RTC NBA Draft Profiles: Charles JenkinsPosted by KDoyle on May 23rd, 2011
Over the course of the next month until the NBA Draft on June 23, RTC will be rolling out comprehensive profiles of the 35 collegians we feel have the best chance to hear their names called by David Stern in the first round that night. There won’t be any particular order to the list, but you can scroll back through all the finished profiles by clicking here.
Player Name: Charles Jenkins
Height/Weight: 6’3/220 lbs.
NBA Position: Shooting Guard
Projected Draft Range: Early Second Round
Overview: One of the most explosive scorers in the country who can score from virtually anywhere on the floor, Charles Jenkins has been the face of the Hofstra basketball program for the past few seasons. In fact, the Pride retired Jenkins’ jersey before his senior season was even over. His electric quickness, strong first step, and pure jump shot make him such a potent scoring threat—it is no wonder he is Hofstra’s all-time leading scoring with 2,513 points. His shot from distance has drastically improved since his sophomore year when he shot a paltry 31% to 42% as a senior. One would think that Jenkins would have a rather slim frame for being such a quick guard, but he is built like a Mack truck checking in at 220 solid pounds. Suffice it to say, Jenkins does not shy away from contact and is able to finish in traffic with the best of them. His ability to distribute the ball should not be overlooked either, as he averaged just shy of five dimes a game and boasted a 2.16 assist to turnover ratio. Jenkins is the prototypical “instant offense” kind of player that simply knows how to put the ball in the hole.
Will Translate to the NBA: Jenkins will be asked to be a scorer, plain and simple. While not a terrible defender, he is certainly no Bruce Bowen that will lock down the opposition’s top guy. The knock on Jenkins has often been his size and whether he will play the point guard or two guard position in the League; both questions we believe are non-factors. First off, there is no such thing as an “undersized” player in the NBA. If you can play, you can play. Allen Iverson never had any trouble playing off the ball, and he was a very generous 6’0. There will always be room for scorers in the NBA, and Jenkins is as good as they come in this department. With that being said, Jenkins would contribute more as a shooting guard thanks to his superior shooting ability.
Needs Work: Other than an improved defensive game—guarding the likes of John Wall or Derrick Rose is a bit different than the average CAA guard—will Jenkins be able to accept a lesser role at the next level? He played over 37 minutes a game as a senior; this certainly will not be the case in the NBA. While at Hofstra, he was given free rein of the offense as it ostensibly revolved solely around him when he was on the floor. Learning to play in a more set-based offense may be a challenge at first as well.
Comparison Players: Jenkins draws a very strong comparison to Ben Gordon, and this goes even further than the basketball court. Jenkins is from Queens, New York, and Gordon hails from nearby Mount Vernon—that New York swagger is definitely apparent when watching both on the floor. On a more concrete level, Gordon is unquestionably a scorer first and is not bashful with his shot. Jenkins is probably more of a slasher as he scores more than a share of his points in the paint, whereas Gordon camps out beyond the arc a little more. This all may change for Jenkins depending on the system he is inserted in at the professional level. As a shooting guard, he would be expected to play more of the role that Ben Gordon currently plays for the Detroit Pistons.
Best Case Scenario: He becomes quicker on the defensive end so he is not perceived as solely a scorer and more of a complete player. Currently, the supreme guards in the NBA will not have much trouble finding good looks at the basket thanks to his lack of foot speed at this end of the floor. Jenkins is by no means a poor defender, but improvement in this aspect of his game would go a long way to finding more minutes on the floor. What cannot go unnoticed about Jenkins is his heady play and sound knowledge of the game. After watching him play more than a handful of times this past year, he truly understands how to make others around him better and exploit the weaknesses of his opponent.
2014 Projection: Jenkins has become an even more polished offensive player and a double-digit scorer that is one of the first guards off the bench for a contender (think, George Hill with the Spurs). What would be ideal for Jenkins is if he is paired with an elite point guard in the backcourt that has a knack for getting him the ball in a good scoring position. Having to play the role of point guard probably would not be the best fit as his talents and capabilities reek of a classic off-the-ball, two guard.
Best NBA Fit: Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls has a slew of players in the frontcourt that he distributes the ball, but he lacks a solid two-guard to complement his impeccable play at point guard. The opposition would no doubt have to respect Jenkins’ ability to score, which would alleviate some of the pressure Rose currently has on his shoulders. One thing is for certain for whichever NBA team takes advantage of Jenkins’ talents: Will they project him to fill the role as a back-up point guard or an off-the-ball starter? This will ultimately determine how Jenkins develops his game throughout the summer months in preparation for the season.
Scout’s Take (Chris Denker from Netscouts Basketball): “a Vinnie Johnson type, built like a linebacker… really efficient offensive player… may struggle dealing with bigger point guards at the next level.”