In today’s third release of Scout.com’s 2013 rankings, the West Coast makes a big impact at the top of the list, landing five prospects amongst the top 26 in the country.
Leading that group is 6-foot-4, 175-pound Phoenix Westwind Academy shooting guard Chris Thomas, who comes in at No. 5. The explosive Denver native has been dominant thus far in the spring, making his placement in the Top 50 an easy decision.
“Thomas is the premier scorer in the class,” says Scout.com recruiting analyst Brian Snow. “No one in this class can match his athleticism, speed with the basketball, strength, and shot making.
“Ever since he burst onto the scene last spring Thomas has been on the fast track to the top of the rankings. This spring his signature moment came in a shootout with Shabazz Muhammad where Thomas matched him shot for shot. When Thomas gets going, really there is nothing a defender can do to stop him.”
Next up is 6-foot-7, 205-pound Oakland Archbishop Mitty forward Aaron Gordon, who moves to No. 6 in the nation up from No. 9.
“Gordon was a top 10 prospect coming into the year, and a strong high school season followed by a great start with the Oakland Soldiers actually helped him move up a few spots in the rankings,” said Snow.
“A power forward with a nice handle and good athleticism, Gordon dominates all over the floor. Also an excellent student, Gordon is the complete package as a player.”
Making a strong debut into the rankings is 6-foot-5, 190-pound Richmond (Calif.) Salesian shooting guard Jabari Bird, whose scoring ability helped him come in as Scout.com’s 10th ranked prospect in the country.
“You won’t find many guys wired to score it like Bird,” said Scout.com national recruiting analyst Evan Daniels. “His mentality is to put up points and he can do it in a hurry from all three levels. He’s one of the best scoring guards in the country, regardless of class.”
Rounding out the Top 25 is 6-foot-4, 190-pound San Diego Lincoln shooting guard Tyree Robinson, who previously came in at 10th overall.
“Tyree has a great combination of strength and athleticism for a guard,” says Snow. “He can be an excellent defender, and right now his game is built on energy and effort on that end along with an ability to beat his man off the dribble on offense.
“His outside shot is solid as well, but as a combo guard he scores in bunches and mostly does it off the bounce.”
Right after Robinson at #26 is 6-foot-4, 175-pound Los Angeles Crenshaw shooting guard Isaac Hamilton, yet another scoring specialist at the two-guard spot from the West Coast.
“Their body types may be different, but there’s one thing Isaac does similar to his brother Jordan and that’s score points at an alarming rate,” Daniels said. “While his jump shot it impressive, his game consists of plenty of driving ability of mid-range shots.”
The last West Coast prospect in the Scout.com Top 50 is 6-foot-3, 180-pound Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep point guard Nigel Williams-Goss, who moved from 22nd to 44th overall.
Other West Coast prospects that have the chance to make the next Scout.com 2013 rankings include point guards Ikenna Iroegbu, Brandon Randolph and Rahsaad Muhammad, as well as small forwards Stephen Domingo and Roschon Prince.