Georgia has beaten out Kentucky for the commitment of the No. 1 player in the Class of 2019.
Anthony Edwards, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard from Atlanta, announced on Monday morning that he will be playing for Tom Crean and the Bulldogs.
“I chose Georgia because two of my favorite players, Victor Oladipo and Dwyane Wade, played for Tom Crean,” Edwards said.
Originally a member of the Class of 2020, Edwards is considered the favorite to end up at the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. He has the size, the frame and the athleticism to play two-guard in the NBA, but what makes him the best off-guard prospect in years is that he has all of the physical tools and the game to be an impact player at the highest level.
Offensively, Edwards is very well-rounded. He’s a good enough shooter that defenders have to crowd him, which is not something that players at the high school level can do with his ability to penetrate. He’s an above-the-rim finisher, but he’s also a willing and capable passer. In an era where basketball at the highest level tends to be isolation-heavy with shooters spacing the floor to allow the stars to make a play, Edwards could not be a more perfect fit.
Edwards joins a pair of top 100 prospects — wings Jaykwon Walton and Toumani Camara — in Georgia’s 2019 recruiting class.
This is a massive pickup for the Bulldogs, but it will be interesting to see how Edwards’ game fits in on a Georgia team that has not been good this year. The Bulldogs won’t have a ton of spacing, and the way things stand, their best players project to be big men.
“He’s one of the best scorers that I’ve seen in 20 years of covering basketball in Georgia,” said Justin Young, founder of HoopSeen.com and a longtime scout in the state. “The only guy I can think of that can is similar is Louis Williams. He’s tremendous as a bucket-getter. He can lead the SEC in scoring as a freshman, and Tom will give him the ball. He told him from Day 1, I want you to be Dwyane Wade, and I think Anthony has that sort of dog in him. He’s one of the best second half scorers I’ve ever seen, he’s really dominated the second half of games he’s played, but that hasn’t translated into wins. That will be the biggest challenge. The talent is there. It’s how does Crean channel all that and get the most out of him for his program.”
But what is clear is that Edwards will be their No. 1 option from the second that he sets foot on campus in Athens, and there is a chance that he could end up being the best scorer in the SEC.