Motlow's Fredericks ready to size up Razorbacks

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Thursday, April 19, 2018
Rashawn Fredericks
Rashawn Fredericks

Arkansas' basketball program hopes to hit the Motlow Daily Double this weekend as it hosts a first-team junior college All-American.

Tullahoma, Tenn., Motlow State Community College forward Rashawn Fredericks (6-6, 198) will begin his official visit with the Razorbacks on Thursday night.

Fredericks was named a first-team junior college All-American after averaging 17.7 points, 10.3 rebounds, 1.7 steals and 1.5 blocks this season for the same school that produced former Razorback Jaylen Barford, who was also a junior college first-team All-American.

He capped off the season with a 36-point performance on 14-of-26 from the field and 5-of-8 from the free throw line and also added 9 rebounds in Motlow’s 86-82 loss to Vincennes in the second round of the NJCAA tournament in Hutchinson, Kan.

“He’s been really good for us the past two seasons,” Motlow assistant coach Zach Holt said Thursday afternoon. “He shoots the ball really well, is a straight-line guy that can get to the rim and is a super athlete that can really score and rebound as evidenced by how he played this season and was named a first-team All-American.”

Holt, who recruited both Barford and Fredericks to Motlow for two different head coaches, noted that the Bucks’ current star has already taken official visits to Cincinnati, South Florida and North Texas, where he decommitted last fall.

“He has one more official visit left if he wanted to use it, but does not have plans to do so right now,” Holt said.

Fredericks is a native of the U.S. Virgin Islands and finished up high school at Tampa (Fla.) Chamberlin.

During his sophomore season for the Bucks, Fredericks shot 46.7 percent from the floor, 32.9 perfect from 3-point range - with a high of eight made in one game - and 78.7 percent from the line.

He ended his Motlow career in the top 10 scoring with 1,001 points (a 15.2 ppg career average), is second on the school’s career rebounding list with 769, seventh in steals (124), fifth in 3-pointers made (113) and fourth in blocked shots (84).

“He played the 3 and 4 for us because of the way that we play,” Holt said. “I see him playing the 3 in college.

“I think he would fit in great at Arkansas. Coach Anderson does a great job with his kids. I’ve obviously watched a lot of their games because of Jaylen being there and I think it is a system that he would thrive in because he can take people off the dribble, can really shoot it, is also a very good passer and gets after it on defense.”

Holt has watched with joy how Barford played over his two seasons at Arkansas as he scored over 1,000 points and led the Razorbacks to a 49-22 record and two trips to the NCAA Tournament.

“That’s been a lot of fun to watch,” Holt said. “Jaylen is one of the best players that I have ever been around. He is such a tough matchup and has such a will to win. He is a proven winner, can shoot it and is fun to watch get to the rim.

“He’s also a really good rebounder, especially on the offensive end.”

Fredericks played last summer on the Virgin Islands national team, which played exhibition games against a pair of college teams in Vanderbilt and James Madison, and finished fourth in the 2017 FIBA Americup in Argentina to advance to the 2019 Pan American Games.

The United States, featuring a group of NBA G League players, won the gold medal in the FIBA Americup.

Arkansas inked six high school seniors in the November early signing period and added Warner, Okla., Connors State guard Mason Jones (6-5, 205) - who will have three years of eligibility for the Razorbacks - on the opening day of the current April 11-May 6 late signing period.

Barford topped Arkansas in scoring (17.9) as a senior and led the SEC in 3-point shooting at 44.3 percent (87-of-201).

Last week, he was named MVP of the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament - which includes the 64 best college seniors - while averaging 19.3 points and 6.7 rebounds and shooting 38 percent from 3-point range while leading his team to a championship with a 3-0 record.

“He had a great showing at Portsmouth and I think he is going to have a great professional career,” Holt said. “He just keeps on proving people wrong and we are very proud of him.”

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