Monte Morris Pan-American Games Interview July 18, 2015 A video interview with Iowa State guard Monte Morris at the USA Basketball training camp for the Pan-American Games.
[Read Full Article] Top NBA Prospects in the Big 12, Part 7: Prospects #13-16 September 15, 2014
The 96th ranked player in the high school class of 2013 according to the RSCI, Monte Morris had an extremely efficient freshman year for the Cyclones in a very compact role, averaging 6.8 points and 3.7 assist per-game while shooting 41% from three-point range in just under 30 minutes per-game.
Standing 6'2 with nice length, but a narrow frame he'll need to improve in the coming seasons, Morris is a lean shooter who has the quickness to attack a bit off the dribble and the speed to be a factor pushing the ball himself in the open floor.
Skill-wise, Morris does the majority of his damage by virtue of his tremendous shooting touch. A terrific set shooter who knocked down 43.1% of his catch-and-shoot jump shots in Fred Hoiberg's NBA-style offense, Morris was the beneficiary of the attention defenses paid to Melvin Ejim and DeAndre Kane.
With Kane and Ejim moving on to the professional ranks, the onus will fall on Morris, among others, to pick up their production in other areas. Morris did quite a bit of scoring in transition a year ago, but his shot selection left something to be desired. He finished at a below average rate around the rim, and shot a surprisingly poor percentage pulling-up off the dribble against a set defense in limited attempts, two areas to keep an eye on as Morris likely transitions into a much higher usage role as a sophomore.
A capable passer, Morris averaged 4.9 assists per-40 minutes pace adjusted a year ago despite playing primarily off the ball. Lacking great explosiveness, Morris is not a prolific drive and dish threat, but he's an unselfish facilitator in the half court. Feeding the post, swinging the ball, and making the simple pass in the two-man game, Morris could provide Iowa State with some relief as it looks to replace Kane's dominant presence. His passing ability, combined with his tremendous proficiency for avoiding turnovers, helped him post one of the best pure point and assist to turnover ratios for a freshman in the past 15 years of college basketball.
Defensively, Morris plays with nice intensity and possesses solid lateral quickness, but his lack of strength is a concern long-term. He makes some mistakes from time to time like most freshman, whether it is helping or closing out too-aggressively, but he played with a desire, especially in the post season, that should help him become a very capable defender at the college level.
With players like Morris, it's ambitious to look too far past that. Playing such heavy minutes but such a small role as a freshman, Morris showed some potentially interesting tools, but he's still a ways away from being a viable draft prospect. Nonetheless, he's a player whose growth is worth monitoring. [Read Full Article]