Re: Rick Jackson - Syracuse
Syracuse is my squad, so I've seen plenty of him over the years. I think the reason he's projected that low is that he's not that big, nor is he particularly athletic, so I think he's someone scouts see as a guy who could go from being able to physically dominate in college, to someone who without having a physical edge ever in the league, may not be able to function.
I don't entirely agree. His post game is actually pretty good. It's not hugely refined, but he's got great touch, and he's left handed, and gets off to his right shoulder with really good jumphooks. His FG% last year was obscene. And his hands are great. He catches well, and it makes him a better rebounder than a guy of his physical stature would normally be. He did block a lot of shots last year, but I don't see him as a shot blocking threat at the pro level just cause his body doesn't have a ton of pop, but he does seem to catch people off guard because his wingspan seems mismatched, and he naturally goes after the ball lefthanded.
I think you're right. He can find a spot in the league. I'm thinking something like Craig Smith. Dejuan Blair is built similarly, but has a lot more spring in him. And if you watch him close, because of the lefty heavy post game, he can at times look like a really really poor, almost homeless man's, Z-Bo.
It would help a lot if he could knock downa 15 footer. Most of these undersized bigs, particularly the ones who aren't explosive athletes, really need to be able to catch and knock down those mid rangers, and I think his FT shooting alone makes people worry he won't be able to develop that.
I also wonder if the Syracuse pedigree may be on a down tip at the moment. Flynn has been lousey, and Wes Johnson was mediocre last year. I sort of expected Wes to struggle. He was another guy who even in college, when he wasn't able to out athlete someone, relied way too heavily on the fact that he could always shoot over people. And at this level, that was gonna happen a lot, and it did.