Will Branden Carlson have a Bogut/Poeltl-esque jump?

He’s going to be a sophomore this season. In both of their freshman years, Bogut and Poeltl showed a lot of promise, just like Carlson did in his freshman season. In their sophomore years, Andrew and Jakob BOTH dramatically improved their games, and they both went onto become star players and eventually NBA Lottery Picks (Bogut went #1 overall in 2005 and Poeltl went #9 overall in 2016). Bogut won National Player of the Year in 2005, while Poeltl was Pac-12 Player of the Year and a consensus 2nd-team All-American in 2016. Is Branden Carlson poised for that type of jump this season?

He definitely could make that kind of jump. I’m not sure how much of an NBA prospect he is, he doesn’t have a big frame really, and isn’t super athletic… but he certainly has the potential to develop into a really good stretch 5 for us, with the added bonus that he would be every bit as good on the inside. If he can improve his 3 pt numbers a bit, he’ll be an all pac12 player.

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I think he is in for a big jump in his sophomore year; especially since he will now be rid of the mission legs.

Personally, Id like to see him get a bit better on the boards (he grabbed almost 1 board for every 5 minutes played; id like to see that closer to 4 minutes). He has a chance to go to the league if he can keep improving on that outside shot and get stronger. Probably not after this year, but i could see him going after his junior year.


I think he’ll make a nice jump this coming season. To compare him to 2 NBA lottery picks would be a very high jump indeed, and I think not very realistic. I think Carlson will go from 4 rebs, 7 pts, and 1.4 blocks per game, to 8 rebs, 13 pts, and 2.2 blocks a game average. Most of that increase will just come from increased minutes, but also not starting the year just coming off a mission, and some improvement in skill should all help him hit these numbers.
Selfishly, I hope he doesn’t improve too much more than that. I love seeing Utes in the NBA, but if we can keep him for at least his Jr. year this team could be something special.

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Carlson lacks the frame/weight/strength of Peoltl and Bogut. Which is a big part of competing against NBA players. But, I think he is already quicker, more athletic, and has more bounce than either of these 2 former Utes ever had in college, and perhaps even including their professional careers. I also think he has better range on his jump shot. Jakob and Andrew never really had the possibility of being a stretch 4 or 5. I think Carlson does. If his skill set continues to improve, I think his potential to make the NBA will be determined by how much weight/strength he can gain, and with the added weight, can he maintain his explosiveness.
I’m hoping he IS an NBA guy, but I want him in a Ute jersey for at least 2 more years.


You are right on outside shooting, but you are very wrong on explosiveness. Both Bogut and Poeltl were extremely “bouncy.” That was a huge part of the success of each player. It’s easy to forget that when seeing Bogut late in his career after 1,000 huge injuries and surgeries.

Yeah, poeltl is an excellent leaper. He played volleyball. IIRC his vertical was well over 30” at one point.

I just think Carlson is going to end up being the wrong kind of tweener for the NBA. He isn’t athletic enough to make up for his lack of bulk. Not athletic enough to guard 4s… not big enough to guard 5s in the NBA. He would need to become the best 3pt shooter on our team to be a legitimate nba prospect.

He’ll be a VERY good college player, but I don’t see his game (slow skinny big man that shoots pretty well) translating well to the NBA.

Poeltl was much bigger and probably a better athlete and he is a marginal nba player. If poeltl had carlsons shooing touch he would be a solid starter.

[quote=“sancho, post:6, topic:4038”]

You are right on outside shooting, but you are very wrong on explosiveness. Both Bogut and Poeltl were extremely “bouncy.”

Bogut measured 33.5 on the vertical jump at the combine. Poeltl didn’t test, but was rumored to be around 35-36". Carlson is in the Peoltl range. There is a video on twitter from right off his mission “head bumping” the rim. Strength and weight are his areas of most needed improvement.

well, vertical is one thing, but how is his lateral quickness? I don’t really see him as a 5 in the NBA to be honest. It was really hard to gauge his quickness because TBH he really didn’t play all that much as a freshman. What I mean by that is, he was CONSTANTLY in foul trouble so we never really got to see him play extended minutes in a quality game. It’s possible that he is quick enough to stay in front of NBA 4s, but I seriously doubt it.

I’m undecided on whether Carlson is more athletic. He seems to get off the floor quicker… but that could be because he’s 40+ lbs lighter. In the games later in the season where he had 5+ blocks, he was a serious weakside menace.

If he can put on 40 and keep the bounce, and find a consistent J, I think he could be a Dwight Dedmon type player, ie, be in a rotation. 7-footers with bounce and a jumper are getting to be a dime a dozen.

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yeah, he needs to have lateral quickness and ball handling skills to really be desirable in the NBA