One and Done
The one and done rule in college basketball is one of the most talked about and controversial topics. NBA commissioner David Stern is in favor of a rule that makes players stay in college for three years. It would be great for the quality of play in college basketball, but really some guys have no business staying that long because of their talent level.
There’s a lot of future potential star talent on this list below, but entering the NBA comes with risks and there’s sure to be at least one or two guys who are going to look back on the decision to turn pro with regret. Here’s the one and done guys that just finished their true freshman season of college basketball for the stacked 2012 NBA draft.
Brad Beal 6-4 207, shooting guard, Florida – Great decision by Beal to enter the draft. I think he’s the best shooting guard in this draft with a more complete game than Jeremy Lamb or Austin Rivers. Led Florida in rebounding at 6.7 per from the guard position and is a very solid on ball defender. Beautiful jump shooter on the offensive end with great NBA range, averaged 14.4 points per game as a freshman while being the key guy in an elite-8 run. Beal did what he needed to do at the NCAA level despite going into a system with a good and deep backcourt already in place. I like the prospect of the Cavs taking him late in the lottery and pairing him up with Kyrie Irving to form a very dangerous young guard duo. Whoever ends up with Beal is getting a future all-star.
Andre Drummond 6-10 260, center, UConn – The hyped big man averaged 10 points and a team-leading 7.6 rebounds per game this season while shooting a 53.8% from the field. Ideally, Drummond could have used another year at UConn to fine tune his skills and learn to develop a better motor. He’s said to have ‘unlimited potential’ by coach Jim Calhoun and is sure to be selected in the top five. He had flashes, but just wasn’t as impressive as I expected him to be. His draft stock is so high that it would have been a foolish move to come back, especially to the disaster that is UConn. The Huskies are ineligible for post-season play next year. Drummond could have benefited from more touches in the paint instead of the quick trigger guards in Shabazz Napier, Jeremy Lamb, and Ryan Boatright. I don’t know what kind of career Drummond will have, but size is a premium in the NBA and the potential to be dominant is there. UConn’s first one and done player.
Moe Harkless 6-8 205, small forward/shooting guard, St. Johns - Broke Allen Iverson’s record for most points scored in a players first Big East game with 32 points against Providence. Averaged 15.5 points per game and 8.6 rebounds this season while earning honorable mention all Big East honors. He can score from the inside or out, although he needs to work on his jumper and perimeter game. Blows by his defender and gets to the rack with excellent agility for a guy his size. Although he could use another year to refine his offensive game, Harkless is likely to be a first round pick based on potential. Needs to add muscle, but is a very good defender.
Austin Rivers 6-4 200, shooting guard, Duke - Doc’s son and his Duke squad was sent him with a disappointing second round exit, but Rivers time at Duke will be remember by a great game-winner 3-pointer against North Carolina. It’s that kind of clutch scoring ability that has NBA teams ready to take Rivers somewhere in the top 20 of this seasons draft. At 6-4, he is stuck between the size of a shooting guard and a point guard, but clearly is more comfortable off the ball right now. He had very good one on one skills and I could see him being a scoring contributor off the bench in year one in the NBA. As far as becoming a star, I think it will be hard for Austin to create his own shot with the dribble at the next level like he had success with at Duke. Despite some limitations, Rivers has good enough offensive game to put points on the board at any level. His jumper is nice, has a good crossover, and can take you to the rim and finish is he needs to. Averaged 15.4 points per game as a freshman.
Tony Wroten Jr. 6-5 205, point guard, Washington- Wroten averaged 16 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 3.7 assists per game as a freshman for the Huskies. Projected to go somewhere in the middle of the first round. Super athletic combo guard with great size for a lead guard. Shows great body control, great speed, and a has proven to cause havoc on the defensive end of the ball. He needs to add some strength. Could use another year in college, but his physical gifts and potential deem that he is ready to go right now. Spectacular highlight ability.
Anthony Davis, 6-10 210, power forward, UK – The consensus first overall selection is capable of impacting the game in every facet. His shot blocking skills remind people of Marcus Camby, while his complete game has some, including me, calling him the best big man to come out of college since Tim Duncan. Could stand to add a little strength, but there is no ceiling on how good Davis will be at the next level.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, 6-7 228, small forward, UK – I think Gilchrist will be the second player chosen in the draft. He has the skills on both sides of the ball to be an immediate impact player. Will be one of the best defenders at his position in the NBA right away. Does all the little things right and is mature beyond his years. There are no real holes in his game and his body is ready for the big leagues. Future star.
Marquis Teague, 6-2 190, point guard, UK – No players stock rose more from the beginning of the season until now than Teague. His decision making and turnovers were questioned early in the season and he did a complete 180, turning his weakness into a strength. He proved to be a championship caliber point guard and leader. Has all the athletic tools to be very good at the next level and his improvement over the season has his stock higher than its ever been.