Top NBA Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part 8: Prospects #16-20

Top NBA Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part 8: Prospects #16-20
Nov 12, 2015, 03:51 pm
We continue our coverage of the top NBA Draft prospects in the non-BCS conferences with part eight, players ranked 16-20: Kyle Collinsworth, Przemek Karnowski, Corey Johnson, Alec Peters and Jameel Warney.
More DX Conference Preseason Previews:
-The Top 20 NBA Draft Prospects in the Pac-12
-The Top 20 NBA Draft Prospects in the Big East
-The Top 15 NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12
-The Top 20 NBA Draft Prospects in the SEC
-The Top 10 NBA Draft Prospects in the AAC
-The Top 30 NBA Draft Prospects in the ACC
-The Top 25 NBA Draft Prospects in the Big Ten

Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part One
(#1) Stephen Zimmerman (Scouting Video)
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Two
(#2) Domantas Sabonis (Scouting Video)
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Three
(#3) Malik Pope (Scouting Video)
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Four
(#4) DeAndre Bembry (Scouting Video)
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Five
(#5) Ron Baker (Scouting Video)
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Six
(#6) James Webb III
(#7) Kyle Wiltjer
(#8) Joel Bolomboy
(#9) Fred VanVleet
(#10) E.C. Matthews

-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Seven
(#11) Patrick McCaw
(#12) Shawn Long
(#13) Maodo Lo
(#14) Paris Bass
(#15) Derrick Jones

#16, Kyle Collinsworth, 6-6, RS Senior, PG/SG, BYU

Josh Riddell

A rotation player on the 2011 BYU team that earned a 3 seed behind Jimmer Fredette, Kyle Collinsworth embarked on a two year Church of Latter Day Saints Mission after that year. He returned to the program for the 2014 season, which ended with him missing the last game with an ACL tear.

He returned healthy for the 2015 season, and became one of the best all-around offensive players in the country. He set a single season record with four triple doubles, including a 20 point output, which gave him six for his career and also tied a record.

Collinsworth has the ball in his hands a lot for the BYU offense and has the physical makeup of a combo guard. He's listed at 6'6” and has added enough muscle to his frame to contend with physical play. His game isn't reliant on athleticism, but he has enough to hang with many players. He loves to get out in transition and has enough speed to be dangerous. He's a quick jumper and while he plays mainly below the rim, he can explode for dunks in the right spots. Collinsworth isn't going to win many battles athletically against NBA competition, but he has enough to hang with most players.

Collinsworth has an excellent feel for the game and always seems to make the right decisions with the ball in his hands. This is especially true in ball screens sets, which account for 23% of his offensive possessions. He reads the defense perfectly and makes the proper call to attack the paint or pass to a cutter or shooter.

He's a straight line driver that can get to the rim at times, but may struggle to do so against NBA competition. Collinsworth needs screens to be able to penetrate to the rim, as he doesn't have the ball skills to beat his defender one on one. He needs to beat his defender with speed but this can cause him to get out of control going toward the rim which leads to a tough shot. He may not turn into a dominant scorer at the next level, but his ability to run the pick and roll and create for his teammates will be a role he could fill for a team.

When he does get to the rim, he is a good finisher for his size at 56.4%. His best finishes come off offensive rebounds or cuts when he can be more under control around the rim and explode to the rim rather than off the dribble. He can finish through contact and isn't afraid of physical play, getting to the line 6.4 times per 40 minutes pace adjusted.

Collinsworth isn't much of a shooter at this point in his career, both from a fundamentals and volume perspective. He attempted only 21 three pointers, making just six, and converted 25% of his 55 overall jump shots according to Synergy Sports Technology. The majority of his jump shots came off the dribble and he isn't always able to gather himself to release a shot on balance. There isn't much of a sample of catch and shoot possessions to judge his potential but he clearly isn't comfortable with his form if he doesn't have many attempts (he's made just 18 3-pointers in over 3000 career college minutes). The ball doesn't come off his hands clean and his form will need work for Collinsworth to become more accurate and confident with his jump shot.

While his lack of three point shooting isn't going to prevent him from being drafted, NBA teams will question his role offensively with so much emphasis being placed on the three point shot now a days. Since 2005, only six qualified players 6'6” and under who were eventually drafted have shot less than twenty threes in a season: Elfrid Payton, Kyle Lowry, P.J. Tucker, Ramon Sessions, Sir'Dominic Pointer and Travis Leslie. If he doesn't improve his shooting, Collinsworth will have to show he has other elite skills that can translate, forcing teams to get creative with their offense to find minutes for him.

Collinsworth has great court vision and understanding of the game and has become one of the best passers in the country. He dished out 7.1 assists per 40 minutes pace adjusted to only 3.4 turnovers per 40 minutes pace adjusted. He keeps the ball moving in the flow of the offense and makes perfect reads to find cutters in space. He has the potential to turn into a floor general at the next level by initiating offense and distributing the ball, even if he can't get his own points.

As a guard, Collinsworth is one of the top rebounders in the nation at 10.2 total rebounds per 40 minutes pace adjusted (2.9 offensive and 7.4 defensive). He has a nose for the ball and crashes the glass hard as a rebounder. Not every team will want their guards to focus so heavily on rebounding but in the right situation this will be a useful skill for Collinsworth.

He isn't a great individual defender and expends little energy on that side of the floor with so much of his stamina used on the offensive end. He is rarely in a stance and doesn't put the same level of focus on this side of the court. The basketball IQ he shows offensively doesn't translate to defense as he loses sight of his man and fails to screens coming and runs right into them which takes him out of the play. He fails to recover hard when he is beat and looks more toward rebounding or leaking out in transition.

Already 24 years old, there are questions about his ceiling and whether his collegiate success is due to his physical and maturity advantage. Regardless, his offensive potential will keep scouts interested and if Collinsworth can show some improvements in other areas of his game, he could be a viable draft candidate for a team that wants a mature player who can play right away.

#17, Przemek Karnowski, 7-1, Center, Senior, Gonzaga

Jacob Eisenberg

Before Przemek Karnowski came to Gonzaga, he was a headlining talent in a class of European teenagers moving stateside to play in the NCAA. In his first season in Spokane, the native of Poland lived up to the hype, leading scouts to gush about his combination of size, skill, smarts and potential. Now a senior, Karnowski has been steady in his three years at Gonzaga, but hasn't quite taken the leap to stardom that many expected. At 22 years old, he'll need a big senior season for his draft stock to recover.

At 7'1 and 288 pounds (and with a 7'0 wingspan), Karnowski can match up in height and size with practically any opponent in the NCAA, even if his length leaves a lot to be desired from a player at his position. He's learned to coalesce his physical acumen with mental restraint – showing a significant drop-off in fouls per-40 minutes from his sophomore to junior season. On offense, he uses his strength well on the interior, shifting around in the paint with good agility for a player of his size.

Karnowski's bread and butter is his ability to score inside the post, with an overwhelming 75% of his touches coming with his back to the basket according to Synergy Sports Technology (including passes). Last season, he shot over 60% from the field in these situations, the third best rate in the NCAA among returning prospects. He's a lefty, which adds a dimension of intrigue and deception to his effectiveness on the interior. While adept with both hands, Karnowski's favorite move involves barreling into his opponent with his right shoulder and gathering for a lefty hook with his shoulder to the basket.

Outside of the paint, Karnowski has decent touch on his release but is a highly reluctant shooter, taking only ten jump shots last season – per Synergy. The fact that he is a career sub-50% free throw shooter indicates that he still has quite a bit of work to do before he can be considered even a decent threat from outside of the paint.

Beyond his scoring instincts, Karnowski is a talented offensive player with impressive passing acumen. He's a gifted passer with a hunger for flash; he'll dazzle with behind the back passes and no-look drop-offs through tight spaces. Last season, Karnowski embraced a minor facilitating role and witnessed a dramatic increase in assists (from 1.2 per-40 minutes as a sophomore to 2.2 as a junior while his assist rate also nearly doubled from 6% as a sophomore to 10.9% last season.)

Often times there's more flash than substance behind Karnowski's passing and Mark Few would undoubtedly prefer him to hold back on some of his highlight attempts. He averaged 3.0 turnovers per-40 minutes last season, and coughed the ball up on 17% of his overall possessions.

Karnowski has never been a great rebounder, which makes sense considering his average length and lack of explosiveness, which makes it difficult for him to pursue loose balls outside of his area. Last season, Karnowski grabbed 9.3 rebounds per-40 minutes, a fairly pedestrian rate, down from the more acceptable 10.8 rebounds per-40 he posted as a sophomore.

Defensively, Karnowski also saw a regression as a rim protector. He averaged just 1.6 blocks per-40 minutes as a junior (after 2.7 per-40 as a junior). This may have been a result of him playing more conservatively in an effort to lower his foul rate, an effort he largely succeeded with by lowering his fouls per-40 from 4.5 to 3.7. He has mastered the art of getting in position to draw charges, which is likely a better strategy for him considering his athletic limitations.

Still, at his size, Karnowski is largely restricted to the interior defensively. He's too slow on close outs to effectively change shots and he has trouble keeping up with quicker athletes out of the pick and roll.

Overall, Karnowski has the size and skill-level to be an effective NBA player, at least on the offensive end of the floor, but his potential as a defender and rebounder may hurt his chances with the stylistic changes that the league is going through. Changing his body and slimming down significantly would likely help his chances at the pro level, but after four years with little change from a physical standpoint, that may simply not be possible.

With Gonzaga expected to be an elite team again this season, and competing against another very strong schedule, Karnowski will certainly get the exposure to show that he has what it takes to make it at the next level.

#18, Corey Johnson, 6'5, Freshman, Shooting Guard, Harvard

Without the benefit of extensive high school footage, we prefer to wait and see how Johnson performs as a freshman before adding to his DraftExpress profile, which already features a detailed scouting report and interview.

#19, Alec Peters, 6'9”, Junior, Power Forward, Valparaiso

Derek Bodner

After being named to the Horizon League All-Newcomer Team during his freshman season, Alec Peters responded by taking another big jump as a sophomore. Peters finished his second season at Valparaiso with averages of 16.8 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game, which earned him All-Conference First Team honors.

When Peters arrived at Valparaiso, his primary contribution was as a jump shooter, where Peters made 38.3% of his 149 three point attempts during his freshman season. That shot continues to be Peters' calling card, as he built upon that strength to become an even more dangerous shooter, knocking down 46.6% of his 178 three point attempts. To put in perspective just how prolific of a rate that was, only three players in all of college basketball who attempted at least 150 three point attempts last season did so more efficiently than Peters did.

Getting Peters open corner threes was an offense in itself for Valparaiso last season, as they did an excellent job of using screens and movement to get Peters shots from this extremely efficient part of the court, and Peters was virtually automatic from the corners. Peters moves extremely well off the ball, has impeccable footwork to step into the shot, and has a short, compact, and extremely repeatable shooting motion that allows him to get his shot off quickly and accurately with very little space.

According to Synergy Sports Technology, Peters shot 42.7% on jump shots overall, which included 44% in catch and shoot situations, 39.4% when shooting off screens, and 35.7% when shooting off the dribble. The points per possession those situations yielded (1.307, 1.149, and 0.857, respectively), were all quality marks, with both the catch and shoot (92nd percentile) and screen (84th percentile) ranking extremely high among college basketball players despite how heavily utilized they were within the Crusaders offense, and thus how much opposing defenses game-planned to take it away.

While Peters continues to make strides as one of the more diversified shooting forwards in the nation, he also added a few wrinkles to his game to make him a more diverse offensive threat.

According to Synergy, Peters posted up on 17% of his offensive possessions and was fairly efficient when doing so. His post game isn't all that advanced, consisting mainly of a jump hook over either shoulder and the occasional drop step to try to get to the basket, but for a player who Synergy logged only 27 post-up attempts during his freshman season, the diversification of his offensive game was a welcomed addition, even if his lack of lower body strength and poor lift in the lane put into question how much, if any, of it would translate to the next level.

Some driving lanes naturally open up for Peters as a result of his shooting, and he has just enough ball handling to make use of that, even flashing the occasional spin move to gain separation. Peters isn't a quick or explosive athlete, with an average first step even for his position. Once he gets into the lane, he has good touch and was able to score efficiently in the Horizon league, but seemed to struggle at times against the rare tough out of conference games Valparaiso had on their schedule. Whether or not he can score with any efficiency in the paint when he makes a jump up in competition is uncertain, but games against the likes of Rhode Island, Oregon and Oregon State this season (as well as any post-season competition) could offer some insight into this area.

Another area where Peters made some strides is as a decision maker. While the frequency with which he operated as a catch and shoot player limited the amount of decisions he had to make with the ball, his 1.9 turnovers per 40 minutes pace adjusted (and miniscule 9.8% turnover rate) was a very low number for a player who used the amount of possessions Peters did. With his offensive game expanding and seeing the occasional double team in the post, Peters seemed to make good reads out of these situations. While Peters doesn't project to be much of a shot creator at the next level, being placed in a position where he has to make decisions with the ball is always a skill that's worth being developed.

The NBA is always looking for 6-9 forwards who can stretch the floor, and Peters should be able to do that at any level. Where the biggest concern is going to come is on the defensive end, where his physical limitations present themselves with concerning frequency. He's engaged on this side of the court, but he's slow to change directions, doesn't move his feet well overall, needs to add considerable strength to hold his ground in the NBA, and isn't quick enough off his feet or with good enough shot blocking instincts to alter shots at the rim. These problems are compounded by an upright stance, a habit of biting on pump fakes, and a frequency to find himself off balance on misdirection moves. The fact that he's accumulated just 47 steals and 14 blocks in nearly 2000 minutes of action at the college level is a red flag that NBA teams will likely scrutinize.

Furthermore, Peters isn't a particularly great rebounder on either end of the court, hauling in just 2.5 offensive rebounds and 6.4 defensive rebounds per 40 minutes, pace adjusted. Valparaiso was a good defensive rebounding team, with a number of wings who could pinch down and contribute on the defensive glass, which could have impacted Peters' defensive rebounding opportunities. Peters does do a pretty good job of putting a body on his man and keeping him off the glass, so this is a concern that could fade over time, but it would be nice to see Peters rebound outside of his area with a little bit more regularity.

Peters has one certifiable NBA skill in his jump shot, and it's one that absolutely has significant value in today's NBA. The diversification Peters showed in his offensive game bodes well for his ability to continue to improve as a player, but improving his strength, quickness, and ball-handling, while continuing to make a stronger impact on defense, would go a long way to increasing the chance that Peters hears his name called on draft night when he does put his name in the mix. Valparaiso has a much tougher out of conference schedule this season, so Peters will have the chance to prove his worth against a higher level of competition.

#20, Jameel Warney, 6'8, Power Forward, Stony Brook, Senior

Kyle Nelson

Few players are as vital to their team's success as Stony Brook's Jameel Warney is and has been throughout his career. Not only has the senior big man established himself as one of the most productive players in college basketball since arriving on campus, but he also earned American East Conference Player of the Year honors for two consecutive seasons, and added Defensive Player of the Year to his resume as a junior. While Warney's credentials in the American East Conference are impressive, whether he is more than merely a productive low-major curiosity remains to be seen.

At 6'8 with a massive 255-pound frame and an average wingspan, Warney is undersized for the power forward position. He is not an elite athlete, either, lacking great quickness and explosiveness to compensate. While he is a strong, smart and skilled player, he has looked overmatched at times in the rare opportunities he's matched up against NBA-caliber athletes, and will likely need to improve his tone his frame in order to maximize his physical abilities.

While Warney is not the most impressive prospect from a physical perspective, he is certainly one of the most productive post players in our database, averaging 20.4 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted. In four games against BCS-conference opponents, that figure fell to a still solid 16.6 points per-40, but he was only able to shoot 34% from the field.

Warney sees almost all of his offensive possessions around the basket and shows very good instincts operating in the post. In particular, he does a good job of establishing and holding his position on the block with an effective repertoire of hook shots at his disposal. Warney does not have the most diverse post game and he noticeably struggles against better competition, but his quick feet and ability to score with either hand, allows him to be a very effective post scorer at the collegiate level.

He did a good job creating possessions for himself off of the ball, as well, both in terms of fighting for offensive rebounds and cutting into space. In the former capacity, he grabbed an outstanding 5.4 offensive rebounds per 40 minutes pace adjusted as a junior and converted 61.3% of the resulting put backs.

His prospects as a finisher are decidedly more muddled. While Warney proved capable of creating space for himself in the post, he struggles to finish over bigger and more athletic players. Though he attacked the basket aggressively, and in turns gets fouled frequently, he was rarely able to compensate for his limitations as a finisher at the free throw line either, making just 57.6% of his attempts (58% career).

Warney ultimately had few alternatives in his offensive repertoire when he struggled inside, as he remains very limited as a jump shooter, making just 7/30 of his jump shots and looking shaky on the few occasions where he took the opportunity to spot-up. He must improve in this capacity moving forward if he wants the chance to stick on an NBA roster, as its unlikely that he can rely on his back to the basket game to carry him offensively against bigger, stronger and more athletic competition at his size.

It should be noted, however, that while Warney was not the most versatile scorer, he was a willing passer, averaging 2.5 assists per 40 minutes pace adjusted against 2.2 turnovers, and was not afraid to pass out of congestion.

On the defensive end of the floor, Warney was one of the most productive rebounders among prospects in our database, distinguishing himself as a top notch defensive rebounder. Warney is a solid post defender, as well, and did a good job of staying with his man on the block while using his strength to hold his position. On the other hand, he lacks the lateral quickness to guard players away from the basket and the height to project as a shot blocker at the next level. Thus, it remains to be seen whether he is capable of transitioning to guarding power forwards in the NBA.

Despite the seemingly negative tone, there is a lot to like about Jameel Warney beyond the numbers, as he has a nice foundation of strength, scoring instincts and feel to warrant discussion as a serious prospect. If able to maximize his below average physical profile and demonstrate an improved jump shot, he may get a chance to show he has what it takes to warrant an NBA roster spot. Early season matchups at Vanderbilt and Notre Dame will be especially important, therefore, as Warney will have few other opportunities to prove himself against legitimate competition.

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