2019 Draft Workouts: Admiral Schofield

June 7, 2019 - Tennessee guard Admiral Schofield speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.

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2019 Draft Workouts: Admiral Schofield

June 7, 2019 - Tennessee guard Admiral Schofield speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  02:21

2019 Draft Workouts: Miye Oni

June 6, 2019 - Yale guard Miye Oni speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  02:18

2019 Draft Workouts: Jon Elmore

June 7, 2019 - Marshall guard Jon Elmore speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  01:52

2019 Draft Workout: Ignas Brazdeikis

June 7, 2019 - Michigan forward Ignas Brazdeikis speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  01:49

2019 Draft Workouts: Aric Holman

June 7, 2019 - MIssissippi State forward Aric Holman speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  01:51

2019 Draft Workouts: Luke Maye

June 7, 2019 - North Carolina forward Luke Maye speaks with Pacers.com's Wheat Hotchkiss following his pre-draft workout with the Pacers at the St. Vincent Center.
Jun 7, 2019  |  01:31

Pacers Looking to Add an Admiral?

Tennessee's Admiral Schofield Headlines Friday's Pre-Draft Workout
by Wheat Hotchkiss
Pacers.com Writer/Editor

Heading into his senior season at the University of Tennessee, Admiral Schofield set a personal goal. By the end of his college career, Schofield wanted to be one of Rick Barnes' favorite players he ever coached.

It was a lofty goal considering Barnes has coached a number of great players over his career. In nearly two decades at the University of Texas, Barnes sent numerous players to the NBA, a list that includes superstars like Kevin Durant and LaMarcus Aldridge, current Pacers Myles Turner and Cory Joseph, and former Pacers T.J. Ford and D.J. Augustin.

Schofield will almost assuredly play in the NBA next season after a standout college career, where he helped Barnes rebuild the Volunteer basketball program into a national power.

The 6-5, 241-pound wing is the younger brother of O'Brien Schofield, a former NFL linebacker who won a Super Bowl with the Seahawks, and looks like he could have easily followed in his brother's footsteps on the gridiron. Instead, Admiral Schofield excelled on the hardwood, averaging 16.5 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game as a junior, earning first-team All-SEC and honorable mention All-America honors, and leading Tennessee to the Sweet 16.

Schofield was a three-star recruit out of Zion, Ill. when he originally committed to Tennessee to play for head coach Donnie Tyndall, but Tyndall was fired after the NCAA uncovered violations he had committed at his previous stop at Southern Miss. After Barnes was named the new coach, Schofield opted to stay with the Vols.

Over the next four years, the program and Schofield both underwent a dramatic transformation. Tennessee went 15-19 and 16-16 in Schofield's first two seasons before breaking through his junior season, when the Vols were 26-9 and shared the SEC regular season championship with Auburn. They were even better last season, when they went 31-6 and held the number one ranking in the country for four weeks.

Schofield was one of the catalysts for Tennessee's improvement. He moved to the wing after playing more in the post earlier in his career and developed into a consistent scorer from all three levels. After shooting just 30.1 percent from 3-point range as a freshman, Schofield improved his percentage every year, knocking down 41.8 percent of outside shots as a senior. Together with consensus first-team All-American Grant Williams, he helped form one of the best one-two punches in the nation.

2019 DRAFT CENTRAL: Complete Coverage at Pacers.com/Draft »

Over the course of his career, Schofield seemed to have a knack for elevating his game at the right moments. He spurred Tennessee's win over top-ranked Gonzaga in the Jerry Colangelo Classic in Phoenix, scoring 25 of his 30 points in the second half and knocking down six 3-pointers. When 15th-seeded Colgate was threatening to upset the Vols in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, it was Schofield who came to the rescue, drilling three straight 3-pointers in the closing minutes to seal the victory.

"I'm a winner," Schofield said after Friday's pre-draft workout with the Pacers. "I compete to win and do little things to win. I'm just coming out and focusing on what I can do to contribute to winning.

"I keep talking about winning, winning, winning. That's what I want to do."

The Pacers will be looking to bolster their depth on the wing this offseason. Victor Oladipo is coming back from a major injury, Tyreke Evans won't be back, and both Bojan Bogdanovic and Wesley Matthews are entering free agency.

Schofield could provide help on the wing, with his shooting, explosive finishing ability, and hard-nosed defense. He also would seemingly be an ideal fit in a locker room full of high character, team-oriented players.

The son of a retired US Navy Chief (Schofield was actually born in London while his father was stationed overseas), Schofield's natural leadership qualities shone through in college.

In Tennessee's overtime victory over Iowa in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in March, Schofield was on the bench with four fouls when overtime started. When he saw fellow senior Kyle Alexander playing well in his stead, Schofield told Barnes to leave him on the bench and ride the hot hand.

"The Pacers are right in the mix, right on the verge of getting over the hump and I would love to be a part of that and help them get over the top," Schofield said. "Coming right in and learning from guys like Vic, Thaddeus (Young), and those guys and just learning and trying to contribute as best as I can with my shooting ability, defensive ability, physicality, and understanding the game."

With his attitude alone, Schofield would seemingly become a quick favorite of whatever NBA coach he ends up playing for. He certainly shared a special bond with Barnes, who got emotional after the win over Gonzaga reflecting on all the hard work Schofield had put in up to that point.

Does Schofield think he did enough to achieve his preseason goal of becoming one of Barnes' favorite players ever?

"I think so," he said Friday. "With the special year that we had and the relationships that we built, the locker room that we had and me being the head of that...I think I'm definitely in that category."

Miye Oni

Yale guard Miye Oni's two-way ability has him on NBA teams' radars. (Photo Credit: @Pacers)

From the Ivy League to the NBA: Oni Ready to Make the Jump

Another intriguing prospect at Friday's workout was Miye Oni, a 6-6 guard from Yale. Oni was the Ivy League Player of the Year as a junior, averaging 17.1 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 3.6 assists and shooting 37.1 percent from 3-point range.

While casual fans might not have followed the Ivy League too closely, Oni is definitely on NBA scout's radars. He turned pro a year early and was invited to the NBA Draft Combine, where he measured out well with a 6-11 wingspan and played well in five-on-five action, amassing 26 points and going 7-for-14 from beyond the arc in a pair of scrimmages.

"I think I'm a pretty high-energy player," Oni said. "I try to be unselfish, try to shoot the ball, play-make, and just try to do a little bit of everything on the court.

"I always try to play the game the right way. So if I'm not scoring at a high level, I'm trying to do something. I'm assisting, blocking shots, maybe dive on the floor for loose balls...trying to do something positive to help my team win."

The combine and workouts have offered teams an extended look at how Oni stacks up against high-level competition. He was inconsistent in limited opportunities in college, tallying 29 points on 10-of-15 shooting in an early-season victory over Miami but struggling mightily in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against LSU, when he went 2-for-16 from the field and 1-for-10 from 3-point range.

Oni nearly didn't even go to Yale. He had no Division I offers heading into his senior year and originally planned to attended Division III Williams College. Just a few years later, he could potentially hear his name called on draft night, with many mock drafts projecting him to go in the middle of the second round.

"It's been crazy," Oni said. "I always had the goal to make it to the NBA. Even if I went Division III, I was going to try to find some way...I knew there were different paths for everyone and I was just going to keep working hard until I could find my way into the league."

Jon Elmore

Marshall guard Jon Elmore amassed 2,638 points over his college career. (Photo Credit: @Pacers)

Elmore Has Experience with NBA-Style Offense

Fewer players compiled a better statistical resume in college than Marshall guard Jon Elmore. The 6-3 guard averaged 19.8 points and 5.9 assists over his four years with the Thundering Herd.

Elmore finished his college career with 2,638 points. His father, Gay, scored 2,423 for VMI from 1983-87. Late in Jon's senior season, they passed Dell and Stephen Curry for the most points in Division I history by a father-son duo.

"I kind of mess with him all the time and tell him he has two-fifths of it," the younger Elmore joked on Friday. "I outscored him a little bit."

While Elmore won't wow scouts with his athleticism, he does a have a leg up in the pre-draft process thanks to the system he played in in college. Marshall coach Dan D'Antoni is the older brother of Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni. The elder D'Antoni was an assistant on his brother's staff with the Suns, Knicks, and Lakers before taking the Marshall job.

While Houston has set a new NBA record each of the past three seasons for 3-point attempts, Elmore and Marshall have run the same offense at the college level. That experience has reaffirmed Elmore's confidence in his own abilities as he works out for NBA teams.

"Coach D'Antoni needed me to score a lot, but then he needed me to facilitate in college as well," he said. "I've always felt my knack and attribute is to set guys up and make the guys around me better. I just try to put as much pressure on the defense as I can and put my guys in advantageous situations."

Aric Holman, Luke Maye

Big men Aric Holman (left) and Luke Maye (right) also participated in Friday's workout. (Photo Credit: @Pacers)

Big Men Holman, Maye Trying to Find Niche at Next Level

The final two participants at Friday's workout (aside from Michigan's Ignas Brazdeikis, who Pacers.com's Mark Montieth profiled here) were big men Aric Holman (Mississippi State) and Luke Maye (North Carolina).

Holman's strengths are his shot-blocking ability (he averaged between 1.6 and 2 blocks per game in each of his final three college seasons) and his ability to stretch the floor defensively. While he struggled from 3-point range in limited attempts as a freshman and sophomore, Holman converted 44 percent of his 85 3-point attempts as a junior and posted a .429 3-point percentage on 105 attempts as a senior. Playing against Schofield and Tennessee in the SEC Tournament, Holman scored 20 points and went a perfect 5-for-5 from beyond the arc.

Holman's skillset would seemingly allow him to fit the mold of the modern NBA big man, who is now expected to stretch the floor on offense while still providing rim protection on the other end.

"Once I've seen that (trend towards) that type of player, I felt like I had to adapt," Holman said on Friday. "I felt like that's my only way that I'll be able to reach my dream in the NBA."

To succeed at the next level, Holman will need to add muscle to his skinny frame (he's listed at 225 pounds, more than 15 pounds lighter than the much shorter Schofield).

Maye is already a household name to college basketball fans.

The former walk-on burst onto the scene as a sophomore during the NCAA Tournament. Coming off the bench, Maye tallied 16 points and 12 rebounds in the Sweet 16, then had 17 points and the game-winning jumper with 0.3 seconds left in an Elite Eight victory over Kentucky. He was named the Most Outstanding Player of the South Regional and helped North Carolina capture a national championship a week later.

That performance seemed to springboard Maye into his junior season, when he emerged as one of the best players in the country. Maye averaged 16.9 points and 10.1 rebounds while shooting 48.6 percent from the field and 43.1 percent from 3-point range in the 2017-18 season, when he was voted the ACC's Most Improved Player and named a third-team All-American by the Associated Press.

Maye's production dipped as a senior, including a curious drop in 3-point percentage, which plummeted to .288.

His limited athleticism may prevent him from being drafted, but Maye's legacy is secure to the Tar Heel faithful.

"Winning a national championship, it's just something that not a lot of guys get to accomplish," he said. "...We'll have that for life. That bond will never be broken with that team."

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