Oregon Women's Basketball

Impact: Taylor Mikesell

May 18, 2020
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On Saturday morning, Oregon women’s basketball landed a huge transfer in guard Taylor Mikesell.

The sharpshooter from Maryland will be a huge addition. She’ll petition to be immediately eligible for her junior and senior seasons, but whenever she can play, she will instantly become one of the team's best three-point shooters.

In her freshman year with the Big Ten champs, Mikesell averaged 13.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.3 assists. The conference's freshman of the year shot an incredible 41.1% from behind the arc and led the nation in three-pointers made.

As a sophomore, Mikesell averaged 11.2 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. And her three-point percentage actually rose to a staggering 42.5%.

Oregon is moving into a new era of women's basketball, one without Sabrina Ionescu, Ruthy Hebard and Satou Sabally. However, that isn’t stopping Kelly Graves, who’s leaving no stone unturned to bring top talent into Eugene.

Graves has crushed recruiting, landing five 5-stars in the 2020 class. Now, he brings in arguably one of the best shooters in the country.

Mikesell is a fantastic player who should fit in seamlessly with the Ducks. Having a spot-up shooter as effective as Mikesell forces teams to play tight defense on her. If her defender  sags off, you just set a pick over the top or have her do a quick catch and shoot from deep. On the other hand, if the team is face-guarding her and denying the ball, it opens up the court for the other players to attack the rim and get a good look.

There are good players in college basketball, and then there are weapons that change the dynamic of a game. Mikesell is the latter. Like Erin Boley, she may not score in volume every game, but just having that threat will be enough to alter games.

Mikesell is a fantastic fit next to a ball-dominant point guard. While she can bring the ball up and run the offense, I would expect for her to essentially be the shooting guard.

Graves runs a positionless system at times, so I would expect to see Mikesell tasked with ball-handling duties at times. However, she’s most effective in an off-ball situation. She’s great at catching and shooting, as well as creating a three off the dribble if need be.

With posts Sedona Prince and Nyara Sabally poised to play big minutes for Oregon, I can only imagine how often we’ll see one of them screen Mikesell’s defender before she makes her way behind the arc for a wide-open shot.

Like Prince and Minyon Moore, Mikesell is yet another highly coveted transfer that elected to join Oregon. In addition to the incoming freshmen, it means Graves' program should be highly successful for the foreseeable future.

In other words, Mikesell is another great player who could help this team finally reach the pinnacle  of college basketball.

 
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