2006 Focus: James Dews

James Dews possesses a skill that is lacking among young players nowadays. The Ohio junior doesn't have to knock down long range shots or go to the basket with authority to put up his points.

The mid-range game may be somewhat of a lost art among young players, but James Dews has found it.

The 6-3, 185-pound Lakota East High (Ohio) junior shooting guard specializes in knocking down shots from around the foul line.

``One of the things that separates him is he doesn't live and die by the three," Lakota East coach Wally Vickers said. "His off-the-dribble shooting is very, very good."

``To me, most defenses don't expect it," added Dews. "They expect you to pull-up for three or go to the hole. They aren't ready for it and because of that, it's hard to defend."

Dews, 17, put up 23.2 points per game as a sophomore and is averaging 27 points per contest in a 3-0 start this season. Despite the fact that he became the first freshman in the history of his league to earn all first-team honors, he remains somewhat unknown on a national level.

There are still facets of the game that Dews needs to improve. Being more aggressive in going to the basket. Working on his left hand. Being more of a complete player.

Although Dews hasn't developed the national rep quite yet, he's still on the radar in the Midwest. Xavier and Dayton have both already offered and Michigan State and Michigan are in the mix. So is West Virginia, Purdue and even Kentucky.

Dews, who has a 2.9 GPA, has already been to nearby Xavier and Dayton on unofficial visits and also taken a look at Michigan, Michigan State and Wake Forest.

``The coaches and coaching style are important," Dews said. "How they treat their players and the type of players they bring into the program. But I don't have a leader now. I'm open to everyone right now."

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