On the Radar: John Flowers

A new name on the Maryland basketball radar which has recently emerged is 6-7, 195 pound junior forward John Flowers of St. Mary's Ryken in Leonardtown, Maryland.

John Flowers is a player who had flown under the radar until this season, when he blew up on the court and colleges have taken notice. He started high school at Thomas Stone HS in Waldorf but hadn’t had much interest from recruiters.

“I went to a public school last year and it was a small conference,” said Flowers. “I’m in a bigger conference now so I can expose myself out to the DC area instead of just in southern Maryland.”

According to St. Mary’s Ryken head coach Danny Sancomb, Flowers is now getting that exposure and hearing from schools such as Maryland, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, Michigan, Texas Tech, and UNC Charlotte, among others. Flowers will be visiting Maryland on Saturday for the Duke basketball game. The Terps recently offered Flowers after seeing him perform in the ultra-competitive WCAC.

At 6’7”, Flowers plays both inside and on the perimeter at St. Mary’s Ryken and Sancomb called him the best athlete in the conference.

“John is a kid who can score in every possible way,” said Sancomb. “He can shoot the three. He can put the ball on the floor. He posts up very well. He can go get it on the offensive glass. He moves without the ball. He can go backdoor on somebody. He can score any way you want him to.”

Both player and coach see Flowers playing the three in college with the possibility of him playing the 4 if he continues to grow. Right now he is still refining his perimeter skills and has room for improvement before he’s a true three in college.

“He’s got to improve [his perimeter skills] a little bit, there’s no question,” said Sancomb.  “He’s got to improve his ball-handling. For a 6-7 junior in high school, he can rip the ball through on a cross-over and go by a defender and finish. He’s got to shoot it a little bit better. He can shoot the three and catch and shoot very well right now but it’s going to have to improve.”

“I can get to the basket,” said Flowers, who admitted he’d like to improve his perimeter and free throw shooting. “I’m a good post player. I’m versatile – I’m a three or a four. I can play on the wing or I can play in the post.”

As far as his recruitment, it’s in the fairly early stages for him after being an unknown for so long. His coach thinks he’ll wait until the summer or fall to pick a school.

“I think John will [commit] this summer or early next year,” said Sancomb. “I think he’s got to go and look at all these schools. The only school that he’s actually visited is West Virginia and obviously Saturday will be his second with Maryland.”

Apparently that visit to West Virginia went well and impressed Flowers and his family. His coach said that West Virginia and Texas Tech stand out at this point among schools recruiting him.

“He loved [West Virginia] coach Beilein. He hasn’t stopped talking about him since he got back on Saturday. I would say those two without a doubt are the front-runners. Now Maryland has just gotten in on him, as well as Kentucky.”

Coach Sancomb had nothing but praise for Flowers and sees big things for him in the future. He estimated Flowers averages around 20 points, 13 rebounds, and 6 blocks per game this season.

The best thing about  John is his potential,” Sancomb said. “He’s got a frame he’s going to fill out and put muscle on. He’s got a beautiful basketball frame. He’s just going to keep getting better. From when he came to us in September until now [there has been a] big improvement. And he’s a gym rat. He’s in the gym every day after practice. He’s always staying around and shooting. He wants to be good."


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