Thursday, November 8, 2012
Telep's college freshman All-Americans
By Dave Telep
As college basketball season gets set to tip off, who better to tell you about the freshmen to watch than the guys who've been following their careers for the past three to four years? The rookies may not have played a college game yet, but RecruitingNation experts Dave Telep and Paul Biancardi know their games from top to bottom already.
As part of ESPNU's "Freshman Orientation" special, Telep and Biancardi both picked their college freshman All-American and All-Surprise teams. Below are Telep's picks, and Biancardi also made his selections.
Telep's Freshman All-American Team
PG: Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State The Cowboys are making him the point guard. Reality is, this is his team and was from the moment this exceptional leader stepped onto campus.
SG: Omar Calhoun, UConn The Huskies need buckets. As a high school star, Calhoun’s specialty was scoring, and he’s a better shooter than he’s given credit for.
SF: Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA The Bruins' rise is predicated on him. He came to UCLA to help reinvigorate the program, and if he gains eligibility he could lead the Pac-12 in scoring.
PF: Grant Jerrett, Arizona It’s a marathon, not a sprint -- but now it’s time for Jarrett to rise quickly. Arizona’s best all-around frontcourt player looks like the boy next door and plays with winner’s edge.
C: Nerlens Noel, Kentucky No, he’s not Anthony Davis, nor does he need to be. By January, the full effect of this defensive impact player will be felt.
Sixth Man: Gary Harris, Michigan State He’s a two-way player right off the bat for Tom Izzo. Early talk is that he’s going to bite off a big piece of the offensive pie for the Spartans.
Telep's Freshman All-Surprise Team
PG: Ryan Arcidiacono, Villanova Leaders and tough guys at this position are hard to come by. “Arch” is both, and that plays well in the City of Brotherly Love.
SG: Denzel Valentine, Michigan State Meet the Big Ten’s newest stat stuffer. Once Izzo finds out what position to play him at -- sorry, Tom, can’t help -- he’s going to be a four-year force.
SF: Ioannis Papapetrou, Texas Never got to see him in the proper setting for evaluating his game in high school, but thinking he works his way into starter’s minutes by January for the Horns.
PF: Josh Scott, Colorado After leading the Buffs in scoring during an overseas trip, my hunch was confirmed. Too big, skilled and smart to not be a premium Pac-12 player.
C: Joel James, North Carolina He’s not even remotely the same person he was at this time last year. James is huge but not too huge like he was as a high school senior. Now that he's devoted full time to hoops, it’s his time to shine.
Sixth Man: Nik Stauskas, Michigan There are three really good freshmen in Ann Arbor. This guy isn’t getting the national acclaim, but when you can make 3s for John Beilein you get to play more than sit.