Bryson Spell is a player that ticks every box for me offensively. I could not be more excited about his upside as a scoring wing/forward.
Let’s start off talking about his greatest skill: he can shoot the lights out of any gym and his stroke is as pure as cold mountain water. His senior year he hit a school record 9(!!) threes in one game. And these were not just open jumpers that the team was giving the big man; he was hitting from the corner, the wing, the top of the key at all distances with guys doing everything to contest his high jumper. Nothing fazed Spell as he sank shot after shot with the ball barely touching the net.
As impressive as his deep threes are, his scoring bag is chock full of high and low post fade aways, put backs and pull up mid range jumpers. His touch on these shots in congruence with his long frame allows him to rise above defenders and create opportunities for himself pretty much everywhere on the floor.
His presence as a post scoring threat draws in help defenders on the weak side, something you can see Spell wait for as he looks for the open shooter on the opposite wing. He makes accurate, quick passes in order to get the best shots, a common theme in Liberty recruits and one that will help them to flourish in the spread out offense that the Flames love to run.
His presence on the block and in the middle of a defense shows his ability to play as a big/forward when need be and his outside shooting and handle gives him versatility as a wing also. He’s not afraid to drive hard to the rack and finish over paint defenders while putting them on a poster occasionally.
In terms of creating shots for himself, there was a play that stood out in Spell’s senior season. Spell is handling the ball at the top of the key and receives a screen from the big. Spell, still dribbling, spins toward it and gets the switch to the other teams big. The big lunges for the steal from Spell and whiffs as Spell crosses over and creates some daylight for himself. Spell caps this off by stepping up and collecting his low dribble and draining a three from a tough starting position. As much as Spell’s shooting skill and natural gifts make him a player with a pretty high floor, flashes of creation and handling like this could very well raise his potential to incredible places.
Breaking down the high school play of Bryson Spell was truly a fun experience. His size combined with shooting ability and switch-ability should hype up Flames basketball fans for what he might show as he begins his college career. He red shirted his first year on the team but surely gained some valuable experience being around the team and practicing within the program’s competitive atmosphere. His talent is obvious, now we just wait to see how it pops onto the college stage.