Wooga Poplar

6–5 | 195 | Shooting Guard | Miami | Junior

This freakishly athletic upperclassman sniper (pictured) is leading the way for the Miami Hurricanes this season — as the team’s top scorer (18 ppg) and second best rebounder (6 rpg). He is shooting an absolutely ridiculous 60% from three on 6.4 attempts per game. While a decent shooter last season (37.5% on 2.8 three point attempts per game), the jump to this season is noteworthy and a big reason why Poplar is moving up NBA scouts’ bigboards. (currently rated 10th on latest NBADraft.net mock update). Against Kentucky he displayed his excellent pull up ability on isolation. He has a bit of an unorthodox windup on his shot where he kind of leaves the ball out in front a bit longer and lower than usual. But the speed of release and follow through look great. And most importantly, the result is pure!

Tyrese Proctor

6–5 | 185 | Point Guard | Duke | Sophomore

Ever since Duke’s lone loss of the season at the hands of formidable Arizona a couple of weeks ago, the Blue Devils have looked like one of the nation’s most dominant teams. And that has been in no small part due to Proctor’s play. In his last 3 games, the point guard is averaging 15 ppg on amazing 61% FG / 46 % 3P / 100% FT splits. In his last 4 games he’s dished 21 assists and only turned the ball over 3 times, which is also a remarkable rate. But just as impressive of a data story there is here for Proctor is his on-court maturity, smoothness, advanced passing and feel that has scouts high on the sophomore. If he can continue to improve as a facilitator running the pick and roll it will bolster his chances as a lottery pick for this year’s draft.

Cody Williams

6–8 | 180 | Small Forward | Colorado | Freshman

This 5-star recruit and younger brother of NBA player Jalen Williams was a great get for Colorado’s basketball program. The long slender wing hasn’t had a signature breakout game yet through five games. But the perfromances are on the uptick and the skillset and physical attributes plus bloodlines make him very intriguing. He does a little bit of everything. And he has a smoothness, control, and fantastic length that leads to a tantalizing overall offensive package. So far he’s shooting a very efficient 58% from the field and 43% from three. However his free throws could stand to improve, currently just 65% from the charity stripe. He also shows defensive potential, again, given his length. With point forward abilities and a 7-foot wingspan, the upside is clear, socits still question his toughness and competitiveness as he’s disappeared from a lot of big games in the past.

Hunter Sallis

6–5 | 180 | Point Guard | Wake Forest | Junior

After playing sparingly in two seasons at Gonzaga, Sallis took advantage of the lenient modern NCAA transfer portal rules to join Wake Forest this season. And he’s done a tremendous job of taking advantage of the new opportunity. Sallis is averaging better than 18 points through 6 games for the Demon Deacons. Most notably, about half of Sallis’s shot attempts come from beyond the three point line, where he’s shooting 43%. A little bit of a sneaky athlete, but generally doesn’t blow you away in that category. Moreover, he has enough smoothness and an offensive mentality to be a real threat on that end. He will make the pass when it’s there, but definitely more of a score first type of player now.

Tyler Smith

6–10 | 215 | Power Forward | G League Ignite| Age 19

Tyler Smith, a member of the high school class of 2023, played last season with Overtime Elite and has now “transferred” to the G League Ignite. Smith has already built his reputation as a shooter, and so far this young G League season he is shooting above 50% from three. Smith has a feathery soft lefty touch, especially for a long forward. Something a bit confusing if not concerning is that his FT percentage is quite low at 60% — surprising given the aforementioned shooting stroke. Smith will look to continue rounding out his game and up his strength (he is not the most prolific rebounder at this time) and toughness to move up the draft board. He’s moved into the late first round on the most recent mock draft update.

Oso Ighodaro

6–10 | 225 | Center | Marquette | Senior

Here is a mature and sturdy, super athletic big who can run the court, defend the paint, and hit the floater or finish the lob. Ighodaro has improved and stepped gracefully into an expanded role each season of his college career for Marquette. He certainly passes the eye test as an NBA athlete, but his relatively soft finishing touch around the hoop may be the icing on the cake for why scouts are becoming increasingly high on the big man. He had a huge game and an equally huge win over #1 Kansas last week. And despite coming up short against #2 Purdue the following day in Oahu at the Maui Invitational, Ighodaro held his own, individually. So far we’re looking at averages of 15 points and 7 rebounds on nearly 70% FGs on the season. One area of concern, though, which much be mentioned and which speaks more broadly to why he may fail to crack the first round in the draft: His shot (which is reflected in his FT percentage, which dropped from 74% his first season to 47% this season). From the field, almost all of his shots are these push shots and floaters. he lacks great form on shots beyond the paint as he lacks great arch and kind of pushes the ball instead of a classic follow through.


Ron Holland

6–7 | 195 | Small Forward | G League Ignite | Age 18

Consider that Holland’s starting point for this evaluation is that he had previously been considered a top-3 pick in the upcoming draft and near or at the top of his high school class. He is off to a rocky start in the G League, mostly due to inefficiency. Through 7 games he’s averaging nearly 5 turnovers, and shooting 42% FG / 23% 3P / 44% FT splits. There’s no other way to say it — those are awful, and will need to improve. We consider it likely things will improve for the talented wing as he adjusts to the physicality of the next level and settles in. But for now, he drops down the draft board into the mid first round.

Justin Edwards

6–8 | 190 | Small Forward | Kentucky | Freshman

Justin Edwards is an elite prospect (size, athleticism, skill, talent). But so far this season his performance has been all over the place, if not downright disappointing. The “scorer” scored just one point a couple of weeks ago in a loss to Kansas despite playing 29 minutes. Over the next four games, while he shot efficiently and scored at a decent clip (about 11 points per), he managed just two assists. It looks like he’s finding his footing under the demanding Coach Cal at Kentucky. He’s a gritty, tough player and generally does not lack for confidence. And he remains an important piece of what the Wildcats are building toward for this season. They also just had a signature win — a blowout over #8 Miami on Nov 28! But for now, Edwards drops down the draft board to the mid first orund.


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