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Help on the Way! Georgetown Class of ‘22 Commit Denver Anglin Impresses

NCAA Basketball: Butler at Georgetown Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

With Georgetown’s season in free fall, I recently decided to take from a break from the present Hoyas and check out a future Hoya in Denver Anglin. Anglin, a Class of 2022 guard who has signed his Letter of Intent with Georgetown, led his Gill St. Bernard’s team against Camden High at the Metro Classic in Toms River, NJ.

The game was one of the most hyped New Jersey high school games in recent memory, as Camden is ranked as the No. 1 team in New Jersey and a top 20 team in the nation, while Gill is No. 3 in the state. Both teams featured highly-touted recruits, as Anglin is teammates with Mackenzie Mgbako (No. 3 prospect in the Class of 2023) and Naas Cunningham (No. 1 in the Class of 2024), while Camden countered with D.J. Wagner (No. 1 in the Class of 2023) and Aaron Bradshaw (No. 24 in the Class of 2023).

While Anglin’s team eventually fell short in a hard-fought 57-55 game, he showed many of the qualities that made him a coveted recruit. Anglin was matched up against Camden’s star guard D.J. Wagner, who is ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2023, and the two players traded blows throughout the game. Anglin finished with 20 points on 8-16 shooting from the field and 4-11 from beyond the arc, adding five rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Wagner led Camden with 18 points of 8-19 shooting, seven rebounds, and two assists.

Gill St. Bernard’s started the game slow, as they struggled to break Camden’s aggressive zone press. Anglin did everything he could to will his team into the game, hitting multiple big threes and bringing constant energy. He was noticeably pumped up after each shot and consistently encouraged his teammates. Despite his efforts, Gill went into halftime down 31-20.

In the third quarter, Gill stormed back. Junior forward Geancarlo Pejuero scored 12 points in the period, including two and-one buckets at the rim, and Mgbako found more room to operate as well. Suddenly, Gill led 43-41 with eight minutes to go.

The fourth quarter was back-and-forth, as Camden forward Dasear Haskins hit two huge threes, but Anglin countered two of his own. With 8 seconds left and Gill down 3, Gill coach Mergin Sina called timeout. Everyone in the gym expected Anglin to get the last shot, and he did come to the ball — but only as a decoy. Mgbako rolled down the lane and into the corner, where he had a wide open look for a game-tying three — that came up just short.

From a scouting perspective, Anglin’s calling card is his jumper, which is close to picture perfect. He establishes a strong base, gets great lift, and has a very consistent release on the shot. He also displayed excellent body control, not hesitating to rise quickly for pull-up jumper when given even a small opening. He always squared his body to the hoop and straightened his back before shooting, always giving himself the best chance to get a clean look.

Against Camden’s aggressive zone press, Anglin was under consistent pressure handling the ball. While he is not as quick as Wagner, he was always under control, keeping his head up and looking for teammates. I wouldn’t describe him as a spectacular ball handler, but he was definitely Gill’s stabilizing engine throughout the game, and also had multiple passes mishandled by teammates in the paint. Despite Camden’s constant pressure, Anglin only turned the ball over twice in the game while playing all 32 minutes.

On defense, Anglin started the game face guarding Wagner on and off the ball, but eventually ceded that assignment to Cunningham. My impression was that Coach Sina realized that Anglin was carrying too large an offensive burden and would quickly burn out if asked to guard Wagner as well. Anglin struggled at times to keep up with Wagner — as would almost any high school guard, including Bronny James — but competed hard, diving on the floor multiple times and poking free two steals in the game, one of which led to a spectacular Cunningham dunk.

Overall, it’s very easy to envision Anglin outperforming his recruiting ranking and having a highly productive college career. There is a very long list of undersized, sharpshooting guard with high basketball IQ having high-scoring careers in the Big East and throughout the country, and Anglin’s competitiveness and effort level should help him greatly as he transitions to the college game. Hoyas fans should be excited about the prospect of adding Anglin to the roster next season.

I was also highly impressed with Wagner’s performance. He has the ball on a string and is exceptionally quick, with sudden movements and the ability to change direction very quickly. It is very difficult for a defense to stop Wagner from getting wherever he wants to go on the court, and he has the ability to score from all three levels. I was also impressed by Wagner’s unselfishness — he was always ready to make the right pass, and did not demand the ball on each possession.

Mgbako, a 6’8 forward, is the prototypical modern wing. He showed good ball-handling skills, especially for his size, and while his jumper wasn’t falling in this game, he has a confident stroke and was ready to shoot when he got open looks from the midrange area and the three-point line. Mgbako also battled hard in the paint and showed very fluid movement, and should be expected to be an NBA prospect when he is eligible in 2024.

The No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2024, Cunningham has a rail-thin 6’7 frame but showed the skill set that has attracted attention from scouts nationwide. I was most impressed by his defensive effort, as he guarded Wagner on multiple occasions and had decent success. He consistently got into a low defensive stance and competed hard. He also showed great ball-handling skills for his size and age. I thought the release on his jumper looked a little funky, but he’s got plenty of time to refine his skills before college.

Camden vs. Gill was a thrilling game that was the best that high school sports have to offer. The 3,500 seat RWJ Arena was nearly full, with enthusiastic fans and a national broadcast on ESPN. I would highly recommend the Metro Classic, or other similar high school showcase events, to any interested basketball fan.