D.J. Hogg: Junior Primer

It's times like these when rankings can appear outdated, and why in the coming weeks we'll update our look at the Class of 2015.

You'll really have to pardon the pun, but D.J. Hogg has been a boss this season. (His name actually is pronounced "Hogue," but nevertheless. ...)

Hogg arose from relative obscurity to national prominence very rapidly. Playing up with the 17s on the EYBL circuit for the Texas Titans in 2013, Hogg compiled solid scoring numbers in the country's most competitive league. He also attended events such as the Elite 100 and proved that he can thrive in an individual setting as well.

From the moment he first surfaced through the early summer, he appeared to be growing physically as well as in terms of skills. Hogg initially projected as a combo forward or perhaps even a jumbo wing, but by the conclusion of summer he clearly had grown into a stretch four.

His ample talents brought heavy collegiate interest. Even prior to his junior season he claimed offers from UCLA, Arizona, Texas, Oregon, Kansas State, Notre Dame, SMU and Missouri.

The 2013-14 season has featured Hogg in a more dominant light. No longer merely opportunistic as an offensive player, he's creating for himself better than ever and appears to be stepping into an elevated realm of potential star. He was outstanding at the Thanksgiving Hoopfest and has generated increasing chatter thanks to a style of play that lends itself to impact performance in both college and perhaps even professionally as well.

Hogg's offer list certainly carries more pedigree than a ranking outside the national top 40 would predict. In addition to those programs already listed, he now holds offers from Baylor, Alabama, Creighton, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Florida and Kansas, among others. That's a national list consisting of blueblood programs spanning the country, so obviously recruiting doesn't need to sit too highly on Hogg's list of life concerns.

On the court, he's a fantastic shooter with an effortless stroke to 22 feet. He doesn't need a lot of time to release his shot, has an excellent follow through, hits some contested attempts and almost always looks to be on balance. He's streaky, yes, but he possesses the form to become a deadeye marksman at the next level.

He also carries a very sturdy frame. When defended by an opposing wing, Hogg uses his height and weight to dive into the post and create turnaround jump shots. That strength also should enable him to become a solid defender, particularly when he's asked to guard a more interior-oriented player. And when bigs attempt to defend him, he can run them ragged on the perimeter and set up his threes.

His ball-handling and passing are sure, and his overall coordination, stride and agility are befitting a high-major talent. Though his game presently relies heavily on his jump shooting, he has a balanced toolset and has begun to put the ball on the floor more frequently.

Though not an elite run/jump athlete, Hogg certainly doesn't lack in that regard and should be able to hold his own physically versus the national elite. All told, he's one of the most intriguing prospects in the junior class and appears prepared for a huge spring and summer.

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