FRISCO, Tx. — Malik Newman is the best guard in the 2015 class. Recruiting rankings are a debate, but this debate for the moment isn’t very close. To put this argument into perspective the 6-3, Jackson, Mississippi-native is the No. 3 overall prospect in Rivals’ 2015 national rankings and the only guard among the top seven prospects. For guards in his graduating class, Newman is in a class of his own at the moment and looks to be an elite scorer.
Newman was averaging 23.4 points per game in eight games with the Jackson Tigers on the EYBL before more big scoring outings this weekend in Dallas. Malik came into Dallas as the EYBL’s leading scorer by a full point over Tyus Jones (22.1 ppg) despite being a grade younger than most of the other players.
“The EYBL has been great because every time we come out there’s at least one or two top players on the other team that are at least top 50 in the country so it’s always a good experience going against them,” Newman told NBC Sports.
Newman handles the ball much of the time for the Jackson Tigers, but is likely more suited to play two-guard because of the way he naturally scores and attacks the basket. Still, Newman is open to discussion regarding his future position.
“I’m not really sure which guard spot I’ll play, it depends on which system I’m in,” Newman said.
Malik also listed a few things he’s looking for in a future college program.
“Probably a team that’s balanced; that can get up-and-down or slow it down a little bit,” Newman said. “Also, a team that’s going to push me to be the best that I can, a team that is going to get me to the next level, and good academics.”
But Malik currently isn’t focused on recruiting and doesn’t even know the schools that are actively involved, instead choosing to focus on his game.
“My Dad knows and my coach (knows the schools recruiting me) and I don’t really keep up with it,” Newman admitted.
For now, Newman is focused on the ways he can improve during the spring.
“My defense, my leadership and the way that I communicate with my players because you have to talk to some people differently than the way that you talk to others.”
Scott also writes for NY2LA Sports and can be followed on Twitter @sphillipshoops