Despite Michigan State and Purdue looking like they will be among the nation’s best teams this season, it appears that it’s a down year coming up for the Big Ten. Additionally, talent-wise the league doesn’t have the boatloads of “superstar” prospects the other BCS conferences do. Because of this, a freshman has snuck his way into number one on this list.
Pick Six: Big East
Throughout the week, check back for Pick Six articles highlighting the Top 6 players in each BCS league. Then next week we’ll be rolling out the Top 6 at each position.
1. B.J. Mullens – Ohio State – Freshman
The latest in the “one-and-down” superstar big men to materialize onto Ohio State’s campus is native son B.J. Mullens. His size and skill level will be unmatched not just in the Big Ten but in the NCAA as a whole. Look for him to be a top three pick in next June’s draft.
Stats: DNP - Freshman
2. Raymar Morgan – Michigan State – Junior
With Drew Neitzel off playing for pay in Germany (and not playing very well by the way), the Spartans will be Raymar Morgan’s team this season. After averaging 14 and 6 last season he looks primed to lead the way. Izzo and company will need even more from him this year if they hope to make a deep March run.
Stats: 14.0 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.6 apg
3. Robbie Hummel – Purdue – Sophomore
There is not much Robbie Hummel can’t do on a basketball court, as he showed Purdue’s opponents last season. Able to pass, hit the three (an impressive 44%) and do the dirty work down low (6.1rpg last season), Hummel is a multitalented threat. He very well could end up being named Player of the Year for the Big Ten this season and will have the Boilermakers in the national conversation of the country’s top teams.
Stats: 11.4 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.5 apg
4. E’Twaun Moore – Purdue – Sophomore
Just as important to Purdue’s success last season – and expected success this year – is Hummel’s fellow sophomore E’Twaun Moore. He’s a stat sheet stuffer who is deadly from long-range (66-152 3Pts, 43%).
Stats: 12.9 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 2.6 apg
5. Manny Harris – Michigan – Sophomore
Speaking of guys who cram the stat columns, Manny Harris is a prime example. Take last season’s stat line for instance – 16.1ppg, 4.2rpg, 2.7apg, 1.4spg. And that was from a freshman. For John Beilein’s team to have any hope in the Big Ten this season, Harris will have to improve on those numbers while also increasing his shooting percentage and cutting down on the turnovers.
Stats: 16.1ppg, 4.2rpg, 2.7apg
6. Marcus Landry – Wisconsin – Senior
Just like big brother Carl (now with the Houston Rockets), Marcus Landry plays bigger than his height and weight measurements would lead you to believe. With big man Brian Butch graduated Landry will have to play big for the Badgers to get back to the Sweet 16.
Stats: 10.8 ppg, 5.4 ppg, 1.4 apg
Next in line: Kalin Lucas, Michigan State; Kevin Coble, Northwestern; Jamelle Cornley, Penn State; Trevon Hughes, Wisconsin.