NBA Draft 2013: Underrated Stars Who Boosted Their Stock in the NCAA Tourney

Zachary KruegerCorrespondent IIApril 2, 2013

Florida Gulf Coast guard Sherwood Brown may have drawn attention from NBA scouts following his performance in the NCAA tournament.
Florida Gulf Coast guard Sherwood Brown may have drawn attention from NBA scouts following his performance in the NCAA tournament.Elsa/Getty Images

The NCAA tournament has seen its fair share of upsets this year. Chances are, if you've filled out a bracket, you likely had it busted by teams like Florida Gulf Coast or Wichita State.

With the Final Four officially aligned, there have been a few performances in the tournament that have helped boost the stock of some NBA draft hopefuls.


Glen Robinson III (Michigan)

Following a dominant victory over third-seeded University of Florida in an Elite Eight matchup, Michigan has propelled itself into the Final Four.

While he has yet to announce whether or not he will declare for the draft, one player who has posted some impressive numbers throughout the tournament is Michigan forward Glen Robinson III.

Robinson, who averaged 11.6 points per game and 5.5 rebounds, has exceeded his season averages in three of the four tournament games Michigan has played in this year.

In the first three games of the tournament, Robinson averaged 16 points per game and 7.7 rebounds.

Robinson did, however, struggle against Florida, scoring just six points in 34 minutes, but that is to be expected from a player who is only a freshman going up against one of the top teams in the nation.

Currently projected as a top-15 pick in the 2013 NBA draft, Robinson could see his stock on the rise if he can continue to post solid numbers in an effort to get Michigan to the national championship.


Gorgui Dieng (Louisville)

Louisville is another team that is on its way to the Final Four following an inspirational blowout victory against Duke after a gruesome injury to teammate Kevin Ware.

Dieng came to play against Duke, posting his first double-double of the tournament with 14 points and 11 rebounds.  

In addition to his points and rebounds, Dieng also has a total of 10 blocks in his four tournament games, including four in each of the last two games.

A big physical presence inside at 6'11" and 245 pounds, Dieng may be on the move up teams' draft boards, especially with at least one more game to showcase his talents.


Adreian Payne (Michigan State)

Michigan State took an early exit in the tournament, losing to Duke in the Sweet 16.  Despite the loss, Payne posted solid numbers against a good Duke team.

Payne did a bit of a disappearing act in Michigan State's first game against Valparaiso, playing only 27 minutes and posting only seven points with four rebounds. However, in his next two games, Payne turned into one of the best players on the floor for Michigan State.

Payne may have boosted his stock because of his ability to show up in his team's bigger games of the tournament. Against sixth-seeded Memphis and second-seeded Duke, Payne had back-to-back 14-point games while also hauling in 10 rebounds.

One final stat worth mentioning for Michigan State's big man: He's been perfect to date from the free-throw line in the tournament, making all 10 of his attempts.


Doug McDermott (Creighton)

Creighton's exit from the NCAA tournament was a quick one, suffering a loss to Duke in the third round. Despite its brief time in the tourney, Creighton forward Doug McDermott put out two solid performances in the Blue Jays' games.

While McDermott may not be one of the most underrated players at the college level, the nation's second-leading scorer is not valued as highly at the NBA level.

McDermott, a junior small forward, averaged a remarkable 23.2 points per game last season with 7.7 rebounds per game.  While his rebounding numbers were solid for a player of his position during the regular season, McDermott exceeded those numbers in March.

In the tournament, McDermott averaged 10 rebounds in his team's two games, including a 27-point, 11-rebound performance against Cincinnati.  Because he is only a junior, McDermott could opt to come back for his senior season.  

Provided his recent rebounding performances were a legitimate display of what he is capable of moving forward, McDermott may garner more attention from a team looking for an efficient rebounder and scorer.


Sherwood Brown (Florida Gulf Coast)

Aside from fans of Georgetown and San Diego State, people everywhere seemed to thoroughly enjoy the run that No. 15 seed Florida Gulf Coast made in the tournament. Fans also seemed to enjoy the inspired and enthusiastic play out of senior guard Sherwood Brown.

Perhaps Brown will go undrafted and see his playing career come to an end, as you won't find his name on many mock drafts.  As a matter of fact, he may not even be listed as a top-100 player among 2013 prospects.  

Regardless, Brown likely drew a lot of attention from NBA scouts after his performances this tournament season. 

Throughout the tournament, Brown averaged 18.3 points per game along with 7.7 rebounds—not bad for a shooting guard who is just 6'4". Brown seems to be a natural scorer with good, raw talent.  

It may not be too far of a stretch to expect a team to draft Brown with a late pick or at least consider giving him an invite to camp this offseason.