One of the best long-term prospects seen at this tournament regardless of age, Noah Vonleh
(#6 ESPN, #6 Scout, #2 Rivals) jumps off the page immediately with his outstanding physical attributes and hard-nosed mentality.
Standing a legit 6-8, with a 7-3 wingspan, huge hands, a terrific frame and excellent athleticism, Vonleh does not look like your typical 16-year old.
Vonleh's most impressive attribute is likely his motor. He runs the court extremely hard, crashes the glass with reckless abandon, and is as committed to his work on the defensive end as we've ever seen from a player this age.
He has no problem banging in the post with players much older than him, showing nice timing as a shot-blocker, but he can also step out onto the perimeter and cover smaller players as well. Vonleh regularly goes out of his area for rebounds, particularly on the offensive end, and has a knack for touching pretty much every ball even remotely in his area thanks to his combination of length, explosiveness and sheer aggressiveness.
Offensively, Vonleh is more of a work in progress at this stage, but is already well ahead of where you'd expect him to be considering his high school sophomore status. He is mostly a straight-line dribbler, but is more than capable of beating his man off the dribble from the perimeter and getting to the basket. Not one to force the issue, he has no problem passing the ball ahead in transition or finding an open teammate on a drive and dish play, as he's clearly an unselfish and team-oriented player.
Vonleh has the ability to make shots from the perimeter as well, even if his release is a bit low and his mechanics are somewhat rigid, particularly when pulling up off the dribble.
To fully make the transition to the small forward position, Vonleh will need to continue to tighten his ball-handling skills and improve the consistency of his jump shot, something he has plenty of time to do.
It's not yet clear exactly what position Vonleh is best suited for long term. At 6-8, there might be an inclination for some to make him a full time perimeter player, but considering how gifted a rebounder he is and the fact that he has the length to defend either forward spot, he could have more value at the professional level as a face-up power forward. Considering he's only 16 years old, it's possible that Vonleh might not be done growing.
Either way, Vonleh is clearly a very exciting young prospect with a bright future ahead of him. As long as he continues to work on his skill-level and does not get distracted by the tremendous amount of attention he's likely to generate, he has all the makings of a top shelf prospect.