Draft Scouting: NCAA Games to Watch This Week (Week 12: 2/5 – 2/11)
Kansas – TCU 9:00 ESPN2
Coming off a shocking home loss to Oklahoma State, the Jayhawks will try to get back on track at TCU. Kenrich Williams is the prospect to watch for the Horned Frogs. He is an under appreciated senior who contributes in a variety of ways and projects well as a role playing combo forward at the next level. Kansas is full of talent, so if you’ve seen plenty of Devonte Graham and Svi Mykhailiuk, check out Marcus Garrett and Udoka Azubuike this time around.
Prospects to watch: Kenrich Williams, Devonte Graham, LaGerald Vick, Svi Mykhailiuk, Marcus Garrett, Udoka Azubuike, Silvio de Sousa
Texas A&M – Auburn 9:00 ESPN2
Auburn is one of the biggest surprises in the nation but perhaps we should have seen this coming to some extent as the roster is certainly not lacking for talent. Anfernee McLemore is a sleeper favorite of my colleagues Ben Rubin and Jackson Hoy. Mustapha Heron was a consensus 5-star recruit. Chuma Okeke is a versatile playmaking four-man who has made great strides with his jump shooting. However, my favorite prospect on this team is probably athletic big man Horace Spencer, who certainly lacks polish offensively but has made some impressive plays defensively throughout this season and has an impressive combination of steal and block rates. In this game, Spencer and McLemore will go toe to toe with another athletic rim protector in projected first round pick, Robert Williams. Williams has played much better since being inserted back in the starting line up, averaging 14 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2.8 blocks in his last 6 games.
Prospects to watch: Robert Williams, DJ Hogg, Chuma Okeke, Horace Spencer, Anfernee McLemore
UNLV – Nevada 11:00 CBSSN
For the Wednesday night cap, this Mountain West match up between two in state rivals. Brandon McCoy has struggled to bring the type of defensive presence UNLV had hoped for from a top 20 big man recruit. He has rapidly dropped on my big board and will need a really strong showing here to keep his spot among the top 100 prospects. For Nevada, Caleb Martin is the star player, thanks to his awkwardly effective jump shooting and physicality.
Prospects to watch: Brandon McCoy, Caleb Martin
Georgia Tech – Louisville 7:00 ESPN2
Josh Okogie hasn’t quite had the type of jump in production that some had hoped to see going into his sophomore season but he is still an intriguing prospect with plenty of potential. One of Okogie’s biggest weaknesses is his inability to finish at the rim and going up against Louisville’ Raymond Spalding and Anas Mahmoud will be a great opportunity for him to show some development in that regard.
Prospects to watch: Josh Okogie, Raymond Spalding
Duke – North Carolina 8:00 ESPN
North Carolina doesn’t have any one outstanding NBA prospect on the team this year but the Duke-Carolina rivalry is one of the best in sports and a must watch for anyone who follows college basketball. Cameron Johnson and Theo Pinson have some upside but really Duke is so loaded with talent, there is enough future draft picks on the Blue Devils roster to make up for both teams.
Prospects to watch: Wendell Carter, Marvin Bagley, Gary Trent, Grayson Allen, Trevon Duval, Javin DeLaurier
UCLA – Arizona 10:00 ESPN
Probably the two teams with the most upside and pure talent in the Pac-12, this is another must watch game. Kris Wilkes and Jaylen Hands will try to show that they can hang with the likes of Allonzo Trier and Rawle Alkins. Meanwhile, UCLA’s bigs will have their hands full inside as they attempt to contain DeAndre Ayton.
Prospects to watch: Kris Wilkes, Aaron Holiday, Jaylen Hands, DeAndre Ayton, Rawle Alkins, Allonzo Trier
Butler – Villanova 12:00 FOX
Another wild Saturday, as they all tend to be at this time of the year, begins with a nationally televised match up between two of the better programs in the Big East. Villanova’s offense is on a historic pace and would be the best offense ever in the KenPom era according to his adjusted offensive ratings. Kamar Baldwin struggled with his jump shot in the start of the season but has been lights out in Big East play and he will try to off set the offensive firepower that Jalen Brunson is likely to bring. Mikal Bridges is the top two way prospect in this game and will likely start the game defending Butler’s leading scorer, Kelan Martin.
Prospects to watch: Kamar Baldwin, Jalen Brunson, Mikal Bridges
Mississippi State – Missouri 2:00 ESPN2
It seems like almost every team in the SEC this year has several NBA level talents. Aric Holman probably has the most upside on the Bulldogs but keep an eye on talented but streaky point guard Lamar Peters and raw, athletic, big man Abdul Ado. For Missouri, Jontay Porter has played himself into the one and done conversation this season but has been up and down so far in SEC play. Matching up against the likes of Holman and Ado will be a good chance for Jontay to prove himself as a legitimate first round talent.
Prospects to watch: Aric Holman, Jontay Porter
Michigan State – Purdue 4:00 ESPN
This is undoubtedly the best game of the weekend and perhaps of the week. Both teams are top five in the nation by almost any measure and have as much talent and skill throughout their line ups as any two teams in the nation. Of course, Jaren Jackson and Miles Bridges are the two biggest NBA draft attractions but there are plenty of other players who have a chance to play in the NBA in this game.
Prospects to watch: Miles Bridges, Jaren Jackson, Vince Edwards, Carsen Edwards, Dakota Mathias
Gonzaga – St Mary’s 10:00 ESPN2
Saint Mary’s beat Gonzaga in Spokane in January, so this is a revenge game for the Zags. If Saint Mary’s wins this one, they’ll essentially lock up the West Coast regular season crown. Not much NBA talent on the Gaels but there is plenty on Gonzaga. So a good opportunity to catch up on Killian Tillie, Zach Norvell and Rui Hachimura.
Prospects to watch: Killian Tillie, Zach Norvell, Rui Hachimura
USC – Arizona 10:15 ESPN
The other talented LA team will play Arizona this week as well and while I’m still disappointed that De’Anthony Melton is forced to sit out the entire year, it’s a good chance to see Chimezie Metu and any defensive development he may have made over the last few months. If Metu is able to use his physical ability in a more functional manner on the defensive end that would be a huge boost to his stock as an NBA prospect.
Prospects to watch: DeAndre Ayton, Allonzo Trier, Rawle Alkins, Chimezie Metu