Big 12 Basketball: Top Six Players
Pick Six: Big 12
Throughout the week, check back for articles highlighting the Top 6 players in each BCS league. Then next week we’ll be rolling out the Top 6 at each position.
The Big 12 lost a lot of talent from last year’s ranks (Michael Beasley, D.J. Augustin and Brandon Rush were all lottery picks) but they also welcome back the player who might go first overall in next June’s draft. No surprise he’s number one on the list.
1. Blake Griffin – Oklahoma – Sophomore
Like there was any doubt as to who would come out on top of this list. His combination of size, toughness, athleticism and hoops skills is a very rare package. He’ll be on everyone’s shortlist for All-American and National Player of the Year honors.
Stats: 14.7 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 1.8 apg
2. Damion James – Texas – Junior
The latest player causing NBA scouts to make a pilgrimage to Austin is Damion James. A super athletic player, James is a double-double machine (13.2ppg, 10.3rpg) who also hits the three and blocks shots. The NCAA’s answer to Shawn Marion?
Stats: 13.2 ppg, 10.3 rpg, 1.3 apg
3. Curtis Jerrells – Baylor – Senior
Baylor perhaps has the best pack of guards in the country, and Curtis Jerrells is their pack leader. Able to knock it down from deep, score, rebound, pass and steal, Jerrells has been a solid contributor since stepping onto the Bears’ campus as a freshman.
Stats: 15.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.8 apg
4. A.J. Abrams – Texas – Senior
Despite being undersized even for a point guard (5’11” 155lbs) A.J. Abrams is one of the nation’s top shooting guards. Money from long-range (he hit 118 threes last year, 120 the year before), Abrams is also the Big 12’s top returning scorer. With backcourt mate D.J. Augustin off in the NBA, Abrams will try to prove to scouts this season that he can run the point for the Longhorns.
Stats: 16.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 1.5 apg
5. LaceDarius Dunn – Baylor – Sophomore
Proving that you can be a star even if you don’t start, LaceDarius Dunn was an explosive presence for the Bears as a sixth man his freshman year. A dead-eye shooter (45% FG, 84% FT, 42% 3PT), he also is a solid rebounder for his size. Even rarer, he is a guard who averaged less than an assist a game last year – a textbook gunner.
Stats: 13.6 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 0.8 apg
6. Sherron Collins – Kansas – Junior
Sherron Collins’ numbers last season doesn’t make it look like he should be considered one of the Big 12’s top players. However, the Big 12’s Sixth Man of the Year last season will be Lawrence’s Big Man on Campus (despite being only 5’11”) this season with all of the departures from the team’s roster.
Stats: 9.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 3.1 apg
Next in line: DeMarre Carroll, Missouri; James Anderson, Oklahoma State; Kevin Rogers, Baylor; Willie Warren, Oklahoma. Tomorrow: Big East