On Sunday, Patrick Ewing and his staff added their second commitment of the weekend, reeling in three-star Class of 2018 guard Mac McClung. McClung becomes the Hoyas’ third commitment in his class, joining forwards Josh LeBlanc and Grayson Carter.
McClung is known for his high-flying YouTube highlight tapes, and that athleticism is certainly a big part of his game. Here’s a look at the total package of what McClung will bring to the Hilltop.
Weight: 175 pounds
Year: High school senior
School: Gate City High School (Virginia)
Recruiting Profile: Class of 2018
ESPN: 3-star recruit, not in the ESPN top 100
Rivals: 3-star recruit, not in the Rivals150
247Sports: 3-star recruit, No. 224 prospect
Scout: 3-star recruit, not in the Scout top 100
There’s a reason why some of McClung’s YouTube highlight mixes have over 400,000 views — he is a truly explosive athlete. At 6-foot-2 with a slight frame, McClung is an incredible leaper. He’s quick off the floor and is able to play way above the rim despite his size, allowing him to throw down some truly impressive dunks. Windmills, reverses, alley-oops, you name it, he can do it.
Not surprisingly, McClung thrives in transition, as his speed and athleticism allow him to be very effective attacking the rim and creating for himself and others. In the half-court, McClung has a very quick first step that helps him to find openings and get to the rim. Once he gets there, he is a very creative finisher, often seemingly floating through the air while he searches for the right angle for the layup.
McClung has a tight handle and is a creative dribbler and passer, but will need to continue to polish up those skills if he wants to be a pure point guard at the Big East level. He was a football player throughout his youth and only started playing basketball in seventh grade, so his relative inexperience and athleticism should mean that he has potential for improvement in those areas. He is also a threat as a long-range shooter, although he should not be considered an elite shooter at this stage.
At 175 pounds, McClung probably needs to put on some weight in order to avoid being pushed around at the college level. He is known as a tough kid and a competitor, which should help him adjust early in his career. Defensively, he has active hands and good quickness, but his size may create difficulties early in his career up against bigger Big East point guards.
McClung provides much-needed depth in the backcourt for Georgetown. With Jonathan Mulmore and Trey Dickerson departing after this season, the team will be left with Jagan Mosely and Jahvon Blair as the only returning guards, so McClung should be able to compete for minutes right away.
As of now, I think it’s fair to say that Mosely, Blair, and McClung all profile as combo guards more than pure point guards, so if McClung can develop his lead guard skills he could be an immediate impact player. I also think McClung’s three-point shot is a key factor to watch, as the current roster is definitely lacking in that department, especially given Ewing’s professed desire to spread the floor and shoot a lot of three-pointers.
McClung will be looking to push the pace and make things happen in transition. With his athleticism and aggressiveness, he should bring elements of excitement and explosiveness that have been lacking on the Hoyas’ roster in the past few years. He should be an immediate fan favorite and it would not be a surprise to see him appear on national highlight reels a few times throughout his college career.
McClung announced his de-commitment from Rutgers on Oct. 6 and committed to Georgetown just nine days later, continuing the recruiting momentum for Patrick Ewing and his staff. Ewing certainly seems to be answering questions about his inexperience in recruiting, as 247Sports currently ranks Georgetown’s Class of 2018 recruiting class as the No. 28 class in the country, which is an exceptional accomplishment for Ewing after only a few months on the job.
It is also worth noting that McClung plays for Team Loaded on the AAU circuit, one of the top teams in the area. Current freshman forward Antwan Walker played for Loaded, and McClung’s current teammates include 2018 guard Kiyon Boyd and 2019 forward Armando Bacot, who have each been rumored to be potential Hoya targets. AAU connections matter in recruiting, and building a pipeline through Team Loaded could be very beneficial in the long run.
It was definitely a necessity for Ewing to bring in at least one Class of 2018 guard, and McClung fills a clear gap in next year’s roster. Even after this commitment, I would not be surprised to see Georgetown look to add another guard for next year’s roster, but that extra guard can now be regarded as more of a luxury than a necessity.
As of now, I think it’s unfair to expect McClung to immediately live up to the hype that has been generated by his highlight tapes, but I view him as a player with great potential who could be a solid four-year contributor.
Welcome to the Hilltop, Mac McClung!