2020 4-star Shooting Guard Jamal Mashburn Jr. is considering Cal as a viable college basketball destination. The 6-foot tall recruit from Miami started his high school career at Gulliver Prep, and transferred after his sophomore year to Brewster Academy, a boarding school in New Hampshire. His performance at both schools has awarded Jamal national accolades, and he’s currently listed on ESPN’s top 100 ranking at 97th in the nation as well as 3rd from the state of Florida.
One striking feature of Mashburn Jr.’s play is his ability to consistently hit shots from deep in three-point territory. When confronted with a one-on-one situation, Jamal tends to favor a jumper with distance rather than driving through the paint, though there are some sparing examples of physicality in that regard as well. When he does make a drive, a quick dump off to a teammate is one usual method of getting it done under the basket.
While up-close-and-personal play has not been a powerful tool in his belt, Jamal is quick with his hands, able to release the ball off a pass to the rim with startling accuracy. Many of these shots are good for three. In the event that he can’t get the ball off so easy, Mashburn Jr. is equally quick on his feet, finding a lane with some finesse to put up more points. He’s averaged over 20 points per game throughout his career, and though his overall shooting percentage isn’t stellar, his three-pointer statistics are among the highest and most accurate with respect to his teammates at Brewster last season. One thing is for certain- Jamal has strong leadership traits. He dominates the court in a collaborative way, and could certainly fill a need on Cal’s squad which seemed like it struggled to manifest an identity last season.
Mashburn Jr. visited Cal this past September, and has not ruled us out as a suitable school. Among others, he is also strongly considering the University of Minnesota, a program which he has publicly praised. Mashburn Jr. and Minnesota’s head coach Richard Pitino are personally acquainted through their fathers, Jamal Mashburn Sr. and Rick Pitino, as the latter coached the former at the University of Kentucky in the 1990s. Though the familial connection may seem like Mashburn Jr.’s mind is all but made up, Cal still persists as an appealing candidate; during an early October interview with the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune, Mashburn Jr. said “It’s just down to Cal and Minnesota.”
Mashburn Jr. looks to make his final decision soon. Until then, we can only speculate whether Jamal will be wearing a jersey for the Golden Bears or Golden Gophers come next season.
Update: Mashburn has chosen Minnesota
The addition of Jamal Mashburn Jr means that Richard Pitino has landed a 4-star top 100 level player in each of his last 6 recruiting classes. The addition of Mashburn & Martice Mitchell give Pitno a pair of top 150 rated recruits in 5 of the last 6 recruiting cycles. pic.twitter.com/lxSEXZQwjO— Ryan James (@RyanJamesMN) October 14, 2019