Quinton Stephens and Travis Jorgenson comprised the incoming class of 2013 for the Tech basketball team. Could both begin the season as starters?
Measurables and background:
Stephens is long and lanky, listed at 6'9 and just 187 lb. Normally that height would put him at a power forward or center role, but as a three point shooter and possessing a small frame, he will line up at small forward for the majority of the time.
He comes from Marist High School in the Brookhaven district of Atlanta. As a senior at Marist, Stephens averaged 19.3 points, 8.5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2.7 blocks per game. He shares his alma mater with non-scholarship Brooks Doyle and Tech legend Matt Harpring.
Stephens didn't have a ton of opportunities to contribute last season. Coach Gregory rightfully prefered the Robert Carter Jr, Daniel Miller and Kammeon Holsey trio in the post so he fought the now departed Stacey Poole for the rights to back up Marcus Georges-Hunt at small forward. He averaged 12.8 minutes and scored 3.6 points a contest on an eFG% of 44.3%. His three point shot came and went, finishing with a 31.3% mark from there overall, but knocked down free throws at a strong rate of 81.3%.
Camp Confidential with Quinton Stephens:
Role on this year's team:
As one of the only main contributors returning from last season, he should get more consistent minutes this year. Despite his skill set, he may get the start at the 4 for select matchups during the non-conference portion of the schedule. Mid-major teams typically have smaller forwards and centers than their power conference counterparts and tend to shoot more threes. As such, Stephens might present a better matchup in a more uptempo game.
Stephen's strengths are obvious. He needs to be a consistent long range shooter to be effective. He can handle the ball a lot better than most his height can and has in his arsenal a dangerous step-back jumper. Defensively, his length can disrupt passing lanes and shooting angles from near or far from the hoop.
On the downside, at a weight of just 187 lb., he could get overpowered by the many strong and skilled ACC forwards he may be matched up against, like Brice Johnson, Rasheed Sulaimon, or Anthony Gill just to name a few. Still, length and versatility is something that can't be taught and it's a gift Stephens will have a better opportunity to flaunt in his second season.