Top 25 breakout players for 2013-14 

October, 31, 2013
10/31/13
9:45
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Montrezl Harrell, LaQuinton Ross, Sam DowerGetty Images, AP Photo
College basketball fans already know about the top returning players who have already proven themselves and are again poised for big seasons in 2013-14 -- Doug McDermott, Marcus Smart, Aaron Craft, etc.

But every season there are players who make the jump from playing a role to becoming someone who could be a major contributor to their team's success. These guys aren't always the easiest to identify, but after an offseason of talking to coaches, I've come up with a list of the top candidates to have a breakout season. Note that I've excluded incoming freshman from this list, as they belong in their own category.

Here is my ranking of the top 25 breakout players for 2013-14:


1. Montrezl Harrell, PF, Louisville Cardinals
Sophomore, 6-foot-8, 235 pounds

Harrell came off the bench as a freshman, playing limited minutes behind Gorgui Dieng. However, his production was impressive per minute played (5.7 points and 3.6 rebounds in 16 minutes per game). Now he'll get 30-plus minutes per game -- as long as he remains out of foul trouble -- and he should be one of the top rebounders in the country.

Harrell won't be the shot-blocker that Dieng was for Rick Pitino and the Cardinals, but he'll bring more energy and athleticism. He's a guy who plays with reckless abandon and runs the court extremely well. He'll also be terrific in Louisville's press.


2. Yogi Ferrell, PG, Indiana Hoosiers
Sophomore, 6-0, 180