|Team: Morgan St,|
H: 5' 10"|
W: 175 lbs
Current: G |
High School: Digital Harbor HS
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
Ryan Thomson takes a closer look at North Carolina small forward Justin Jackson's performance against Kentucky.
The 6'8 junior had arguably his best game at the college level, finishing with a very strong 34 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists in 36 minutes, shooting 10-17 from the field and 10-15 from the free throw line.
Jackson is shooting 37% from beyond the arc on the season, correcting one of his biggest impediments preventing his NBA draft stock from taking off his first two seasons in college, where he shot just 29% for 3.
His numbers are up across the board on the year in fact, as he's posting a career high 21 points per-40 on the season, while his rebounding, 2P%, free throw attempts, free throw percentage and PER have all improved.
While North Carolina lost this game 103-100, the fact that Jackson was able to step up and have perhaps the best performance of his college career against this type of competition certainly bodes well for his prospects.
Ryan Thomson is a video analyst for DraftExpress. Follow him on twitter and check out his DraftExpress Video Archive. He will be breaking down the NBA draft in digital format all year long for us.
Justin Jackson decided to test the draft waters and was invited to the NBA Draft Combine, but ultimately made the decision to return to North Carolina for his junior season after a poor showing and lackluster NBA feedback. Jackson will be one of UNC's veteran leaders this season after the graduation of Marcus Paige and Brice Johnson, and will likely be called upon to have a bigger role in the offense. He'll be looking to build on his draft portfolio after two solid, but not spectacular, seasons to start his collegiate career.
Mike Schmitz continues our coverage of the top NBA prospects in the ACC with a video scouting report of the #3 prospect in the conference, North Carolina's Justin Jackson.
Over the course of the camp, the 6' 8.5” North Carolina wing proved to be the most offensively polished small forward out of a very talented group of wings. Jackson has excellent natural scoring instincts and is capable of getting buckets from all over the floor.
He showed his high basketball IQ with his passing ability (3.3 assists per 40 pace adjusted as a freshman), fluidity with the basketball driving in a straight line and attacking closeouts, and lethal mid-range pull up/floater game off the dribble.
Jackson played with the ball quite a bit and looked comfortable putting it on the deck going both right and left. Although he doesn't always get all the way to the rim, he uses his size to rise up over his defender and knock down contested pull up jumpers with relative ease. Jackson shows an excellent feel for the game as he rarely plays outside of himself and forces up bad shots or tries to make plays that aren't there.
While the Houston, TX native impressed with his smooth scoring ability, he didn't answer many of the questions surrounding his shooting range. Jackson is deadly as a jump shooter inside the arc but really lacks consistency when he stretches it out to the 3-point line. Jackson's mechanics get a bit stiff as he incorporates a somewhat violent dip of the ball and doesn't quite the rotation you would hope for from a player with such soft touch inside the arc. Becoming a more consistent threat from behind the arc will be an important part of Jackson's development.
On the defensive end, Jackson has some room to develop as well. Although he has solid length for his position (6' 10” wingspan), Jackson has a thin, hunched frame that limits his ability to guard stronger forwards. Jackson is also a bit hunched in his stance and struggles to consistently contain penetration versus quicker wings.
Jackson moves well enough to eventually develop into an adequate defender, especially given his 6' 10' wingspan, but it will be interesting to see how the 20-year-old's body develops as it will play a big role in his ability to defend stronger wings and finish through contact offensively. With all of that said, Jackson's size, scoring instincts and feel for the game make him an attractive option as a draft prospect, possibly as early as this upcoming year.
Freshman Justin Jackson has been playing some of his best basketball as of late, shooting the ball well from the perimeter (14/33 for 3 in his last 10 games) after a very slow start to the season (9/52 in the first 25 games). Jackson's cold shooting and overall average play early on had extinguished any talk of him as an early-entry candidate despite coming into the year with the pedigree of a top-10 high school recruit, but continuing to perform well in the month of March could change things, particularly since he is a little older than your average freshman, turning 20 next week.[Read Full Article]
Jackson emerged on the radar after averaging 11.3 points per-game for Canada as a 15 year old at the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championships. A 2016 recruit out of Findlay Prep committed to UNLV, Jackson is a strong, aggressive scorer who excels in the open floor. Scouts will be interested to see how his skill level has matured in recent seasons, as he elected to skip the U17 World Championship last summer. His extremely well developed frame made him a bit of an early bloomer physically, and it will be interesting to see how his perimeter game has evolved since the last time we saw him, especially now that he is listed as being 6-8.[Read Full Article]