Dexter Strickland Makes His Move

Marcus ShockleyCorrespondent INovember 10, 2008


Dexter Stickland (SG,6′3″,2009) has enough skill as a shooting guard to get an offer (which he accepted) from UNC. He can blast up and down the court, streaks to the hoop with dominating slashing moves, and can finish. He also has excellent hops.

But…

Strickland knows that at 6′3″, even with the talent he has, it’s an uphill battle. 6′3″ is a good height for a college shooting guard, but it’s even better for a point guard, and so Strickland is working on being able to play pure point by the time he reaches Chapel Hill, as seen on Nathan Blue’s blog (what’s up, Nathan!):

…when Strickland gets to North Carolina next year, he’s not going to be able to rely solely on his ability to put the ball in the basket. So the 6-foot-3, 180-pound playmaker has spent the past year learning what it takes to become a floor general, from running an offense to feeding the post.

It’s pretty common when an explosive player like Strickland to bring the ball up in high school and also be the team’s dominant scoring guard. Basically, he’s playing two positions depending on where he is on the floor. But when he gets to the ACC, he’s going to need to be more than a great shooting guard who can handle the ball "some."

In order to play point at this level, he’ll need to learn how to actually run an offense, and he’s already got the main thing he needs: patience.

Some of the best point guards to play in the ACC were outstanding at knowing when to push the ball and when to wait, such as Raymond Felton, Bobby Hurley, Jay Williams or Chris Paul. It’s a shooting guard’s natural tendency to push the ball, get to the hoop, be aggressive, score.

It’s not always easy for players who are adept at this to learn how to switch gears when running the point. Only time will tell how well Strickland is at making the switch.

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