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Basketball Recruiting

Scout's Take: Oregon commit Nate Bittle

September 15, 2020
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This afternoon, Nate Bittle told Stockrisers.com that he will be committing to the Oregon Ducks. We will take a look at what exactly the ‘Unicorn’ will bring to the Pac-12 and the Oregon program.

Bittle is a 6-foot-10 forward that has been seen as a special prospect according to many. He was Oregon’s top-rated player in the state and that was a position he held for years up until now due to his transfer to Prolific Prep. He’s a multiple time USA Basketball invitee, Steph Curry Select participant, and played on the UAA circuit alongside future pros Josh Green and Nico Mannion.

His AAU director Ryan Silver calls Bittle ‘The Unicorn’ and we break down his game this afternoon post-commitment to Oregon.

What Does Bittle Bring To The Oregon System?

You take a look at Bittle and obviously you see the lanky frame and long wing-span so you immediately think this guy is a paint player and premier shot blocker. Both of those aren’t wrong but the most intriguing side of Bittle’s game for me is without a doubt his offense. You see the play above, Bittle with an excellent made three-pointer. 

Bittle took the time this season to average nearly 22 points per game at Crater High School (Ore.) where he instantly made the program a dominant one since he enrolled for his freshman year. He was able to score on all three levels and it is evident. When he touches the ball, something good is going to happen. 

He will also use his size to draw the defense on him which will then leave his teammates open and he won’t shy away from threading the needle or making plays as long as he conributes to his team. 

Another key part of his offensive game that’s effective is his offensive rebounding. He does average double-digit rebounds per game but a lot of those are on the offensive end. Oregon will instantly see rebounding numbers rise with Bittle on the floor but also will see more second chance points on the board.

The Obvious

His shot blocking is the obvious strong point in his skillset. Bittle averaged three blocks per game last season along with one steal, he’s a major presence at 6-foot-10 on the defensive end. He also doesn’t lack with his perimter defense, with his astonishing wing-span and ability to run the floor, he’s also a defender that can play you full court or around the perimeter.

Why this will benefit the Ducks? They didn’t have one member of their roster averaging over 0.8 blocks this past season. I think that’s a number that Bittle will surpass once he enrolls in Eugene. The Ducks could instantly have themselves a Pac-12 defensive player of the year on their hands.

Area Of Improvement

As much as you see positives with Nate Bittle, like every player, he also has areas in which he needs to improve in. When seeing him play you notice his high basketball IQ but entering college one main area he must perfect is his decision making. This is where i believe his move to Prolific Prep comes in, he will be competing on a national schedule for his senior year and have to go against some of the top-rated forwards in the country.

You see some of his decision making now, it may be right at this point but how will these things translate to the next level. If he faces a seven-footer in the Pac-12 how will he stand his ground. He is also an improving shooter, the Ducks have had success with their bigs offensively over the past few years and I think they will look to use him as a scoring/rebound weapon in Dana Altman’s system.

 

 

 

 
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