Of 541,064 HS Players, Just 162 Make the NBA

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

If you are one of 541,064 boys high school players, this is probably your last level of competitive play.

Of 541,064 high school players, only 4,096 (0.8%) made the www.valueaddbasketball.com database as D1 players, 162 (0.03%) correctly see themselves shaking hands with the commissioner at the NBA draft, and just one (0.0002%) ranks as a perfect “10” on the court.

Yes, the odds are long for youth believing their ticket to success will come via the NBA. The one?

Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield, who became the only player worth more than 10 points a game this season with a five-game stretch against very tough teams during which his average game was 6 of 11 on three-pointers, 4 of 4 from the line, 4 assists, and 6 defensive rebounds that improves his worth 10.58 points per game.

We will save the deep analytical math for a piece for the Ivy League readers of Big Apple Buckets, but here are the three key ratings for the “perfect” roster of the 13 most valuable college players:

Ultimate Roster Team OffR DefR Pts/Gm NBA%
Hield, Buddy 24 Oklahoma 11.83 -2.03 10.58 57%
Simmons, Ben 25 Louisiana St. 9.54 -3.9 9.95 96%
Scott, Josh 40 Colorado 10.62 -2.54 9.76 10%
Payton, Gary 1 Oregon St. 9.13 -3.27 9.54 54%
Andrews, Andrew 12 Washington 11 -0.97 9.24
Johnson, Brice 11 North Carolina 9.02 -3.36 9.21 45%
Mockevicius, Egidijus 55 Evansville 8.11 -5.26 9.2 10%
Thompson, James 2 Eastern Michigan 11.69 -1.64 9.17
Punter, Kevin 0 Tennessee 10.85 -0.47 8.77
Frazier, JJ 30 Georgia 8.9 -2.25 8.65 10%
Morris, Monte 11 Iowa St. 9.98 -1.14 8.63 59%
Warney, Jameel 20 Stony Brook 9.77 -3.6 8.5 10%
Barber, Anthony 12 North Carolina St. 10.63 -0.25 8.46 7%

Hield creates almost twelve extra points per 100 trips down the court for Oklahoma (11.83 Offensive Rating). He takes away just over two points per opponent trip down the court per 100 trips (-2.03 Defensive Rating), and with slight adjustments for other factors that changes Oklahoma’s average score margin by 10.58. Do the math, and instead of going 6-2 their last eight games, they would have gone 1-7.

One statistical note: Previously this season we listed the total Value as overall points per 100 trips, but many preferred we go back to making it the point value per game – so everyone’s total value is now 70 percent of the total that was being listed.

If you could pick the 13 most valuable basketball players in the country to fill all the scholarship spots on the “perfect” team above you would expect to enjoy quite a March Madness title. But even the best college players do not always translate into professional contractors—in fact only 8 of the 13 have more than a 10 percent chance of being drafted by an NBA team.

As a freshman, Ben Simmons has a 96 percent chance in the NBA. Even though Hield is the better college player this season, as a senior he is already closer to his peak value as a player and is thus just a 57 percent bet to make it in the NBA.


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