|Name: Jaquan Miles
Class: Junior (2017)
High School: Northampton County (Conway, NC)
Position: Shooting Guard / Small Forward
AAU Team: Richmond Squires
Projected Level: Mid Major/High Major D1
Video Link: https://youtu.be/pSEzk8hq0U8
Jaquan Miles (also known as J.J. Miles) is a sweet shooting SG/SF from Northampton County HS in Conway, NC. He has been playing varsity basketball since he was the teams designated shooter as a 6’2” freshman. He had a great sophomore season during the 2014-2015 campaign, capped off with a 33 point outing during the 2015 NCHSAA 1A State Playoffs in a matchup against Northside Pinetown. Fast forward to now, he’s 6’6” and has retained his shooting stroke and improved his other skills along the way. He produces big numbers consistently for his Northampton County HS. So far this season (2015-2016), he’s currently averaging staggering numbers of over 28 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks per game. He’s only a junior and has plenty of room to continue growing as a player.
Shooting/Scoring Ability – Very confident and consistent knockdown shooter. Has a nice high release and solid overall form. Makes shots from all levels, whether off the catch or off the dribble. Has an effortless release all the way out to 24 feet. Scores in huge bunches at times with a barrage of jump-shots, pull-ups and dribble drive moves. Despite being the primary shooter/scorer for his Northampton County HS team, he still manages to be consistent shooting the basketball from the perimeter against a variety of man to man defenses and zone defenses keyed in mainly just to stop him. He is a very solid/confident free throw shooter as well. Very rarely misses free throw attempts. With added gym time and continuing to work on his jump-shot, he could arrive in college as a deadly jump-shooting option from the start of his college career.
Intangibles – It’s typically hard to get a good read on whether or not a kid has the intangibles to progress as a player by watching a few games, but the necessary intangibles are all glaringly evident with this kid. He has a high basketball IQ and the mentality to take and make big shots as evidenced in his big games against Northside (Pinetown) and South Creek (NC). His rebounding instincts are also really good as he’s a solid/quick leaper. Takes some risks that most players would not take in transition, but the risks somehow seem to always result into a layup or a trip to the line for free throws. He has a high motor (which can be an unteachable trait) and always hustles hard on both ends of the court. Has good body language. His teammates appear to love playing with him, as he displays good leadership with a sound finesse and confidence to his game.
Passing Ability – Despite the fact that he’s putting up staggering scoring numbers, he is by no means a selfish ballplayer. Very unselfish and willing to share the basketball. He has showcased an underrated passing ability in pick and roll situations, in transition and in several drive and dish situations. When he grabs defensive rebounds, he’s shown a good habit of looking ahead and throws full court outlet passes with a high accuracy.
Areas for Improvement:
Strength – By absolutely no means is he a weak basketball player, but he could stand to put on about 10 to 15 pounds of muscle to handle more physical play on both ends. Listed at 195, but looks closer to 185. As of right now at the next level, he would be labeled a good but not a great athlete. He already plays strong, but if he vastly strengthens his core, lower and upper body, he’ll become much more efficient playing through contact, finishing at the rim and he won’t be easily moved out of position by opponents at the next level who possess more girth.
Ball Control – Creativity with the ball isn’t an issue, however he does exhibit a habit of being too upright/loose with his handle at times. Better defenders aim to get underneath him and pressure him to his left side. This often times turns into tough contested pull-up jumpers and sometimes results in turnovers. He shoots it well enough that it doesn’t make too much of a difference at this level. However, to translate his scoring and shooting to the next level, he’ll have to strengthen his ball handling so that he could mix it up more, ex: strong drives to basket coupled with pull up jumpers and passes. Repetition pounding the basketball with his off hand, executing a variety of dribbling drills, getting lower and getting stronger will elevate his offensive game to another level.
Defensive Consistency – When motivated he’s shown to be a solid defender in help-side defensive situations and on the ball. However, he has a habit of gambling too early against ball-handlers. It leads at times to open shots and missed defensive rebounding attempts for his team. As with most young wings, he relies on his size often to stay in front of players instead of staying low and moving his feet. If he continues working on his lateral quickness (core) and staying motivated on the defensive end, he could become a really good option to defend opposing team’s scorers.
Game Film: Courtesy of Riverside HS (Williamston) & Northampton County HS
Photo Credits: Sarah Bloom (RRDailyHerald)