Name: Kiel Turpin
Eligibility: (RS) Senior
Weight: 240 lbs
Twitter Handle: @Big_Turp (protected account, good luck with that one)
2012-13 Season Stats: 5.4 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 1.3 BPG, .51 FG %
Prognostication: If Kiel Turpin’s game matched his size, we’d be talking about a young man who was an NBA draft pick two to three years ago. Instead, the fifth year senior who transferred from Lincoln College (IL) to Florida State back in 2011 is hoping to be the Seminoles starting center for the 2013-14 season. Again, if Turpin were a better player he’d be a little more well known around the ACC, but as a starter in 25 of the 34 games he played in last season, Turpin still finished eighth in the ACC in blocked shots (1.3 per game). If Turpin’s made any strides on his low post game, he and senior Okaro White could team to give the ‘Noles one of the better front courts in the conference, but odds are, he hasn’t.
Strengths: Turpin isn’t your typical college seven-footer. Sure, he has his doofy moments, but he doesn’t lack skills. A late bloomer (he was still 6’5″ before his senior year of high school), Turpin has more of a guards skill set offensively speaking, where he plays with comfort further from the basket. Fortunately for Leonard Hamilton, Turpin has displayed different habits on the defensive end, where he contests shots as well as any big in the ACC.
Weaknesses: Despite having a clear height/length advantage over the glaring majority of his peers, Turpin isn’t exactly Kevin Love on the boards. While his long arms really help alter shots on defense, his lanky frame got pushed around for the most part in his first season suiting up for the ‘Noles. Turpin also looked vulnerable playing against more physical front courts last season, having found himself in foul trouble when FSU took on rivals like Maryland, Miami, and North Carolina State.
Bro, sick genes: Kiel is the son of the late, great Mel Turpin. A former All-American basketball player at Kentucky, Mel was a two-time All-SEC First Team pick (1982, 1983) – he led the SEC in scoring in 1984 (15.2 ppg) – and was drafted sixth overall by the Washington Bullets in the 1984 NBA Draft.
If you’re interested in College Basketball snobs who constantly complain about the Knicks, Jay-Z, and the state of rap music, follow Jared on twitter at @JMintzHoops