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Blue & Gold

2019 Commit: Mikal Dawson (6-4 2G)

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1 hour ago, akronzips71 said:

Now wait. This guy grad HS in 2018 but he won't be playing for us this year?

 

According to VerbalCommits.com Mikal Dawson is in the 2019 recruiting class.  He will play at Huntington Prep in 2018-19.   

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2 hours ago, akronzips71 said:

Now wait. This guy grad HS in 2018 but he won't be playing for us this year?

 

Welcome to the way things are done now. Instead of riding the bench as a redshirt freshman, he will be playing and getting better at a prep school. 

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It is kind of encouraging to me that Mikal committed before the season. The entire reason he decided to play a year of prep school (according to local news articles that I have read) was so he can show off to scouts this upcoming season and get some better offers. He must have really been impressed by his visit to decide to commit before he even played a game. I obviously believe that the Zips are a step up from Marshll, BG, and the like, but it is nice to see that recruits are still seeing it that way as well.

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Big fan of this commit. If he stays committed, awesome. If not, still awesome, because it's a Huntington Prep kid committing to Akron. Might turn a few heads towards Akron that otherwise weren't looking our way. 

 

51 minutes ago, UAZippers said:

It is kind of encouraging to me that Mikal committed before the season. The entire reason he decided to play a year of prep school (according to local news articles that I have read) was so he can show off to scouts this upcoming season and get some better offers. He must have really been impressed by his visit to decide to commit before he even played a game. I obviously believe that the Zips are a step up from Marshll, BG, and the like, but it is nice to see that recruits are still seeing it that way as well.

 

Totally agree they are an obvious step up from Marshll, but not sure they're a step up - let alone an obvious one - from Marshall (coming off an upset of Wichita State in the NCAA Tourney). ;)

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When Groce recruits new players I like to compare them to past players to try to get an idea of how he intends to utilize them. Some are more obvious than others. Mikal Dawson's videos scream former Illini guard, Rayvonte Rice to me. And that would be a very good thing.

 

Both 6 - 4. I think Dawson has longer arms.

Dawson 200lbs now. Rice 220lbs out of high school, played at 230lbs for Illinois.

Both Shooting Guards that played some forward in high school.

Both very strong and played football in high school.

Both seek contact and can rebound/score in a crowd.

Both have hops and play above the rim.

Both team leaders and state champions.

Rice was runner-up to Mr. Illinois Basketball and a 3 star recruit. Dawson was voted captain of the Class AAA all-state first team in West Virginia and a 2 star recruit. Both passed over by P5 schools out of high school. Rice transferred in from Drake after 2 years to play for Groce.

 

I don't know if there is such a thing as a power guard in basketball, but that is exactly what Rayvonte Rice was for Illinois. He was "Mr. And 1" because he drove the lane like a running back. I think Utomi, who is taller and a natural wing could very well take on that role now that he has help and depth at forward. And I sure do hope to see Mikal Dawson develop into some version of a power guard.

 

 

 

 

 

https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5343942/58fbe8b002b1c631d0ccfdbf

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Illini Zip
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After discussing Ali Ali, we should check in and see what's new with Mikal Dawson. He was harder to find and there is not much good video out there on him. He is using this gap year to develop with a group called Huntington Prep Post Grad (Gold Team) which I believe operates out of Marshall University facilities. The kid is indeed strong, especially for a guard and plays a hard nosed game. Anyway, the following video is a mess. There is camera lens fog for one thing and the operator doesn't follow the action well, but you get a sense of his ability and the level of competition he is running with this year.

 

Blue and Gold team, #22:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3yb_Sxvs2g

 

 

 

Program twitter page:  https://twitter.com/HunPrepPostGrad

 

 

 

Edited by Illini Zip
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1000 pts scored in 35 games averages to 29 pts/game. I think that's impressive at any level. Maybe the Zips have already found their much needed go-to scorer.

Edited by Illini Zip

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I watched a decent chunk of that video @Illini Zip posted on 2/15. Dawson seemed to do a good job at both finishing at the rim in traffic and at hitting open 3's. It's just a chunk of 1 game, but I feel he would be an instant help on the offensive end. I feel he has some improving to do on the defensive end of the court. I'd expect the team culture and Groce stressing defense to earn minutes will help him make big strides in that department.

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