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NCAA Basketball

2012 NBA Draft Grade: Harrison Barnes

Harrison Barnes came into the University of North Carolina knowing that he would step into a starting spot in Roy Williams’ squad. The small forward was the second rated recruit heading into the 2010 NCAA season and he certainly lived up to his ranking over the last two years. Barnes made a reputation on being an athletic forward that can hit any jump on the floor. He will be one of the prized prospects in this year’s draft and has a very bright NBA . future. Below is a full draft report of the UNC star heading into the draft:

2011-12 College Average: 17.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 1.1 steals, 1.9 turnovers

Scoring: A- Scoring is one of the easiest things to transition into the bigs because the size of the rim does not change from college hoops to the NBA . Barnes’ best aspect of his game is his ability to score and to create shots for himself. He has a very polished jump shot that is good enough to get him into the starting lineup from day one.  Some people question his ability to finish at the rim, but that is something that will develop more as he matures as a player.

Rebounding: B- Barnes was not exactly known for posting extravagant rebound numbers at UNC (5.2 a game), but the sophomore did have some big competition for rebounds with forwards John Henson and Tyler Zeller also in the front-court. Barnes will instantly become one of the youngest starting small forwards in the league when he is drafted this year and his young legs will help him get plenty of playing time over the veterans, and thus plenty of chances to grab precious late-game rebounds.

Size: B Barnes is not the biggest guy at 215 pounds, but he is a lanky six-foot-eight for a small forward. He will need to add some weight in order to bang around with the bigger bodies in the paint, but the fact that he is over 6’7” is promising for his long-term value.

Athleticism: A– It was truly hard to gauge how athletic this kid was in college, because he rarely had one-on-one opportunities with the Tar Heels talent around the court. However, it is clear that he can flat out ball and knows how to lead an offense. Barnes is a man in a child’s body and will only become a better athlete as he matures.

Projection: Top Three Pick

NBA Comparison: New York Knick’s Carmelo Anthony