Leading the Pac-12 in FG% last season, Devon Collier
raised his level of play considerably as a sophomore. A fringe top-100 prospect coming out of basketball power St. Anthony's HS (NJ), Collier averaged 13.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per-game playing off of 2012 draft pick Jared Cunningham
. With Cunningham out of the picture, Oregon State Head Coach Craig Robinson will look to Collier to step up once again.
Standing 6'8 with a long, lanky frame, Devon Collier
is an exceptionally smooth athlete with ample size for a power forward in the college game, but less than ideal size or strength for a four at the NBA level. He's added some weight to his frame since entering the college game, and would be well served to continue building muscle to help prepare him for the rigors of defending the rim in the NBA and improve his already solid explosiveness around the rim.
On the offensive end of the floor, Collier's length, fluidity, and touch are the defining characteristics of his game. Nearly 65% of Collier's shot attempts came in finishing situations at the basket according to Synergy Sports Technology. Collier's ability to finish above the rim or use his deft touch to finish around defenders play a big role in his 64% shooting at the rim and 62% shooting overall. Though Collier remains raw in some areas, he was one of the most prolific per-40 minute scoring sophomore power forwards
in the country and had one of the highest field goal percentages among all prospects in our database
CWith Jared Cunningham
no longer drawing the focus of opposing defenses, and few dynamic returners to benefit from the backcourt, Collier will be looked upon to emerge as a more versatile scoring option this season. His ability to create his shot as well as he finished the shots created for him by others last year will have a major impact on whether he can match his efficiency as a sophomore during his junior year.
In the post, Collier shows some promising skills creating his own offense. He may not have any overly polished post moves at this point, but he is confident in his ability to score over his right shoulder, will exploit mismatches, and is rangy enough to get shots off over and around defenders. He doesn't shy away from contact, and active follows his own shot, often cleaning up his own misses with a second effort.
As Collier begins to assert himself as the Beavers' top scoring option, he'd be well served to expand his face-up game. He may never be the type of player to overwhelm a defender with strength on the block, but he has the instincts and touch that could help him become an effective face-up four.
Collier's ability to become a more versatile offensive player will start with the development of his jump shot. Knocking down 7 of the 17 jumpers he attempted last season, Collier shoots the ball with a high release point, but missed badly as frequently as he appeared comfortable from the midrange. If Collier can improve his ability to score facing the basket from 15-feet out and finish with both hands at the rim, he could emerge as one of the better scorers in the Pac-12.
Defensively, Collier had some moments of brilliance as a sophomore. He's an exceptional weak side shot blocker for a player his size as evidenced by his 1.3 blocks per-game. The Bronx native will over-pursue the ball when rotating from time to time, leaving his man wide open to finish easy put-backs on the weakside, but he changes a few attempts at the rim with his effort, timing, and length each game. When defending away from the rim, Collier's focus wavers for stretches, he was largely untested in the post last season, and he isn't always aggressive when pursuing the ball off the rim, as evidenced by his meager 3.7 defensive rebounds per-40 minutes pace adjusted.
One of the most intriguing juniors on the west coast, Devon Collier
should see his role shift significantly as the Beavers will likely rely on him to carry them for stretches this season. Already showing promise in a number of areas, Collier still has plenty of room to grow as a player. Even if he is a bit undersized for the power forward position at the NBA level, if he can show improve and have a strong year, he'll certainly generate some buzz this winter.