No high school player in the state last season had a better season from beginning to end than Desert Mountain High School's talented and elusive 5-foot-11, 165-pound senior point guard Rolando Rhymes. After a season of sitting out due to AIA transfer rules, Rhymes returned to action this high school season and looked better than ever, as he emerged into one of the states elite overall prospects and among the best pure point guard prospects in the state.
Rolando has been regarded among the best talents in the state since he was a youngster, but this past season on a loaded Desert Mountain HS team, Rhymes put it all together for the state to take notice of his tremendous ability to make plays with the basketball in his hands. In many games this past season, and amidst strong competition, Rhymes single-handily took basketball games over.
Rhymes would lead Desert Mountain to a strong 25-6 overall record this past high school season in the state's top Division-I Class of schools. He would turn in his best high school season of his young career - averaging 15.1 points, 4.5 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 2.1 steals per/game.
I caught up with Rhymes this week and he advised me that he is ready and focused on having a strong July performance to improve his overall college recruitment.
Currently Rhymes informed me that he is receiving strong interest from many different schools, as NC State, Saint Mary's, UC-Irvine, UC-Riverside, Tulsa, Weber State, Northern Arizona and North Texas have been in contact with the talented guard prospect. Each school has shown a serious interest in recruiting Rhymes, but are each looking forward to watching him perform during the month of July.
Rhymes also informed me that he currently does not have any scholarship offers for himself, but he hopes to change that in July.
Rhymes also will now be playing this summer for the Arizona Magic Pump N Run-2014 squad - a team that won two different tournaments during the spring evaluation period. The addition of Rhymes to an already very successful group should help the team, as well as create more exposure to college coaches for Rhymes.
Rhymes advised me that he does not have a clear favorite as this time, but that he is simply looking forward to raising his recruiting stock at this time.
Rhymes is a shifty, pass-first point guard prospect that is capable of making plays for himself or others off the dribble. His crafty approach to the game and speed off the dribble make him very difficult to defend when he makes up his mind to get to the basket, where he is also a very good finisher in traffic. He utilizes a variety of floaters when in traffic to finish plays, and has excellent body control in traffic. He pushes the basketball up the floor and finds the open man on the court quite often, and is able to make players around him better - a nice attribute.
Rhymes is also an excellent defender with quick hands and feet, and is able to get many pass deflections through passing passing lanes, while also forcing pressure on opposing guards. Rhymes is capable of becoming a lock-down defender over time with maturity physically.
Rhymes is as good a pure point guard prospect as there is in Arizona's loaded 2014 class, and a strong summer performance could change everything for him in his college recruitment.
Rhymes currently carries a 2.7 CUM GPA in the classroom.
Arizona Preps will co0ntinue to follow the college recruitment of Rhymes closely this summer, and bring you any updates as they continue to develop.