ORLANDO, Fla. — When Devyn Marble went to Iowa and Victor Oladipo went to Indiana, their respective schools were bringing up the rear of the Big Ten.
Having attained success on both team and individual levels in college, the two of them hope that can carry over in the NBA as teammates with the Orlando Magic.
Oladipo already has the benefit of a full season under his belt and the job security that came with being the No. 2 pick in 2013. Marble’s future isn’t quite so certain after lasting until near the end of the second round two weeks ago, although his outside shooting touch and knack for getting into passing lanes on defense have been noticeable during the Orlando Pro Summer League.
"I’m loving it," Marble said Tuesday after he had seven points in 20 minutes off the bench in the Magic’s 80-73 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies. "I finally can be with somebody who shows the same interest as far as competing and really getting after it. We’ve been through a lot of battles against one another, so now we want to take that attitude toward other people."
Oladipo was back in action after sitting out a victory Monday over the Houston Rockets. Though he connected twice from 3-point range, the game was largely one to forget for him and everyone on the Magic after the first quarter.
"It seemed like we couldn’t get into our sets today," he said. "We were forgetting plays, making little mental mistakes."
Marble hit a 3-pointer in the first quarter off an assist from first-round pick Elfrid Payton. He’s now 3 of 8 from that distance through three games and is second on the Magic to Oladipo in scoring despite his somewhat limited role.
Marble, who describes himself as "6-7 with a 6-9 wingspan," has been used primarily at small forward since arriving in Orlando because of the abundance of guards such as Oladipo and Payton. But he played both point guard and shooting guard at Iowa, which had not reached the NCAA Tournament since 2006 until earlier this year.
"So far I haven’t had any issues playing the 3," he said. "I’m here for whatever the coach needs me to do."
"He can flat-out score the ball," Oladipo said. "He’s really talented. He can play the 1, the 2, the 3. He’s a legit 6-7."
The Magic were able to select Marble after acquiring a pick from Denver as part of the trade that sent Arron Afflalo to the Nuggets. He is the son of Roy Marble, who also played at Iowa and went on to have a brief NBA career with the Nuggets and the Atlanta Hawks.
Being a second-generation Hawkeye might have brought inevitable comparisons. But to Marble, that was a non-issue.
"Our games are not similar at all," he said. "He was more of a slasher, a more athletic guy. I’m more of a playmaker and a scorer."
The Magic never worked out Marble before the draft. Part of the reason why might have been that they didn’t originally have a pick in the second round. Another reason could have been that Marble didn’t count on lasting as long as he did.
"The circumstances fit me real well," he said. "It was just that I wasn’t expecting it."
The Magic have had mixed results with second-round picks since Rob Hennigan became their general manager two years ago. Kyle O’Quinn has carved out a roster spot for himself, but Romero Osby was one of the final cuts this past preseason and wound up playing in the developmental league.
Marble isn’t using that track record as any sort of indicator of his future.
"I’m not really worried about it," he said. "That’ll take care of itself, as long as I continue to do what I do and I continue to compete at the level we’re trying to compete at."