Monday, January 26, 2009

College Games

I have had the chance to catch three games recently. I watched Murray State take on Tennessee Tech last week. It was a severe mismatch, but it was the only televised Murray State game I have found to watch senior Prospect Amber Guffey.

WNBA Player Comparison: Lindsay Whalen
Amber has a similar body type to Whalen when she entered the WNBA. She also plays a similar style of game. She is a solid scorer, with a decent jumper and the ability to drive to the basket and finish. She has deceptive speed and makes good decisions on the court and seemed to have a great sense of when to distribute and involve her team mates vs. when she needed to put the team on her shoulders and carry them. The entire Tennessee Tech defense swarmed on Guffey throughout the game, yet she still tallied 14 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals and only one turnover. She has led the Ohio Valley Conference in scoring and is 16th in the nation. She is in the top 100 in the nation for assists and FG% and in the top 50 for FT%. Her main weaknesses from a draft perspective are coming from a small program and her current overall fitness level. She has deceptive speed in the open court and seems to manage that speed well on offense, but I believe she will have trouble keeping the strong, fast and very athletic guards of the WNBA in front of her.

I also managed to catch the top 2 matchup between Connecticut and North Carolina. The Huskies were out a starter and were going to have to face an aggressive, pressing defense from North Carolina's guards. Connecticut didn't blink, took control early and poured it on all game. On a side note, Maya Moore is all that and then some. As for the seniors, there were two in this surprisingly mis-matched game.

Renee Montgomery
WNBA Player Comparison: Janeth Arcain
I like Montgomery a lot more after seeing this game. She is the perfect accessory to a star player. She has the ability to put points on the board but does not have to be the focus of the offense. She knows how to find the star and fit her own points in out of the offense. She will never be superstar in the WNBA, but she will have a solid career as a starter. She shoots the three better than Arcain ever did, but I look at how Montgomery has increased her scoring this year and it reminds of how Arcain upped her scoring to 18ppg in 2001 after averaging around 8ppg in the previous 4 seasons and then returned to average around 10ppg for her last 3 seasons. Cynthia Cooper retired after the 2000 championship and Sheryl Swoopes sat out the 2001 season after ACL surgery and Arcain picked up the slack.

Rashanda McCants
WNBA Player Comparison: Swin Cash
I wasn't all that excited about McCants from this game, but she has the potential to be a utility forward much like Swin Cash was orginally used Detroit. I don't think her upside is as high as Cash's was as a rookie, but she could certainly fill the role of a player who will score points of rebounds, kick-outs from other player penetration and drawing fouls. She is not the kind of player that requires set plays to have an impact, she will do whatever is needed and you will always see her in the box score when she gets minutes.

Finally, I watched teh Purdue at Ohio State game yesterday. This was not a terribly exciting game, but I did get to see two of my prospects play.

Star Allen
WNBA Player Comparison: Latasha Byears
She will never be a star in the WNBA, but she is the perfect bruising role player that many teams lack. She has the bulk and the kind of "edge" needed to be a role playing enforcer like Byears did in LA during their strongest seasons.

Lyndsay Wysdom-Hilton
WNBA Player Comparison: Camille Little
She is a great shooter, but is a little short to play power forward in the WNBA, and not athletic enough to play the 3. She can rebound and has a nice touch around the basket. She is too soft around the basket in my opinion, and nowhere near tenacious enough on the boards to translate her play to the pros at her position. If she were a few inches taller and a little more physical she would be a good pick at the four. If she were faster and more athletic she could play the three or be a good combo player. However, I would have said the same thing about Camille Little when she entered the league.

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