Jordan Salley 6-7 Lutheran High School La Verne, California
Last spring and heading into the summer Jordan Salley was becoming a very hot commodity in recruiting circle with his outstanding play during the high school season and spring AAU ball then he blew out his knee in late June of 2009. While quite a few schools back off Montana State was one of the schools that stuck with Salley. His relationship with coach Huse and Starr was strong enough that in December of 2009 before even taking an official visit to Montana State he committed. His knee is now almost 100% and he is firmly committed to signing this April 14th.
Salley did not play this year with Lutheran high school but he was a part of the team all season and accompanied them to Bakersfield as they won the State 5A championship. Lutheran is a junior dominated team (Salley was their only senior on the roster) this season, but have 4 players that are getting looks from Pac-10 schools. Despite this all season when reading articles on Lutherans outstanding play this season, there is almost always the line “and they are doing it without their best player Jordan Salley”
As a junior Salley averaged 17 points, 11 rebounds 3 blocks while shooting 62% from the field and 60% from the free throw line. He had 30 rebounds in one game and scored over 25 points 5 times that season. His stats could be even better but his play (and stats were) limited in eight 30+ point blow out by Lutheran.
Salley primarily played center in for Lutheran high school but played both center and power forward on the AAU circuit. He has that elusive quality that all coaches and TV announcers are marveling about and that is great length (long arms and big hands), that enable him to play much bigger than his 6-7 height. The attribute that seems to universal no matter who you talk to is his hustle and determination. He gives 100% on the court and never takes plays off. He already possesses a D-1 ready body at 230 pounds, has good quickness, speed and is tenacious rebounder. The main concern for Salley (besides his knee injury) is his size at the center position, and the development on a few more offensive skills. Salley should play both the forward spot and some at center for the Cats but the size issue should really not hinder him that much in the Big Sky especially with his other attributes.
Last fall I heard Huse mention that he felt the 2009-10 team would really miss the athleticism of Mbunga, and in the 2010 recruiting class his goal was to recruit some big men who could play above the rim, and defend the more athletic players. In Salley I thin he took a big step to fill this need. As long as he is healthy I see Salley logging some significant minuets next year in the rotation at both the center and power forward position. His future is at the power forward spot, and could be heir apparent to Bobby Howard, but a lot of that could depend on his knee.
Here is ESPN’s evaluations over the past couple year. There are a couple contradictions in them like <”he needs to> work on using his left hand on finishes as well”>. Salley is left handed.
Jordan Salley | C
Hometown La Verne, CA
High School Lutheran High School
Position rank Center # 94
Weight 230 lbs.
ESPN Overall Rating 79
ESPN Center Rank # 94
April, 2009: Salley, a lefty, has very long arms and uses this length to crash the boards on both ends of the floor. He scores on offensive rebounds put-backs and runs the floor reasonable well, which leads to easy finishes on the break. Salley has very good strength and powers up in traffic and finishes with bodies hanging on him. Salley generates power in the strong lower half of his body and has the capacity to add even more strength. His quick leaping ability allows him to play an active brand of basketball and get to offensive boards before the opposition. Salley, especially since he is undersized, needs to improve his post footwork and add counter moves to his game.
June, 2008: Salley had a dominating performance due to the fact the event (2008 Fullcourt Press Showcase) was short on bigs. He is quite the physical specimen and he competes very well, but his skill level has not improved in quite some time. He gets most of his points powering his way to the basket, usually off of offensive put-backs or drop-step moves. However, at the next level he’ll need to refine his offensive game, especially his footwork. He has a limited touch around the basket due to poor fundamentals and lack of skill. In the next couple of years he needs to polish up his post moves – a jump hook would be a start – and work on using his left hand on finishes as well. He has the frame to play at the Division I level, but his overall game needs to improve to reach his potential.
October, 2007: Salley is an undersized “center” prospect but he has a wide frame, long arms, and he is very active around the basket. Salley had an outstanding weekend (2007 Fullcourt Press All Frosh/Soph Camp), as he was virtually unstoppable in the paint area each and every game. He has a strong frame with long arms and plays each possession with a purpose in mind. He utilizes his wide frame and toughness to score through and over the top of opponents. Though he is an undersized five, he plays extremely hard at both ends and his skills are progressing as well. He has an excellent pair of hands and a pretty sweet jump hook. Most importantly, he was one of the few players who didn’t back down from Jeremy Tyler. He played aggressively throughout the all-star game against Tyler — especially on the defensive end — and he even frustrated him on occasion. Overall, Salley — due to his tenacity and strong frame — should find himself next summer attracting attention from the Big West and/or the WCC.
Salley received recruiting interest from Creighton, San Jose St., Pepperdine, San Diego State, West Virginia, Washington State, Utah, Tulsa, New Mexico, Santa Clara, Santa Barbara, UC Riverside, Eastern Washington and others.