Predicting Which Incoming Freshmen Will Be One-and-Done
One-and-done players have become a sickening part of college basketball culture, and the Class of 2012 has several players who will surely be enter the 2013 NBA draft.
Freshmen have dominated the recent NBA drafts, with No. 1 overall picks John Wall, Kyrie Irving and (soon-to-be) Anthony Davis all being one-and-done players.
While I personally despise the one-and-done rule, it's part of the game that I've had to accept. These are the players in the Class of 2012 who will continue this unnecessary trend of a single year in college.
Steven Adams, Pittsburgh
Steven Adams is a center who is coming over from New Zealand to play his college ball at Pittsburgh next season.
He is a 6'10" center who specializes on the defensive end. He is arguably the best shot-blocker in the Class of 2012 because he doesn't leave his feet until his opponent does and he elevates quickly. He can't be fooled with shot-fakes, which makes him tough to beat inside.
On offense his game is still developing, but he has the tools necessary to become a great NBA center, and a year under Jamie Dixon can only help him.
Adams decided that he needed time in America to adjust his game accordingly to the new style of play. He played his senior season with Notre Dame Prep and will play one season with Pittsburgh before entering the NBA draft and realizing his dreams of being an NBA player.
Kaleb Tarczewski, Arizona
Kaleb Tarczewski is a seven-footer who will be playing this year of college ball under Sean Miller at Arizona.
Tarc already has NBA prospects because of his size, but he is also a very good center in terms of skill and knowledge as well. He has an arsenal of offensive moves with his back to the basket, and he very rarely makes stupid mistakes.
He is a solid player without any glaring flaws, and his athleticism will allow him to keep up with the pace of NBA basketball.
Tarc could probably play in the NBA right out of high school because of his size and skill, but the one-and-done rule forces him to go to college for a year. That year will most likely help him develop, unless he suffers any injuries or setbacks.
Look for him to be a top pick in the 2013 NBA draft.
Alex Poythress, Kentucky
The first of John Calipari's one-and-done's in the Class of 2012, Alex Poythress is a big, athletic small forward.
He is listed at 6'7" and 215 pounds, but he looks and plays like he's bigger than that. He is freakishly athletic and can get up and down the court quickly. He loves to run in transition, and he is next to impossible to stop in the lane for most small forwards.
On defense, he uses his long arms and quickness to stay in front of his man and block shots. He is disruptive on the defensive end, and dominant on the offensive end.
Poythress already has an NBA body and playing a year under John Calipari can only help him. He has the athleticism and versatility to be a successful small forward in the NBA, which is why he will be ready for the 2013 NBA draft, and he should be a lottery pick.
Kyle Anderson, UCLA
Kyle Anderson is easily the most unique player in the Class of 2012. He is a 6'9" point guard with incredible versatility.
Anderson can play any position on the floor, thanks to his size and skill. He is big enough to play even center, and has the passing ability, court vision and shooting stroke to play in the backcourt as well. He is a great distributor who is a mismatch for opponents.
There are two strategies against Anderson. You can either put a point guard on him to stay in front of him, or put a big on him to stop him inside. Either way he will beat you because he will shoot over point guards or use his quickness to get by big men.
On defense, his long arms and height make it difficult for opposing point guards to shoot over him or get past him.
Anderson is a future star because of his versatility, and he is ready for the pros.
Nerlens Noel, Kentucky
The similarities between Noel and Davis are truly incredible. They are both centers who were ranked No. 1 in their respective recruiting classes.. They are roughly the same size. They are both great shot-blockers with developing offensive games. They both chose Kentucky.
While I believe that Davis is slightly better than Noel because his offensive game has developed more, that is due in part to coach John Calipari.
Noel needs to learn as much as he can under Coach Cal during his one year at Kentucky because if he can expand his offensive game he could be the No. 1 overall pick like Davis will be.
Anthony Bennett, UNLV
Anthony Bennett is a power forward who can play well inside, but you wouldn't know it if you saw him taking threes in warmups.
Bennett can play well inside, but what makes him special is his range. He can shoot well from further out than some elite shooting guards can, and he is a consistent shooter from behind the arc.
Bennett is a star because of his versatility, and now that the question of his stamina and conditioning has been answered, he looks like a good NBA prospect.
This is as close to a guaranteed one-and-done as you can be, and everyone knows it. Bennett feels that he owes it to his mom to make it to the NBA as so he can pay her back for everything she has done for him. Bennett will move on to the NBA after just one year in Las Vegas.
Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA
I consider Shabazz Muhammad to be the best player in the Class of 2012 because he affects the game in so many different ways.
He is one of the best players in the Class of 2012 on the offensive end. He is impossible to stop when he is within 15 feet of the basket because he drives so well, and having Kyle Anderson feed him the ball will only help show off his skill on that end.
On defense, he is quick, long and strong. He can bully smaller players and stay in front of bigger opponents. His long arms are disruptive, and his defense always leads to offense because he gets out in transition so quickly.
Muhammad is the type of player who should already be in the NBA, but is only going to school because of the one-and-done rule. He is surely going to be in the 2013 NBA draft, and he should be a top pick.
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