The Cleveland Cavaliers are currently focused on the season as they are surging toward a playoff berth for the first time since 2017.
They have their leader and starting NBA All-Star Donovan Mitchell leading that charge as he and his young teammates like Darius Garland, Evan Mobley, and Jarrett Allen are having their best season yet. They currently have a 35-22 record and sit in the No. 4 spot in the NBA Eastern Conference standings.
While things are looking promising for the Wine and Gold, they are always looking toward the future. The college basketball season is in full swing right now and we are approaching “March Madness”.
There are too many great players to name all of them at the moment but we’re going to look at some of them in this article and see who might be on the Cavs radar when the NBA Draft occurs later this year. Cleveland Cavaliers currently holds a second-round pick, but they could always try and move up if they found a player they fall in love with.
Today we’ll focus on the Big Ten conference and five players that Cleveland could be interested in come draft time.
Jalen Hood-Schifino, G, Indiana
The guard from Indiana is considered a top player come the draft and has been projected at being taken anywhere from the first to the second round. Cleveland has a great pair of guards in Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland but we’ve seen what can happen to the Cavs when both these players can’t play due to injury.
The freshman star in the making player at Indiana is rising up draft boards as we speak. He stands at 6’6 and has a lot to offer any team that drafts him.
He’s averaging 12 points per game to go along with four rebounds and assists. He’s also shooting a respectable 39 % from the three-point line. He’s scored in double figures 13 times this season already including a 33-point outburst in a home game against Northwestern.
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 7, 2023
Coleman Hawkins, F, Illinois
The Cavs continue to try and build up their frontcourt. Despite having Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley, the team still needs players that can back these two big men up. To win a championship in Cleveland they need to add depth and Coleman Hawkins, from Illinois could fit the bill.
Hawkins is one of these young kids that has really started to excel after a couple of seasons in college that were less than spectacular. When you watch the film of Hawkins you can see why there is so much to get excited about. He’s an excellent defender and with his big 6’10 body frame and massive wingspan, he can create a lot of problems for his opponent.
This season he’s averaging nine points a game to go along with seven rebounds. When you watch him play in games you might not see in a box score what a difference he can make.
There are many plays where he helped alter a shot by the player he was guarding. He’s got a quick move with great footwork to cover a lot of ground as well. Envisioning him playing defense for the Cavs and only making the Cavs rim protectors even better is exciting to consider.
Kris Murray, F, Iowa
Kris Murray is a kid from Iowa that has come out of left field to have a fantastic junior year as a Hawkeye. He stands at 6’8 and is a rising prospect on NBA draft boards around the NBA. The Cavs need help at the small forward position and Murray could be the guy to fill that need.
He was averaging 10 points a year ago as a bench player but this season he’s averaging 21 points a game and has been the everyday starter. He’s scored north of 20 points in 10 games this season. Murray had the game of his life when he went for 31 points and 20 rebounds in a win against Georgia Tech.
— FOX College Hoops (@CBBonFOX) February 1, 2023
Not only is he shooting the ball at a .50 % clip, but he’s also been knocking down the outside three-point shot by shooting a respectable 35% percent while taking 127 of them already this season.
Zack Edey, C, Purdue
If the Cavs are looking to add depth at their post and center position look no further than Zach Edey. The ginormous 7’4 player has been a big rim protector for his Purdue Boilermakers basketball team over the past three seasons.
This season he’s knocked his scoring average up to 22 points a game while averaging 13 rebounds. He’s now collected 726 total rebounds in only two and a half seasons while blocking 131 shots in that same time. Purdue is having a great season thanks to Edey. He’s gone over the 30-point mark six times already in games and looks to help his Purdue team go far in the NCAA tournament in a few weeks.
Adding a player like Edey to a frontcourt of Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley just looks great when you think about it.
Brice Sensabaugh, F, Ohio State
The Buckeyes haven’t had a season to remember so far but don’t blame freshman player Brice Sensabaugh who is having a great season. The Florida native is averaging 17 points and six rebounds so far. In 24 games, he’s scored in double figures in all but two games. In addition, he’s scored north of 20 points in eight games.
His shooting touch is also impressive as he’s shooting over 51 % overall and 45% from beyond the arc. The kid likes to shoot the ball and most nights is getting up 14-15 attempts a game. The Cavs definitely need to find a shooter and Sensabaugh seems like a good fit. He won’t be drafted in the first round and Cleveland could draft him in the second round.
The nice thing for Sensabaugh and the Cavs is that he could work his way into the team’s game-time rotation and provide that nice offense coming off the bench next season.