ARIZONA STATE BASKETBALL

ASU’s Bagley, UA’s Mathurin in 1st round mix for 2022 NBA Draft

Nov 9, 2021, 12:27 PM

The Arizona State Sun Devils and Arizona Wildcats men’s college basketball teams both sport some talent that will have NBA scouts’ eyes on the programs this season.

Arizona State sophomore forward Marcus Bagley is ranked No. 27 on The Athletic’s 2022 NBA Draft Big Board and 32nd on ESPN’s Top 100 Big Board.

After his freshman season, Bagley entered his name into the 2021 NBA Draft and also the transfer portal, keeping all of his options open before ultimately returning to school. Bagley played in 12 games for ASU last year while dealing with a nagging ankle injury that had him sidelined for most of the second half of the season.

Bagley has clear NBA appeal. He’s 6-foot-8 with a strong upper body and some quickness, which he used to grab a team-high 6.2 rebounds per game.

The forward has a good-looking three-point stroke and was primarily used as a floor spacer last year, attempting 6.0 of his 8.8 shots a night from three-point range. Bagley converted on 34.7% of those attempts.

Bagley, though, isn’t viewed as the top NBA prospect in the state at the moment. Wildcats guard Bennedict Mathurin is 13th on The Athletic’s board and sits 20th for ESPN’s.

Mathurin is similar to Bagley in that it doesn’t take an in-depth scouting report to tell you why he’s getting this buzz.

The 6-foot-6 guard has NBA athleticism and shot 41.8% from three-point range on 3.5 attempts per game last year.

He posted 10.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.2 assists a night, where some more high-end production would certainly help cement him as a lottery pick. Mathurin scored at least 15 points in only four of his 26 games, and the door is open for him to get the ball more after leading scorer James Akinjo transferred to Baylor.

Mathurin wasn’t firmly planted on scouts’ radar heading into last season, but that changes this year, and he’ll have a chance to capitalize off that momentum he’s built for himself.

Arizona’s Azuolas Tubelis also found a way into these rankings, finding No. 49 on The Athletic’s list while ESPN placed him 57th.

Penguin Air

Arizona State Basketball

Pac-12 Conference commissioner George Kliavkoff speaks at Pac-12 NCAA college football media day Fr...
Arizona Sports

Pac-12, Larry Fitzgerald-backed startup to monetize highlights for NIL

The Pac-12 is entering the NIL space by partnering with a startup that will help athletes earn money from their personalized game highlights.
4 days ago
Basketballs are rolled off the court during the NCAAB game at McKale Center on January 03, 2022 in ...
Nikash Nath

CBS Sports: Wildcats among top 30 best 2021-22 sports programs

CBS Sports released rankings Monday with over 130 colleges ordered on the success of their athletic programs. 
8 days ago
Arizona State linebacker Kyle Soelle carries out the state flag as the team takes the field to face...
Arizona Sports

State of the Sun Devils podcast: What’s next for the Pac-12?

Arizona Sports introduces State of the Sun Devils, an Arizona State podcast hosted by Jesse Morrison, Jeremy Schnell and ASU reporter Jake Anderson.
10 days ago
Pac-12 logo on the court after a college basketball game between the Arizona State Sun Devils and t...
Arizona Sports

Report: Talks between Pac-12, Big 12 end without future partnership

The Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences have concluded talks without a future partnership, reports ESPN's Pete Thamel.
21 days ago
Incoming Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yorkman smiles during a news conference opening the NCAA college...
Arizona Sports

Big 12 ‘exploring all options’ when asked about potential Pac-12 additions

Big 12 commissioner Brett Yorkmack said Wednesday that the conference is open to expansion when asked about the Pac-12.
26 days ago
Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff speaks at a press conference before the PAC-12 Football Champi...
Arizona Sports

Pac-12 breakup amid conference realignment ‘overstated’ at the moment

Nobody is denying that ASU and Arizona, among other teams, could be considering leaving the Pac-12. But it's a holding pattern for now.
27 days ago
ASU’s Bagley, UA’s Mathurin in 1st round mix for 2022 NBA Draft