Vols basketball star Rickea Jackson projected as top-three WNBA draft pick  over Iowa star Caitlin Clark after…

ESPN has mocked the WNBA Draft twice, with Lady Vols basketball star Rickea Jackson landing at No. 3 and 4 in each mock draft. ESPN’s Michael Voepel made the predictions and added that Jackson would be an elite scorer and defensive player for any team that drafts her.

To no one’s surprise, Caitlin Clark is projected to be the No. 1 overall pick for the Indiana Fever. Stanford’s Cameron Brink has been projected to go No. 2 overall in both mock drafts, landing with the Los Angeles Sparks. After that, Voepel swaps the No. 3 and No. 4 picks between Jackson and South Carolina Center Kamilla Cardoso.

Cardoso’s size alone moves her up the draft board to a lottery pick. Voepel defended his decision to move Cardoso to No. 3 over Jackson due to her scoring efficiency and ability to control the boards.

Jackson, on the other hand, seems like she could be a major piece to any team winning a title or simply turning the franchise around. Voepel believes she could be a star in the WNBA because of her ability to shoot three-pointers consistently and efficiently while being a strong defensive presence in the paint.

“It’s not out of the question Jackson could go at No. 2,” Voepel wrote in his initial mock draft with Jackson at No. 3. But if she goes third, she could be an important piece of the Sky’s rebuilding process. New coach Teresa Weatherspoon has a lot of work ahead in trying to reestablish Chicago as a competitive team.

“Jackson, who spent her last two collegiate seasons as Tennessee’s top player, should expand her game even more as a scorer in the WNBA. Long, quick and strong wing-type players who can guard multiple positions are very valuable in the league, and Jackson can fill that role.”

In Voepel’s second mock draft, he seemed to be just as high on Jackson, but still moved Cardoso above Jackson.

“Jackson was Tennessee’s star the past two seasons and could be a boost to the Sparks with her scoring ability,” Voepel said in his second mock draft. “She made a career-high 22 3-pointers this season, which is a good sign for her continued progress as she enters the WNBA. She also should be a top-notch defensive player for Los Angeles coach Curt Miller.”

Although Jackson is a forward and Cardoso is a center, Jackson has proven to be willing and able to shoot and score from anywhere on the court. Last year as a senior, she averaged 20.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 2.3 assists. She also shot 48.5% from the field and 33.8% from three. Cardoso is a defensive-first center, and her shot chart looks a lot like Purdue’s Zach Edey’s.Next. Kim Caldwell is the culture builder Lady Vols basketball needs. Kim Caldwell is the culture builder Lady Vols basketball needs. dark

This year’s WNBA Draft will take place on Monday, April 15, at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York City. You can watch the draft on ESPN at 7:30 PM ET when we see the future of the WNBA join the league and see where Jackson and others will spend the first years of their professional career.

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