6’9″ PF Julius Randle, the crown jewel of Kentucky’s enigmatic 2013 recruiting class, was thought to be in the #1 overall pick conversation following a highly decorated prep career. Randle has had a productive freshman year, but his high school hype has cooled off a bit due to concerns over his short arms, lack of leaping ability, and turnover proneness. Kentucky’s surprising run in the NCAA tournament may breathe life into Randle’s draft stock, but I’m not sure that it should.
|Tyler Hansbrough (Pace Adj.)||.570||.739||12.9||1.6||1.5||0.9||2.9||22.7|
Julius is most similar to guys like Tyler Hansbrough, J.J. Hickson, and Leon Powe; very productive college players who were unable to distinguish themselves in the pros. Simply put, players with Randle’s size, skill set, and pedigree are much better suited for the college game, where they can physically dominate lesser big men.
Randle is last in his grouping in PTS and third-worst in FG%, which should do little to ease concerns about his ability to finish over NBA big men, and his dangerously low steals rate is equally disconcerting with regards to his defensive potential. Randle is a quick big man and a strong rim-finisher, but it’s hard to make a case for him being the exception here. He projects as a slightly above-average PF; not exactly an inspiring return for a projected top five pick.