Many Arizona prospects gained maximum exposure to college coaches last week in Las Vegas - the end of the recruiting window for high school prospects across the country. One prospect that definitely raised his recruiting stock this summer was Hillcrest Prep 6-foot-7, 225-pound senior forward Stephan Gabriel. Gabriel showed off a versatile and athletic playing style that brought him a lot of attention from numerous college programs.
While playing in Las Vegas for a team called the Arizona Monsoon, which included Pinnacle High School's sharp-shooting guard Trent Brown, Gabriel played numerous positions and showed excellent versatility. Gabriel handled the basketball in the open floor from the guard position, scored off the dribble and from the perimeter in the half-court set and made plays for himself and others - showing a good understanding and feel for the game. Gabriel's sheer size, strength and athleticism on a college-ready body also were very attractive traits that had college coaches very intrigued.
While Gabriel has yet to receive any offers from his play, surprisingly, Washington, San Diego State, Kansas State, New Mexico State, Portland, Pacific and Montana State each showed serious interest as a result of his play. Currently, Gabriel has offers on the table for himself from Bradley, Montana, Fairleigh Dickinson, Wagner and Maine.
Gabriel decided to hold off on his college recruitment for 2018 and will now enter the 2019 class instead. He still needs to complete the NCAA academic qualification process to be eligible for division-I athletics - something he is working hard on at Hillcrest Prep with the coaching staff.
I will continue to follow the recruitment of Gabriel closely this fall as well as his academic standing, and bring you any updates regarding him as they develop.
Arizona Hoop Review Scouting Report: Gabriel is a native of New Jersey and recently moved to the state for his senior season. He is a unique prospect in the state, as very few prospects possess his combination of size, physical strength and athleticism. He plays well above the rim and is a force on both ends of the floor. He has excellent work ethic and competes at a high level - playing very hard at all times and looking to make a play consistently. He is a versatile prospect that should be able to develop into a consistent wing prospect over time. He has a solid shooting stroke with range on his shot, but is at his best from mid-range currently. He has a good handle of the basketball and excellent explosion off the dribble. He is an excellent finisher, especially in the open floor where he attacks the rim hard. A good passer that looks to get teammates involved and pushes the ball up the floor in fast-break situations - leading the break. An active and strong rebounder that rebounds outside of his area. An excellent shotblocker with long arms and big hands. His level of intensity and eagerness can get him in foul trouble at times, so he will need to channel his energy in the right manner to stay on the floor. A sure-fire talent and an excellent sleeper prospect.