Really happy we were able to land Poole, think he’s going to be a really nice player for us. Don’t care what the rankings say, he’s better than a 75 - 100 range type player (for comparison, Poole is better than Kenny Williams). Think he’s a notch better than that, most likely a 50-75 player, with potential to be a hair inside the top 50 depending on how he develops. Not knocking him, but I think it was wishful thinking by most here that Watson would shoot up the rankings (he actually dropped on nearly every site)…this is not wishful thinking, Poole is a legit, upper tier, combo guard.
On to the analysis:
Size - Poole seems to be a legit 6’3 - 6’4, long arms, but appears to be carrying some bad weight.
Athleticism - not a surprise, Poole appears to have below average verticality, lateral movement, and average straight line speed. That being said, Poole is very impressive with his body control despite being a below the rim player. Poole willingly takes contact and finished through it as well.
Ballhandling - Poole is an above average ballhandler, although he is bit right hand dominant. Shows ability to change direction with either hand, handle needs to be a bit lower. He’s able to get separation from defenders by changing speeds with stepbacks as well. Overall, he’s a plus ballhandler for a 2/combo guard, has potential to be a PG in spots early on, or as an upperclassmen.
Shooting - no doubt Poole can shoot the rock. Appears to be a very good shooter from catch and shoot positions, can’t really speak as to whether he can come off screens (film doesn’t display much of that). Appears to be a good shooter off the bounce from midrange as well…which is always key (this is what prevents Caris from taking the leap from good to great). Poole’s release can be a bit slow off catch and shoot situations, but he seems to adjust off the dribble when a defender is in his grill. Think Poole will be a really good shooter at the next level.
Passing - film shows Poole has above average court vision for a combo guard…but most of that is in transition. And I’ve learned from Derrick Walton’s film that court vision in transition is very much distinct from passing in a half court set/off PnR. Don’t think Poole is in the same stratosphere as Nik in terms of passing, but probably more in the Caris mold to where he’s a decent passer, but not someone you can consistently rely on to playmake for others. Admittedly this is a small sample size, so take that with a grain of salt.
Projection - Poole is certainly a high floor player at minimum, with the ceiling being somewhat limited based on lack of athleticism. He is really the perfect thing for UM because he probably isn’t a threat to go to the league as underclassmen…unless he’s shoots up to 6’6. The only thing that will prevent Poole from getting minutes as a freshman is strength/conditioning/athleticism. As a 2 guard/combo, Poole’s skillset as a sophomore exceeded the skillsets Caris, MAAR, Irvin, Dawkins, THJ, Stu as HS seniors…and that is a very good thing. When 17 rolls around, MAAR and Simpson will be the only backcourt players on the roster in ballhandling roles that are a sure thing (Watson, Dawkins, Chatman are not sure things as ballhandlers at this point) so Poole will have plenty of opportunity to prove himself as a combo guard that is a creator. Even if he is relegated to more of a shooter role, Poole can play alongside MAAR or Simpson to space the floor. Don’t think there is any doubt that Poole will be a major contributor as a sophomore, with Dawkins, Chatman, and MAAR all gone. I have Poole pegged in as a starter at the 2/combo and may play a quasi Nik type role as playmaking 2 depending on his development.
I honestly think Poole has the potential to be an all Big Ten type player as early as his sophomore year…his entire skillset is already above average, and shooting is already good, potentially great. Once Jordan gets his body right and gets a year of Camp Sanderson, the B10 better watch out for this kid…he can play.
We got a steal in this one fellas, Poole can play…he can definitely play. A few months after the Battle fiasco, we replace him with an above average PG in Simpson, and a good combo in Poole…we’ve rebounded nicely. From a skillset standpoint, Poole is better than Battle in my opinion (always thought he was a bit overrated). Hopefully we can keep the recruiting momentum rolling and land an athletic/upper tier wing. In my opinion, I think we can go without a PG for 17 because Jordan Poole can get some minutes there as a sophomore once MAAR leaves. With the way the roster is looking for 17 and beyond, I think Jamal Cain would be a REALLY NICE fit at the wing…and there is interest there. Small tidbit, but Brandon Wade is REALLY interested in UM…if UM offers next year, wouldn’t be surprised to see him grab that spot.