|DraftExpress: DX: Top NBA Prospects in the ACC, Part 5 (#21-25): http://t.co/xqDiRXDl - Okaro White, Ryan Kelly, K.T. Harrell, Andre Dawkins, Mike Scott|
Florida State, Junior
H: 6' 8"|
W: 180 lbs
(20 Years Old)
|Rank 57 in NCAA Juniors |
High School: Clearwater
Hometown: Clearwater, FL
|Height w/o Shoes||Height w/shoes||Weight||Wingspan||Standing Reach||Body Fat||No Step Vert||Max Vert||Bench Press||Lane Agility||3/4 Court Sprint||Class Rank|
|NA||6' 8"||180||6' 11"||NA||NA||NA||NA||NA||NA||NA||NA|
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|Top NBA Draft Prospects in the ACC, Part Five (#21-25)|
September 26, 2011
A highly touted high school player who landed just outside of the RSCI top-50 in 2010, Okaro White had a quiet season for the Seminoles, but had some nice moments on both ends of the floor. He saw rotation minutes in a deep and talented FSU frontcourt early in the season before starting the last 13 games of the season at the small forward position for Leonard Hamilton's squad after Chris Singleton's ill-timed injury.
White's move to the starting lineup was thanks in large part to his impressive physical profile. Standing 6'8 with a near 7-foot wingspan, he has excellent size for a small forward, but it is his quickness for his size and ability to defend multiple positions that made him a logical choice to fill in for Singleton despite his inexperience. Though it remains to be seen if the Clearwater native can develop the perimeter skills to play the three long-term, his lateral quickness, rangy strides in the open floor, and explosiveness at the rim give him potential on the wing and as a face-up four alike. His extremely skinny frame is a concern in projecting him to the next level, but he doesn't back down from stronger players and has plenty of time to maximize his physical potential in the weight room.
As a freshman, it was White's reckless abandon in traffic that accounted for most of his points. He will never be a space-eater in the paint or a true back-to-the-basket grinder, but the rising sophomore does a terrific job filling lanes in transition, crashing the offensive glass, and flashing to the rim when defenders rotate away from him. According to Synergy Sports Technology, more than 50% of White's touches came in such situations, which is reflective of his effort level and the fact that he's yet to develop a defined NBA-caliber offensive skill.
Though he was typically FSU's fifth option when he was on the court, White finished at an exceptional 63% rate around the rim, showing a degree of aggressiveness that belied his skinny frame. At this point, the young forward is turnover prone and a bit limited outside of his catch-and-finish ability on the offensive end, as evidenced by the disparity between his 63% shooting at the rim and 44% shooting overall. Though he took the ball coast-to-coast in transition on a few occasions last year, flashed the ability to create separation using his quickness when facing up in the post, and knocked down his free-throws at a solid 83% clip, his polish on the block, as a jump shooter, and when creating shots off the bounce from the perimeter are questionable.
Those limitations aren't uncommon for an athlete like White who is still on the upswing of his skill-set development, but what he offers defensively is a unique commodity. Many of the players we see in White's athletic-tweener mold tend to lack the intensity to impact the game on the defensive end. That isn't an issue for White, who doesn't have ideal fundamentals at this point, but shows a terrific motor closing out on shooters, contesting shots from the weakside, and pursuing rebounds.
White's lack of physical strength limits him somewhat at the moment in the minutes he sees at the 4-spot. However, his length makes him a factor around the rim and in the passing lanes and his lateral quickness helps him stay in front of twos and threes. In the short-term, he'll need to cut down on the number of dubious fouls he commits to make the most of the minutes left behind by Chris Singleton's departure, but his potential on this end looks significant.
Considering his raw skill set, it wouldn't be prudent to draw any definitive conclusions on what White's NBA future may hold, but if he improves his frame and carves out a niche offensively, his energy, length and athleticism would certainly be enough to pique the interest of scouts. Florida State's roster will be in flux in the next few seasons with Singleton out of the picture and Bernard James, Jon Kreft, and Michael Snaer set to graduate this year, meaning White will have ample opportunity to improve as a player and draft prospect down the road.
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