Xavier is bringing back two sophomores who played enough minutes as freshmen to put together a meaningful sample of their skills. The first we looked at was JP Macura, whose up and down bench gunning left him with a very broad range of outcomes among his comparable players. The second of those is Trevon Bluiett, who brought a much more narrow spectrum of comps with his 11.0/4.2/1.9 on .422/.326/.746 as a freshman.
While Macura didn't have a single player with a similarity score of 900 or higher, Bluiett had five. One of those was also a freshman last year, and the other jumped to the draft after a single season. Since neither of them laid out any sort of development beyond the first year of college, they've been thrown out. What remains is a group of players - all of whom are rising seniors - who have put together fairly impressive careers to this point. Here they are:
Top performer: D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, Georgetown (904)
You don't need me to tell you about DSR. Xavier fans knew him as a verbal commit who backed away and then signed with Georgetown instead, then they got to know him even better as one of the best guards in the Big East. Smith-Rivera is a good three inches shorter than Bluiett, but he's a good rebounder who takes care of the ball and can score from all over. If Trevon developed along DSR's path, I'd be beyond delighted.
The middle road: Marcus Georges-Hunt, Georgia Tech (901)
Like Bluiett, Georges-Hunt was asked to step in and contribute right away on the wing, and - also like Trevon - he did just that. From that freshman year though, he never really got any better. That's not to say that he got meaningfully worse, because he really didn't. A bump in getting to and converting at the line more or less balanced out his declining three-point numbers, and his usage rate has taken a steady climb. He's more or less getting the same results as he did as a freshman, just slightly more often.
The cautionary tale: Rasheed Sulaimon, Duke (905)
Sulaimon came on to the scene as an efficient and effective scorer from beyond the arc who could also get to the rim and score. As a sophomore, he was still hitting threes but his efficiency from inside the arc and at the line dropped off. His junior year was kind of a public relations nightmare and he ended up getting dismissed from the school as a result. His on-court performance was pretty solid all through his time at Duke, but his minutes declined every year before he was excused from the program.
All three of these guys can really play ball. The fact that DSR is a good comp has more to do with how unique he is as a player than portending a more perimeter-oriented future for Trevon. I don't see Bluiett falling off the rails off-court like Sulaimon did, and I would be surprised to see his shooting numbers drop like Georges-Hunt's. My gut tells me that he will be a stud for three or four years at X; what do you think?