Leading up to the NBA Draft we will be analyzing scouting reports for various players who have entered their name in this year’s NBA Draft. The focus of these articles will be on prospects who we find most intriguing and feel readers need to become more familiar with. Please let us know if you want any players specifically @edupridepress. All stats and videos are via KenPom, ESPN, DraftExpress, and YouTube.
Frank Jackson – PG – Freshman – Duke
Weight: 208 lbs
Age: 19 years and 1 month
Projected: 37 (DraftExpress) 32 (CPP Big Board) 24 (CPP Mock Draft)
Background: Frank Jackson, going into the NBA Combine, was still deciding whether or not to keep his name in the 2017 NBA Draft this June. After Trevon Duval (No. 1 PG in 2017 Recruiting Class) committed to Duke University and after some impressive measurements at the combine, Frank Jackson has elected to keep his name in this years draft and has hired an agent. Standing at 6’4” and roughly 210 lbs, Frank Jackson is a very versatile point guard that played valuable minutes for the Blue Devils this past season. In 36 games, Jackson averaged 24.9 MPG, 10.9 PPG, 1.7 APG, and shot 39.5% from 3-pt range. Jackson has an enormous upside as an NBA prospect with his ability to create space, but has drawn in lots of question marks on whether or not he can be a true NBA point guard. At Duke Frank Jackson was moved around a lot and played some time at point guard and at shooting guard/wing player as a result of their surplus in guards. At the combine, Frank Jackson ran a 2.70 shuttle time, the fastest among all players at the combine, played in one scrimmage where he tallied 21 minutes, 13 points, 4 assists, 6-12 from the field and had a +/- of 7. As a very young duel-guard, Frank Jackson has the eyes of lots of NBA personnel on him and has seen his draft stock rise significantly since the combine.
Strengths: Perhaps one of the quickest freshman in the draft, Frank Jackson has shown flashes of a very elusive one-on-one player. On the offensive end, Frank Jackson is very crafty and weaves around defenders on his way to the basket. For an NBA point guard, Jackson has a very solid frame, standing at 6’4” and with a wingspan of 6’7 ½”, he should be able to contest lots of passes going to the low post. Frank Jackson’s form on his jump shot is clean and smooth, allowing him to expand on his deep range jumper with time. At Duke, Jackson excelled with a catch-and-shoot offensive form, but was still able to knock down shots off the dribble. Along with his quick shuttle-run at the combine, Jackson also measured a 42” max vertical jump and proving he is a very athletic player; possibly one of the most athletic guards in the draft class! Offensively, Frank Jackson thrives in isolation situations, taking smaller and slower guards to the paint where he can easily rise up on them. Jackson does not have a preference of hands when dribbling and normally will pass the ball off on the drive to get a better shot from a teammate. Frank Jackson’s athleticism and speed makes him lethal in transition and allows him to get to the free throw line a lot, where he shot 75.5% from last season at Duke. NBA teams love players that can come off the bench and give them a burst, a mold that Frank Jackson could fill immediately in his rookie season!
Weaknesses: If Jackson gets drafted by a team that wants him to be a two guard more than a true point guard, he could find himself undersized and limited. In isolation as a two guard, Frank Jackson was successful at Duke, but would be lined up against taller NBA guard, and have to drive from a wing instead of from the top of the key. As a point guard, Jackson still needs some work making the right choices with the basketball. At times, he is not always the most willing passer as a result of his scorers mentality. The biggest question surrounding Jackson as a true point guard is whether or not he can consistently run a team for 30-40 minutes a game. Frank Jackson will have to expand his vision on the floor and have the mentality of a true point guard instead of always wanting to score if he is to take the role of point guard on a NBA team. Jackson is continuing to work defensively, and got better during his first year at Duke, but still needs some work with his defensive stance and awareness. Jackson got caught up in a lot of screens and switches on the defensive end and sometimes lost his player. If he can find a balance between his vision and speed, Frank Jackson can become a very strong rookie point guard in the NBA.
Comparison: A mix between a young Deron Williams and Kemba Walker
Before you start freaking out about a comparison to Deron Williams and Kemba Walker, two completely different NBA players, hear me out! Frank Jackson is a hybrid between the two. As stated many times, Frank Jackson is a very agile and quick guard that creates space with his speed. His ability to weave in and out of defenders draws his comparison with Deron Williams. In his prime, Deron Williams made a living bringing the ball up the floor, evaluating the defenders around im, and using his “weaving” ability to get to the rim in seconds. Both Jackson and Williams have the same athletic explosiveness to get to the rim and are natural scorers. Both players have range of their jump shots. Deron Williams’ jump shot got better as his career went on and made a lot of defenders look foolish a result of his versatility with his speed and shooting range. Frank Jackson could become this type of offensive player in the NBA with time. As for the Frank Jackson to Kemba Walker comparison, Jackson’s agileness and big shot mentality is very comparable. If you watch Kemba during his days at UCONN and even now, every drive and every shot he takes is mentally identical. He does not steer away from a physical play and wants the ball in his hands in the final seconds of a game. I see a lot of this mentality in Frank Jackson! When Frank Jackson gets drafted and is playing his rookie season, take note on if he steps up and takes charge of the floor or if he develops into an athletic wing player. Frank Jackson can be a superstar point guard, but these next three years will be vital for him to take the next step with his skills.
Be sure to check out our other Top 30 Breakdowns and NBA Draft Charts: CPP NBA Draft Big Board 5.0 CPP NBA Mock Draft 4.0