By Steve DiMiceli
Jerry Jones emerged as a top candidate for the most improved player on the Duquesne roster. He went from being a guy who I saw as a potential strong option off the bench to a guy I see as a good starter over the next two season. His performance against UMass in the A-10 tournament was a thing of beauty and while his teammates let him down at the end, he showed me that he can win some games for this team.
What he did well
No one on the team moves without the ball and finds space the way Jerry Jones does. His open looks didn't happen by accident. He made progress from behind the arc and has the potential to be a very strong shooter. Jones was one of three Dukes I was comfortable with at the FT line. His defense, said to be a strength when he was recruited, improved as the season progressed . I'd like to see him spend more time defending on the perimeter. When BJ Monteiro was out, I thought he filled in quite well. Jones is a very good passer and showed excellent vision finding his teammates.
What he didn't do well
Jones rarely created his own shot on the dribble and this is a big hole in his game as I see it. He struggled against teams like St Louis that make it difficult for teams to pass. He also seemed to disappear for long stretches of games and failed to make an impact some of the times he was in the game. At 6'5'' he will be counted on to improve his defensive rebounding.
I think Jones has a pretty high ceiling for his final two years at Duquesne. With increased minutes I could see him averaging 9-12 points, 4-6 rebounds and 2-3 assists a game to go with a half steal and block all while playing fairly strong defense. He needs to play more of a 2 or 3 than 4 to be successful. I think he could be very disruptive on the perimeter defensively while creating a difficult defensive match up against smaller twos. Provided he improves his ball handling, he could become a better shooting version of Michael Davenport.