Interview & Workout Footage with Sherron Collins June 18, 2010
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Sherron Collins also looked very impressive in his time here, looking outstanding shooting the ball in drills, while also being the most vocal player of all those here at the gym. More importantly, Collins has undergone a significant makeover with his body, as he’s lost 11 pounds and dropped his body fat percentage from 13.5% to 10.2%, now being in the best shape of his life. Sporting a full six pack, much less baby fat, and still having a very strong, stocky build, Collins certainly will come into the NBA in much better shape than he left college.
While Collins impressed with his shooting during drills, he impressed more with his passing and shot creation abilities during the scrimmages, looking excellent running pick-and-rolls and making drive-and-dishes, constantly keeping his head up and showing excellent vision throughout, often finding an open man parked on the three-point line.
Collins didn’t have the greatest day with his own scoring, not getting separation for his pull-up jumper very easily, but he did have some good drives to the basket, showing off change of direction abilities and making some tough finishes at the rim.
Where Collins impressed the most in the scrimmages, however, was on the defensive end, where he played extremely tough, especially on the pick-and-roll, as he fought through screens pretty easily, benefitted greatly by his incredibly strong build and low center of gravity, which allows him to change directions easily and get right up into his man on these types of plays. While Collins’ size will have some defensive drawbacks in the pros, he also is showing he understands how to make use of his size’s benefits, and he has the potential to be a very tough pick-and-roll defender at the next level if he keeps playing like this.
Projected as a late first rounder much of his career, Collins has seen his stock slip a bit on many boards this year, partly a result of questions surrounding his conditioning, which will make it interesting to see how teams react when they see his new body in workouts. In a draft relatively weak on point guards after John Wall, Collins could see his stock improve a bit with some impressive team workouts, but he’ll need to convince teams his weight issues are now fully in the past. [Read Full Article] NCAA Weekly Performers, 3/24/10 March 24, 2010 Jonathan Givony
A disappointing season for Sherron Collins came to an even more disappointing conclusion this past weekend, as top-ranked Kansas was shockingly knocked off by Northern Iowa in the second round of the NCAA tournament, behind a forgettable performance by their star guard.
Following up from where our last scouting report left off, Collins’ production dropped off notably this season—even when adjusting for minutes played--as he not only scored at a worse rate than last year, but also saw his efficiency numbers slump as well, as they have in every season at Kansas. Bill Self decided to reduce Collins’ role in his offense substantially—dropping his usage rate (the percentage of his team’s offensive possessions he shoulders) from 25.1% to 19.6%. Collins got to the free throw line less this season, dished out fewer assists and rebounded worse, but managed to cut his turnover rate slightly.
Comparing the Synergy Sports Technology data available to us from the past two years, it appears that most of Collins’ struggles on the offensive end this season stem from his inability to convert shots as effectively from mid and long-range distances—particularly off the dribble--as well as a huge drop-off in efficiency in isolation situations..
The reasons for Collins’ struggles are likely two-fold, mostly revolving around some combination of shot-selection and conditioning issues. Collins has yet to commit to maximizing himself from a physical standpoint, sporting a noticeable amount of baby fat and looking exceedingly heavy as the season moved on-- something that has been an issue for him throughout his career. This becomes even more of an issue for him in the offseason, as we noticed when we saw him this past summer in Chicago, looking a good 20-30 pounds heavier than he normally does.
Already severely undersized for his position, and not terribly explosive to compensate for that, Collins has had his fair share of problems finishing around the basket this season, something that won’t get any easier for him at the NBA level. Once considered a superb athlete earlier on in his career, it’s difficult to describe him as such at this point—something teams surely will want to study further. Collins typically gradually gets into better shape as the season moves on, but this year he seemed to move in the opposite direction.
An extremely talented shot-creator and overall scorer thanks to the tremendous talent he brings to the table, Collins uses his strength and instincts to get to the basket very effectively, even if he doesn’t always get the lift needed to finish plays around the rim. His ball-handling skills are superb, as he has a terrific knack for getting his man off-balance and attacking him at the right time—a skill that is even more coveted at the NBA level. Collins can drive in either direction, has terrific footwork and loves to take big shots, showing the confidence and aggressiveness of a true go-to guy.
Also known as one of the best shot-makers in college basketball, Collins’ jumper mostly abandoned him mid-way through the season. He made just 34.6% of his total jump-shots this season (according to SST) compared with 39.6% last season, with his off the dribble jumper taking the biggest hit—going from 41.8% to 28.9%. These are extremely inefficient numbers any way you slice it, which helps explain why he was relied upon less heavily than he was last season. Getting into better shape and not having to shoulder such a heavy offensive load may help Collins revert back to being the excellent shooter he was known as in the past—he did make 41% of his 3-pointers already as a freshman after all, and converts nearly two of them per game on average.
As a playmaker, Collins has been reined in somewhat this season, spending most of his minutes playing off the ball next to the steadier and more fundamentally sound Tyshawn Taylor, who has no problem crossing over and defending shooting guards on the other end of the floor. This may indeed be his optimal role in the NBA as well, as he’s clearly more comfortable looking for his own shot than he is running a half-court offense.
Capable of finding players in transition, off the pick and roll or on simple drive and dish plays, Collins will rack up a decent amount of assists thanks to the quality of teammates around him and the way Kansas executes their half-court offense. His court vision is clearly underdeveloped, though, showing clear-cut tunnel vision and missing open teammates on a regular basis, being very prone to running into brick walls and being a very average decision maker in general. He’s not really the type of player who is going to make his teammates better, as he’s far more of a scorer than a playmaker, and commits more unforced errors than you would hope.
Defensively, Collins is clearly undersized, and not exceptionally quick laterally, but he seems to be putting in more effort on this end than we gave him credit for in previous reports. He’s capable of being an absolute ball-hawk with his ability to put pressure on his matchup, getting down in a low, fundamental stance and smothering his opponent when he puts his mind to it. He has incredible natural strength, which he uses well to body up, deny angles and get his man off balance with his wide frame.
He’s not immune to getting beat off the dribble from time to time—especially when he loses his focus, which happens a bit more than you’d like—but after four years of playing for Bill Self, it’s safe to say that he knows how to play good defense when he wants to. His potential on this end of the floor remains somewhat limited for the NBA, though.
The winningest player in the history of Kansas basketball, Collins surely did not expect to be sitting at home at this point in the season. This definitely is not the way he wanted to go into the draft process either, with no momentum to speak of. Already 23 years old, undersized, not really a point guard, coming off a disappointing season and with red flags surrounding his intangibles, it’s really anyone’s guess where Collins will end up being picked at this point.
It’s possible some team takes a liking to him late in the first round—shot-creators in his mold are very much en vogue in today’s NBA, and this year’s crop of point guards is incredibly shallow--but being selected in the second round surely isn’t out of the question at this stage. [Read Full Article] NCAA Tournament Performers, 3/26/09-- Part Two March 26, 2009 After spending two seasons playing behind Mario Chalmers and Russell Robinson, Sherron Collins finally took the reins of a young Jayhawks squad looking to retool after their National Championship run. Despite questions about his work ethic stemming from some early-season conditioning issues, Collins was just what the doctor ordered for the Jayhaks, leading them to a surprising 27-7 record and a #3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. After his excellent performances against North Dakota State and Dayton in the first two rounds, it seems like an ideal time to take a look at how Collins has performed in a feature role this season.
Collins has come a long way since the last time we checked in on him. After seeing his role (and his production) remain stagnant during his first two seasons in Lawrence, Collins has almost doubled the amount of possessions he's using each game, nearly doubling his numbers across the board. Doing a lot more ball handling and playmaking than he had in past seasons, the short, but well-built point guard showed that he is capable of doing more than just changing the pace of games.
The development of his mid-range game may be the biggest reason he's been successful in that endeavor. Earlier in his career, Collins wasn't terribly efficient as a jump shooter when he was forced to put the ball on the floor, but he's become a very reliable shooter off the dribble this season. He now complements his ability to create separation with smoother perimeter footwork and reliable mechanics that have come a long way in the last two years.
While his jump shot has improved in some ways, this season has also exposed some of his weaknesses as a finisher. Though Collins is completely capable of turning the corner and getting to the rim, his lack of height limits his scoring efficiency in traffic. In the past, he was able to pick and choose his spots and be more opportunistic when attacking the basket, but with defenses keying in on him, he's had a tough time scoring with defenders bearing down on him. At the next level, Collins will need to continue honing his perimeter shooting ability to offset the difficulties he'll have scoring at the rim.
As a point guard, Collins shows the explosiveness and ball handling ability to make an impact, but is a bit too assertive for his own good with his dribble and simply isn't a pure point guard. Though he's amongst the top assist-men in our database, he's also amongst the most turnover prone. His numbers as a passer aren't staggering when compared to the players he's competing with for draft position, and are highly representative of the fact that Collins is a scorer in a point guard's body. Head Coach Bill Self has looked to Collins for point production, but he has shown some impressive flashes of point guard ability during the tournament, especially on the pick and roll and in drive and dish situations. He may have a scorer's mentality, but in the NBA, he'll likely be asked to take fewer trips deep into the lane and focus more on orchestrating offensive sets.
On the defensive end, Collins doesn't utilize his athleticism as well as he could –a fault that became abundantly obvious when Ben Woodside beat him off the dribble repeatedly in their opening-round matchup. Despite having all the physical tools to be at least a passable defender, Collins doesn't always show the greatest intensity, seeming to merely go through the motions on many possessions, but being a somewhat effective defender when he wants to be. Given his lack of size and only average lateral quickness, improved attention to detail on the defensive end could be very beneficial to his stock.
With the end of the season just around the corner, Collins is in position to toss his hat into the draft-ring, but would probably be well served returning to school. He has all the makings of a future NBA player, proving to be very productive on the highest levels of college hoops, but he is still an undersized shooting guard that lacks a defensive presence. With essentially everyone on the roster returning to school, Collins could boost his stock significantly next season when he can do more play-making and not have to carry his team. Whether he decides to explore that option remains to be seen, and may not even be an issue if he continues to step up with big performances in the coming weeks. [Read Full Article] Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12 (Part Two: #6-10) September 4, 2008 Sherron Collins may be the top returning scorer from last season’s national championship team, but he has plenty of work ahead of him. While the Chicago native has shown loads of potential, his work ethic has been called into question as of late. Collins arrived on campus this fall out of shape and according to head basketball coach Bill Self (via CNN/SI), “a month behind where [he] thought he would be.” For a player already fighting an uphill battle due to the fact that he is 5’11” and lacking a typical point guard’s skill set, the junior now has to further prove that he can be a hard worker on and off the court.
As far as his development is concerned, Collins hasn’t seen any major strides in his game since we last wrote him up this time last year. His turnover numbers actually increased slightly, while his shooting efficiency dropped from his freshman campaign. He is still a perimeter shooting threat when he can catch and shoot, but struggles when he has to put the ball on the floor, showing a more inconsistent release point. Collins relies too much on his athleticism, which while excellent, doesn’t always save him around the basket, where he often gets blocked due to his lack of size. He needs to do a better job of recognizing what the defense is giving him, rather than trying to force the issue around the rim, even though he does finish at a relatively good clip there.
Ultimately, Collins needs to develop his point guard skills, particularly his decision making abilities. In his first two seasons of college basketball he didn’t have much of an opportunity to do that playing behind and alongside Mario Chalmers and Russell Robinson. With these players gone, the onus now falls on Collins. This is a huge opportunity for him to show that he is more than simply a great athlete with potential. Even more than most players due to the circumstances he was in, what Collins shows in his final two seasons of college basketball will likely have a much larger bearing on where or if he gets drafted than his first two, so it’s probably best to be patient at this point. He has gotten off to a poor start, but with the season still a couple of months away, there is time for Collins to right the ship. [Read Full Article] Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12 (Part One: #1-#5) October 8, 2007 On a stacked Kansas roster, freshman Sherron Collins not only carved a nook for himself, he became a key contributor on one of the elite NCAA teams. He finished the year earning All-Big 12 Honorable Mention accolades as well as being voted to the All-Big 12 Rookie Team. However, even after an impressive freshman campaign, Collins still has a lot to prove this season.
For one, he is a guard without a position at this point. Collins’s height makes him all but a lock for the point guard position at the NBA level. However, with the glut of point guards on the Kansas roster, he played a lot of last season off the ball. Therefore, a lot of Collins’s point guard ability is unknown.
Athletically, there are not many guards at the NCAA level that can stay in front of him. Collins has a very good handle and his speed with the ball in his hands is very promising. He is a good passer as well, but he’s clearly thinking shoot-first for the most part at this point in his career. Sometimes he will over-dribble into traps in the paint, leave his feet, and is forced to make an ill-advised pass to the perimeter. Other times he ignores the pass altogether and gets his shot blocked. It seems as though he is so intent on finishing, he does not think about what to do with the ball if the opportunity is not present. While his role last year was to be an offensive spark plug more than a point guard (think Kyle Lowry with a jump-shot), it would be good if he sharpened up his overall decision making abilities. However, for a freshman with his speed and ability, he certainly was not as some of his peers. While on tape he looks like he might be turnover prone, in reality he averages 1.9 in about 20 minutes/game and only 3.0 per 40 minutes; both statistics rank towards the bottom amongst point guard draft prospects.
Collins is an incredibly fast player with superb quickness and agility, which allows him to penetrate the lane at will. Getting to the rim is another story. Collins gets to the hoop fairly easily with good body control and overall intelligence, but he frequently is on the receiving end of an emphatic block because he stubbornly drives into waiting post defenders. This is actually where most of his problems come from on the offensive end. However, with maturity and experience will come an understanding of how to score the ball despite his lack of size. For instance, by the end of the season, he started to use a very effective floater to score in the lane. He also follows his shots and rebounds the ball well for a guy his size.
As a shooter, he is very versatile for an undersized point guard. He has three-point range on his jumpshot and excels in both “catch and shoot” and “create and shoot” situations. He flourishes as a mid-range shooter as well being able to create space for himself and then displaying the athleticism and body control to shoot over taller defenders. His shooting mechanics could certainly use some work, though. Coming off of the dribble he pulls up well, but does not have a consistent release point and sometimes displays a hitch in his motion. However, his set shot looks very nice and if he works on his form, he has the potential to be a very good shooter. Last season, he shot 47.8% from the field on 7 attempts per game, and from beyond the arc, he shot 40.5 percent on 3 attempts a game. His overall scoring instincts are very refined at this point, but his curious inability to get to the foul line is a bit surprising considering his explosiveness.
Perhaps the most impressive aspect to Collins’s game is the energy and aggression he brings to the floor. Reminiscent of ex-Villanova guard Kyle Lowry, Collins is relentless when he is on the floor pushing the ball at lightning pace and then scrapping on defense. . That being said, he is also a good defender. With his strong build, speed, and athleticism, he is a strong defensive presence and uses his quick hands to strip the ball from opposing point guards. He also stays with his man well and plays screens competently for a freshman, at least attempting to fight through them most of the time. The only problem is that in the NBA, he is going to be severely undersized for the point guard position and does not have the length to really make up for that. Bigger guards are going to be able to post him up as well as use their height advantage to see the floor over him.
All in all, Collins’ first season of college basketball didn’t give us a great indication of just how good of an NBA prospect he is yet. There was a lot of talent around him, he came off the bench, and he wasn’t in very good shape to start off the year—struggling with weight problems. Collins will probably have to wait another season or two to really start considering declaring for the draft, as he’ll need to show the ability to effectively run a team if he’s going to be projected as a point guard at the next level. [Read Full Article] NCAA Weekly Performers, 2/7/07-- Part One February 7, 2007 The freshman has scored in double figures in all but one of Kansas' Big XII games, and Collins' assertive play against Texas A&M on Saturday was just another reminder of how far he has come over the past two months. With Kansas' offense generally stagnant, Collins was the only Jayhawk willing to attack the Aggies' stingy halfcourt defense. He pushed the tempo with much success, slashed all the way to the basket, created easy finishing opportunities for his teammates and looked very comfortable taking and making several huge 3-pointers. Collins' 10 points in a seven minute stretch midway through the second half left the Jayhawks ahead by a comfortable margin with seven minutes to play. It wasn't until Self went away from his freshman that the Aggies were able to come back and pull out the win.
Obviously Collins is benefiting from having the chance to play with two more experienced ball-handlers. He gets to focus on the things that he is good at, and doesn't have the constant pressure of being responsible for running the team. But at the same time, Collins has done a great job of playing under control since Big XII play started and shows a level of point guard poise that his teammates Mario Chalmers and Russell Robinson simply don't have. He is the perfect complement to Self's stable of athletes, blessed with phenomenal open court speed and court vision, blow-by quickness in the halfcourt, and the ability to finish around the rim. With players like Brandon Rush, Julian Wright, and Darrell Arthur to pass the ball to, expect Collins' role and production to continue growing into March.
As far as Collins' NBA future, the weight he added over the summer is fairly disturbing. His listed height of 5'11 is quite generous, so he'll need every bit of quickness he's got to succeed at the next level. At the same time, point guards who can distribute the ball so well while playing at such high speeds are rare indeed, and few in recent memory shoot the ball as well Collins does. It probably takes a couple of years before we get a full idea of the type of NBA player Sherron Collins can become, but if he keeps his weight under control from here on out, it is fairly clear that he has a spectacular future ahead of him at the college level. [Read Full Article] At the Jordan Classic: Main Event and Regional Game Recaps April 24, 2006 Sherron Collins had a very erratic game, showing some impressive ability to get into the lane, but also some bad decision-making. Collins has a quick first step, finishes well at the basket, and can take contact and still maintain his balance in the lane. He scored most of his baskets by getting past his man and then going straight to the basket for a lay-in off the glass. All of his assists also came from either executing a drive-and-dish once in the lane or by throwing an alley-oop pass. Collins had a lot of problems with forcing the issue in this game, though. He took a few ill-advised shots off-the-dribble, most of which he missed. He also had some problems passing, being a little careless, leading to his six turnovers. Collins’ biggest problems right now lie in his mentality. He needs to play more under control and not take shots out of the flow of the offense. [Read Full Article] 2006 McDonald's All-American Game, individual player breakdown March 30, 2006 The diminutive point man from Chicago took this game as a challenge to show that he was the nation’s best point guard. While I’m not sold that he did that, Collins did have a very nice performance in the McDonald’s game and will give Bill Self an excellent compliment to Mario Chalmers next season. Sherron showed great explosiveness and quickness, but unfortunately also took some pretty questionable shots and didn’t find the open man as much as you’d like a 5’11 PG to. All in all, it was a solid performance by Collins that was topped off by an off the backboard pass and dunk to himself as time expired. Jayhawk fans will love watching the flashy Collins, as he will command immediate playing time next season. [Read Full Article]