Roy Devyn Marble, SG, Iowa, 21 years old (turns 22 in September), via NBADraft.net: 6'6", 192 pounds.
17.0 points per game, 3.2 rebounds per game, 3.6 assists per game; 42.0 FG%, 34.9 3P%, 71.4 FT%.
First-team All-Big Ten in 2014, third-team All-Big Ten in 2013. All-NIT team in 2013. Two-time captain. Per his official bio, "finished career ranked fifth in Iowa career scoring (1,694) and free throws made (432), sixth in assists (397) and free throws attempted (595), and seventh in steals (176)." Marble was a four-year fireball for the Iowa Hawkeyes, playing every position of the perimeter (not at the same time, that would be ridiculous) and functioning as the team's primary offensive threat for each of his three last seasons in Iowa City. He led a Hawkeye resurgence from the depths of the Big Ten to a tournament contender, and his presence will be sorely missed in 2014-15.
He's primarily a shooting guard but is intriguing as a combo guard. Very effective in transition, both running point and finding open spots for long-range jumpers. Shooting technique is sound, if not fast. Can get hot and has no reservations about heat checks. Surprisingly crafty with interior shots, and doesn't need much space to get a good shot off. He was a fine jump shooter from deep, sometimes straying out to NBA range and hitting at a 35% pace overall his senior season. He showed an ability to create space for a shot, either by getting into the lane or getting free on a step-back.
He can read passing lanes exceptionally well and showed a knack for jumping lazy passes without getting burned often; he was third in steals per 40 minutes in the defensively stellar Big Ten (and fifth in overall steals) last year and rarely found himself in foul trouble. He has the size and length to frustrate smaller point guards on defense.
Overall, his character is unimpeachable, as he stayed out of trouble on and off the court, played hard on both ends and seems exceptionally coachable. Playing four years in the best conference in American amateur basketball should minimize the adjustment shock from moving to the next level. Also, despite a workload that saw him log 3,751 minutes of game time in college, he's still a growing prospect, as he's not turning 22 until September, he grew three inches in college according to the BTN's Stephen Bardo and at a thin 192 pounds, he has room to fill out his frame.
Reliability from long range must, must, must improve or else he'll never get minutes. Shooting 71% from the line as a senior is also troubling for a shooting guard, to say the least. He's not likely to be a factor at the rim in traffic. Can get shut down and frustrated by high-level defenders. He will need to adjust to a completely different role, from the focal point of an offense to a chess piece. Despite his potential as a combo guard, didn't facilitate many easy baskets via tough passes in half-court sets.
Has zero business defending in the post at this point, and his hands are not particularly effective in one-on-one defending situations.
It is hard to complete the sentence "Roy Devyn Marble can ___________ at an NBA level." Even at under 7% body fat, his athleticism is "college good," but replacement-level in the NBA. Could really use another 10+ pounds of muscle to handle increased physicality at next level.
In case you've been living under a rock, the San Antonio Spurs just embarrassed LeBron James and the Heat in the NBA Finals, and two key contributors for the Spurs were Danny Green and Manu Ginobili: a pair of wing players who were mid-to-late second round picks in their respective drafts and who developed into offensive weapons in their own way. Mind you, Ginobili and Green didn't just step into the NBA right after being drafted; Ginobili kept cutting his teeth in Italy for a couple years while still playing for the sensational Argentinian national team, and Green bounced around the D-League and Europe and was cut multiple times before sticking with the Spurs. Marble is a similar candidate for development outside the league, seeing as how he's still young-ish and relatively undersized with a jumper that needs fine-tuning. And while he's probably not going to become quite the improvisational genius Ginobili is or quite the long-range assassin Green has become, those two are the pillars upon which Marble's ceiling resides.
Uh, a guy who doesn't play in the NBA at all, I guess? God, why did I add this? Who wants to read what the worst-case scenario is for Roy Devyn Marble? OK, he goes overseas to play ball in Paris and then a gang of Albanian crime lords steal his friend Amanda while they're in the hotel and oh my god they're coming for him too and... wait, hang on, that's the plot of Taken. I'm sorry. But you have to admit, that'd be pretty bad.
Where's He Getting Drafted?
DraftExpress has Marble going at #52 to the Philadelphia 76ers. CBSSports.com's three mocks say Denver at #41, Charlotte at #45 ("I'm definitely #teammarble but I also think is a spectacular fit," writes Matt Moore) and Milwaukee at #48—which is where Bleacher Report has him too. Chad Ford at ESPN Insider doesn't have Marble getting drafted ($$).
Don't expect the team drafting Marble to be doing so because of a glaring need in its depth chart; that's not a problem you fix with a second-round rookie unless you want it to still be a problem. In fact, with Marble's age, size and lack of specialty all being factors, a year (or even two) in the D-League to further acclimate himself to the next level and establish his identity as a player would likely do wonders. Essentially, Marble needs to decide what specialties he's going to bring to the table for whatever his NBA team will end up being, then attack those specialties with a sociopathic insistence. If he gets that work in—and that absolutely seems plausible—and takes those necessary next steps, he just might have a decent NBA career.