It’s clear that freshmen will play a bigger role than usual during the California Golden Bears basketball team’s 2017-18 season. For that reason, I’ve taken a look at two players who could make instant contributions for new head coach Wyking Jones.
Some publications list the 6’7” forward as Justice Sueing, Jr. He’s originally from Hawaii: in fact, his father played hoops for the University of Hawaii. However, he moved to Southern California to play for Mater Dei in Santa Ana. The Monarchs enjoyed a 33-3 season which ended in a 60-53 loss to Bishop Montgomery in the CIF Open Division Regional Final. While the above clip is a game highlight reel, fast forward to the end and you’ll see Sueing (wearing #2) score the decisive basket in a 64-63 win over Santa Margarita.
Sueing has the ability to finish strong at the rim, sometimes with a dunk. He can also play without the ball. On multiple occasions, he can be seen cutting to the hoop, making himself available for the pass, and converting an easy layup. Below is a more detailed highlight reel of Sueing (uniform #15) playing for a travel team.
Sueing is a solid rebounder, averaging 6.6 per game in his senior season. During one dominant sequence, he tapped a rebound to himself, regained it, then scored thanks to a fine pump fake. At the high school level, he frequently draws double teams on the perimeter. Sueing has the ability to take one look and find a teammate in motion inside for the easy hoop. His assist to turnover ratio was essentially one-to-one, but with an average of 17 points per game it’s clear that he was relied on more for scoring than facilitating.
Sueing doesn’t always look to shoot from the outside but is comfortable pulling up from there when needed. He went 30-88 from the perimeter this season. 34% might not seem overly impressive at that level, but it’s heartening to see him looking to improve his game. After all, he only made 12 threes during all of 2015-16.
Sueing’s game isn’t always flashy, but he makes a lot of things look easy on the court. He also displays a noticeable sense of anticipation when it comes to defense, especially when coming up with steals: he grabbed 1.5 per game during the 2016-17 campaign.
The 6’4” wing attended Heritage Christian High in Northridge, CA. The Warriors compiled a 20-10 record, falling to Pasadena in the CIF Division II Regional Playoffs. It doesn’t take long to come to the conclusion that Harris-Dyson is a skilled ball handler with the ability to use his quickness in getting to the basket. Harris-Dyson (who wore #2) improved his scoring average from 14.7 as a junior to 20.1 in his senior season.
Shot blocking is a part of his arsenal. Harris-Dyson swatted 1.3 per contest for each of the last two seasons. Sometimes the blocks are especially dramatic: he’s able to contest shots on the run, not just from a set position. Pair that talent with his average of 2.8 steals and you have the makings of a solid defensive player at the collegiate level.
Harris-Dyson doesn’t mind a degree of difficulty when it comes to offense, either. I’ve seen him use the finger roll to score from underneath the basket. He’s also solid fundamentally, with a willingness to use the backboard. I was especially impressed by a play in which he banked the ball high off the glass for the hoop and drew a foul for good measure.
Harris-Dyson has gotten a reputation for being a flashy dunker, which he deserves. He hasn’t neglected the fundamentals, though. Harris-Dyson can play with his back to the basket and post up on occasion. He’s not a major threat from long distance yet but can keep the defense honest with an occasional corner three.
You might argue that Harris-Dyson doesn’t shoot from behind the arc much because of his excellent penetration skills. He’s quick enough to split multiple defenders and score or find an open teammate. After all, his assists average improved from 2.9 in 2015-16 to 3.4 this season. Harris-Dyson is lethal in transition because he can find the open man if the defense collapses on him. He’s also a surprisingly good rebounder who can convert offensive boards into slams in an instant. Harris-Dyson pulled down a whopping 11.6 rebounds per game over the last two seasons.