College Basketball 2012-13: The Best Player at Each Position
The 2012 NBA Draft (June 28) will feature an array of talented players, many of whom could still be playing collegiate hoops in the '12-'13 season.
But, as the following list shows, college basketball will not be hurting next year.
Many of the versatile players on this list have position flexibility. They are not locked in at specific roles.
As always, you are invited to comment. If a player is left off the list, make your case. If a player shouldn't be on here, tell us why.
Point Guard: Aaron Craft (Ohio State)
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Myck Kabongo (Texas)
Phil Pressey (Missouri)
Trey Burke (Michigan)
There are point guards who score more points or average more assists than Aaron Craft.
But no point guard in the country combines all the essential elements of a great floor general than the 6'2" junior from Findlay, Ohio.
Craft's best attribute is not an offensive stat. He is the premiere on-ball defender in CBB, impacting games with his defensive pressure.
Craft's 2.2 assists-to-turnovers ratio shows that he takes care of the ball well, and he shoots a surprising-to-some 50 percent from the field.
He only averaged 8.8 points per game last year. With the departures of Jared Sullinger and William Buford, we may see Craft become a more assertive scorer in 2012-13.
Shooting Guard: C.J. McCollum (Lehigh)
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Isaiah Canaan (Murray State)
Jamaal Franklin (San Diego State)
Shabazz Muhammad (UCLA)
A number of college basketball fans were first introduced to C.J. McCollum when he scored 30 points as Lehigh beat Duke in the 2012 NCAA Tournament. But McCollum has been wowing 'em in the Patriot League for the last three years.
McCollum was the first freshman to be named the PL's Player of the Year, an award he also received this past year as a junior.
In 2011-12, he led the Mountain Hawks in scoring (21.9 points per game), rebounding (6.5 rebounds per game) and blocks (19).
In an AOL Sporting News article he wrote himself, McCollum explained that he had "unfinished business at the collegiate level."
Shooting Forward: Mike Moser (UNLV)
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Deshaun Thomas (Ohio State)
Adonis Thomas (Memphis)
LeBryan Nash (Oklahoma State)
After transferring to UNLV from UCLA, combo forward Mike Moser had a breakout red-shirt sophomore season in 11-12.
Moser led the Rebels (26-8) in scoring (14 points per game), rebounding (10.5 rebounds per game) and blocks (35).
Due to head coach David Rice's recruiting of Anthony Bennett and Khem Birch (transfer from Pittsburgh), Moser will be able to slide back over to his natural position of SF in this upcoming season where he can use his length, athleticism and explosiveness to dominate smaller players from the wing.
With Moser returning, UNLV could be the best team in the West.
Power Forward: James Michael McAdoo (North Carolina)
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C.J. Leslie (North Carolina State)
Andre Roberson (Colorado)
Brandon Davies (BYU)
On just about any other team in the country, James Michael McAdoo would have been a star from Day 1.
But since he decided to go to UNC, McAdoo spent most of his freshman season backing up Tyler Zeller and John Henson.
Even though the 6'9", 220 -pound power forward only averaged 6.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game coming off the bench in '11-'12, watch for him to have a breakout campaign as a sophomore in the upcoming season.
McAdoo is not just a long and athletic face-up four. He has excellent footwork and post moves that helps him do work down low on the block.
UNC will be just fine (after losing four NBA lottery picks) with McAdoo ready to blow up this coming season.
Center: Cody Zeller
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Jeff Withey (Kansas)
Gorgui Deng (Louisville)
Nerlens Noel (Kentucky)
Cody Zeller is not only the best center in the country; he may be the best player in CBB in 2012-13.
Zeller had a fantastic freshman season at IU, leading the team in scoring (15.6 points per game), rebounding (6.6 rebounds per game), shooting percentage (62.3 percent) and blocks (42).
It can't be good news for the rest of the Big Ten or the Hoosiers' future opponents that Zeller has continued to fill out his 6'11" frame by adding strength and bulk during the offseason. ESPN's Andy Katz has Indiana as his 2012-13 preseason No. 1 team.
If Zeller takes his game to another level next year, Katz's prediction will become reality.