2012 NBA Draft: First-Round Studs and Their Pro Counterparts

Thad NovakCorrespondent IApril 1, 2012

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The NCAA champion hasn’t even been crowned yet, but the postseason exits of some of college basketball’s most talent-rich squads have started the dominoes falling when it comes to the NBA draft. North Carolina’s posse of young stars has already announced an en masse early entry, and other top-notch underclassmen are sure to join them.

Of the Tar Heel trio, the one who might have benefited most from staying in school is PF John Henson. Henson is an outstanding defensive player and rebounder, but like Hornets center Emeka Okafor, he’ll be entering the NBA with a dangerously underdeveloped offensive game.

Okafor, who’s never been remotely as dominant in the pros as he was at UConn, could have benefited from another year in Storrs to polish his post moves, and Henson may wish he’d stayed in school for the same reason.

Take a look at this group of five college stars likely to be drafted even higher than Henson, along with the NBA players who give the best indication of what to expect from from the youngsters early on.

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