Currently averaging 22 points and 6 rebounds per game, 2010 Greer High SG/SF Chris Dean has made a case as one of the top players in the Palmetto State this season. We caught up with the 2010 standout in this edition of our "UP NEXT" series.
Asked how it feels to be one of the state's very best basketball players currently at this juncture Dean replied, "It feels pretty good. All the hard work I put in this summer is paying off with my play this year. People have been doubling me a lot and there's been a bunch of pressure on me."
As of right now things have been great for Dean and his Yellow Jackets teammates as they are still undefeated in region play. Teaming with fellow 2010 standout PG Chandler Hash gives Greer head coach Jeff Neely a great 1-2 punch in the AAA ranks. We've tracked the duo since last season and their efforts are starting to create some buzz from college recruiters.
His offensive firepower and diversity is what stands out the most right now. The 6'4 175 pound shooting guard has displayed it a ton this year putting up 22 per game but he's had a couple of 30+ point outbursts as well. "Two of my best games I'd have to say were against Greenville and Travelers Rest. I had 32 and 31 against those guys. I was able to show a lot of aspects of my game. My jumpshot was falling and people were able to see my abilities."
Chris says he's identified and is fully aware of his strengths and weaknesses and shared them with us. "Some of my strengths are my ability to get out on the break and make the opposing team spread out. I'm a guard but the other team usually has a tough time trying to guard me. Teams don't think I can shoot that good but I can. I can put the ball on the floor and it's helped me a lot." Dean made no bones about some areas he'd like to amp up in an effot to become a better all-around prospect too. "One area that I really need to get better at is my strength. Just getting stronger in general I think would help a lot of things and especially rebounding the basketball."
Putting in hard work on the hardwood is evident for Chris but it isn't the only area that he excels in a big way. Dean is a standout student in the classroom as well. "I've got a 3.7 GPA so I have pretty good grades. I took the SAT a while back and should have my scores back soon too." That strength in the classroom will carry some significant weight for him when it comes time to making a decision for college as well Dean says. "Getting a quality education is going to be the biggest thing for me, that's number one. I'll also look at possibly being able to play in the best conference I can too. I am looking at possibly getting into sports management or athletic training after college."
Being a standout shooting guard from Greenville County Dean helps strengthen what many feel is "shooting guard central" in Greenville County. With the likes of Southside's Robbie Dreher, J.L. Mann's Damien Leonard, and Greenville's Marquis Sloan also being top flight shooting guards.
Dean talked at length about being in the mix with the other big names at the position in Greenville. "Yeah Robbie Dreher and Damien Leonard are the two toughest guys I've faced while at Greer. Robbie is really tough because he can shoot it well but he can get to the bucket and get points too. He's difficult to guard. I like guarding him because he's one of the best around so it makes me better. Damien is tough because you know he can shoot the rock. The reason I think Damien is a little easier to defend than Robbie is if you make him put it on the ground it's easier to take it from him than Robbie. If you give him some room though he's gonna hit it."
The 2010 standout talked about his outlook for the Yellow Jackets heading down the stretch in region play and the playoffs. "My main thing is to take things game by game and help my team win the region and hopefully win another AAA state championship. I also do not want to get shut down or score just single digits. It'd be nice to be an all-state selection this year too but we'll see how things go."
There are already some schools out there that Chris says he's got a heavy interest in and he shared them with us. "I really like Charlotte and Winthrop right now. Really any D1 school that has an interest in me, I'm interested in all good programs."
SCPrepNation.com will continue to bring you the very best boys and girls basketball recruiting coverage when it comes to the Palmetto State so stay tuned. We will have video footage of Dean soon so check back so you can see why the 2010 prospect is creating such a buzz.
FUN FACTS...with CHRIS DEAN
Favorite player: Right now it's Dwayne Wade. All-time though it's Michael Jordan.
Favorite shoes: I'd have to say Jordans but I like to play in other Nikes too.
Favorite video game: NCAA basketball or football
Favorite food: pizza
Favorite thing to do when not playing basketball: Chill with my friends, go out and stuff
Most inspirational person in your life? I'd have to say my dad. He got me interested in basketball and he won a state championship in 1978 at Greer High School. My brother also won a state championship in 2005.