The Pistons front office will begin interviewing the next group of college players who'll dress up and shake commissioner David Stern's hand a month from now at the NBA draft, only they don't know exactly where they'll be selecting.

They're also without a coach and have a handful of players under contract for next season, and even a few of those guys are question marks.

In other words, uncertainty seems to best describe this franchise as the Pistons begin the next stage of the predraft scouting with the draft combine in Chicago, which started Wednesday and goes through Sunday.

It's there where they can begin separating fact from fiction when they actually sit down with college players, beginning the process of figuring out who's the best fit for the type of team Pistons president Joe Dumars is trying to build, with the expectation that next week will be the last time they make the trek to Secaucus, N.J., for the draft lottery, for the foreseeable future.

Height, weight and personalty traits will all start to come to light, moreso than any actual on-court attributes.

"I think the actual interviews they do with the players are much bigger," said ESPN's NBA draft guru Chad Ford on a conference call Wednesday. "This is the first time that they're allowed to sit down with the players and actually talk with them, they have to bring team psychologists in, and they bring the team doctors there to check them out medically. This is the first time for them to have that one-on-one experience with the players."

The Pistons interviewed Greg Monroe, Brandon Knight and Andre Drummond, their last three first-round picks, at the combine but didn't bring them to Auburn Hills for individual workouts. Drummond had a late-night workout in New York the night before the draft once the Pistons received intel the Portland Trail Blazers would pass on him and the likelihood of him falling to nine was very real.

This year, though, the odds of finding a player with Drummond's star potential are slim to none, even if they get lucky and have the No. 1 pick. In fact, most general managers agree if prep star Andrew Wiggins were allowed to enter this draft, he'd almost certainly be the first pick.

The term you hear most about this draft is "rotation players," which is highly disappointing for teams looking for culture-changers.

"I think teams at the top are frustrated. They're lottery teams," Ford said. "They need a franchise type of player. They want a guy who has a chance at being a 10-year All-Star or perhaps a Hall of Famer someday. That's what you want out of the No. 1 pick, and that player doesn't exist in this draft yet."

There's a consensus that Michigan's Trey Burke is the best point guard among the group, but executives can't even agree on whether he's an NBA starter, which should tell you how highly they think of the talent in this year's class.

For the Pistons, it hasn't been decided whether they'll re-sign Jose Calderon or what the plan is for Brandon Knight. He played both guard positions last year, so no one can say whether Burke would be a good fit or any type of fit at all.

They've scouted Georgetown's Otto Porter (small forward) and Indiana's Victor Oladipo (shooting guard) extensively over the past year, and normally those type of players would be available well after the Pistons would pick if nothing miraculous happens next week at the lottery, but both could go top five.

"Victor's case, you're looking at a guy that's rapidly improved over three years," said Fran Fraschilla, ESPN draft analyst. "A ridiculous athlete, plays with high energy, high motor, low maintenance guy, wants to be not just in the NBA, but wants to be an NBA player."