Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It's Time To Step Up: Players That Need To Come Through Next Season

Posted by CoHoops DeAnte Mitchell
For some players, their freshman year of college basketball is a breeze. Others can't say the same.

There are a ton of sophomore players heading into next year with a vengeance. 
Some were used lightly and some weren't used at all. 

However, once the 2010-11 season gets started, these are the guys that will need to be big for their respective squads.

John Henson, North Carolina, Forward

Henson came out of high school as a sure-fire top-ten player in the 2009 recruiting class. He could do so many things right in the post.

However, once arrived in Chapel Hill for his freshman season, he wasn't able to play big minutes.

He was playing behind Ed Davis and Deon Thompson for the first part of the season.

But once Davis broke his hand, his minutes picked up and we started seeing a little of what we could expect from Henson.

With a depleted frontcourt the Tar Heels are going to rely on Henson a lot to make plays.

He needs to step up and give the 'Heels the edge in the post.

Jordan Hamilton, Texas, Guard

Hamilton ended his high school career as the best small forward in the Class of 2009. He is very long, explosive and athletic.

He has the ability to be a great wing player. However, since Texas had Damion James, and his injury early in the season, you weren't able to witness a lot of what Hamilton could do.

Next season, Texas will need a spark off the wing. Hamilton can be what James was. He is a consistent jump shooter and an absolute monster in transition.

Hamilton thrives in fast paced offenses and Texas will need that kind of player next season.

Wally Judge, Kansas State, Forward

Judge came out of high school as a McDonald's All-American. He was blessed with explosive leaping ability and the skills to be a dominant post player.

The Wildcats' frontcourt was not loaded with talent but K-State head coach Frank Martin still only pulled Judge out the bag for defensive reasons. But when he did, Judge also showed he could play offense.

Reviewing game tape, you will see what a great job he did against Kansas. Not only did he contain Cole Aldrich, but he ran in transition an made plays on offense. 

Not to mention, he can be a great low post option on offense.

Judge needs to cut down on his turnovers ho wever. The Wildcats could use his presence in the post. He is a big-time athlete that needs time to improve. This season is the perfect time for him to play a ton of minutes and get to where he needs to be.

Peyton Siva, Louisville, Point Guard

Siva is a 5-foot-11 point guard that came out of high school as a McDonald's All-American.

He is a very explosive athlete with the ability to score on every possession. But that doesn't mean he will not check it down and get his teammates involved.

Siva played behind guards Edgar Sosa and Jerry Smith for most of his freshmen year. 

With the point guard position open, Siva will have a chance to show off his skills.

His explosiveness adds another dimension to this backcourt. Not to mention, his thievery on defense is also a plus. 

Louisville will need all his contributions in their depleted backcourt next season.

Mason Plumlee, Duke, Center

The 6-foot-10 center Plumlee came out of high school as one of the best in his class.
He is extremely long, coordinated and agile. I remember watching Plumlee participate in the high schools dunk contest.

He threw down dunks that you would not expect from a 6-foot-10 center.

Last season, he had to play behind Brian Zoubek and Lance Thomas.

Now that both have graduated, I expect Plumlee to emerge as the leader of Duke's frontcourt.

Abdul Gaddy, Washington, Point Guard 

Coming out of high school, Gaddy was tabbed as one of the best point guards in the recruiting class. 

He was considered to be the best point guard not named John Wall; who went No. 1 overall in the draft. 

Gaddy is a point guard in every sense. He is young and developing, but his game has surpassed so many of his peers.

He has a great jump shot that he uses off-the-dribble and when setting up.

After a slow start to his college career, I expect an improved Gaddy that is ready to show why he was the No. 2 point guard in the 2009 recruiting class.

Elijah Johnson, Kansas, Point Guard

Johnson came out of high school tabbed as one of the better point guards in his class.

However, he doesn't have the feel to play point guard for a college program and that is probably why he chose to redshirt.

Johnson is a great player with the ability to score all day.

With Collins, I do not think minutes would have opened if he decided he wanted to play.

Johnson is a great player in transition and once the break starts he wants to show off his athleticism.

Head coach Bill Self will need all his contributions, since most of their guards are gone from last year’s squad.


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