Spurs Prospect Watch: Austin Wiley

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Austin Wiley Auburn men's basketball vs Mercer on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016 in Auburn, Ala. Photo by Wade Rackley/Auburn Athletics

The San Antonio Spurs could be getting Kawhi Leonard back sooner than later and that would mean a guaranteed playoff spot yet again. And with that great feat comes a not-so-great pick in the first round. However, there should be plenty of value there with some late round steals and that is why you are presumably reading this article.

This week’s Spurs prospect watch will feature 6-foot-11, 260-pound Auburn big man Austin Wiley. He is an intriguing prospect as he was expected to be a huge contributor for the Tigers this year, but he may never see the floor. He is currently being held out because of his reported involvement in the FBI probe that has already caused some schools to suspend or even get rid of assistant coaches.

So while he has yet to play this season, he could be one of those cases where he shows what he’s capable of in workouts and during the combine. Since he may not play at all this season, here are his stats from 2016-17:

  • 8.8 PPG, 1.3 BPG, 4.7 RPG (18 minutes per game)
  • 58.4 FG%, 49.1 FT%
  • Per 40
    • 19.5 PPG, 13.9 RPG, 4 BPG

His per-40 numbers are fantastic, but his regular averages could have been vastly improved as a starter this season with a year of experience under his belt and considerably more minutes. However, he’s a strong finisher at the rim and is competent in the low post on offense. He’s also clearly a good shot blocker and rim protector and could immediately make an impact on the defensive end of the court with his size and strength.

While he gets to the free throw line often, he does not convert from there and shoots below 50 percent from the charity stripe. His strength and sheer brutality at times gets other players in foul trouble, but he also has issues staying out of foul trouble himself, so that would have to be something to get worked on should the Spurs draft him.

Wiley is very much a wildcard at this point, but if he does get to play during the season, you can bet we will have an update on him, especially if he is looking like a guy the Spurs could end up taking in June’s draft.

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