Rashad McCants: Scouting Reports

"Too short to guard the WF? Ha. This 6-3 (maybe 6-4) hoopster from Asheville, N.C., via New Hampton (NH) School guards whatever he needs to guard. Big guy? Sure. Little guy? Sure. Quick guy? Sure. He's turned one of his previous weaknesses into one of his biggest strengths. So strong - so quick - so athletic. The personification of mismatch. A prospect that defies position. But enough about his body and skills. How about some intangibles? Animated on the floor. Shows up at winning time ... The kid defies typical positional constraints. Yes, he's "too short" to play wing forward at the high-major level, but his unique frame – a swimmer's body almost, with muscular calves, a V-shaped torso, impossibly broad shoulders and long arms – at this point cancels out any physical shortcoming. McCants manhandles opponents. He beats up same-sized defenders down low, out-quicks taller opponents outside and out-jumps almost everybody." -- Michael Kruse (Prep Stars)

"Some call him a "tweener," as he doesn't fit the mold of either a shooting guard or small forward, but we'll turn it around and call him a "matchup nightmare." McCants explodes off the dribble and throws down vicious dunks, but he can also spot up for a perimeter jump shot. He battles in the paint with the opposing big men for rebounds or putbacks. After this weekend (at the Boo Williams Invitational, 4/01), his defense deserves just as much mention as the other facets of his game. McCants shut down whatever talented player he was assigned to, regardless of height. First 6-11 TX center Kendrick Perkins, followed by 6-5 Duke-bound shooting guard J.J. Redick in the semifinals, and then highly ranked MI wing Lester Abram in the title game." -- Ben Sherman

"The man without a position. McCants played power forward, wing forward, shooting guard and even guarded the 6-9 260 pound center from Houston. This kid screams, pumps fists ... As a recruiting analyst, I find it hard not to be in awe of McCants -- because he just does all of the things you'd want a kid to do on the court. He's a leader, he's intense and he's a winner. We saw North Carolina head coach Matt Doherty raise his eyebrows on a few occasions while eyeing McCants explosive athleticism. Our gut feeling is that he's going to make one ACC program very happy and wreck havoc on the other eight for four years." -- Clint Jackson

"He played wherever we needed him, but he will be a small forward or wing guard in college. He could play either position. Rashad is 6-3, maybe 6-4, but he plays much taller because his arms are extremely long. I consider him a good jumper, not a leaper, but he dunks over big people with relative ease because of those long arms.

"At the beginning of the season, I would put Rashad on the weakest player. He wasn't very good defensively then. But by the end of the season, he was guarding the other team's best player. He worked hard on his defense. His strength, quickness and long arms make it difficult for anyone to go past him. He is naturally strong; he just has one of those bodies that looks like it has been chiseled by God. He has never lifted much, but he has started to do that with us.

"I would say the weakest part of Rashad's game is his ball handling. He needs to get better at beating people on the dribble. He handles fine in the open court; in fact, he is practically unstoppable in transition. He really is fun to watch.

"Rashad is one of the best shooters I've seen, but because he is so athletic, his ability to shoot the basketball is overlooked. I'll put him against anybody as a shooter. He has a very nice jumper and is a consistent three shooter." -- New Hampton coach Jamie Arsenault (ACC Today)

"If ever a wing player had an all-around game, McCants is that player. He has a nice stroke from behind the arc, has great quickness, power, and ball control on his drives, and he loves to get the ball in the post with his back to the basket, as well ... He is very emotional and expressive on the court, and is not afraid to get in an opponent's ear ... Some recruiting experts had indicated before the Boo tournament that McCants might be a "tweener." He was thought to be too short to play small forward in college, but they weren't sure he could play shooting guard. But McCants answered these skeptics in resounding fashion: show me someone who can stop me playing inside or outside. Let it be known that, convention aside, the guy can just flat out play." -- Matt Michalec

"Athletically, he's a phenom. McCants' game resembles that of Jerry Stackhouse. His jumper from three-point land is very good and he converts plenty of opportunities around the bucket. He likes to take his man to the blocks and can score using his athleticism." -- Dave Telep (after watching McCants lead the USA Basketball Youth Development Festival in FG% and 3pt% in June, 2000)

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