Tubby Gets His Guy

Orlando (Fl.) Evans guard C.J. Williamson signed his Letter of Intent on Wednesday to play for Texas Tech. The following is a look at what Williamson means to the Red Raiders and how he fits on the roster.

The addition of Orlando, Florida’s C.J. Williamson guarantees that Tubby Smith Red Raiders will have length and physicality on the perimeter, as well as extreme versatility.

Williamson, formerly a teammate of current Red Raider Justin Gray, is 6-foot-6 and 185 pounds, and has the ability to play the point, off guard or small forward at the collegiate level. In certain respects, his game, as well as his frame, resemble Gray’s. Specifically, Williamson is an extremely smooth player who rarely appears flustered or out of control. He takes his time, surveys the court, and makes good decisions with the basketball. And what this means is that Smith is getting a player who will contribute immediately.

But finding a position for Williamson could be a conundrum for the simple reason that his skills make him a strong candidate at three positions. Hence, Williamson has amazing quickness for a player his size, and a devastating crossover dribble that allows him to create space and drive to the hoop where he is able to absorb contact and finish. And as a junior at the prep level he handed out four assists per game so there is good reason to believe his vision and passing skills are that of a point guard.

Those terrific point guard skills aside, Williamson could also find a home at the shooting guard or small forward positions. He has three-point range and good mechanics on his jumper. Williamson can also stop on a dime and hit the pull-up J. And as a prepster a year ago he averaged five rebounds per game, suggesting he strong enough to compete in the paint.

Pegging Williamson’s future position at Tech is a difficult task. Early word has it that freshman newcomer Keenan Evans is impressing at point guard, and if that is the case he could own that position as a sophomore, junior and senior.

Likewise, at off guard, JUCO transfer Devaughntah Williams looks like the real deal, but he will be a senior when Williamson is a freshman, so the latter could be the heir apparent. To lock down that position he will probably have to beat out fellow freshman Jordan Jackson.

At small forward it would appear that Justin Gray will ultimately be the man for the job, although another freshman, Zach Smith will also be in the mix, to say nothing of oft-injured but promising Aaron Ross.

Regardless of where Williamson ultimately plays—and he will probably contribute at three positions—Tubby Smith has seriously augmented the talent on his roster. Williamson is listed as a three-star recruit, but has a four-star offer list that includes the likes of Texas, Kansas State, Virginia Commonwealth, Virginia Tech, Alabama, UTEP, Clemson and Missouri. Louisville also showed interest, but an actual offer has not been confirmed.

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