With many Cavaliers' fans already having their eyes on the draft, I've been scouting college basketball pretty intensely over the past couple of months. That being said, we are going to try to provide you with as many scouting reports as...
With many Cavaliers' fans already having their eyes on the draft, I've been scouting college basketball pretty intensely over the past couple of months. That being said, we are going to try to provide you with as many scouting reports as we can until the draft on June 27th.
Today, we present Jamaal Franklin of San Diego State. Franklin's an interesting prospect because of his versatility, motor, and toughness. After winning the Mountain West Conference's Player of the Year award in 2012, Franklin replicated his numbers again this season, averaging 17 points and 9.5 rebounds per game, along with 3.3 assists. He played kind of a combo-forward/small forward role at San Diego State, but will most likely be asked to play shooting guard in the NBA because of his size and athleticism.
Measurements, Athleticism and Intangibles:
Franklin stands about 6'5" with a 6'11" wingspan. He's also added about 40 pounds to his frame since high school, now weighing 205 pounds, meaning he has pretty much a prototypically NBA-ready body for a shooting guard. He's a really good athlete, with great leaping ability and solid quickness. His basketball IQ is off the charts, but in my opinion his best attribute is his motor. Franklin is tough and never quits working on the basketball court.
That toughness and motor are on full display on the offensive end, where he relentlessly attacks the defense with his great first step and length, which allows him to blow past a lot of collegiate defenders. He's got a pretty good midrange game, but mostly ends up driving into the lane. Once in the lane or the rim, he shows a really good ability to find high percentage looks. Franklin converts 61% of his attempts at the rim, but his best quality is his ability to draw contact. Franklin ended up at the line 8.1 times per 40 minutes, where he shot 78%. This might be his most NBA-ready skill right now, as he's something of a jack-of-all-trades, master of none at the offensive end of the floor.
In that vein, he's already a pretty good playmaker, who finds great passing lanes and excels finding cutters to the rim. He averaged about four assists per 40 minutes. However, due to his all-encompassing role within the San Diego State offense, he also turned the ball over at an alarming rate of four times per game. These turnovers tended to come from trying to do a little too much within the offense, or trying to make the perfect pass. I think there's a chance that problem goes away in the NBA when his role won't be so large, but it's worth mentioning.
Turnovers aren't his biggest roadblock though to becoming an NBA-caliber shooting guard. Franklin is a bad shooter from distance who still takes 37% of his shots from beyond the arc, according to hoop-math.com. He only made 27% of his 4.6 three point attempts per game this season. He doesn't seem to elevate off the ground well when he shoots, and his release point kind of wavers from way over his head to right in front of it. He'll really need to start becoming a better spot-up shooter - which Chad Ford says he's working on - in order to become a better role player in the NBA.
Franklin also has potential to be a fantastic wing defender due to his high work level and athleticism. At San Diego State, he was asked to guard at least three different positions (SG, SF, and PF), giving him not only the versatility, but also the toughness to defend guys who are bigger than he is. Sometimes he's a little overanxious and gets beat off the dribble, but that seems like more of a youth thing that he'll learn to minimize as he gets older. He also forces a lot of turnovers, finishing second in the Mountain West in blocks plus steals with 2.4 per game.
His most eye-popping statistic though is that he's a fantastic rebounder for a potential guard, averaging 11.2 rebounds per 40 minutes. He actually led the Mountain West in defensive rebounding with 7.8 per game. He'll be an excellent rebounder
about 23 hours ago