Wake Forest recently received a commitment from 2012 point guard Madison Jones out of Ravenscroft High School in North Carolina, adding a seventh player to its 2012 recruiting class. Generally, a class of this size is frowned upon simply due to scholarship complications down the road. In rare cases, however, it is a necessity and can really help a team's success the following season.
Click through the jump to see how Jones will give the Demon Deacons some much-needed flexibility and depth...
BSD had some analysis of Madison's game last week. That can be found here. The article I am writing, however, looks at what the addition of Jones means for Wake's team next season.
Before signing Madison, Wake had only one player on its roster - and a freshman at that - at the point guard position. The addition of Madison gives incoming freshman Codi Miller-McIntyre some relief off the bench (I am making the assumption that Codi will start ahead of Madison simply due to his higher ranking, although I do think Madison will challenge Codi for that spot).
While Codi is projected to be an immediate impact player, a single freshman can only do so much. We cannot expect one eighteen year old to shoulder the entire load at the most important position on the floor. Madison can come in and provide some meaningful minutes at the point each game.
These minutes will give Codi a much-needed break. It gives him more opportunity to watch the game from the bench, learning alongside his coaches and teammates, something I think is very important in a player's development. It will also allow Codi to play off the ball in certain situations, something that fits well into his game. Codi has been described by many as a scoring combo guard.
Having Madison run the point with Codi or CJ off the ball for stretches of the game will throw a different look at the defense. It allows Madison to do what he's done throughout his whole high school career, run a team, while also allowing Codi and CJ to do what they do best: score the ball.
As I mentioned, Madison's addition prevents CJ from ever having to move over to the point guard slot, allowing him to focus exclusively on his natural shooting guard position. Even though CJ is competent running the point, Wake's offense has proven to be much more efficient and effective with him on the wing. According to Kenpom, CJ's effective field goal percentage this past season (similar to regular field goal percentage but with more weight given to three point field goals made) was 55.3, compared to a much less impressive 42.7 percent his sophomore season when he was forced to play at the point guard spot.
Furthermore, Madison can really help Wake behind the scenes. His addition provides the second unit with a true point guard and gives Codi someone to compete against every day. Madison, no doubt, will compete with Codi for that number one point guard spot from day one, which will only result in a higher level of play by both players. Consequently, the overall level of play in practice will increase, and as we all know, good competition on the practice court almost always translates to better performance in actual games.
Madison is a guy who started at point guard for a Ravenscroft team that won a NCISAA 3A State Championship. He is an athletic floor general who knows how to lead a team and clearly brings a lot of intangibles to Wake, along with his natural talent and basketball skills. Hopefully, these intangibles can add to a recruiting class that helps get Wake back on the right track.
Madison, along with Miller-McIntyre and Aaron Rountree, will be playing in the Jordan Brand Regional Game this Saturday at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte.