Christian Watford Archive

Video: Destined for Glory and Success with Christian Watford and Victor Oladipo

Via Sholape Oriola on YouTube:

Draft watch: Victor Oladipo works out for Cleveland

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Just one week remains until the 2013 NBA Draft and with several mock drafts updated this week, it’s time for another look at where Cody Zeller and Victor Oladipo are currently projected to be selected as well as some recent buzz on Christian Watford.

Victor Oladipo
ESPN: (2 to Orlando) Draft Express: (5 to Phoenix) NBADraft.net: (7 to Sacramento) SheridanHoops.com: (2 to Orlando)

· Analysis: Oladipo worked out Wednesday in Cleveland along with Ben McLemore, Otto Porter and Jamaal Franklin. He’s also worked out for Phoenix and Orlando, the two teams most frequently mentioned as potential landing spots, and declined a workout for the Washington Wizards, according to The Washington Post. ESPN.com’s Chad Ford said Tuesday on Sportscenter that the Cavaliers haven’t decided which direction they’ll go with the No. 1 pick and the fact that Oladipo, McLemore and Porter were all brought in this week seems to indicate the franchise is doing its due diligence. That said, Ford is still projecting Nerlens Noel at No. 1 while adding that Oladipo has the upper hand over McLemore at No. 2 to Orlando.

· Expert Opinion: “With a potential hole at shooting guard to fill, the Magic have their choice of Ben McLemore and Oladipo. Both guards represent better value and have higher ceilings than Trey Burke. The current preference is Oladipo, who projects as a better defender and is a better athlete than McLemore. Although McLemore has been as high as No. 1 in our mocks, Oladipo looks to be making a push. Considering Orlando GM Rob Hennigan came from Oklahoma City, going with a player that has a high upside, high character and is very long and athletic makes the most sense. While Oladipo has continually risen up NBA draft boards, McLemore has started to slip a bit, and that could see him fall more than initially anticipated.” – SheridanHoops.com.

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Draft watch: Oladipo, Zeller on the rise after combine?

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With the combine complete and the lottery taking place tomorrow, it’s time for an updated look at the prospects for Cody Zeller, Victor Oladipo and Christian Watford in next month’s NBA Draft.

In our latest update, we’ll walk you through the latest projections for each player as well notes and measurements from the combine for Zeller and Oladipo:

Cody Zeller
ESPN: (12) Draft Express: (9) NBADraft.net: (4)

Combine measurements and testing results:

· Height w/o Shoes: 6′ 10.75”
· Height with Shoes: 7′ 0.25”
· Wt.: 230
· Wingspan: 6’10.75″
· Reach: 8’10″
· Body Fat: 4.75
· Hand Length: 8.5
· Hand Width: 10.5
· 3/4 sprint: 3.15
· Lane agility: 10.82
· Modified lane agility: 2.69
· Standing vertical: 35.5″
· Max vertical: 37.5″

· Analysis: After drawing more scrutiny than any other player during the college hoops season, Zeller stepped onto the floor on Friday at the combine and stood out in the testing against his peers. His standing vertical of 35.5 inches was the best ever recorded at the combine for a player 6-foot-9 or taller. Zeller also fared favorably in the 3/4 sprint, lane agility and modified lane agility tests. Zeller was criticized for his play against Syracuse in the NCAA Tournament, but his athleticism really stood out at the combine and that should help him move up in the draft.

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Video: Christian Watford 2013 NBA Draft workout

Via CityLeagueHoopsTV on YouTube:

Notebook: Fischer makes large leap in ESPN rankings

050213bcxAt last month’s Derby Festival Basketball Classic in Louisville, 2013 Germantown (Wis.) forward and Indiana signee Luke Fischer said he wasn’t concerned about where he fell in the national rankings.

“It doesn’t really bother me that much at all. I really don’t care about rankings,” he told Inside the Hall. “They don’t really mean much to me. I’ve just always gone out there and played and have done my own thing.”

Despite leading his high school to two straight undefeated state championships and winning Mr. Basketball, Fischer isn’t included in the Rivals.com or Scout.com top 100.

But one of the three major services, ESPN, took notice of Fischer’s production as a senior and gave him a major bump in its final 2013 rankings that were released on Wednesday.

The 6-foot-10, 210-pound big man jumped from No. 67 to No. 34 after averaging 21.3 and 9.5 rebounds as a senior.

Three other IU signees — Noah Vonleh (13), Troy Williams (54) and Stanford Robinson (99) — were also included in the ESPNU Top 100.

Indiana’s class ranks No. 4 nationally behind Kentucky, Kansas and Memphis.

Oladipo, Zeller hold steady in mock drafts

With the passing of the NBA’s early entry deadline for the draft on April 30, several publications have updated their mock drafts and Indiana junior Victor Oladipo and sophomore Cody Zeller are unanimously in the lottery.

The NBA will hold its annual combine later this month in Chicago and the event will air live on the following times and dates:  10 a.m. May 16, ESPNU;  2 p.m. May 16, ESPN2; 10 a.m. May 17, ESPNU; 2 p.m. May 17, ESPN2.

Here’s a look at where each player is currently projected:

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That’s A Wrap: Defense

IUMinnITH0011Welcome to “That’s A Wrap,” our recap of the 2012-2013 Indiana Hoosiers. Today, the final installment: Indiana’s defense.

Final stats (36 games): 62.1 ppg, 43.2 FG %, 44.0 eFG %, 30.4 3P FG%, 27.0 % FTR.

As the 2011-12 college hoops season wrapped and many national pundits ranked the Hoosiers No. 1 heading into this past season — a ranking that eventually carried over to the official AP preseason Top 25 — there was one black mark on Indiana’s resumé: its defense.

“Indiana may well be the proper pick as the best team in the land, but I think if you locked people in a room in late March and made each individual figure it out on his or her own, it wouldn’t have been nearly as obvious that a team with a suspect defense last season should be the best team in the land this season, and at least a few people would have struggled to put them in the top five,” wrote Stats Lord Ken Pomeroy in late October.

ESPN’s Blog Star Eamonn Brennan on the same day: “As the Hoosiers themselves will readily admit, they were not a good defensive team last season. It is rare for a team with a defense so mediocre — they finished ranked No. 64 in adjusted defensive efficiency — to seriously contend for a national title the next season.”

All true and fair. But Indiana quickly shed such a reputation once the ball tipped on the season. It would finish the year No. 13 in adjusted defensive efficiency and show tremendous improvement across the board. The biggest change? Its communication and commitment to team defense. They understood when to switch, when to rotate, when to help and when to stay home. They held each other accountable. They realized good defense could turn into a quick transition bucket, that a turnover or long rebound often meant a dunk or 3-pointer on the other end.

The numbers bear it out. Where Indiana in seasons past struggled to defend the 3-point line — remember games like this or this or this? — they held opponents to a 30.4 percent mark from distance in 2012-2013, 30th best in the nation. An opponent 2-point percentage mark of 43.2 (No. 32) and eFG percentage of 44.0 (No. 15) also had them among the top teams in the nation.

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That’s A Wrap: Offense

IUUNCITH0013Welcome to “That’s A Wrap,” our recap of the 2012-2013 Indiana Hoosiers. Today: Indiana’s offense.

Final stats (36 games): 78.6 ppg, 48.2 FG %, 54.8 eFG %, 40.3 3P FG%, 74.3 FT %, 45.9 % FTR.

Indiana’s offense was once again elite in 2012-2013, and paired with a much improved defense that wasn’t present in 2011-2012, the Hoosiers spent a majority of the regular season ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press top 25 poll.

Despite a tough last month in which it scored just 1.03 points per possession, Indiana finished the season with the nation’s second best offense at 1.21 points per trip. That was up slightly over last season when IU finished at 1.206.

The improvement was a bit more defined in Big Ten play where IU scored 1.136 points per possession compared to 1.112 last season.

Once again, the efficiency was led by Cody Zeller’s presence in the middle, getting to the foul line and IU’s ability to find shooters on the perimeter. Zeller’s biggest impact was in getting to the foul line, where he posted a free throw rate (FTA/FGA) of 73.2. Indiana shot 904 free throws and made 672 of those attempts compared to 563 attempted for its opponents. Offensive rebounding was a big area of improvement this season as Indiana rose from 59th nationally in on the offensive glass all the way up to seventh. Both Zeller and Victor Oladipo ranked in the top seven in the Big Ten in offensive rebounding.

The 3-point shooting percentage was down from last season, but was still fourth best nationally with four guys — Jordan Hulls, Christian Watford, Oladipo and Remy Abell — finishing at better than 40 percent. After shooting better than 41.2 percent in each month from November through February, the Hoosiers managed just 31.5 percent from behind the arc in March, which was a big reason the offense sputtered down the stretch.

The offense was again incredibly balanced with five guys scoring 9.5 points per game or more and a sixth, Yogi Ferrell, averaging 7.6. The two biggest movers year-over-year were Oladipo and Watford. After an up-and-down sophomore season, Oladipo put it all together as a junior and finished seventh nationally in effective field goal percentage (64.8). Watford shot a ridiculous 48.4 percent on threes, which was up nearly five percent from his junior season and almost 17 percent from where he finished as a freshman.

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