Oregon owns No. 24 spot in 247Sports' preseason countdown

Oregon owns No. 24 spot in 247Sports’ preseason countdown

“(Kel’el Ware) has all the talent in the world. He’s getting better but still not where he needs to be. I was down with USA basketball and the U18 team and he was noticeably more talented than any other player there, including (Villanova five-star) Cam Whitmore. You just don’t know if he’s going to assert himself or if he’s going to half-ass a play. But he’s 7-feet tall, he can run, he dunks everything, he can shoot 3s, not much he can’t do from a talent standpoint.

“He can stretch it. With Kel’el next to Dante, the concerns are more on the defensive end, are they going to play zone? Even if they do play zone, one of them is on the wing in a 2-3. I would be very curious to see how they would gameplan around those two defensively. With Bittle, the defense questions are still there, but offensively it’s a much more natural pairing. Both of those guys can shoot it, so they can create space for one I do think defensively, in either scenario, that’s going to be the question mark.”

“A lot of it depends on the other pieces. He’s not ready to be a leader yet. If he’s in a high-culture place and expectations are set for him by everybody else. If they’ve got a veteran team and nobody cuts corners or else, he’s talented enough to step right in and make an impact. If they’re relying on him to set the tone and establish the culture this year? That’s a problem.

“He played high school basketball with Nick Smith. He’s used to playing with a dynamic guard. Not only does he not need to be the focal point, but that’s the positive of the personality, he doesn’t have the personality to really want to be the dominant guy either. I think that will be just fine. He’s so tall and he’s got this high release. Offensively, if you can simplify the game for him. What I mean for that is you get him the ball where he doesn’ t have to bounce it. You get him in his spot and he’s got a lot of different spots, but if you get him the ball in his different spots whether that’s a pick-and-pop 3, a lob or a crab-dribble jump hook, he’s going to be able to score the ball pretty easily. He’s never going to be a super high-motor guy, does he hold his seals, does he block out? He just has to be competent in those areas. But I think joining a veteran team and a well-coached team, everybody knows (Altman) can coach, that’s where it’s going to be helpful to him. people will go in there thinking he’s a one-and-done. And that brings expectations.” — Adam Finkelstein, 247Sports national basketball analyst.

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