NCAA Coaches Poll: Most Underrated Player

NCAA Coaches Poll: Most Underrated Player

Scout.com talked to more than 100 college coaches to get their take on who was the most underrated player they saw during their July travels.

For recruiting purposes, July is a vital month for college coaches.

The month consists of three five-day evaluation periods, where coaches can be on the road evaluating and gathering information on players.

The final evaluation period concluded at 5 p.m. on Sunday. On Monday and Tuesday, I reached out to more than 100 head coaches and assistants to get there take on who they thought was the most competitive, most underrated and best overall player they saw during the month.

The second of this three-part series focuses on the players that the coaches voted on as the most underrated.


Perhaps the biggest story to come from this category is the sheer number of players that received votes.

Of the 114 participants 10 coaches opted not to vote in this category. Reason likely being they are recruiting the player they think is most undervalued and didn’t want to draw any more attention to the particular prospect.

So out of 104 votes, 73 different players received votes as the most underrated player in the country.

Donovan Mitchell, a 6-foot-3 guard out of Wolfeboro (N.H.) Brewster Academy, was the selection for the most underrated player. Mitchell received nine of the 103 votes.

Most Underrated Voting
  • Donovan Mitchell -- 9
  • Kerwin Roach -- 7
  • Jacob Evans -- 4
  • Dean Wade -- 3
  • Deng Adel -- 3
  • “He’s made a big jump from last year to this year,” one college coach said. “He’s always had talent, but he’s putting it together and playing with a confidence and pace.”

    “Donovan Mitchell is by far the most underrated kid in the country and it’s not even close,” another coach told Scout.com.

    Mitchell’s emergence began at the Reebok Breakout Classic. Playing in the camp, Mitchell showed his athleticism, aggressive nature and showed off his improved long-range shot.

    That strong play continued at the UA Finals and at Fab 48 playing with The City.

    “He’s really like Dwyane Wade,” one college coach said. “He was my favorite player all summer.”

    Mitchell, who now holds scholarship offers from schools like Villanova, Kansas, Louisville, Indiana, Providence and others, didn’t see this type of play or even this type of college interest coming.

    “I couldn’t see myself in this spot,” Mitchell admitted. “I feel like I’ve just been able to work my butt off while at school and finally it all came out. All my preparation came out.”

    Kerwin Roach, of Houston (Tex.) North Shore, received the second most votes, as he reeled in seven. Roach emerged at the Fab 48 during the last evaluation period.

    Roach had a big July with the Houston Rockstarz
    “He’s a very competitive combo that plays very hard and is always making plays,” a college coach told Scout.com. “He wants to win and does all he can to win. Tough kid.”

    When asked to describe Roach’s game one college coach said: “Very athletic, quick first step, excellent vision, good shooter, can play either point or off the ball and has the ability to be an excellent defender.”

    Roach, as mentioned, is able to play either guard position. At 6-foot-3, he’s fast, is a consistent long-range shooter and has good vision. When I watched him at the Fab 48 nearly the entire Big 12 was in attendance checking him out.

    Jacob Evans, who also had a strong showing at the Fab 48, received the third most votes as the most underrated player with four. A 6-foot-5 wing scorer, Evans played with the Louisiana Dynasty on the summer circuit.

    The players that also received multiples votes were Dean Wade, Deng Adel, Brandon Ingram, Dillons Brooks, Dupree McBrayer, Jawun Evans, Jaylen Brown, Kenny Williams, Kentrell Barkley, KeVaughn Allen, Kyle Guy , Vance Jackson, Jeremy Hemsley and Jalen Brunson.

    MY TAKE

    My vote for this category doesn’t vary too much from the college coaches. I personally think Donovan Mitchell, who isn't currently in our rankings, is easily the most underrated recruit in the country. He proved himself as a top 30 type talent with his play in July. He’s a tremendous athlete, a very good passer and an improved shooter and scorer. After Mitchell, three players – Justin Patton (Creighton), Matt Heldt (Marquette) and Kerwin Roach – immediately come to mind. All three were unranked heading into July and all three will be top 100 recruits and four-star prospects when the rankings are updated.

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