Getting information on the mystery recruit William Howard is very difficult. The 6’8″ French forward is playing his senior year at New Hope Academy in Maryland. He is originally from Montbrison, France, which is located in the Loire Department in Central Southeast of France.
He is only 205 lbs, which means he has a long, but thinly built frame, sort of similar to Jernard Jarreau. Watching the videos on YouTube, it is obvious that he LOVES to shoot the three. He is in no way hesitant to launch shots up from 24 feet or more.
Rumors abound that Howard was “placed” at New Hope Academy by the Washington Huskies’ staff to try and get him academically qualified. The fact that there has not been a peep out of him or anyone else for that matter even after national signing day this week seems to indicate that he is still waiting on a qualifying SAT score.
But, in this interview, Howard talks about his game and who is recruiting him. He indicates a couple of times how much he loves to shoot three pointers. He also lists Washington first on his list of schools.
In this video, Howard can be seen launching up threes and getting some nice rebounds. But, scouts who have seen him play indicate he is often lost on the floor and out of position. He makes a few poor decisions and looks a bit unsure of himself, except when he heaves up those confident three-pointers. There are some similarities to Martin Bruenig just in his demeanor and play on the floor. But, he is a little out of position as well. While his team mostly plays him at the 4-spot due to his size, he looks more like a tall 3 in the college game, especially since he is so thin and likes to take things outside.
A scouting report from Draft Express indicates that he is a well-rounded player with the ability to dribble the ball and get out on the break. He has good defensive skills, but lacks a little on his lateral adjustments and quickness. It also indicates that while his length and positioning make him a good defender and rebounder, he doesn’t have the strength or skills yet to contain strong post players.
CBS Sports had a profile of his performance at the National Prep Showcase and gushed about him. Here is a snippet:
The best prospect on the squad is William Howard, a France native who created a buzz with his play in Europe. NBA types have known about Howard for a while, and college coaches are beginning to get acquainted with the 6-foot-8 forward.
“He still has to take the SATs and, even though he’s in prep school, he’s still young,” coach Chris Chaney said. “He just turned 18.”
Howard really made an impact over the weekend, going for 19 points and 11 rebounds in an easy win on Friday night. He followed that up with 30 points in a high-scoring loss to Notre Dame Prep (Mass.). He has a good frame and strong legs, but is also long and athletic. He can rebound effectively and knows how to score in different ways.
Finally, I came across an article in the Baltimore Sun discussing Maryland’s pursuit of Howard. The last line is what caught my interest the most.
By Matt Bracken The Baltimore Sun
1:00 a.m. EST, November 25, 2011
A new prospect has been mentioned in connection with the Maryland men’s basketball program, and the player in question doesn’t live far from College Park. According to CBSSports.com’s Jeff Borzello, the Terps are in the mix with William Howard, a 6-foot-7 wing from France who’s currently doing a post-grad year at New Hope Academy in Landover. Borzello caught up with New Hope coach Chris Chaney for a breakdown of Howard’s recruiting.
In terms of recruiting, Washington, Providence, Rhode Island and Maryland have all shown interest in Howard.
One Pac-12 school stands out, though. “We’re leaning Washington,” Chaney said.
Interesting that Chris Chaney uses the word “we’re”. I hate when coaches use that kind of language, as if they are also going to go there or get something out of it. Heck, what do I know about major college recruiting. Maybe they do…