Clemson returns four starters from a team that reached the NIT Finals a season ago, so why aren't Cliff Hammonds and the Tigers a part of the Rivals.com Top 64 Countdown? Andrew Skwara answers that question and more about the ACC in this week's hoops mailbag.[details]
Strengths: Hardin has an excellent combination of size, length, and athleticism for a player his size. He is a strong finisher around the rim when he gets the ball there, often throwing down monstrous dunks. He has also shown flashes of a mid-range jumper and a left-handed jump-hook in the paint. He has a lot of potential as a shot-blocker with his physical tools, and is already a good rebounder at the college level.
Weaknesses: Hardin is still very underdeveloped in terms of his skill set, not possessing any real go-to moves on the offensive en. He finishes mostly on putbacks and open lay-ups or jams. His assertiveness is also questionable, and he doesn't have great hands. He's lacking in fundamentals and awareness on the defensive end and on the glass. He is definitely more of a project player right now.
Outlook: Hardin should be a first rounder if he remains in the draft, due almost solely to his intriguing physical tools. He will likely need a few years of developing before he can really contribute at an NBA level, and improved work on his fundamentals will be key to his future. Hardin missed the vast majority of his junior season with a foot injury, and would probably be best off going back to school for another year.
DraftExpress covers the NBA Draft for Rivals.com. Their work can also be found at Complete Bio]