#0 / Guard / Washington St. Cougars
Winter Haven, Florida
Scouting Report: The path that brought Marcus Capers to Washington State has been well documented. Taylor Rochestie gave up his scholarship and the announcers at Fox Sports Net had an anecdote to pass along every time the Cougs were milking the shot clock on offense. WSU fans should be thanking Taylor for years to come, as Marcus displayed in his freshman year the type of length and athleticism that made him a lock-down defender and gives him the potential to have an impact in a more open offense.
Capers slowly worked his way into playing time in his freshman campaign until he was finally making starts during the Pac 10 schedule. His work on the defensive end clearly impressed the coaching staff. He was third on the team in defensive rebounding percentage (15.9) and was able to block shots at a very high rate for a guard. His long arms and tremendous vertical leap gave opposing guards fits. Capers should continue to improve on defense and soon become one of the top on-ball defenders in the Pac 10.
On offense, it was a very different story. Marcus was clearly uncomfortable in Bennett's offensive system. At times, he looked very awkward with the ball in his hands. He had the tools to make something happen, he posted a very solid 31.9 free throw rate and was second on the team in assist rate. The problem was that he absolutely could not finish. He made just 32% of his two point shots and missed all seven of his three point attempts. This led to an atrocious 29.0 eFG%. His care of the ball also left something to be desired, as he posted a high 26.7 turnover rate.
Going forward it is clear that Marcus's length and athletic ability will assure he gets significant minutes in the lineup. He has the ability to defend three positions on the floor and is an excellent rebounder. On offense, he will benefit from opportunities in the open court. He should have his fair share of YouTube moments by the end of his time at WSU. If he can develop a serviceable mid-range jump shot and be stronger around the rim when finishing, he will be a stud for the Cougars.
Best Case Scenario: Marcus is hitting jumpers like he did in the NIT game against St. Mary's last year. He finishes on his drives to the basket. His eFG% is closer to 50%, a dramatic improvement thanks in large part to a lot of easy looks in the open court. In the half court offense, he plays the point and leads the team in assist rate. On defense, he becomes one of the top defenders in the conference and shuts down opposing guards every game. He is one of the most important players for WSU on both ends of the floor and plays 30+ minutes a game.
Worst Case Scenario: Marcus has shown no improvement on the offensive end and continues to be a liability. Teams are able to ignore him and it makes it more difficult for guys like Klay Thompson and Mike Harthun to get open looks. He is still a solid defender, but not the shut down guy Coug fans were hoping for. Out of necessity, Ken Bone has to leave him on the floor for 20 minutes a night.
Likely Scenario: His offensive game is improved, but still leaves something to be desired. He is a beast on the defensive end and on the boards. He proves to be very effective in distributing in the half court. As far as playing time goes, the best case scenario is the likely scenario, as he plays 30+ minutes a night.