Name: Ian Miller
Weight: 198 lbs
Twitter Handle: N/A
2012-13 Season Stats: 5.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.9 apg
Prognostication: A bone bruise in his right foot hampered Ian Miller’s junior season, but make no mistake about it, he’s a leading candidate to start for Leonard Hamilton this season. A scoring point guard with feisty hands on defense, it was hard to avoid comparisons to Toney Douglas in Tallahassee throughout Miller’s first two seasons, where he came off the bench to average 10.3 points per game as a sophomore. The foot injury literally and figuratively slowed Miller down considerably last year, as his speed and quickness helped him get almost any shot he wanted when he was healthy. Miller’s ability to think like a scorer should create for good balance in the backcourt with him and sophomore Devon Bookert, not to mention give the ‘Noles one of the better defensive back courts in the ACC.
Strengths: Miller is as good of a two-way combo guard as it gets in college basketball. Again, the third year player never quite got acclimated last season, but he scored 15 or more points eight times as a sophomore, and that was strictly in a bench role. Despite being hurt, Miller looked like the guard most capable of running the offense, as he led the team in assists through the first half of the season. This year, I anticipate seeing more of the scorer than the facilitator, as Hamilton has to be praying for someone other than Okaro White to emerge as a legitimate scoring threat this season.
Weaknesses: For what it’s worth, we haven’t seen Ian Miller recover from the foot injury that really derailed him for his entire junior season. A proven role player in the conference, we have to see if Miller can come back strong and lead this undermanned (I’m sorry, guilty until proven innocent for me this season) Seminoles team the way they’ll desperately need him to. Reason for pessimism: Miller’s assist-to-turnover ratio over his first three seasons has been embarrassingly low, and as I keep alluding to, he’s probably going to have more responsibility than he’s ever had as a senior.
Reason for Ian Miller optimism: It shouldn’t be too difficult to improve on his 33% shooting from the field last season.
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