#44 / Forward / Washington St. Cougars
Hometown: Ephrata, WA
High School: Ephrata High School
This is the latest in our series of WSU basketball player profiles, a new one of which is hitting the site periodically early in the basketball season. You can read the other players' profiles here.
Scouting Report: It's very hard to believe that Patrick Simon is finally a Coug. Not because I thought he would bail, but because he made his first verbal commitment to WSU during his freshman year of high school. It seemed so far away then, and that makes me feel old.
Well, he is here now and Coug fans are pretty excited about it. He was a tremendous scorer in high school, but that was at 2A Ephrata. Can that translate well to Division 1 basketball?
So far, so good.
Simon has come off the bench for a total of 25 minutes and it is pretty clear what he is sent in to do. In those 25 minutes, he has taken 34.9% of the team's shots. In case you were wondering, that is similar to the percentage of shots Klay was taking in the preseason last year. This kid is not timid.
So far his propensity to take shots has paid off in a big way. He is posting a ridiculous early-season ORtg of 154.9. That means for every possession that ends with him (shot or turnover) the Cougs are getting 1.5 points on average. He also has a 73.0 eFG%. Efficiency has been the name of the game.
We knew Simon had a pretty sweet outside shot, so it would be safe to assume that most of his points would come that way, as he may not be ready to play inside at this level. Well, that assumption has been wrong so far. Patrick is getting 47.6% of his points inside the arc, 42.8% on threes, and the rest on free throws. Very nice balance.
Shooting is not the only way Simon has contributed so far. Against lesser competition, he has done very well on the glass. His 30.2 defensive rebounding percentage is absolutely ridiculous. I'd be happy if he finished with half of that this season. His 12.0 OR% is also very impressive. If Patrick continues this sort of play, Coug fans can expect a lot of double-doubles out of him in the next four years.
Of course the huge caveat with these stats is the small sample size. He is not going to continue to post 154.9 offensive rating and and a 30.2 DR%. However, it is very encouraging that he is able to excel against the lower opponents on WSU's schedule. If he was struggling right now, it would likely mean he isn't ready for minutes in Pac-10 play. He's not struggling, and that is something to get very excited about. Remember, this guy was a four star recruit before injuring his knee. The talent is there. The scoring pop that he and Faisal Aden can provide off the bench come conference play could be crucial to WSU's success.
Best Case Scenario...Patrick continues his stellar shooting and rebounding. He pushes his way into the starting five, in the frontcourt next to Casto. He makes teams pay for paying too much attention to Klay Thompson, Reggie Moore, and DeAngelo Casto. He ends up on the Pac-10 All-Freshman team.
Worst Case Scenario...His opening games were just a product of very poor competition. His slow footspeed becomes too much of a liability on the defensive end. He finds himself still in the rotation, but only getting about 5-10 minutes a night.
Likely Scenario....He shares time with Lodwick at the 4. As a true freshman, he isn't ready to pound with Pac-10 bigs on the inside twice a week and that wears on him a bit. He still provides offense off the bench as a serious outside threat and scraps for a decent rebounding percentage. He earns himself 12-15 minutes a night.