Evaluating Jake O’Brien to Temple

In a transfer season that seems to have no end, the latest is Boston University forward Jake O'Brien transferring to Temple. O'Brien, a senior, is immediately eligible since he has already received his bachelors degree. He left BU because they are ineligible for their conference tournament as punishment since they'll be leaving it next season. In a conference like the America East, they only road to the NCAA Tournament is through winning the conference tourney, so O'Brien left for a realistic chance at postseason play.

Due to a foot  injury, O'Brien last appeared in a game on New Year's Eve, 2010. He's since had two surgeries.

So what does he bring to the Owls? Any discussion here assumes that he's back at full speed.

The 23-year-old was the America East freshman of the year, and then 3rd Team All Conference as a sophomore. He was having another solid year as a junior before he hurt his foot. So clearly he has some talent, and for his career he's averaged 12.9 points and 5.6 rebounds a game.

What makes him a valuable contributor is his ability to screen on the perimeter, and then either roll or pop. At 6-8, the pop is especially tough to defend. As a freshman he made 37% of his 3s, but that dipped to 35% as a sophomore. He was making 39% his junior season before it ended prematurely. He's basically a set shooter, so there's no reason to think a foot injury will have a huge effect on his perimeter shot. If he can make 37% or more, then Temple is adding a great asset.

On the interior he was solid, but unspectacular. Which is the same way to categorize his rebounding. With those two skills he's at best a replacement level player, so he really needs to be knocking down 3s to be considered a plus.

Of note is his assist rate, or lack thereof.  It was 5.0 or lower for all three seasons, which led to less than an assist per game even though he rarely came off the floor. In short, he either shoots, or the offense has to be reset. He's not going to set anyone up.