Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Can Iowa State Contend For a Big 12 Championship in 2011-12?

Posted by CoHoops DeAnte Mitchell
The Big 12 conference has been one of the toughest basketball conferences for the past couple of years. Kansas has emerged as a national powerhouse, with Kansas State and Baylor on the rise. With that, the Big 12 hoops conference looks stronger than ever this upcoming season.

Already looking ahead into next season (2011-12), it assume it will be a huge scramble at the top of the Big 12.

The last time the Iowa State Cyclones advanced in the NCAA Tournament was back when Curtis Stinson was scoring 17 points per game, while grasping other players like Jared Homan and Will Blalock.

However, during the last decade, the Cyclones achieved three Big 12 Tournament wins, one NCAA Tournament and two NIT appearances.

Luckily for the Cyclones, in the year 2011, they'll possess a tough roster that can actually compete at a high level in the Big 12. Coach Fred Hoiberg has acquired Royce White, the transfer from Minnesota, and Chris Allen, the transfer from Michigan State.

Not to mention, Coach Hoiberg has done an exceptional job with recruiting. The Cyclones acquired a 6-foot-6 wing threat in Elgin Cook, a decent lead guard in Tyrus McGee, and frontcourt presence Anthony Odunsi.

With the notion that Scott Christopherson, Jordan Railey, Eric McKnight and other standouts from Iowa State return after this season, Iowa State will have a talented roster to compete with any team in the Big 12.

With Chris Allen in the backcourt, he could bring you leadership and scoring. Playing under a Coach like Tom Izzo has progressed Allen's game a lot. He can bring that same intensity to a hungry Iowa State team, if not more.

Not to mention, hoisting players like Elgin Cook and Royce White on the wing, will present a lot of problems for opposing defenses. Cook and White collectively could score on every possesion. With such high basketball I.Q's, it'll be tough trying to outsmart both of them if you are the defense.

Point guard prospect McGee will have a huge impact on their 2011 roster. He was an All-State point guard in High School, but switched to the off-guard position during his tenure with Cowley County CC.

However, that will not stop him from coming to Ames, Iowa and helping right away. McGee is the band-aid to the Cyclones point guard problems.

He can shoot lights out from three, shooting an unprecedented 44 percent last season, and lead an offense. According to McGee has been working on his point guard skills.

Now just imagine a starting rotation that would feature McGee, Allen, White, and Cook. These four players collectively could establish ground in the Big 12, and possibly compete for the conference title.

With such a talented roster on paper, the Cyclones will have to put it together nicely for it to work. Basically saying, the Cyclones will need to establish depth, leadership and most importantly, an offensive attack.
The Cyclones will have enough talent to compete in the Big 12, but the real question is will they contend?

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