De'Anthony Melton wound up sitting out his entire sophomore season as USC investigated his eligibility after his inclusion in the FBI’s report detailing corruption in college basketball (a close family friend was linked to the bribery scandal). He ended up withdrawing in February to prepare for the draft. With all that in the rearview, Melton and his strong freshman season remain of significant interest to NBA teams.
The Crossover’s Front Office breaks down Melton’s strengths, weaknesses, NBA comparison and more in its in-depth scouting report.
De’Anthony Melton, G, USC | Sophomore
Height: 6'3" | Weight: 190 | DOB: 5/28/98 (19)
Stats (2016–17): 8.3 PPG, 3.5 APG, 1.9 SPG
• High-energy player and athlete. Likes to play in transition, where he has a solid playmaking feel. Great foot speed getting up and down the floor.
• Rangy defender with a good sense of anticipation. Averaged 2.6 steals and 1.4 blocks per-36 as a freshman. Measured with a 6’8” wingspan. Can defend either guard position given his length. Makes plays on the ball.
• Makes good decisions as a pick-and-roll passer (1.079 points per possession). May have some untapped ability to initiate offense.
• Shooting form leaves some room for optimism.
• Shot just 28.4% from three as a freshman and made just 28% of all jumpers (though he shot 70% from the foul line). Attempted more than three three-pointers in just five of 36 games.
• Offensive efficiency was just average. Can finish easy baskets but lacks a degree of polish. May struggle to consistently generate good looks for himself.
• Decent feel for passing (1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio) but not a pure point guard. Spent most of his time playing off of Jordan McLaughlin. May need to be paired with a more offensive-minded backcourt partner to maximize his strengths.
Comparison: Iman Shumpert
Despite sitting out a year, Melton has a number of positive traits that profile into a defensive-oriented backcourt role and plenty of room to build on his freshman season.