Cody Zeller – C So. 7’0 230 lbs. 16.5 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 1.3 bpg
Zeller turned down the opportunity to go pro after his freshman season. Many mock drafts initially projected him as the top overall pick in 2013. The seven footer had a solid sophomore campaign, help leading the Hoosiers to a No.1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and a sweet 16 appearance. Zeller struggled at times this season exposing some of his weaknesses, causing his draft stock to decline.
Body/Athleticism– Zeller showed off his athleticism at the NBA Pre-Draft Combine, finishing first among centers in the lane agility drill and standing vertical jump and finishing a close second in the max vertical jump. Interestingly he tested better than Mason Plumlee who was generally regarded as the most athletic center in the camp. Has good feet. Moves well laterally and runs the floor extremely well. Generally does not play above rim, although his athleticism suggests he has the capability to. Which might allude to his not being a quick jumper. Needs to add weight and get stronger.
Shooting– Needs to develop range. Catches and faces when catching ball off the block, wants to drive instead of shoot. Will need to shoot 20 footer at next level for pick and pops. Prefers to catch and face up when catching ball off the block and want to drive the ball instead of shooting 15-20 footer. Catches off the block with back to the basket, wants to go middle and finish with jump hook. Skilled, can finish with either hand.
Position Offense – Plays hard. Runs the floor very well and will get layups in transition beating defense down the floor. Skilled, can face up and take defender off dribble or post up with solid moves and counters. Good footwork and hands. Needs to get better at playing through bumps and contact. Needs to be more assertive. Has trouble finishing inside against long players due to his short arms.
Defense/Rebounding – Good mobility. Hedges well in pick roll situations. Can get buried by more stronger more physical post players due to lack of strength. Not your classic rim protector, 6’10 wing span.
Miscellaneous – Good basketball IQ who is fundamentally sound. Ceiling is lower than other prospects, but know what you are getting. Will get stronger and improve offensively because of strong work ethic. Brother Tyler, plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Overall Rating – Worthy of a top ten pick. Not as much upside as a Nerlens Noel or Alex Len, would not be surprised if had a longer and more productive career. Will likely need to transition to the “4” due to his physical profile.
Ryan Klaas is a scout for NetScouts Basketball.