We’ve known for a while that Bruce Brown is really good, and Lonnie Walker IV is the highest ranked recruit to have ever signed with the University of Miami Men’s Basketball team.
Those points got new corroboration today when Bleacher Report named both Brown and Walker IV as top prospects for the 2018 NBA Draft.
Neither Michael Porter Jr. nor Marvin Bagley III top our preseason NBA draft big board https://t.co/9n5pz4Bdkv pic.twitter.com/XkscAuhxMa— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) November 1, 2017
In the list, which lists the top 50 players for next year’s NBA Draft, Brown is ranked 16th and Walker IV is ranked 7th. That’s rare air, and each player could challenge to be one of the highest drafted basketball players from UM in program history.
As far as Bleacher Report’s evals/snippets on Brown and Walker IV, here you go
#16 Bruce Brown
Bruce Brown Jr. figures to be one of the ACC's top producers as a sophomore, having already shown he can score 30 points against North Carolina and 25 against Duke.
From a scouting perspective, on one hand, Brown packs 6'5" size, athleticism and combo-guard versatility with the ability to attack, catch fire and take over or make plays for teammates (3.2 assists per game). He can be a pest defensively with his quickness and competitive edge (1.5 steals).
On the other hand, Brown isn't convincing around the perimeter with his shooting range (33-of-95 from three), pull-up or floater (25.4 percent on two-point jumpers). And his decision-making as a ball-handler (16.1 turnover percentage) has looked shaky.
Brown will still have the chance to rise Donovan Mitchell-style if he can improve his three-ball and lead Miami to wins as a reliable No. 1 option.
This fits what we saw from, and said about, Brown in his freshman year at Miami. Draft Express has further evaluation of Brown’s prodigious talents (which admittedly need a bit of refinement).
Here are some highlights of Brown’s performance from his freshman year (and you can’t tell me he doesn’t have intermittent flashes of Russell Westbrook in his game)
#7 Lonnie Walker IV
Back after offseason knee injury, Lonnie Walker IV is set for a significant role in Miami.
His stock rose last April after he scored 19 points at the Jordan Brand Classic. Walker passes the NBA eye test with 6'4", 192-pound size, an impressive 6'10 ½" wingspan and plenty of athleticism.
He'll enter the one-and-done discussion with a smooth three-ball, slashing ability and defensive tools that point to two-way potential. Depending on how much of a backseat he takes to Bruce Brown Jr. and Ja'Quan Newton, Walker could wind up staying another year, instead looking to crack the top 10 in 2019.
Walker IV is a high flying player who will get plenty of buckets for the Canes this season. Draft Express also has a profile on him, which you’ll want to check out.
And, cuz you love videos, here are some Lonnie Walker HS highlights for your eyeballs.
Before either one heads to the draft (no matter when that is), Brown and Walker IV will form one of the top guard duos in America for the Canes this season.
Be sure you check out all the Canes Hoops action, starting with tonight’s exhibition game (ESPN3.com at 7pm) and all throughout the 2017-18 season.