Basketball Previews: Meet Patrick Heckmann
When you are building a team you plan carefully, you scout and recruit a certain type of player and you find guys who can play at the ACC level. But as with the best plans, sometimes you need a little luck. It seems like Steve Donahue lucked out by finding Patrick Heckmann after he had put his first full class together.
Heckmann isn't necessarily your prototypical European player. His outside shooting is inconsistent. He also likes to drive to the basket and uses his athleticism. Heckmann has played at a lower level club in Germany (ho hum) but also played well for the German national team (great news). It was on the national team where Heckmann started gaining U.S. attention. Heckmann was one of the lone brightspots of he recent U-20 season.
Heckmann came to the U.S. to prove himself and because he likes the American style of play. BC became a fit because of our offensive style of play and the chance to play right away.
Like Clifford, there has been good "buzz" on Heckmann since he's been on campus. In addition to his surprising athleticism, he's supposedly got good handle and may be able to spend some minutes at the point.
The question is how quickly he can adapt to BC and the ACC style of play. Europeans are often tagged as "soft." Heckmann has the athleticism and body to drive through contact and defend. Also, BC will need him to sharpen his 3-point shooting. If he can't convert those 3s, teams will just play off of him and not let him drive.
I think Heckmann will have a short but memorable career at BC. If he really is a star in the making, I think he'll be playing professionally in Europe or the NBA within two years.
I know he bypassed pro ball in Europe to test himself and get a degree, but I think the temptation will be too much. But if Donahue can get two years out of him and he is a star, BC will have been served well by this last second signee.