Draft Watch: A look at the stock of Ferrell, Williams

  • 04/02/2015 12:36 pm in

With a pair of lottery picks in 2013 and one in 2014, draft watch was a regular feature on the site the past two seasons. With no clear prospect headed for the 2015 NBA draft, we ditched the feature this season, but have resurrected it for a postseason edition as Yogi Ferrell and Troy Williams appear to be on the radar, but aren’t sure things to be picked if they were to declare.

The key date this year for Indiana fans to know is Sunday, April 26, as the NBA’s early entry deadline for the draft is that day at 11:59 p.m. ET. The NCAA does have a deadline of its own on Tuesday, April 14, but it has no relevance as it is technically only a withdrawal deadline for players who have already declared to remove their name and retain NCAA eligibility moving forward. Even if a player doesn’t declare by April 14, he can still declare up until April 26, but will not have the option of pulling out of the draft if he declares after April 14.

This year’s NBA draft combine is scheduled for May 12-17 and team-specific workouts will occur in the weeks leading up to the draft on June 25.

Draft Rankings – Ferrell

DraftExpress: No. 47
ESPN (Ford): No. 104
NBADraft.net: Unranked

Analysis: Clearly DraftExpress is the most bullish on Ferrell’s chances of getting drafted and while Ford believes, according to this conversation he had with The Bloomington Herald-Times, that he’s a very capable player, he’s not sure how his game translates to the NBA. “Yogi’s a good floor leader, he’s a really good basketball player, and I don’t think there’s any question about that,” Ford told the H-T. “But you think about the Russell Westbrook’s and the Derrick Rose’s, all of these elite sort of point guards out there, and they’d eat him for lunch.”

As we discussed recently on Podcast on the Brink, Ferrell’s stock may not change much if he opts to come back for another season. But if he’s not going to be picked in the first round, another year in college, which will allow him to finish his degree and have a chance for more exposure and a bump in his stock with an NCAA tournament run is arguably the superior choice to being a fringe NBA player, playing in the the D-League or heading overseas.

Draft Rankings – Williams

DraftExpress: No. 48
ESPN (Ford): No. 48
NBADraft.net: No. 58

Analysis: Williams was asked about the NBA in the immediate aftermath of IU’s loss to Wichita State and said it was the furthest thing from his mind. Last night, ESPN reported that he’s still undecided on whether to enter the draft, but all of the projections currently slot him as a second round pick at best.

His situation is different from Ferrell’s in that another offseason of development could really skyrocket his stock into the first round or higher in the 2016 NBA Draft. Williams already has the athleticism to play in the NBA, but he still lacks a midrange game and a consistent perimeter game in general.

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  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    when he’s playing well, i love watching TW play, but i think him leaving would be far less impactful than if YF were to leave. i’m not so sure this is even all that bold a prediction, but i think if enough of the top underclassmen stay in school so that TW has even a slight chance of cracking the first rount, he’s outta here. then again, doesn’t look like he’s anywhere close.

  • twarrior87

    Really hope these guys stay. Both of them will contributed 100’s of times more to this team next year than they would in the D-league. Of course, the d-league pays, so if its about money then whatever. They will increase their money by staying at IU another year and upping their draft stock. Troy could potentially be a lottery pick after next year if he works hard this off-season (see Oladipo). Hopefully, IU can land Bryant and that may entice them both to stay.

  • Benhyoung14

    For both of these guys, it would be a mistake to declare for the draft. Both of them have things to improve upon. Draft stock will increase, unlike with Zeller and Oladipo where it couldn’t get any higher at the time. If they were mid-first round then I could see it, but they’re not.

  • Paul G

    I think Yogi can be Travis Best in the NBA (who, like Ferrell should, went to school for 4 yrs and improved each year). A legitimate NBA role player – backup PG that can score and start for stretches and lead a team if needed.

  • Paul G

    Hard to imagine leaving is a good decision for either. If Williams makes another leap (develop a consistent mid-range or 3pt stroke or a big jump in defensive positioning/awareness) he could be a lottery to mid-1st next year instead of a potential late 2nd. Both he and Yogi should be better next year and would benefit with a legitimate post presence.

  • Kyl470

    If either player left early it would be a mistake.

  • I’m going to out on a limb here (and I don’t think very far) and predict that both will be back. I’m at 99% sure. If we get a legitimate big, then 100%.

  • SilentBob

    Part of their decision seems to be looming on whether we get a big guy or not considering both have talked to Bryant

  • Sam Reisert

    To my knowledge Ferrell will be earning his degree at the end of this semester. That’s why some people are worried that he could transfer, as he would not have to sit a year for eligibility.

  • SilentBob

    Considering Crean returning was mentioned as a big factor for him returning I doubt that happens. Especially if we land a big. But if it did happen that would be easily the biggest shot to the nads I have ever experienced as a sports fan lol

  • downtownhoosier10

    He very well may not complete his degree by this summer. It’s basically stay, or leave to play overseas if that is the case

  • TomJameson

    Yogi may try the draft, but he won’t transfer. Yogi is loyal to IU and to Crean. If Yogi does stay he will have a better, older, more experienced team around him … and enough bigness to make a huge (pun intended) difference.

  • SCHoosier

    Would be shocked if either Yogi or Troy were guaranteed money picks. If Yogi was 6-2 he’d be gone. Troy would be a D league selection to refine his game. Want ..need them both back in B-town. Anybody know where they are on their degrees?

  • Corey M

    Yogi leaving for the draft is a very legitimate concern but what would make you think he is going to transfer..? I don’t see how that would benefit him in anyway

  • dwdkc

    There are all the good arguments below, but there is also the fun factor. IU should be really good next year, and they may very well experience the most fun year of their lives playing at IU (most players will tell you that college is a lot more fun than the NBA or pro ball grind). I figure both of these guys will be good enough to get paid to play somewhere for 10-12 years so whether they start a year earlier in Europe or the D-league won’t change their income projection that much. This is one of those situations where they need to follow their heart (esp Yogi). For Troy, it’s a no brainer–improve to where you get a guaranteed contract.

  • CreamandCrimson

    There have been multiple (completely unsubstantiated) rumors bouncing around for the past few months. “Yogi to UCLA”, “Yogi to Louisville”, “Yogi to ….insert potential contender here”. A couple of different posters wrote midseason that Yogi wouldn’t be back for his senior season due to a transfer and to “book it”.

    None of the rumors make any sense and I don’t believe anyone has any credible information that Yogi has any thoughts of transferring. However, there have been rumors floating around the web so I understand why someone would think it’s a legitimate possibility.

  • mdtreat

    I think it was Alex that reported last week that he will not graduate this year, so will not be eligible for the grad transfer. Pretty silly to transfer and sit out a year

  • SilentBob

    I think we all agree it would make much more sense for Yogi to go than Troy, as Yogi is closer to his ceiling. To me it doesn’t make a lot of sense to leave one level early until you have dominated that level. Kind of like a video game lol. Since most of us have never played sports at this level that comparison seemed a good one. Unless their family is missing meals it just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for either, especially Troy. Playing for a possible contender will itself give their stock at least a small bump. Plus outside of Jaylon Brown and Ben Simmons, Troys position looks a little watered down next year which would help his value as well. Then with Troy’s insane athleticism plus yet another year of all around improvement and becoming a leader….. He could raise his stock maybe has high as the tenth pick. Doubt he goes that high, but for arguments sake lets say he does because I don’t know the salary projections for second round picks (Cory Jefferson who was the 60th pick makes 507k however but it changes every year it seems).

    Lets say Troy has the most insane combine ever and ups his stock to the 31st pick. He would only (hahaha this hurts to type) be projected to get 911k his first year, where if he waits until next year and gets picked 10th he would make at least 2 mil in his first year. He would make more money in one year than two years at 911k. Really the only argument against it is he would get off his rookie contract earlier if he left now. But it would take a rare amount of self confidence to think you as a late pick, will do so good regardless of who develops you, to think that would be the more profitable move. Even it worked out that way not that much more profitable. Too big of risk for far to low of reward.

  • David Macer

    All of this discussion changes dramatically if IU lands either Bryant or Maker. So lets just stop with the conjecture and wait to hear what happens on or before 4/14.

  • inLinE6

    Transfer for what? He either returns or off to the NBA.

  • Hoosier Pride

    Love both of these guys and believe it is absolutely in each of their best interests to stay. You all say well the D-League pays. I know as of the 2014 year the DL pencils players into 3 tiers A, B, and C. The contracts pay 25k, 19k, and 13k. C tier players make less than minimum wage. And yes I know, they get meals paid for, hotel accommodations, etc. My point is neither of these guys are going to be drafted into a guarantee money situation (could be wrong and if they do make the jump i hope they prove me wrong). Why not stay another year to work on the things that have them slotted low in this years projections with a balls out mentality to go out and get the guaranteed money next year?

  • curtis south

    I agree 100% This team is a good big man away from going from the field of 64 to a final 4 team! I really hope/pray both Yogi and Troy stay and we land a good big! Those 2 guys are a HUGE piece of the puzzle and I dont want to even think about IU without them next year!

  • just a fan

    Even Victor Olidipo waited until after his junior year–look how much that third year added to his game. If Troy ‘leaps’ at even half that rate, and I think it’s a lock that he will, I’m betting he’s a lottery pick next year. Yogi may be a second round pick, but for the team who might draft him, they’ll get a winner. You can’t coach attitude, a kid has it or doesn’t.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    Right up there with Luck Recker transferring to Iowa.

  • marcusgresham

    While I don’t feel Yogi is ready for the NBA, using Chad Ford’s statement that Russell Westbrook would eat him alive isn’t really the conjecture I would use to make my point because Russell Westbrook currently eats a lot of guys for lunch who currently play in the NBA.
    I think Troy comes back and goes later in the first round next year to someone like San Antonio who always seems to make a smart pick by taking a veteran player who dropped because guys with “potential” went ahead of him and played for crappy teams while the older guy became the steal of the draft and contributed to a playoff contender (i.e. Kyle Anderson.)

  • cooper

    Williams has the better shot to stick as a pro but not this year. He is no where near good enough. Ferrell I’m sorry, but he doesn’t have a shot to be more than end of the bench or overseas. He can’t guard an average pro guard. He is a very good college player and there is nothing wrong with that.

  • Mr. Mitchell

    Steph Curry ate Chris Paul for lunch.

  • jayrig5

    If Yogi does get drafted and perform well, I look forward to Chad Ford retroactively changing his ranking of him.

    In all seriousness, while there are some things about Yogi that might not translate to the NBA, Westbrook and Rose (when healthy) destroy everyone. That’s like saying Andrew Wiggins might not translate to the NBA because LeBron and Durant would be better than him. Ty Lawson has had a solid NBA career, as has a guy like Luke Ridnour. The position is evolving to favor big athletes who can drive and finish at the rim, but there will always be a place for a point guard who can shoot like Yogi can. But I do think another year, on a presumably higher profile team, can only help him.

    Again, I have no idea whether he can be an NBA player or not, but that’s some shady reasoning from Ford for ranking him as low as he does. There aren’t 103 better NBA prospects. That’s laughable.

  • eville87

    I just read where we have the 9th highest paid coach in the ncaa… hmmmm that’s interesting

  • Outoftheloop

    With only a little research I came up with a list of 20 PG’s in the NBA right now that Yogi would do as well guarding them as they would do of guarding him (+/-)! You can argue some: Ty Lawson, Trey Burke; but others are pretty telling: Pablo Prigioni, Brian Roberts, Corey Joseph, JJ Barea, Beno Udrih, Norris Cole. We forget how offensively talented Yogi has become. In 15 minutes/game my bet is that Yogi would average 10 pts and 5 assists. That would be very good for a back-up PG! However, as a GM I would never use even a 2nd round pick, I would get Yogi cheap as a free agent. So Yogi should definitely play 1 more year of college. Troy is a problem. At #48 he will make some team. But not playing many minutes/game will cost him on improving his game. Yogi will play for 10 + years. Troy will be gone in 2. Troy is not as talented as James Edwards was and he could not make it on self-coaching and self-discipline. Troy can’t either. But Yogi can easily.

  • Dave Carnes

    Yogi doesn’t see the passing lanes when they open up.At his size you have to have Scott Skiles type court vision.He needs to see the game 2 seconds in advance.

  • cooper

    It’s not a knock on Ferrell, there is nothing wrong with being a great college player, but I’m sorry, there is literally no chance Ferrell averages 10pts a game in the pros. You wouldn’t be saying that if he played for UK or some other team.

    Ty Lawson would destroy Ferrell. Players hit their peak at different times.Trey Burke is continuing to get better, Ferrell is or close to his max. Burke’s peak is higher than Ferrells. PG in the pros are all just as fast and most are between 3-5 inches taller. They will be up in his grill to take away the 3-pt shot. If he drives he is going to run into legit 6’10-7 footers (if he can get around the guard). He can’t guard college PG well, he isn’t going to guard a pro PG.

    Williams on the other hand, hasn’t reached his peak. If he continues to improve, and he will need to improve ALOT, he could carve out a career. I could see him maybe getting to 10 pts a game with 5 reb with a ton of improvement. As I’ve mentioned before, he could be a poor man’s Shawn Marion.

    Talent evaluators in the NBA are rarely completely wrong. Sure there are certain cases where someone comes out of nowhere
    to have a good career and I hope it happens from them both, but I highly doubt it.

    You forget the talent in the NBA.

  • Dooteetime

    Both need to stay in college another year as both are not ready for the NBA. TW has a much higher upside than YF. I am not sure YF will do much or anything in the NBA. I can see YF playing overseas for his professional career. TW still needs to develop a consistent jump shot or else he wont do much at the NBA level either. And learn not to be so out of control at times! GO IU!

  • Dooteetime

    I read that as well. our 9th highest paid coach is not producing 9th highest paid coach results.


    If it comes down to, Yogi gets his degree, TB or no other high level true big doesn’t sign with IU and an extraordinary opportunity should become available, such as a high level team that only lacks a high quality PG to truly compete for the NC, I don’t think it would be totally out of the question that he could transfer. The chances of all those things happening are slim and none, but it’s not impossible in my opinion. While I would really hate to see that happen I can’t truthfully say that I would blame him since he would have a lot better chance of obtaining the two biggest things he really wants, a NC and a chance to play at the next level, cause the rise in draft stock that he would need for that to happen would more than likely come if he excelled while captaining a team to a NC. If for whatever reason, Yogi was to leave, Crean can bet that the bar to keep his job will get raised by a noticeable amount and that the temperature on his seat will have gone up considerably as well.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    There are a large number of non-U.S., non-ncaa players that play on all sorts of semi-pro and pro teams. I don’t think the 103 number is at all laughable. And once the obvious talent is drafted, most nba teams are drafting in the second round on potential. As many have said on these threads, yogi gives the impression of maxing out his potential. To the degree the scouts hold that view, yogi would free fall in the draft.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    and if TW shows signs next year of becoming a lock down defender, that will seal his nba contract. He can do that. So two goals to focus on for TW: a mid-range jumper and much improved defense.

  • Outoftheloop

    I actually do know the talent in the NBA and Yogi can play there, as do: Burke, Brooks, Lin, Chalmers, Beverly, Augustin, Watson, Schroder, Vasquez, Nelson, Bayless, Cole, Udrih, Barea, Joseph, McCallum, Roberts (Brian), Larkin, and Prigioni!

  • Outoftheloop

    A really stupid comment based on nothing. Yogi has been playing PG for 12 years now. His court vision is very good and has improved each and every year at IU!

  • cooper

    Ok let’s bet two tickets to an IU game of your/my choosing. If Ferrell averages 10 & 5 within 3 years of going pro I’ll buy you tix. If he doesn’t you buy them for me. No garbage tickets either. Firsts 30 rows


  • Sam Reisert

    I must have missed that! If he is not eligible for a grad transfer then I’d be extremely surprised if he wants to transfer.