If you follow us on Twitter, you know we're not fans of Seth Davis. I guess that's fair since he's not a fan of the topic we cover- Purdue sports.
It's one thing to not like Purdue and give good, solid analytical reasoning for why you think that. It's quite another to mercilessly-pound an idea with nothing as your defense other than opinion. Davis does this over and over again...and he's wrong a lot. CBS doesn't seem to mind...but I do.
A few weeks ago when Purdue was in the top-10, Davis was asked who would be the first team out in that group. He of course answered Purdue. He went further to say that Purdue wouldn't get past the first weekend...without having any clue who Purdue would be playing. Let's look at Matty's tourney record, Seth- wait, nevermind, that'd take research...don't worry about it, I know it won't happen.
All season he's consistently had Purdue lower than where they've belonged and where they've landed in the poll. In fact, for much of the early season, he didn't rank Purdue. And once they had earned his good graces, they hung in the 20-24 range. Is it because they hadn't played anybody at that point? Could be. But, that very situation didn't stop him from ranking his beloved Blue Devils consistently in the top-5.
Davis has a problem with Purdue-I guess because Purdue beat Duke in Alaska a decade ago (I can't think of another reason). Whatever the reason really doesn't matter, but the proof's in the pudding and we have plenty of rancid dairy dessert all around the interwebnet with Davis' pasty fingerprints all over it.
Most-recently, he penned an article
about 54 potential NBA players that are currently in college and what NBA scouts think of them. The problem is, he has no specific scout's opinion. Instead, he sites "several scouts" as his source...and he refuses to tell us who they
are, so they
can stay anonymous.
It's a nice place to be- you write an opinion-based piece, with your name attached, and you have no culpability. This type of pseudo-journalism is a pet peeve of ours at this site. But, let's take a look at our favorite guys in this article: Of course, JaJuan Johnson and E'Twaun Moore.
JaJuan Johnson, 6-10 senior center, Purdue
Some people really like him, but I just don't know how he gets his game off. I don't think his post game will transfer, so you're looking at a 6-10 jump shooter who will have a hard time guarding any positions in our league. He strikes me as a combination of Marcus Camby and Hakim Warrick. I'd say he's on the bubble for the first round. I think he makes the league, but he won't get a lot of scratch.
Honestly, I don't even know what the first sentence means...so I won't spend a ton of time on it. I guess he's saying he doesn't understand how well Johnson will play in the league. He jibbers his way through the review of JJ, saying little and comparing 25 to a guy who is a rebound-first player who's been in the league for 14 seasons (doesn't sound like a bad investment for an NBA team...but JJ is far from a banger on the boards) and Hakim Warrick, who while a few inches shorter is a very-similar player, statistically, as he left college. But, Warrick was more of a combo player and JJ will more than likely never play shooting forward in the NBA. Davis ends the write-up by saying he won't "get a lot of scratch". Once again, not exactly sure what he means, but I don't think it's a positive.
So, let's compare JJ to a few of the guys, that he's played against, that Davis' imaginary...I mean...anonymous sources are really high on.
Sullinger- "I love him."
He's good, he's young...a lot to like there. When JJ faced him, here's how it went:
Player Pts. Reb. Blk.
Sullinger 17 7 0
Johnson 22 7 0
I guess JJ's game did kinda "get off" in that contest...let's try another.
Benson- "I like him."
It's not love, but it's definitely more positive than his review of JJ.
Player Pts. Reb. Blk.
Benson 16 14 2
Johnson 25 11 2
Not too shabby...JJ also added 5 assists. Benson had 0.
Next, John Leuer- "He's more skilled than you think."
Player Pts. Reb. Blk.
Leuer 24 13 0
Johnson 23 4 3
Once again, JJ did OK, I guess.
Now onto Smooge's review:
E'Twaun Moore, 6-4 senior guard, Purdue
I think someone will take him in the second round. He's small and not very athletic, so that's a bad combination, but the kid has found a way to get it done at a high level. But again, who is he? What does he bring to the table? He can get to the basket at the college level, but he doesn't shoot it great. He reminds me of Reece Gaines, who didn't make it in the league because he had no position. Or Joe Forte from North Carolina. Forte was better than Moore in college, but he didn't make it in the NBA.
I think Moore will have a fight to be successful in the league because he is shorter and he doesn't appear to be quite as quick as many of the guys playing shooting guard in the NBA. So I understand some of the criticism. But the line that really bothers me is this: "But again, who is he?"
Here's who he is: He's a guy who's led his team in scoring for three of his four seasons. He's All-Big Ten, an Academic All-American, an Honorable Mention All-American and a lockdown defender.
Unlike JJ who's squared off against quite a few future draft prospects, I could only find one on the list that Moore had faced- Duke's Nolan Smith.
Davis said of Smith,
"Can he make it as a two guard? That's the question. I'm not sure he has the kind of speed and quickness to be able to attack guys. I think he's proven enough to be drafted and he'll figure it out once he gets up there."
Okie doke. Smith's career numbers look like this: 12.7 pts. 2.7 ast. 2.7 reb.
Moore: 15.0 pts 2.8 ast. 4.4 reb.
But Smith played in the tough ACC while Moore played in the lowly BT, right? Yeah, and Smith never had any talent around him at Duke while Moore was always surrounded by some of the best teams in America. Oh wait...I thought Purdue was only a two-man team. Nevermind.
Then head-to-head, Smith must have just owned Smooge, right??
Player Pts. Reb. Ast. Stl.
Smith 15 5 4 0
Moore 18 4 1 2
Alright, maybe not. It just seems odd that Moore is too small at 6'4", but Smith at 6'2" is not. And Moore is not athletic, but Smith, who will be drafted to a position he doesn't play in college deserves a chance to "figure it out" on the next level.
Other interesting tidbits:
Singler- "I'm a Singler guy all the way."
Plumlee- "If you stick around, you're going to get better."
(If I didn't know better, I'd think that was a plea...not a review.)
And if you really wanna pick this piece apart, read some of the UNC player reviews.
I know, supposedly these words weren't even Davis'...but since he's the only real person I can find mentioned as responsible for the article, I'll pin it on him. I guess if nothing else, Davis is consistent.