College Basketball: The Best Players at Every Height

Doug BrodessCorrespondent IAugust 10, 2012

College Basketball: The Best Players at Every Height

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    Great college basketball players come in all shapes and sizes.

    From the mighty mites in the backcourt to the biggest bigs down low, there are no limits on what talented players can do regardless of their physical stature.

    Here is a lightning-fast look at the best college basketball players at every height from 5'6" through 7' tall.

    Special thanks to Statsheet.com for the player measurements.

Jordon Crawford, Bowling Green: 5'6"

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    Jordon Crawford probably used to hear that he couldn't "get it done" because he was too small.

    I don't think he still is told that very often.

    More than just a outrageous ball-handler/playmaker, Crawford can just flat-out play.

    Last year, as a junior, he averaged 11.3 ppg and 4.8 apg for the Falcons.

    But, as you can see in this video clip, Crawford has no problem getting up and throwing it down...Wow!

Maurice Jones, USC: 5'7"

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    USC struggled last year (6-26; 1-17 Pac 12), but one bright spot was the stellar backcourt play of sophomore guard Maurice Jones.

    The Saginaw, Mich, native led the Trojans in scoring (13 ppg), assists (3.5 apg) and steals (1.8 spg).

    As Southern Cal mends from an assortment of injuries and takes on an assortment of incoming players, watch for Jones to shine even more brightly in 2012-13.

Jesse Steele, Monmouth: 5'8"

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    Jesse Steele is another mighty-mite guard who can do more than dribble and pass.

    He led the Hawks in both scoring (12.6 ppg) and assists (4.2 apg).

    Don't think Steele can only shine against smaller schools.

    Last year as a junior, he dropped 25 points, five assists and three rebounds on Vanderbilt.

Chaz Williams, UMass: 5'9"

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    Chaz Williams is a stat-book stuffer.

    He contributes in so many different categories.

    Last year, he led the Minutemen by averaging 16.9 ppg, 6.2 apg and 2.2 spg.

    Williams put up five (points-assists) double-doubles in 2011-12, including dropping 20 and 10 on Atlantic 10 champ Temple.

Pierre Jackson, Baylor: 5'10"

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    Pierre Jackson showed up in Waco, full of confidence, ready to take on the Big 12.

    And Jackson ended up helping Baylor make it to the Elite 8, losing to Kentucky.

    Jackson is a super scorer (13.3 ppg) and playmaker (5.8 apg), who can shoot it from the field (46.4 percent), the line (81.9 percent) and beyond the arc (43.4 percent).

    I am so ticked that, because Missouri left the Big 12 for the SEC, we will not get to see Jackson go head-to-head against Phil Pressey, the next best 5'10" player.

Trey Burke, Michigan: 5'11"

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    Even though he could have been a first-round pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Trey Burke came back for another season in Ann Arbor.

    Burke is the real deal. He did a little of everything for Michigan, leading the Wolverines last year in scoring (14.8 ppg), assists (4.6 apg), steals (31) and even blocks (13).

    Burke shared Big Ten Freshmen of the Year honors with Indiana's Cody Zeller.

    Watch for Burke and UM to not only challenge for the '12-13 Big Ten title but also to make a deep run in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.

Isaiah Canaan, Murray State: 6'0"

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    Murray State's magical season last year was in large part due to the exceptional backcourt play of Isaiah Canaan.

    Canaan paced the Racers (31-2; 15-1 OVC) in scoring (19 ppg), assists (3.6 apg) and steals (1.4 spg).

    He was one of the best three-point shooters in the country (45.6 percent from beyond the arc).

    The Biloxi, Miss., product could put up ridiculous numbers as MSU again dominates Ohio Valley Conference play and then makes another run in 2013 March Madness.

Tim Frazier, Penn State: 6'1"

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    Tim Frazier proves that there is some good news coming out of Happy Valley these days.

    While he gets very little attention from the national media, Frazier, a senior and first team all-conference performer, led the Big Ten in assists (6.2 apg) and steals (2.4 spg), while being the conference's No. 2 scorer (18.8 ppg).

    Last year, he set the Penn State single-season assists record (198).

    To top all this off, Frazier has twice been named an Academic All-Big Ten honoree.

Aaron Craft, Ohio State: 6'2"

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    Aaron Craft makes his name, not by scoring a truckload of points, but by consistently shutting down his opponents.

    Craft is the best on-ball defender in the country. His ongoing pressure pesters opponents and changes games.

    Craft led the Big Ten in steals (2.4 spg) and was tied for No. 2 with Michigan's Trey Burke in assists (4.6 apg).

    With the departures of Jared Sullinger and William Buford, Craft will be asked to shoulder a little more of the scoring load in 2012-13.

C.J. McCollum, Lehigh: 6'3"

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    Tons of college basketball fans' introduction to C.J. McCollum came when he dropped 30 points, grabbed six rebounds and dished out six assists on Duke in the Mountain Hawks' upset in the opening round of last year's NCAA Tournament.

    McCollum is a two-time Patriot League Player of the Year.

    He led the conference in scoring (21.9 ppg) and steals (2.6 spg), and was surprisingly the No. 2 rebounder in the league (6.5 rpg).

    McCollum will have another chance as a senior to prove that he is one of the top backcourt players in the country.

Matthew Dellavedova, St. Mary's: 6'4"

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    Matthew Dellavedova just keeps getting better.

    The big guard from Down Under averaged a team-leading 15.5 points and a West Coast Conference-leading 6.4 assists per game last season.

    Last year, he was the WCC Player of the Year and first-team all-conference selection.

    Dellavedova has spent the summer playing for the Australian Olympic team, where he averaged 7.3 points, 3.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game.

Jamaal Franklin, San Diego State: 6'5"

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    Jamaal Franklin is another big-time West Coast guard from a non-power conference school.

    Franklin tore it up for the Aztecs last year, winning the Mountain West Player of the Year award while leading the conference in scoring (17.2 ppg) and was the MWC No. 4 rebounder (7.9 rpg).

    Most of the time when backcourt players have a double-double it is by points and assists.

    Last year, Franklin put up 11 double-doubles consisting of points and rebounds, with his best game coming against TCU when he exploded for 35 points, 13 rebounds and five assists.

Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA: 6'6"

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    Right up the road from Jamaal Franklin is what could be the most watched player in college basketball this upcoming season: Shabazz Muhammad.

    The Vegas native is an exceptional scorer in the open court, able to slash to the basket or fill it up from all over.

    While he has yet to play a minute for Ben Howland's Bruins, look for Muhammad to have a Anthony Davis-like impact on UCLA this season.

Doug McDermott, Creighton: 6'7"

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    Doug McDermott is a multi-skilled, old-school player who makes so many things happen that it's hard to keep track of all of his contributions to Creighton's success.

    Last year, McDermott, as a sophomore, was selected as an Associated Press and USBWA All-American.

    He was also named the Missouri Valley Conference's 2012 Larry Bird Player of the Year.

    McDermott was the nation's No. 3 scorer (23.2 ppg) and No. 5 three-point shooter (49.5 percent).

    He also led the Blue Jays in rebounding (8.2 rpg) and helped them to a 29-6 record.

    With a strong supporting cast around him again this season, watch for McDermott to have an even better year in 2012-13.

Mike Moser, UNLV: 6'8"

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    After a lackluster freshmen season at UCLA, Mike Moser transferred to UNLV and emerged last year as one of the most improved players in the country.

    Moser is a double-double monster, averaging 14 points and 10.5 rebounds per game.

    With added frontcourt talent arriving for Rebels head coach Dave Rice, we may get to see Moser slide over to the small forward position and show off his ability to break down opponents and do work from the wing.

James Michael McAdoo, North Carolina: 6'9"

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    On any other team besides last year's UNC Tar Heels, James Michael McAdoo would have been a full-time starter and major contributor from the moment he arrived on campus.

    Instead, JMA backed up Tyler Zeller and John Henson for most of the season.

    However, when Henson went down late in the season, McAdoo gave us a sneak preview of what he can do and what we will see this upcoming season.

    Even in North Carolina's loss to national runner-up Kansas, McAdoo scored 15 points, grabbed four rebounds and pinched two steals.

Mason Plumlee, Duke: 6'10"

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    Mason Plumlee has taken steady steps forward in his first three seasons at Duke.

    He led the Blue Devils in rebounding (9.2 rpg) and blocked shots (1.6 bpg) last year, and was the team's No. 4 scorer with 11.1 points per game.

    Plumlee runs the floor as well as anyone his size and uses his athletic ability to create scoring opportunities.

    Look for MP2 to have a breakout senior season and help lead Duke back to the Final Four.

Cody Zeller, Indiana: 6'11"

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    Cody Zeller is one of the best college basketball players in the country.

    He is a versatile, back-to-the-basket post player who rarely makes bad decisions on the court.

    Zeller led the Hoosiers in scoring (15.6 ppg), rebounding (6.6 rpg), steals (1.4 spg), blocks (1.2 bpg) and field goal percentage (62.3 percent).

    While he controlled and patrolled the middle for IU last season, look for CZ to dominate the paint this year like few other players in the nation.

Jeff Withey, Kansas: 7'0"

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    Jeff Withey is a great example of a player who makes a huge contribution to his team while not scoring a bunch of points.

    Withey was the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year in 2012.

    He was the No. 7 shot-blocker in the nation (3.3 bpg) and combined with Thomas Robinson to create a stout defensive barrier for the Jayhawks during their NCAA Tournament run last season.

    While Withey will be asked to score more this season, look for him to still make his biggest contributions on the glass and on defense.