Assessing Timmy Allen, Sir’Jabari Rice, and Keyonte George

January 31st, 2023

By Alan Lu

Yesterday, I took the time to watch Keyonte George and Baylor take on Texas in a very competitive, moderately high stakes, regular season Big 12 college basketball game.  George is a highly touted prospect that can put up points in a hurry, and he had helped his team win against Arkansas recently.  He is currently projected to go in the lottery, and this was also another opportunity to watch Texas’ freshman forward, Dillon Mitchell.  Mitchell started the season rated as a potential lottery pick, but he’s seen his draft stock slide because he’s rather unpolished offensively, and isn’t yet a very skilled player on that end of the floor.  Tyrese Hunter had shot the ball extremely well in an early season win over Gonzaga, so it was another opportunity to see him play. 

As for the game itself, it was a defensive battle, and Texas really hounded George to force him to take a lot of tough shots.  George didn’t play nearly as well as hoped and he didn’t shoot the ball very well, though he did go on a late second half scoring binge to keep the game close.  Still, Texas was able to withstand George’s scoring barrage as they received strong performances from seniors Timmy Allen and Sir’Jabari Rice to get a win over their rival, Baylor.  Here are my thoughts on how Allen, Rice, George and other various prospects fared in this game.

Timmy Allen scored 18 points on 7 of 10 shooting, and had 6 rebounds and 4 assists in Texas’ win over Baylor.
(Photo:
Scott Wachter/USA Today Sports, via Fansided’s Hook ‘Em Headlines)

Timmy Allen had a strong showing in his team’s win over Baylor.  He is a strong, mobile swingman that thrived at scoring on post-ups and on mid-range jumpers, and he showed good strength, body control, and scoring touch to consistently score when he was on the floor.  He also was able to score on strong drives to the basket. 

Allen also is an unselfish player that was able to make an assortment of passes to get the ball to his teammates, and he passed the ball well.  Plus, he also rebounded and defended well.  He also would contest shots both out on the perimeter and in the paint to get stops for his team.  Overall, Allen played very well, and even though he didn’t take or make a three-point shot on offense, he thrived as a scorer and in the other areas of this game, and he could be an intriguing candidate for NBA teams to consider late in the 2023 draft.

Jabari Rice scored a game-high 21 points on 5 of 7 shooting, and he made 4 threes and had 6 rebounds in his team’s win over Baylor.
(Photo:
Will Gallagher/Inside Texas, via On3)

Sir’Jabari Rice played very well to held lead Texas to a win in this game. He is an agile, skilled combo guard that thrived as a shooter, scorer, and defender in his team’s win over Baylor.  He did a very good job of making threes, especially in spot-up situations.  He showed off a smooth jumper, and he also would draw lots of free throws on strong drives to the hoop.  Rice also has a crafty pump fake, which he was able to utilize to draw a foul on a defender to get to the foul line.

Plus, he also rebounded the ball very well.  On the downside, Rice was also turnover prone in this game.  He would throw passes that would get intercepted.  Sometimes he would be too aggressive on drives to the hoop, which would lead him to commit charging fouls.  Overall, Rice is a strong, fairly athletic combo guard that played very well in this game.  He is an energetic, shot maker off the bench that provided a boost for Texas, and he could project into a 3 and D role in the NBA.

Keyonte George scored 17 points on just 5 of 18 shooting in his team’s 76-71 loss to Texas, but he also scored 9 of his 17 points in the final 9 minutes of this game.
(Photo:
Stephen Spillman/Associated Press, via Dallas Morning News)

It was far from a perfect game for Baylor’s freshman guard, Keyonte George, and for most of the game, his play was just not very good.  He took a lot of tough, ill-advised shots and tended to miss them, he would sometimes commit careless turnovers, and he generally just shot the ball very poorly in the first 30 minutes of this game.  But George suddenly was able to go on a scoring binge in crunch time, and he showed that he is a confident, fearless shot taker that get any shot he wants and that he can make the tough shots that his team needs.  To summarize his overall performance in this game, George had his ups and downs in his team’s loss to Texas.  It still may not have washed out the numerous shots he missed in this game, but his ability to make tough shots in the clutch suggest that he may still have very good potential as a prospect for the NBA.

George wasn’t efficient at making shots in this game, but he showed a decent ability to score off the dribble.  He has a quick first step that can enable him to get past his man, and he can make tough shots in traffic.  Late in this game, he showed good speed, balance, and finishing ability to score and draw fouls upon defenders to get free throws, and he is a shot creator that can get his shots up.  When he would be able to get all the way to the basket on strong drives to the hoop, he would tend to score or get to the foul line.  Also, George was able to go in to get some tough offensive rebounds, and he was able to draw free throws on a strong put back late in this game. 

However, he also took a lot of questionable shots, and he would tend to rush up quick, hurried and sometimes off-balanced shots that would lead to misses.  George was prone to rampant chucking for most of this game, and he often miss on quick, rushed mid-range jumpers off the dribble.  He threw up some ugly misses when attempting mid-range jumpers, and he didn’t tend to play calmly nor always had his balance when he would take those shots.

He flashed a better ability to make threes than mid-range jumpers in this game, though George still didn’t do a great job of making three-pointers overall against Texas.  He was able to dribble to his right to make a nifty crossover, step-back three once.  George also darted quickly off of a ball screen to make a quick spot-up three at the top of the key another time.  On the downside, he tended to miss a lot of quick, rushed three-pointers, and he also threw up a rushed step-back three from way out late in this game that missed, and he could’ve tried to take more time to get a better shot off down the stretch.

He also displayed average at best playmaking skills.  For the positives, George was able to throw a couple of nice touch passes, and he can find open teammates in stride to set up scoring chances for them in the paint area.  On the downside, sometimes he would play too fast and out of control, as he would over-dribble and rush his moves too quickly, which would lead him to commit ball-handling turnovers.

Also, George was able to get his fair share of boards, as he was able to get rebounds on both sides of the ball.  Defensively, George looked to be about average at best.  He was able to stay in front of his man to contest a three to force a miss once.  However, he would tend to give up too much space to shooters, and he would sometimes take bad angles when defending in screen situations, which would lead him to allow opponents to score on jumpers.  Another time, he was caught on a switch, and he rotated to the post but he and a teammate both bit on a pump fake, which put their team in a compromised situation that time.

Overall, this was not the best game for George, but he did make some strong plays down the stretch that highlight his potential as a prospect for the NBA.  His fearlessness as a shot taker can be something of a double-edged sword.  On one hand, he can ably create and make tough shots, which gives Baylor a shot creator that can score in late clock situations.  On the other, he also was prone to taking a lot of difficult, low-percentage contested shots, which resulted in him missing a lot of shots in this game, especially for the first 30 minutes of this game.  He’ll definitely need to improve his shot selection and play more under control, but his potential to be a go-to scorer at the NBA level combined with his intangibles could make him an intriguing candidate to be selected in the mid first round range of the 2023 draft.

Tyrese Hunter had his ups and downs in his team’s win over Baylor.  He played terrific defense, and he is a tough, pesky defender that would poke balls away and jump on passes to get numerous steals and deflections.  He also is an unselfish player that can find open teammates in stride, and he was able to help his team space the floor by making several spot-up threes off the catch. 

On the downside, he had trouble making shots consistently, as he was very streaky with his three-point shot, and he missed too many open three-point shots from beyond the arc.  He took a lot of threes as he attempted them in volume, and he wasn’t very efficient in making them from long distance.  While he also was able to score on a drive in transition, Hunter also tend to would miss wildly when driving to the basket, and he didn’t usually show great balance or body control on those possessions.

Overall, Tyrese Hunter was able to make some tremendous plays at times, but he struggled to make shots consistently in this game.  He took a lot of shots and didn’t make enough of them, but he also played outstanding defense when he was on the floor.  He’ll need to be a more consistent shooter, especially from the outside, but his ability to make plays, run the team and defend could enable him to end up being a second round pick whenever he decides to enter the NBA draft.

Jalen Bridges quietly played well in his team’s loss to Texas.  He is an athletic, energetic combo forward that was able to score in a variety of ways, and he can make solid hustle plays to help his team on both ends of the floor.  He generally excelled as a finisher around the basket, and Bridges was able to score on tip-ins and on a fast break.  He also was able to score on a right-handed drive to the hoop.  He also made an open corner three off the catch. 

On the other hand, Bridges isn’t overly explosive nor is an elite ball handler, so he would sometimes struggle to create his own shot, and he also would sometimes miss easy shots at times due to rushing.  He also would sometimes be careless with the basketball, which would lead him to commit silly turnovers.  He also rebounded and defended well.  Bridges was quite active at crashing the glass, and he would get his hands on passes to get steals and deflections.  Overall, Bridges had a solid game in his team’s loss to Texas, and he is a versatile role player that could project into a 3 and D type of role in the NBA.

LJ Cryer had a decent showing in his team’s loss to Texas.  He is a good shooter that can make shots off the catch or dribble, and he especially thrived at making spot-up threes.  He also showed good footwork to be able to make dribble jumpers, but he also took some tough, rushed shots that would miss.  He showed a decent ability to score off the dribble, and he would sometimes show good body control to score at the rim, but he had some trouble finishing plays in other situations.

He also showcased decent playmaking skills.  Cryer can make an assortment of passes to set up scores for his teammates, but sometimes he would try to force the issue a bit too much at times, which can get him into trouble.  He generally rebounded and defended well, and he was able to jump on a loose ball to get a steal.  Overall, Cryer has played very well recently.  He is an agile, skilled combo guard that can score in a variety of ways, and he could project into a microwave type of scorer role in the NBA.

Dillon Mitchell quietly played well in his team’s win over Baylor.  Though he isn’t very skilled offensively, he played with great energy, as he thrived as a finisher around the basket, and he also defended well in this game.

Mitchell is a tremendously athletic forward that thrived at scoring on high-flying dunks around the basket.  He was able to run in to score on a thunderous tip slam, and he also would score and draw free throws on hustle plays.  He didn’t really look to create his own shot, score off the dribble, or take jumpers, but he was very efficient in making shots around the basket.

Also, he displayed satisfactory playmaking skills.  He also was able to throw a high entry pass to set up a scoring opportunity for a teammate.  On another play, he showed some ball-handling skills by running the floor and driving to the hoop in transition to draw free throws.  Mitchell didn’t look to handle the ball very much, but he also did not turn the ball over once on offense.

He also did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  On one play though, he was called for an over the back foul when going for an offensive board.  Plus, Mitchell also played solid defense.  He did a great job of blocking and altering shots to help his team protect the paint due to possessing very good athleticism, timing, and instincts.  He also has solid lateral agility, and he was able to contest threes to force misses.  Sometimes though he would over-rotate and end up out of position when defending out on the perimeter, but Mitchell generally defended very well, as he especially thrived at making plays to help his team shore up the interior.

Overall, Dillon Mitchell had a solid showing in this game, and he played very well within his role when he was on the floor.  He will still need to expand upon his skill set, but his tremendous athleticism combined with his defensive skills and motor could enable him to be a solid pick for an NBA team in the late first round of the 2023 draft.

All in all, those are my thoughts on how George and other various prospects fared in the Texas-Baylor game that was played on January 30th.  Thanks for reading.

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