CBI 2013: Highlighting the Best Players in Monday's Elite Eight Action

Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistMarch 25, 2013

Nov 29, 2011; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Cougars guard Joseph Young (0) posts up LSU Tigers forward Johnny O'Bryant (2) during the second half at Hofheinz Pavillion. LSU won 59-58. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Campbell-US Presswire
Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

The CBI Invitational may not host college basketball’s best teams, but some of the best players in the nation take part.

As the tournament shrinks down to its final eight, top players will get to showcase their talents on a bigger stage. Some will play up to all that potential, while others will fade with the other names in the box score.

Of the CBI’s Elite Eight, which players left in the tournament are the tournament’s best? Scroll down to find out.


Sherrod Wright, George Mason

The Patriots’ most improved player also doubles as their leading scorer. Wright received a six-minute bump in playing time this season and responded with almost 17 points per game.

George Mason’s star has continued his strong season with 20-point games in three of his last four contests. Most notably in the CBI First Round game against Charleston, Wright scored 20 on 55 percent shooting in a one-point victory.

If the Patriots are going to continue advancing in this tournament, Wright will be the focal point of their offense.


Joseph Young and TaShawn Thomas, Houston

Let’s look on the other side of this George Mason and Houston game, as the Cougars boast two dynamite scorers that pace their attack.

Young can fill it up from anywhere on the court and does it efficiently too. The Cougars’ leading scorer averages 17 points while shooting 45 percent from the field, including 42 percent from three-point range. He’s buoyed by Thomas’ dominance inside, averaging 16 points and 9.5 rebounds on the season.

The matchup between Young and George Mason’s Wright will be a must-watch battle, but the Patriots may not have an answer for Thomas in the paint.


Shayne Whittington, Western Michigan

One of the best rebounding teams in the nation gets the majority of their production from Whittington.

The team’s top scorer and rebounder patrols the paint with his 6’10”, 220-pound frame and will prove to be the key to Western Michigan’s CBI title hopes

He shoots 50 percent from the field as his team’s leading scorer, and as said before, leads the Broncos’ assault on the glass.

Western Michigan will apply their rebounding prowess to an undersized Wyoming squad whose tallest starter is 6’8”. If the Broncos play inside-out through Whittington, they’ll be able to keep up with Wyoming’s balanced scoring attack.


Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report. Follow his College Basketball coverage on Twitter.