Drew Peterson will likely be the No. 1 option for USC basketball next year, and he's going to be crucial to the success of the Trojans. He should want that. He came back to make sure he plays in the NBA someday, and to hopefully even rack up more draft stock in another season. Peterson was a First-Team All-Pac 12 selection last season, but still has room for improvement.
Peterson is expected to contend for Pac-12 Player of the Year in the 2022-2023 season, and if he improves in the top three areas he needs to, will surely place right in the thick of that conversation. Peterson has improved as a player since transferring over from Rice, especially when factoring in the fact that he's been playing against much tougher competition.
There's still another level he can get to in his game this year, however, and if he hits it the Trojans have the chance to get a couple of rounds further from where they got this year in the NCAA Tournament. The way for him to be the player SC wants to see is to improve in these three key areas.
No. 3 goal for USC Basketball's Drew Peterson next season: Clamp down on defense
Drew Peterson was not a bad defensive player for USC basketball last season, but defense is still an area where he can improve on in the 2022-2023 season. If he wants to really improve his draft stock, improving his game on D is where he can do that for certain.
Last year, Peterson's defensive rating was 98.5. That's not bad, but not as good as his 97 rating the season before, and north of USC's overall 97.1 rating this season. If he wants to stick out this season, he'll need to stick out defensively on what could be another very good team defensively.
It would also be huge if he could force some more turnovers. He's only stolen 0.6 and 0.7 possessions in each of his seasons at USC, respectively. Either that, or he could work on using his 6-8 frame as a guard(!) to swat some shots away. He had a career-high 0.8 blocks per game last year, and has enough height to keep working in that department.