#3 Johnathan Williams III
6'9" 225 lbs
Southwind High School
The prize of the Frank Haith recruiting tenure was securing Johnathan Williams III, the highly touted 4-star Power Forward from Memphis. Williams chose Mizzou over Michigan State, Florida, Georgetown and Texas. So it was a huge recruiting win for the Tigers. And Williams rewarded them by becoming a solid and reliable player as a freshman. He had some ups and downs adjusting to the level of play in the SEC. You could see the whole time that there was an All-Conference player cooped up inside those struggles, and when he showed the flashes it was exciting.
The leading returning scorer from last year, a lot of expectations are resting on Williams shoulders and he should be able to step up to them. He has the ability to be pretty deadly around 12 feet and in, and he is also developing a jump shot that could open up more opportunities on the inside as he can use that to drag larger slower interior players father out to take advantage of his quickness. Whether or not he's ready to take those kinds of advantages this season are still not known, but I think it's unlikely. Where Mizzou is going to need him is attacking the rim in close. If he does that and becomes the player on the inside that Mizzou needs, this can be a tournament team. You could easily say that he is the most important player on the roster. Good luck, we're all counting on you.
Some people call him JIII , some JW3, some even call him sticks, but regardless of what you call him he was one of the real bright spots in a somewhat disjointed and disappointing season last year. I love his potential, I love his potential as a leader for Mizzou and for becoming the kind of player Mizzou fans love and latch onto for the next three years and will lose their minds for on senior night in two years.
He's got great talent, a nose for the ball and he seems to be in the right position to grab some boards. My one concern aside from the potential of a nagging injury that won't see him play much in the exhibition season and that there is too much put on his shoulders to be the man with Ross, Jabari and Clarkson gone.
Let's see some progress from his jump shot and free throw shooting and up his production to 10 pts and 11 boards a game and let's enjoy the ride.
Love this kid and his potential. For me, JIII and Jabari were the bright lights shining amongst the litter of last year's disappointment. I'm a little afraid that too much will be put on his plate too quickly as the returner with the most experience and potential; he's certainly not a go-to guy yet. But on the off chance that he grew into one over the summer--with better touch around the rim, a more consistent jumper/FT stroke, a more mature feel for the game, and the ability to stay out of foul trouble--then watch out. Probably around 25 minutes per game, 10 or so points per, and 8-9 rebounds. If we get more than that, well, awesome. Probably our best chance at an all-SEC performer.
johnathan williams - thalami ninjas howl, owlish inhalant jam