I went to the Bob Jones v. Hoover game last night to check out Alabama signee Levi Randolph. We missed most of the first half because tipoff was moved up from 7:30 to 6:30.
If I had to compare him to someone, Kennedy Winston would certainly be the first player to come to mind. They are of similiar size and build, and much like Kennedy, Levi is amazing at creating his own shot. He was definitely the go to guy for Bob Jones, and he pretty much single handedly brought them back from an 11 point defecit to force overtime. Whenever they needed a basket, they would run an iso play for him, and he consistently beat his man. He's so quick he got to the basket and scored before the helpside defense could get into position. He's got all the moves off the dribble. He's got a wicked cross over, he can spin, go right or left, hesitation, up and under, drop step, he can do it all. I was very impressed with him offensively. He has a good midrange jumper, and was deadly with the teardrop runner through the lane. Good at following his own shots and putting in his rebounds. He has a decent jumpshot, but he's not going to light it up from downtown. He has the versatility to play the 2 or 3.
He made some good defensive plays, but was inconsistent on defense. He got some steals in the open court, but I was not overwhelmed with his intensity on defense, especially off ball. That being said, I think both teams were looking ahead to the area tournaments later this week, as this was pretty much a meaningless game. Meaningless as it may have been, it was still a great game. As I mentioned, Bob Jones was down 11 with about 4 minutes to play, but rallied to force overtime. It was tied again with time running out, when Bob Jones got a stop and Levi was fouled with 3 seconds remaining. He made the first but missed the second, and there was a jump ball on the rebound, with the possession arrow giving Hoover the ball with 2.8 seconds left. That was huge, because Hoover had no timeouts remaining, and time would have expired otherwise. Instead, they threw the inbounds pass close to halfcourt, where a kid crossed the line and nailed a 45 foot shot as the horn sounded for the win.
Other players of note in that game included Reggie Ragland, who is committed to play football for Alabama. He was in foul trouble most of the night, but he certainly has the build of a linebacker. Bob Jones had a white kid who is signed with Gardner-Webb, and I think he will do well for them. I was impressed with his passing skills. They also have a junior who has a nice shot and will likely play D1 ball, but his name escapes me. #24 for Hoover can flat out shoot, I think he made 5 or 6 3's just in the time we were there.