Monthly Archives: November 2015

D’Angelo Russell will be the bust of the ’15 draft class

 

When you watch sport news like ESPN, listen to sport talk radio or read various sport articles, the word “bust” tends to come up the most, when referring to the NBA or at least that’s how I’ve always perceived it. Because there’s only two rounds in the NBA Draft, it leaves more pressure for executives and scouts to get their picks correct, otherwise, the pick will be considered a bust.

In recent years, players like Derrick Williams, and Anthony Bennett have been labeled as busts, as they’ve didn’t live up to their potential as the number-two and one picks, respecitvely in their drafts. Both today serve as reserve role players on there respective teams.

But Players like Jan Vessely and Jimmer Ferdette, of the 2010 draft are true busts of the past decade, as they’re no longer in the league.

So how does that fit into the 2015 draft?

No. 1 pick Karl Anthony-Townes and No. 3 pick Jahlil Okafor have shown promise, along with the other top-10 picks, except for D’Angelo Russell, former Ohio State Buckeye and current Los Angeles Laker.

 

Credit: USA Today Sports Images

Credit: USA Today Sports Images

 

Russell has shown very few highlights between summer league, preseason and his first two regular season games. And being only 19, he still has a lot of room to go grow. Over the past decade, general manager Mitch Kupchack has drafted 16 players drafted who have ever worn the purple and gold. But his overall drafting record speaks less than how the players performed.

Andrew Bynum – ’05
Ronny Turiaf – ’05
Von Wafer – ’05
Jordan Farmar – ’06
Jordan Ebanks – ’10
Derrick Character – ’10
Daruis Morris – ’11
Andrew Goudleock – ’11
Darius Johnson-Odom – ’12
Robert Sacre – ’12
Ryan Kelly – ’13
Julius Randle -’14
Jordan Clarkson – ’14
D’Angelo Russell – ’15
Larry Nance Jr. – ’15
Anthony Brown – ’15

Of those 16, every player from the 2012 to 2015, (except Johnson-Odom), are on the Lakers. Additionally, every player listed prior to Sacre is no longer in the league.

Of all the players selected in the top-10, most league personnel believed that Russell would have the hardest transition to the NBA.

Prior to Russell’s arrival in the NBA, I personally didn’t think he’d be a superstar or an impact scorer. At Ohio State, he was the focal point of the team, but he wasn’t a 20 ppg type of player. His athleticism and ability to find open passing lanes is how Russell made a name for himself. And personally, I believe he can make the transition into being a great distributer.

But for the Lakers, Russell is not the next Kobe or Magic.

He has the ability to be a special player and Byron Scott is the type of coach that he needs, it’s just going to take a couple years. But by that time, Kupchack and even Scott maybe out of Tinseltown.

Urban Meyers image is on the line

Before Ohio State fans cared about Urban Meyer as a coach, he dealt with many troubled players at Florida.

Aaron Hernandez, Janoris Jenkins, Cam Newton, Chris Raney are a few players that have had issues at Florida and post college. In his time with the Gators, Meyer was known the not severely discipline his athletes at times, to the degree of the crime they had committed.
When he took the job with the Buckeyes, he vowed to make changes and to correct his past mistakes that led to the collapse of the Gator program in his tenure, in Gainsville.
Buckeye players have gotten in trouble in the four seasons he’s been head coach, but he has finally become the center attention of the college football universe again.
J.T. Barrett has always been spoken of highly by Meyer, his other coaches and teammates. And his excepting of been benched, to begin the 2015-16 season after becoming the Big Ten’s leader in touchdowns responsible for in a regular season and leading Ohio State to a 11-1 regular season record  in his freshman season, was truly professional.
On Satruday, Barrett was cited by Columbus police with a misdemeanor offense of OVI. Meyer has since suspended Barrett from OSU’s Nov. 7 game vs. Minnesotta. Because this was considered a misdemeanor, he must be suspended for at least one game, according to Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith.
However, Barrett is under 21 and in accordance with Ohio State’s student-athlete drug and alcohol policy, he could could’ve been subjected to a two-week suspension. So if Meyer wants to suspend Barrett for the Nov. 14 game at Illinois, he can.

The question is, will he?
This is why a lot of attention is and will be on Meyer over the next two weeks. Should he punish his star quarterback and receive negative attention from fans and media, or should he allow Barrett to play because his arrest was only considered a misdemeanor?
It’s possible Meyer will take the full two weeks to decide whether or not Barrett will play against the Fighting Illini. If history is to repeat itself, one could assume that Barrett will play. But if Meyer claims he’s a changed man, one could assume he would not play because Barrett was not legally old enough to drink.
The Buckeye football team should be the spotlight of college football for the next two weeks, pending any announcement made by Meyer before then.
Personally, I believe that any announcement will come after the Golden Gophers game the following Monday, as he won’t want to take any attention away from that game and address the situation at the appropriate time.

Meyers next press conference is scheduled for Nov. 2 at approximately 11:45 a.m. EST