As Alabama basketball moves into the offseason, BamaInsider is continuing its end-of-season reviews, breaking down the Crimson Tide players’ performances based on expectations. Next up on our list is freshman guard Joshua Primo.
What did we expect?
Primo, originally a member of the 2021 recruiting class, reclassified into the 2020 class to get a jump-start on his college career. As one of the youngest players in the SEC, he was still expected to make a large impact as a freshman. Alabama head coach Nate Oats described the 17-year-old as a “gym-rat” ahead of his first season for the Crimson Tide.
The appeal for Primo is his ability to play alongside other talented guards. He has great positional size at 6-foot-6, which makes him versatile on the defensive end. He’s also another player for opponents to stress about on offense.
What did we get?
This season, Primo averaged 8.1 points and 3.4 rebounds on 43 percent shooting from the field. He was one of 24 freshmen to shoot above 38 percent from 3 and 75 percent from the free-throw line.
Primo went through a freshman slump before an impressive nine-game stretch in January. He averaged 11.2 points and 3.4 rebounds on 50 percent shooting from three over that stretch.
Primo’s best performance came at LSU on Jan. 19 when he scored 22 points on 80 percent shooting (8 of 10) in 19 minutes of action. Primo is an excellent stationary shooter as 88 percent of his 3-point attempts were assisted. He’s a low-maintenance player that shoots in the rhythm of the offense.
Joshua Primo 2-point shooting
Here’s how Primo fared on 2-point attempts. He regressed as a finisher from non-conference play as the SEC presents a tougher challenge due to its skilled rim protectors. Primo must improve in this area to solidify himself as a first-round pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.
On defense, Primo is a long athlete who is active on and off the ball. He’s on track to be an elite switchable defender as he continues to put on muscle. Currently at 190 pounds, Primo has added 10 pounds of muscle since arriving on campus last summer.
Primo is set to return for his second season at Alabama. His ceiling is through the roof if he continues to round out his offensive game and improves his frame.
Kira Lewis Jr. was in a similar situation after his freshman season when the 18-year-old guard took massive strides in his second year.
Primo is a player to watch heading into the fall.
Season Grade: B