Grading The Top College Basketball Stars So Far
It’s only been about a month into the College Basketball season and up to this point it hasn’t failed to dissatisfy. The beloved 2014 class is playing at the phenomenal levels scouts were expecting, with amazing games such as the Parker/Wiggins showdown and Marcus Smart’s career night against Memphis. Now after 4 weeks of action, here are some grades for the top college basketball stars so far:
Jabari Parker, Duke
With 6 games under his belt so far, Jabari Parker has lived up to all the hype surrounding him. Already drawing comparisons to scoring machine Carmelo Anthony, Parker has the ability to shoot anywhere from the floor converting on .580% of his field goals and shooting .609% from the perimeter. Andrew Wiggins may have gotten the last laugh in their big matchup a few weeks ago but Parker’s consistent numbers are proving to scouts he’s a lot more NBA ready.
Andrew Wiggins, Kansas
It’s about time the Lebron James comparisons have been put to rest. People need to realize Andrew Wiggins is still an extremely raw player and has a long ways to go if he’s to evolve into one of the greats. Even without an advanced offensive arsenal, Wiggins still utilizes his supernatural athletic ability to stuff the stat sheet on a nightly basis averaging 16.8 points and 6.3 rebounds. Those numbers aren’t superstar caliber averages just yet, but it goes to show how much potential the projected No. 1 pick truly has once he develops an offensive game.
Julius Randle, Kentucky
Scouts are already drooling over Julius Randle and what’s not to love? The big man has ferociousness that can’t be matched and a tank for a body despite being the youthful age of 18. In his game against Michigan State he completely carried the team on his shoulders scoring 23 of his 27 points in the second half while ripping down 13 rebounds. The only knock against Randle’s game right now is his turnovers coughing up the ball 3.4 times a game but that should improve over time once he gets more comfortable in Coach Calipari’s system.
Doug McDermott, Creighton
Does anyone else think it’s crazy that Doug McDermott is expected to put up around 30 points and 10 rebounds on a consistent basis? I agree the level of competition he faces may not be up to par with some of the other big schools in the nation but he’s also scoring at an alarmingly efficient rate shooting .525 from the field and .405 from the perimeter. There are only 2 other Creighton players averaging double figures in points so far and even when you combine their numbers they’re still 4 short of McDermott. Talk about an offensive juggernaut.
Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State
Marcus Smart shocked the world when he announced he would return to Oklahoma State for his junior year. The floor general felt he needed more time to work on his game (particularly his shooting touch) and even though he may have passed up on a larger contract it’s looking more and more likely that he made the right decision. In his recent game against Memphis, Smart exploded for a career high of 39 points and knocked down 5-10 of his shots from the perimeter. If he keeps up this stellar play, especially with the way he’s shooting the ball he may be in the same position for the upcoming draft.
Follow Evan Caulfield on Twitter @caulfieldhoops