Isaac Hamilton may be one of the purest combo-Guards the West Coast has experienced in a handful of years. The MixTape phenomenon has trained the general public to focus on the slashing, dunking, ankle-breaking highlights flooding the Internet. Potentially lost in the shuffle are the handful of ballers whom impact the stat sheet more so than the highlight reel. Now don't get it twisted, Isaac Hamilton has the athleticism and handles to put it on his opponent as well as the next man, but it is his sniper like precision from outside the key which has his ticket punched for long-term hardcourt success.
As a St. John Bosco Junior in '11-'12 Hamilton went about his business with a conviction and calm years beyond his age. Challenged by Coach Derrick Taylor to run the Point for Bosco the early season concern was the impact the new role/responsibility would have on Isaac's scoring. Hamilton responded by putting up 26 points a game while averaging close to 6 Assists. Mix in (10+) Rebounds per game and grows clear the 5-start rating affixed by ESPNU and Rivals. This is not small-town dominance by the one kid in the region with D1 talent. Hamilton finds himself squarely in the heart of SoCa'ls highly competitive High school basketball scene and dominates at every turn.
In watching Hamilton shoot from outside it becomes clear why so many high-level D1 programs have him on their wish list. The shot is almost absurd in its simplicity. It is quiet without wasted motion. The follow-through may tail on a half second more than D1 coaches will accept, but it is difficult arguing against the results. The shot carries a steady arc and Hamilton appears equally comfortable pulling the trigger off the dribble or a catch and shoot. At 6'4, Hamilton normally carries the height advantage over his defender. This will be less the case at the next level, but the release appears fast enough to remain highly effective.
Hamilton's biggest D1 college basketball test may come from the physical style of the game. He will need to bulk up (185-195lb range) to absorb contact and fight through traffic. Isaac is not an above-the-rim player, but is a creative scorer and projects extremely well as an offensive contributor. His PG play this year should minimize the transition to the more athletic and quicker pace of collegiate ball. The (2) appears his best role/fit and an additional 10-15 pounds in weight should not compromise his quickness/shot. He will need to recognize when his shot is not falling, and work to setup his teammates, and he is more than capable of doing so. I project Hamilton as a future All-Conference level performer scoring in the 17-20 point range. Add solid rebounding and assist numbers and Hamilton could develop into a top D1 player as he hits his Junior/Senior seasons.
Carrying offers/interest from just about every West coast NCAA basketball program (to include UTEP) it is clear why Hamilton's in no hurry to decide on his collegiate home. According to ASR.com's Agustin Gonzales, Hamilton is planning to visit five campuses. The five are San Diego State, UNLV, Florida, Washington, and UConn. With his brother Daniel (also a high level D1 prospect) and father serving as his most trusted advisers, my guess is Issac will allow the recruiting process to play out into his Senior season, possibly arriving at a decision in late 2012. Some kids are hype. Some are nothing more than the product of a well-edited MixTape. A few, Isaac Hamilton included, are the real deal.