Of Duquesne’s incoming transfers for the current season, one name intrigued me more than the rest. Marcus Weathers started eleven games his freshman year for a bad Miami (OH)Redhawks team and formed a stat stuffing duo with his brother Michael, now at Oklahoma St. He had a very polished year for a first year player leading the team in offensive efficiency and total rebounding percentage. He also finished fourth in defensive efficiency. If you like advanced numbers as much as I do, Weathers jumped off the paper.
Weathers hasn’t exactly rekindled his magic in first three games with the Dukes. By no stretch of the imagination has he been bad, but he doesn’t feel like he’s gotten himself going yet either. He did go for eight points and eight rebounds in the win against Radford, his best performance so far.
What He Does Well
Weathers is strong dude and a physical player. When he wants to move opponents, they move. He is a good rebounder who puts himself into position to get boards at both ends. He can score in a variety of ways and he draws contact very well around the basket even if he doesn’t always get the fouls called his way. He has the ability to set up the perimeter offense with inside out passes and he takes care of the basketball quite well for an underclassman, hybrid forward. In terms of head height, Weathers is a touch small for a four, but I haven’t noticed him look glaringly mismatched defending anyone on the court so far.
Opportunities for Growth
It’s not unusual for transfers to need some time to shake off the rust after a year away from competitive basketball. Sometimes, it take the entire year. While Weathers has made positive contributions in each Duquesne win, he hasn’t been nearly as efficient as his freshman self. He needs to finished more around the hoop and use his strength to force in shots with opponents hanging on him. He needs to sell the contact better to get to the free thrown line with greater regularity.
When it comes to slightly undersized forwards who have had success in the Atlantic 10, Kendall Pollard stands out in recent years. His body type is almost identical to Weathers and their playing style is similar as well. I think eventually, we’ll see more jump shots from Weathers, but for now, they fit neatly into the same archetype of the shorter than the book suggests post focused power forward. I have no clue if Weathers will be as good as Pollard by his senior year especially on defense, but I do think the bones are there.
Weathers hasn’t made the first impression I was expecting, but he has the good excuse of not playing competitively for well over a year. Thanks to a solid sample size of playing time at Miami, he’s also not nearly as blank of a slate as some of the other transfers. We have’t seen star power from Weathers yet, but his first impression in Duquesne uniform doesn’t change that I believe he can deliver big things over his career