Sam Dekker is an athletic, 6-foot-7 wing from Wisconsin that is headed to (you guessed it) Wisconsin in the fall.
A consensus top 20 recruit, Dekker was recently named to the USA’s U-18 team despite missing out on being named a McDonald’s All-American in the spring.
As a prospect, there is plenty to like about Dekker. He’s got size, he’s got athleticism, he’s a lights out shooter, he’s a capable ball-handler, and he’s not afraid to take and make a big shot. Don’t believe me? Just watch this video of Dekker hitting a fadeaway 25-footer over two defenders to win the Wisconsin state title.
And while all of those skills are all well and good, the reason that I know Dekker will thrive with the Badgers can be summed up by this little nugget from Mike DeCourcy’s feature from this afternoon:
As ESPN analyst Dave Telep said, there is a toughness about him that is uncommon among prospects who generally are presented with every available honor and accolade as their careers developed.
Telep is on the staff at the NBA Players Association Top 100 Camp, and Dekker showed up last summer with a rib injury that made it a chore even to lift his arms above his head to fire a jumpshot. Camp trainers told the staff that Dekker would have been justified to sit out all drills and competition.
“Not only did he not miss a game, he didn’t miss a practice session with his team or an individual workout session that was optional,” Telep said. “I think there’s a legitimate reason to think down the road Sam Dekker is a Big Ten player of the year candidate. In many ways, he’s as close to perfect as you could be from a coachability standpoint.”
That sounds like a Bo Ryan kind of guy.
Makes you wonder why he was so hung up on losing Jarrod Uthoff.