Mocksville is a small hamlet west of North Carolina's Triad region, and Davie County high school isn't known as one of the state's most prolific talent factories. But Caleb Martin and his twin brother Cody Martin emerged as freshmen and picked up very early college interest, including offers from Wake Forest and Virginia Tech prior to their sophomore seasons.
Neither received immense publicity due to the size and location of their high school, but Caleb's exploits on the travel circuit for Team Loaded earned him a national ranking. By the time of his rising junior summer, he (and Cody) had added an offer from N.C. State. From the beginning the recruiting process felt like it would end with a local or regional school winning out, and the Wolfpack beat out their competitors in October, 2012.
Caleb began to evolve into a full-time wing prospect with a strong frame and high skill level. He arrived at this past spring's Carolina Challenge a marked man due to his national stature and early commitment, and though not spectacular he showed why he had been such a valued prospect.
His summer became derailed by an injured foot that kept him out of action at the Super 64 (and elsewhere) in late July, thus depriving many scouts from tracking his progress. He'll get ample opportunity to impress as a senior, though, as he and Cody transferred to Oak Hill Academy for maximum visibility and instruction.
Martin is a fine jump shooter with effortless three-point range. He fires in jumpers with an easy, mechanically sound stroke that should translate very well to the collegiate level.
He also has broad shoulders and has become significantly stronger over the past couple years. With a college strength and conditioning regimen — along with a first step that's now markedly quicker — he should be able to incorporate a driving game along with his shooting.
And his height alone will become a major weapon. A powerful and skilled 6-7 wing will present matchup problems for most opponents, and with further development Martin should be able to cultivate a post game to exploit shorter defenders.
His passing ability ranks above-average, and he'll be a fine rebounder as well with the strength to defend some of the stretch-fours who now inhabit the college game.
Martin had one very bad game at the NBPA Top 100 Camp in June, at a time when nearly every scout was on hand watching the same court. He played much better than that afterward, however, proving that he could more than hold his own against national level competitors. Still, at times he's too reliant on his jump shot when he might enjoy greater success off the bounce.
He also doesn't possess ideal hips in terms of slashing and finishing. He's more of a straight-line driver and thus can be funneled directly into a shotblocker more easily than some other blue-chip wings.
Meanwhile, he has suffered two significant foot injuries over the past two years. He's expected to recover fully, but that's always a concern.
Martin doesn't project as a one-and-done or a guy who ends up taking 15-plus shots per game early in his career. He's likely to begin more opportunistically for the Wolfpack, which like to play at a high tempo and thus he should receive open three-point looks in transition.
Perhaps the key will be how quickly he rounds out his game and responds to scouting reports that undoubtedly will consider him a stationary shooter. He appears to have the physical tools (height, frame, quickness) to develop into an all-around scorer, and with time he should become a fine multi-year starter for Mark Gottfried's program.
His brother, Cody, also warrants mention because he'll accompany Caleb every step of the way. Caleb is considered the superior prospect of the two because he possesses more legitimate wing skills, but Cody is a talented combo forward and should contend for an eventual starting berth as well.