Chicago Bulls: 5 criminally underrated NBA Draft targets

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

Sports Illustrated Big Board Ranking: 36

Besides having the coolest name in college basketball, Admiral Schofield brings a lot to the table. As a four-year college player, Schofield’s value in the draft has diminished significantly. That shouldn’t scare away the Bulls scouts though, considering two of their best draft picks in recent memory – Jimmy Butler and Taj Gibson – stuck through three seasons in college each.

Sometimes, instilling a strong winning culture and work-ethic can be just as valuable as a few extra developmental years. Coach Rick Barnes took over at the helm of the Tennessee Volunteers in 2015, the same year Schofield first stepped on campus. At the time, Tennessee was a middling program with not much hope for the future. Since then, they have transformed into perennial title contenders, and it’s easy to see why. He emphasizes a Spurs-style of play that encourages ball movement and getting everyone involved.

This clearly instilled the right values in Schofield, seeing as he evolved from the 251st-ranked recruit in his own class to a man en route to the NBA. He’s slowly developed into a dependable leader on the court, carrying Tennessee to a pair of victories in the opening weekend of the NCAA tournament.

Boasting the second highest points per game on the Vols – behind only fellow first-round projected Grant Williams – while also grabbing six rebounds a game and shooting 41.1 percent from behind the arc, Schofield has clearly developed an ‘admirable’ skill set.

If he can fix his recent free throw shooting woes, he would be a legitimate threat to regularly post a true shooting percentage of 60 percent or higher. That’s higher than a sharpshooting NBA star Klay Thompson has ever posted in his career.

With the Chicago Bulls currently projected to have the 36th pick in the draft, Schofield should certainly be on their radar. He has the potential to be a great rotation player for a Bulls team in desperate need of a bolstered bench. As No. 2 seeded Tennessee marches forward into the madness, keep an eye out for Schofield. His play during the remainder of the tournament could make or break his draft stock.

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