After a solid sophomore season, Josh Carter didnt have quite the breakout junior season he had hoped for, failing to take advantage of the greater offensive role that came his way. While the departure of floor general and shotmaker Acie Law opened up a lot more shots for Carter in the Aggies offense, it also decreased the quality of many of those shots, without Law to set them up for him.
Carter did manage to slightly increase his scoring to 12.2 points per game, but with his field goal percentage dropping 7 points to 42%, his three-point percentage dropping 12 points to 38%, and his eFG% dropping a remarkable 13 points to 53%, its hard to see that as a good thing.
In terms of what he looked like on the floor, there really wasnt much different about Carters skills, just his role. His shot looked the same and he still was absolutely deadly at times, but he is a much better shooter when he gets his feet set and his body squared, and this season he had defenders sticking him tougher and closing in on him faster, making it harder for him to do those things. Carter does show flashes of ability to hit shots coming off screens, fading away, and pulling up off the dribble, but he doesnt do it consistently enough, something that was a problem last season as well. After a pretty consistent start to the season in terms of scoring production every night, Carters point totals began to fluctuate wildly again towards the latter half of the conference schedule.
With the ball, Carter looks very comfortable in space, and is still capable of making one or two dribble drives to the basket, but he doesnt take it all the way there often. On the contrary, hes actually developed a nice mid-range game with runners, floaters, and fadeaways, where he shows good touch and body control. While his ball-handling looks comfortable in space, and he has the first step to get past his man, he struggles to get all the way to the basket because of a high center of gravity, lack of change of direction ability with the ball, a high dribble, and the inability to make advanced moves in space. Off the ball, Carter shows very good recognition of angles and space, doing a good job to cut off screens or lose his man to get open for lay-ups at the basket.
Defensively, Carter makes good use of his length on perimeter defense, and shows a good stance and commitment, but often being assigned to smaller guards, he lacks the lateral quickness to stay in front. His high center of gravity also hurts him when having to change directions, even though he does a good job of getting into squad position. His hustle, length, and athletic abilities allow him to make some weakside plays in terms of blocks and steals, but they are far and few between, as he averages just 0.8 blocks/steals combined per game.
As a senior, the pressure is on Carter to pick up where he left off as a sophomore, and it will be interesting to see if he can bring his shooting percentages back to where they were without so many wide open jumpers. Carter is likely someone well be seeing at the pre-draft camps in the offseason, and he should have ample opportunities to prove hes worth taking a shot on in the NBA. With a great shooting touch and good size for a wing, he definitely has a chance, but hes going to need to help himself more than he did as a junior.