Players that should return to school next year

Almost 95 percent of college athletes want to advance to the NBA, while only about one percent actually make it. Some players have good seasons (or a few games) and think they are league ready. While other are not, but still try their hand at the next level when they aren’t yet ready. Here are a few players (for one reason or another) that should think twice about declaring for the draft this year.

Melo Trimble

PHOTO CREDIT:Rob Carr/Getty Images North America

Melo Trimble did not have a strong year last year and still declared for the draft.

Once he saw his stock was not as high as he thought, he had a change of heart and decided to go back to school. Trimble was suppose to have a breakout season, things didn’t work out that way. He was a returning sophomore (which is rare these days), had a loaded freshmen squad to lead and he had a whole offseason to refine his game. However, not only did Trimble not have that “breakout season” this year, he might have slipped further in the eyes of NBA scouts.

Maryland was a “middle of the pack” team the entire season. They were young, but that should have helped Trimble put up numbers. His leadership was in questionsall season as well and his play did not improve at all from his freshmen year.

Trimble might get drafted late second round, but that may likely lead to a few stints in the D-League. The better option may have been to return to College Park. 

Harry Giles

PHOTO CREDIT:Lance King/Getty Images North America

Injuries have taken their tole on Harry Giles

Coming into the year, he was projected to the be the number one overall pick in this years NBA draft. Standing at 6’10, Giles was a hybrid center who could put the ball on the ground with nice footwork and had a sweet stroke outside of the paint. He needed to gain some weight, but his length made him a solid rim protector. That was the general consensus from many before the season started.

However, after another knee surgery and missing the first half of the season, Giles looked like a shell of himself. He looked a step slower, his help defense was borderline embarrassing.  That wasn’t all as the heralded freshman fouled too much and struggled to score from the floor. Yes he did finish the season shooting 57 percent, but most of his shots came inside the paint. He did not have the same explosiveness he was know for in high school, ending the year averaging 3.9 points and 3.8 rebounds a game. 

From a young man that was projected to go number one, Giles might not even go round one if based on production. Maybe another year can get Giles back to “Potential cornerstone” status. The difference between him and Trimble, is that then NBA generally drafts on potential and this youngster still has a tremendous amount of upside.

Isaiah Briscoe

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Name Isaiah Briscoe’s defining moment this year? We’ll be here waiting for that answer.

He was an after, after, after thought in Kentucky the last two years. Especially this year behind three lottery pick talents. Briscoe is that solid player who was reliable in the right times for the Wildcats, but never really carried the team on any night. His defense was solid, but spotty far too many times. The fact that he struggles with the three-ball (28 percent) in an NBA that is three-point heavy now surely won’t help his stock.

If you want to look at a moment where Briscoe shined, it was against Vanderbilt when he scored 23 points (which is his career high.) Outside of that, he really has been forgettable these past two years.

Briscoe was the “vet” for this years Kentucky team, and they still failed to make it to the championship with nine All-Americans. I’m not putting the loss on him, but as he is today, Briscoe’s NBA value is low. Very low. Especially with a loaded guard class coming out this year.

Devin Robinson

PHOTO CREDIT:Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images North America

Devin Robinson has a NBA body and will be an NBA player.

However, he still needs a little more polish before then. A long, lanky player with great touch around the rim. Robinson also has a solid three point shot for a big man. With those measureables (height, weight), the young man should be a much better rebounder. Too many times he falls asleep on the boards or simply gets boxed out more than he should. He also needs to improve on his all around I.Q on the floor.

Robinson could and probably would get drafted this year, but he has top five potential if he stays one more year and polishes his game.

Tyler Dorsey

PHOTO CREDIT: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images North America

Do not let Tyler Dorsey’s magical March run fool you, his game still needs a lot of work.

Yes, he averaged 14.6 points a game this year, but if we are talking about defense, Dorsey is far from perfect. He gets lost on switches, has slower feet then most guards and sometimes has that “I’m going to save my energy for offense” syndrome. Oregon had many talented players, most of his points  came in catch-and-shoot situations or from getting to the line.  

Dorsey can create his own shot, but he struggles when defenses scheme for him which is essentially what North Carolina did. His shooting stroke is beautiful, but streaky more often than not.

Dorsey could use another year to work on his all-around game. If so, he could be lottery pick worthy in a year.

Dillon Brooks

PHOTO CREDIT:Ronald Martinez/Getty Images North America

Remember when I said to get fooled about Tyler Dorsey’s March run? For Brooks, March is the only place you need to look at to tell his story.

Not only was this Brooks’ third straight March, this is the third straight March he underwhelmed. Brooks is a high energy player who brings toughness night after night. However, there are a lot of factors holding him back.

Going into the season, he was the preseason favorite to win the Naismith Player of the Year award. He was a returning junior who was the leader of a loaded, athletic Oregon team. Brooks was known for his clutch shots and crafty scoring. He is not known for his athleticism and defense. More athletic players feasted on Brooks this season and it ultimately hurt him in the tourney.

Due to his limitations physically, Brooks gambled far too many times which constantly puts him in foul trouble.

Lastly, lets talk about Brooks’ play in at March. Every season he has played in the tournament, his numbers have been lack luster. Each year his numbers decrease, not increase in the tourney. The tournament is great for prospects as it provides an opportunity to play some of the best teams in the country on a national spotlight. Many players have seen their stocks raised during that time of the year with good performances. 

Every player not a senior for Gonzaga

PHOTO CREDIT:Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images North America

How much does a championship really means to players?

Gonzaga was a blocked shot away from capturing the school’s first NCAA Championship. Behind solid play from Nigel William-Goss and company, Gonzaga finished the year 37-2 and looked nearly unstoppable for the majority of the season. They have size, shooting, and defense at every position. It also doesn’t hurt that they are led by a great coach. Gonzaga is a complete team that could and should be making noise again next year, if players return.

Remember when UNC lost in heartbreakin fashion a year before in the championship game and came back with basically their whole team and won it all this year? Well, that could be Gonzaga next year.

They would only lose three seniors. Led by William-Goss, rookie sensation Zach Collins and company could reck the league. Both players could enter the draft this year and would more than likely get drafted.

So back to the original question, how much does an opportunity to win a championship mean to players.

Written by 

Jalen Hunter is an NBA writer for My Mind on Sports.

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