Brandon Bass is considered to be one of the premier Freshman Power Forwards coming into the NCAA this year. He has all the skills you could ask for out of a PF and he is developing other skills that could make him more of a perimeter threat as well. He has a very bright future ahead of him and if he continues to work hard he will be a first round draft pick when he decides to come out. The first thing his coaches will tell you about him is that he's an extremely hard worker and a very motivated young man. Everyone that's worked with him agrees that he is a very coachable player and strives to do all he can to get better as a player. He takes his academics very seriously and was named student athlete of the month in December. You would never guess that he is only 18 years old. He has a solid NBA body, big soft hands and a nice wingspan which allows him to play bigger then his height. He's getting a ton of minutes and playing a big role in LSU's offense already in his freshman year. He has no problem playing 30+ minutes a game because he keeps himself in excellent shape. He rarely gets more then 5 minutes of rest in an entire game and he seems to have no problem with that whatsoever. Bass made a name for himself in high school mostly by being a force in the paint. He blocks a lot of shots and rebounds extremely well. He knows how to establish position in the paint and box his man out for the rebound on both ends of the court. He's very hard to move out of the low blocks once he's established position. Very good upper body strength. Even though he is very big and bulky he is a mobile player, runs up and down the court extremely well and can get off the floor in a second to catch the alleyoop pass and throw it down. He's a very good athlete and he uses his skills well. Bass was a late bloomer, started growing pretty late and you can tell that he was used to being more of a perimeter type player up until his final years of high school. He'll sometimes step out of the paint and attack the basket off the dribble or pull up for the 15 footer. His jump shot is getting better everyday, if this trend continues he will be an extremely tough player to guard on any level. He is already an excellent free throw shooter by all standards and that might imply that he has what it takes to become a solid outside shooter down the road as well. We're not talking 3 point range here but more of a 16-18 foot jump shooter like Chris Webber or Jermaine O'neal. We'll see how that comes along. He's got a beautiful shooting stroke for a big man right now and all it will take probably is a lot of hard work to get where he needs to be.
Bass is undersized at 6-8 for a Power Forward and this will be the main knock on him when he'll be up for the draft. Defense needs work, he is used to getting a lot of blocked shots but that won't be as easy in the pros. Midrange game is a work in progress but is improving. Handles are questionable. Needs to become a better dribbler to successfully take his man to the basket from the outside in the NBA. He looked a little mechanical in the couple of times that I saw him this year early in the season. He is obviously trying to do what his coach tells him in practice, but it looks like he's thinking too much. This might be just a freshman thing. He doesn't improvise at all. He gets a little nervous when he is double teamed and doesn't quite know what to do. His passing skills definitely need work.
Bass will probably wait until he finishes at least his sophomore or junior year before he decides to come out. He is in a pretty good situation at LSU, playing very close to home and next year with Lloreda graduating he will have the team all to himself and should be able to showcase his talents every game in the SEC. He definitely has some work to do to show that he can play both Forward spots effectively in the NBA. Regardless, Bass has NBA written all over him.
A McDonald's All-American in 2003, scored 14 points, blocked 3 shots and pulled down 3 rebounds in 17 minutes for the East.