Evan Mobley Takes Center Stage Again

NBA Draft: USC’s Evan Mobley selected third by Cleveland Cavaliers

The 7-footer, out of Rancho Christian High in Temecula, ties O.J. Mayo as the Trojans’ highest-ever draft pick

Adam Grosbard (OC Register)  —  His name just called by NBA commissioner Adam Silver, Evan Mobley – usually so stoic – cracked a wide smile. The 7-footer stood up, and before he could go far, his father Eric began buttoning Mobley’s powder blue jacket.

After getting the parental approval, and few hugs around the table, it was time for Mobley to step up to the stage at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and begin his NBA journey.

Mobley, who in his one year at USC lifted the Trojans to rare heights, was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers third overall in Thursday’s NBA Draft.

“It felt amazing,” Mobley told ABC following his selection. “I can’t even put it in words. Like, I’m really here right now. It’s so crazy.”

At No. 3, Mobley ties O.J. Mayo for the highest draft pick in USC history. The Trojans have now produced first-round picks in three consecutive drafts for the first time since 2007-09.

Mobley, who played his high school basketball at Rancho Christian High in Temecula, came to USC as a McDonald’s All-American. He made an immediate impact for the Trojans, leading the team in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots as a freshman.

For his efforts, Mobley was named the Pac-12’s Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year. He was only the second player in history to win all three awards in a major conference in a single season, joining Anthony Davis of Kentucky.

Mobley thrived in the Pac-12 last season by averaging 16.4 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game for the Trojans. Mobley’s play led to team success, too. The Trojans were percentage points away from their first conference title in decades and made the Elite Eight for the first time since 2001.

After the season-ending loss to Gonzaga, Mobley declared for the draft. At Barclays Center on Thursday, he was surrounded by his parents, USC head coach Andy Enfield and Rancho Christian head coach Ray Barefield as he heard his name called.

In Cleveland, Mobley joins a young core that went 22-50 in the 2020-21 season. The Cavaliers feature guards Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, both former lottery picks themselves, to space the floor around Mobley. The Cavs also traded on Thursday for veteran point guard Ricky Rubio to run the offense.

With a young, fast-paced roster, Mobley believes the Cavs can play an exciting brand of basketball.

“We could definitely shock a lot of teams and get out and run a lot,” he told reporters following his selection.

In the front court, Mobley will pair with 6-foot-11 Jarrett Allen, more of a traditional center who will allow Mobley to play the four and more of the perimeter, where he can take advantage of his ball-handling skills and improving jump shot.

“Jarret Allen is a great player. I definitely feel like I can learn a lot from him and we can do damage in this league,” Mobley told reporters.

An NBA career awaits Mobley, but Thursday night closed a chapter, too. At USC, he was able to play next to his brother, Isaiah, with his father, Eric, on the sidelines as an assistant coach. Now, he’s off to the pros.

But his family will still be by his side, if Thursday was any indication. Eric and Nicole Mobley joined their son for his interview with ABC, his mom by his side and his dad standing behind them.

“It’s definitely going to be an adjustment with him all the way out there, but we’re going to make it work,” Nicole told ABC. “We’re gonna travel, we’re gonna visit, we’re gonna be there for him, whatever he needs. We’re looking forward to what the new city brings.”

ocregister.com

__________

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San Diego Trojan
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San Diego Trojan (@san-diego-trojan)
August 3, 2021 9:22 am

I was watching the Lane Kiffin interview on the Dan Patrick show this morning, and they were discussing the value of paying coaches huge salaries in wake of Nick Saban’s new $10.6 mil a year extension, and whether it’s deserved. Lane, looking quite subdued these days, basically said what we all think, that the financial trickle down impact to the entire university, from the success of the football program, more than justified it. The Alabama board of trustees had no problem adding a ten year extension to a 70 year old. They get it, USC doesn’t. Go big or go… Read more »

Trojan5
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Trojan5 (@trojan5)
August 3, 2021 10:40 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

I agree with you. In addition to being the best coach, he quite possibly is the most impactful. Without Saban there is no ALABAMA & no CLEMSON or OSU. Alabama was like many good/great blue blood program ( IE Texas, SC, MI, GA, etc) in that they were all part of a cyclical football universe. Up for awhile, down awhile and back up again. Saban has destroyed the cyclical and created a world where very few are able to get to the top and stay there. Right now it is ALABAMA, OSU and CLEMSON. Those 3 have the vision to… Read more »

Trojan5
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Trojan5 (@trojan5)
August 3, 2021 11:27 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

I don’t share your optimism that a new AL coach will get a honeymoon period. It Just Means More is real and AL fans expectations are off the charts. Remember when Saban got pissed and called out both fans and the press for their expectations? If they grumble with Nicks results what do you think they are going to do to the new guy? Saban has spoiled AL fans to the point anything less than a NC is a failed season. They forget the Shula years and the medicrotity before Saban showed up. It must be nice to be a… Read more »

Chris
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Chris (@chris)
August 3, 2021 12:35 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

I think we are fast headed, light speed fast, to full on pay for play college football. NIL will just lead to those who aren’t getting better endorsement deals (non skill position) to forcing teams to shell out more bucks for them. Players will soon get a piece of gate a TV revenue. Those teams with best TV contracts and largest revenue streams will be those with the best players. The SEC is way out ahead of this and will stay out ahead with Oklahoma and Texas. You think there are only a few that can win now? Wait until… Read more »

illinoisusc
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illinoisusc (@illinoisusc)
August 2, 2021 6:15 pm

This kid is so frustrating. If he were playing OLB he might have been a top10 pick in a few years. Instead, the Texas drama, the mysterious illness, insisting on playing WR and now the possible crime. Its really sad to see him throw it all away. Hopefully, he did nothing serious but as many have noted the knives will be out at USC. Good chance he transfers but considering his record thus far he’ll probably muck it up again. On the other hand I can just hear the speech by some coach that needs a receiver…….a fine young man… Read more »

LawyerJohn
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LawyerJohn (@lawyerjohn)
August 2, 2021 5:59 pm

Another young athlete has his career derailed by a young woman accusing him of sexual assault. Granted, I am sure a certain percentage of these accusations are bogus, but on average I trust the woman’s account over the athlete’s explanation. Recounting my own teenage experiences of sexual desires raging and how I had to navigate that desire into a civil response, I was never a top-level athlete and so did not take advantage of that status I bet these athletes believe they are above everybody and above the law, and can do anything they want with a woman. That shows… Read more »

Rock2112
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Rock2112 (@rock2112)
August 2, 2021 4:52 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

What a disaster. We’ll never see him again in a USC uniform. This seals our season.

Rock2112
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Rock2112 (@rock2112)
August 2, 2021 5:17 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

And another thing — McCoy was one of the few reasons for optimism this season. The WR group is thin and just got thinner. We are watching every strength of USC football slip away. It is pretty sad to see what this has all become. Either McCoy has decided to throw his career in football away, or he has been wrongly accused (in which case, no matter what happens with his case, we can count on the “USC Office for Equity, Equal Opportunity, and Title IX” to make sure he never sees the field again at USC). Either way, it… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Rock2112
TrojanRJJ
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TrojanRJJ (@trojanrjj)
August 2, 2021 5:32 pm
Reply to  Rock2112

So correct. His SC career is over. If there was enough evidence to file criminally, he stands zero chance with the SC Title IX gestapo. If he had been prosecuted for violence during a protest- no problem. He committed one of the few acts a black male athlete cannot commit. Concerning the 2021 season, that was over before it started. Candidly, his pro career is probably also toast.

Chris
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Chris (@chris)
August 2, 2021 5:51 pm
Reply to  Rock2112

obviously I care about the football program, like everyone here, but the loss of a player is secondary to the sad situation. If he is guilty, I hope she is Ok and for rehabilitation for him. If he is innocent, I hope for a second chance.

as far as the football goes, we are not thin at WR. We have 5 stars on bench (Bryant and Ford) We have 3 really productive transfers coming in. We can absorb a loss in this group.

But it is a sad situation.

TrojanRJJ
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TrojanRJJ (@trojanrjj)
August 2, 2021 6:29 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

Totally agree. I still remember his game as a Trojan, which was his best. He was a major reason SC beat ASU. He caught the amazing “tip pass”. He then recovered the ensuing onside kick. Truly amazing plays. He is now simply part of Trojan lore. His plays saved the 2021 season for Clay.

Terrific Tommy
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Terrific Tommy (@terrific-tommy)
August 2, 2021 7:18 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

If there’s any fairly good news in this scenario for USC football it’s that Bru played a position where we are quite deep. But, be-that-as-it may, good news seems to be missing in action for us over the last decade or so.

Rock2112
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Rock2112 (@rock2112)
August 3, 2021 8:55 am
Reply to  Terrific Tommy

I have heard two people say we are deep at wide receiver. That is not correct. For Harrell’s offense, we really need about 8 highly productive to productive receivers. With departures, injuries, and now arrests, we are left to counting on transfer portal guys to step up and crossing our fingers that there are no more injuries. We’re thinner than you think. McCoy was our best chance to not feel a drop off with Pittman gone.

Rock2112
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Rock2112 (@rock2112)
August 3, 2021 11:22 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

I am not going to prejudge a thing about what McCoy did or did not do. I don’t know anything about what happened. The reports are very hush hush, naturally. But for USC football, it doesn’t matter, the accusation and arrest are enough at USC and we will never see him on the field in a Trojan uniform again. The same thing will happen whether it turns out he’s a monster or it turns out that somebody set him up and falsely accused him. You know, Allen, that DOES happen. There have been instances of women (and men in reverse),… Read more »

UtahTrojan
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UtahTrojan (@utahtrojan)
August 2, 2021 6:20 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

Good bye Bru McCoy. True or not, USC and Title IX do not fair well for a USC football player. To be clear if Bru did this he needs to be gone. But USC has proven in the past they don’t need proof to bury a football player.

ATL D.D.S.
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ATL D.D.S. (@atl-d-d-s)
August 2, 2021 7:41 am

Off topic housekeeping: Has anyone got the problem that when I hit the Home tab for the TDB, it keeps going to the profile page?

John Weld
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John Weld (@johnnynumbers)
August 2, 2021 8:25 am
Reply to  ATL D.D.S.

Thanks for heads up, I will check the situation out and follow up with you.
Can you tell me when it started happening? Does it always happen?

ATL D.D.S.
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ATL D.D.S. (@atl-d-d-s)
August 2, 2021 12:03 pm
Reply to  John Weld

just happened again when i logged in. been going on at least 5 or 6 days.

Golden Trojan
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Golden Trojan (@golden-trojan)
August 2, 2021 4:11 pm
Reply to  John Weld

Happened to me as well.

Trojan5
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Trojan5 (@trojan5)
August 2, 2021 1:40 pm
Reply to  ATL D.D.S.

Happened to me also at 135 pm on Monday August 2

John Weld
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John Weld (@johnnynumbers)
August 2, 2021 3:40 pm
Reply to  Trojan5

Thanks. I am still looking into it.

volunteerTrojan
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volunteerTrojan (@volunteertrojan)
August 2, 2021 4:28 pm
Reply to  ATL D.D.S.

Happened to me several times over weekend. Also just now when I logged in, I could not leave the profile page by clicking any links on the menu. I was able to get here by clicking on one of the comments in the right sidebar.

Terrific Tommy
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Terrific Tommy (@terrific-tommy)
August 1, 2021 11:07 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

Teaming with a bRuin Allen rarely ends well. 😎

TrojanRJJ
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TrojanRJJ (@trojanrjj)
July 31, 2021 8:11 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

Allen, I think it was Chris who commented that we see exactly the same reports every year. We saw exactly the same types of comments about three years ago concerning AA (who was let go). I know you have a feeling that it might be different this year. For me, seeing is believing. So I will wait for the season. What I do know is Helton does not have a clue about how to do this task or how to choose a person who does. Maybe Stiner is the answer. Time will tell.

TrojanRJJ
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TrojanRJJ (@trojanrjj)
July 31, 2021 11:34 am
Reply to  Allen Wallace

In some ways it has been very typical as regards SC: same old Kool Aid from Clay. But that is due entirely to the SC football having been mismanaged. OU and TX clearly had contingency plans in place which were triggered by most likely the NILs and the Supreme Court ruling as well as the long term potential of the Big 12. Does SC management have similar plans in place? I doubt it. Have they actually looked at the long term prospects for football in the Pac? The new Commissioner acknowledged the Pac did not have any football strategic plan… Read more »

Steveg
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Steveg (@steveg)
July 31, 2021 3:30 pm
Reply to  Allen Wallace

The Drake is without a doubt one of the best defensive players in the nation. I can see that with Foreman and he on the same side they are going to be a monumental force to deal with. If the new strength coach is any better at all we will see improvements in a lot of places. Game time with show us the truth.

Chris
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Chris (@chris)
July 30, 2021 2:33 pm

I think he is going to be great. Not many guys out there with his size, athleticism, and skill.