Carolina Challenge Recap: 2011 Class

Cary, N.C. – Despite being a year or two younger than the other prospects at the Carolina Challenge, a handful of freshman managed to stand out during the all-day event.

Photos Courtesy Arianna Hoffman

Although it is still early, the freshman class in North Carolina looks to be a talented one. It's already full of guys that can score like P.J. Hairston, Donta Harper and Bishop Daniels.

To go with the scorers, the class of 2011 also has some talented big men. Marshall Plumlee appears to be the furthest along, but Anthony Williams and John Cannon were two other post prospects that made a name for themselves at the Challenge.

Donta Harper, SG, South Central – We heard some hype about this freshman before the event and the 6-foot-4, 165-pound certainly showed some potential. Harper displayed range out to three and made a terrific pass on the baseline that led to a bucket.

Rankin Pushes The Tempo
Marquis Rankin, PG, Vance – Running the point for his camp team, Rankin looked like one of the better young guards in attendance. He's got a strong dribble and a quick first step. Rankin also has range out to three, but more often than not attacks the basket looking to score or dish the ball off to get a teammate an easy shot.

John Cannon, C, Mountain Heritage – With guys rotating gyms there were a few teams that we only got to see once. Cannon's team was among that group, however the 6-foot-10, 225-pound freshman still caught our eye. He already understands positioning and how to seal off defenders. He also drained a spot up jumper from 15 feet.

Jacoby Davis, SG/PG, Vance – This athletic guard attacks the basket and does it well. He has a strong frame that allows him to take hits and he's crafty with the ball in his hands. To go with his ability to attack, Davis also knocked down a three-pointer in the game we saw.

Bishop Daniels, PG/SG, Leesville – The 6-foot-1, 150-pound freshman was one of the biggest surprises of the camp. Daniels started off camp by draining jumper after jumper, and he's not just a spot up shooter, as he's capable of going off the dribble and knocking down shots. The Raleigh (N.C.) Leesville standout was among the top 10 scorers at camps, as he put up 14.6 points a game.

Marshall Plumlee, PF/C, Christ School – Yes, you guessed it. There's a third Plumlee. Already a legit 6-foot-9, Plumlee played hard and looked to be having as much fun as anyone during the Challenge. He's already skilled and he proved that when he busted out a left handed hook at the end of his final game.

Much like his brothers, Plumlee is a solid jump shooter and he knocked down a bunch of face up jumpers. Look for the third Plumlee to be one of the best players in the state of North Carolina and likely the country, as he certainly has the work ethic and pedigree.

Hairston Shows Scorers Mentality
P.J. Hairston, SF/SG, Dudley – One of the best pure scorers in camp came from the freshman class. Hairston had it rolling, especially from long range, where he hit a bunch of three-pointers. The 6-foot-5, 205-pound wing is already solidly built and has a tremendous feel for the game. Although it's still early, he's a guy that high major schools should begin to monitor.

Anthony Williams, C, West Coumbus – The best rebounder at the Challenge was definitely Williams. The 6-foot-8, 240-pound big man sought out rebounds in and out of his area. He knew where and when to position himself and gave his team a big lift. Big men don't get a ton of touches in camp ball, so Williams went to the glass with some ferocity and he got majority of his points from put backs.

Deuce Bello, SG, Westchester Country Day – Bello certainly showed flashes of why he's already considered one of the better prospects in the 2011 class. He's a 6-foot-3, 170-pound guard that already has a knack for scoring. On Saturday he got his points in variety of ways. He knocked down jumpers, slashed to the basket and even hit a sweet up and under on the baseline.

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