The song wasn’t called “We’ve Got Bryce” even though I love Bryce Brown and all he stands for. Chuma is the better NBA prospect and probably Auburn’s best player last season. However, if we are sitting around here talking about which player was Auburn’s most important player, which player showed up to the gym looking for blood each night, or which player played like the human embodiment of the 100 emoji? Brother we are talking about Jared Lamar Harper.
The chip on Jared Harper’s shoulder has a chip on its shoulder. He seems like the kind of player who writes down the name and address of every person who has ever doubted him, only to send them VHS tapes of him dunking on people in big moments. If you don’t think a guy like that doesn’t deserve a shot at the next level then you don’t watch a lot of NBA basketball.
In case you are doubting Jared Harper right now, thinking he won’t make it at the next level, just understand he is probably gonna find out and then dunk on you. Half of the guys in the League are genetic freaks who wake up being 6’9” tall and able to run like a deer. The other half? Dudes like Jared Harper who wake up wanting to embarrass those dudes on national TV. Every GM in the league knows he needs one or two of those dudes on his team. My favorite basketball team, the Dallas Mavericks, won the 2011 NBA Finals over the much more “talented” Miami Heat because the Mavs had Dirk and a bunch of killers like JJ Barea. If you don’t know who JJ Barea is, go ask a fan of the OKC Thunder or a real Lakers fan.
Watch that video and then watch this one:
There’s a place for Jared Harper in the NBA. High-level athlete with an off the charts Basketball IQ and work ethic? Yeah he’ll find a roster spot.
I’ve seen him projected in the late second round, but I am not convinced he gets taken in the draft at all. He’ll find a spot on a summer league roster and then make his way on a bench somewhere by next season. He’s too smart and mean and tough.
Jared always seems to hit the cold-blooded three pointer when his team needs it. In fact, almost every jump shot he took last year was a three pointer. He attempted 265 threes and only 194 twos and he made his living on transition pull-up threes that just killed the morale of the opposition. Also, he is a pick and roll machine. In the NBA, as a guard, you have to be able to shoot the three and you have to be able to run the pick and roll. Jared is one of the best pick and roll ball-handlers in this entire draft. He relishes in making bigger players pay when they switch, and is even better busting a three in the eye of a player who decides to go under the screen. He’s a monster, y’all, and he’s going to be a sixth-man in the league who does this on TNT for years.
If you’re an NBA exec and you’re reading this (College and Mag is huge among NBA Execs) then you should get Harper in the late second or snatch him up on a two-way deal after the draft. Just know he might do this to some of your bigger players in practice:
The next time Jared Harper looks afraid on a basketball court will be the first time. I want him to be a Maverick so badly you guys, but I think the best fit for him might be somewhere else. I could see him going to a team like Milwaukee or Los Angeles who need a serviceable backup point guard. I could also see him going to the G League for a team like the Warriors or Spurs and working his way into the league from that route. Just know, if he hears his name called on Thursday night, I have a new second favorite team.