November 13, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Lehigh Mountain Hawks guard C.J. McCollum (3) handles the ball against pressure by Pittsburgh Panthers guard James Robinson (right) during the first half at the Petersen Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

C.J. McCollum: NBA Draft Profile


  • School: Lehigh
  • Height: 6’3”
  • Weight: 197 lbs
  • Wingspan: 6’6”

 

Strengths:

McCollum is everything you want from a perimeter scorer. With the ability to shoot in catch-and-shoot situations, off the dribble, set, or on the move, he is pretty much always going to do his damage offensively. His great handle on the ball along with shiftiness allows him to be great in isolation situations, and McCollum is also a huge threat in transition due to his creativity.

One of the highest basketball IQs in the draft, McCollum understands and sees mismatches, whether it be involving him or a teammate. He has a great feel for the game, and does a solid job of reading screens and making teams pay for going under or switching.

Off the ball defensively, his anticipation allows him to be an annoyance to opposing offenses in the passing lanes. He plays great team defense, understands rotations and positioning, and is almost never loses his man due to lack of focus or knowledge.

In his junior year, he proved that he wasn’t afraid of the biggest of moments by beating Duke in the NCAA Tournament on Lehigh’s run to the Sweet 16. Along with being a big time player, he is a hard worker and high character guy that is great locker room presence.

 

Weaknesses:

Despite his great scoring instincts and ability, he is slightly undersized to be a shooting guard, but is not a natural point guard. His handle isn’t the issue, but he lacks a great feel for pick-and-roll offense in its entirety when he isn’t shooting. He averaged over 3 turnovers per 40 minutes this past season.

Unfortunately, McCollum is not as great defensively on the ball as he is off of it. His IQ allows him to be a capable defender off the ball, but his lack of elite athleticism was on full display at times in his days at Lehigh when defending the ball handler. Without a ton of quickness or strength, he may struggle to stay in front of NBA point guards.

 

Role on the Sixers:

C.J. McCollum may be ready to contribute right away. If he is available for the Sixers at No.11, expect them to think long and hard about selecting the senior guard out of Lehigh. Philadelphia struggled to score all season long, and was even worse when Jrue Holiday was on the bench getting rest. McCollum would give them a shoot-first option that can light it up at any time next to Jrue and/or spelling him off the bench.

NBA teams can never have too many shooters. McCollum is a shooter. With the possibility of losing Nick Young and Dorell Wright to free agency this summer and Jason Richardson certainly being out of town after this season, he would be able to learn before being expected to contribute a ton. Ultimately, McCollum could wind up being a huge improvement to the starting line-up next season, if not this one.

Tags: C.J. McCollum NBA Draft NBA Draft 2013 Philadelphia 76ers