McDonald's All-American Game: Stars Who Will Have Immediate Impact in College

PJ BernackiCorrespondent IApril 5, 2013

Jabari Parker driving on Andrew Wiggins
Jabari Parker driving on Andrew WigginsJonathan Daniel/Getty Images

It’s always exciting each year to watch the next crop of college stars on the same court at the same time, giving us a taste of what to expect next season. Even though the McDonald’s All-American game contains nothing but highly talented players, not all will dominate forces for their respective teams right away.

There are a few young athletes, however, who have the ability and opportunity to immediately strengthen their team.


Andrew Wiggins

The No. 1 recruit (via 247Sports) in the nation shined in this game, displaying not only his offensive ability but how smothering he can be on defense. The 6’7” forward led the East team with 19 points while dishing out four assists. He was unstoppable on offense, but Wiggins also held the No. 2 recruit (via ESPN) in the nation, Jabari Parker, to only 10 points.

Wiggins is still undecided, but the schools still in the hunt for this future stud are Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina and Florida State. If you’re scratching your head about the Seminoles, keep in mind that both of his parents graduated from there.

Wherever he ends up, Wiggins will be one of the best players on his team, in his conference or maybe even in the country.


Aaron Gordon

The 6’8” forward out of California took home MVP honors by scoring 24 points and grabbing eight rebounds. Gordon has committed to Arizona, who lost a heartbreaker in the Sweet 16 to Ohio State.

Arizona will be losing senior guard and leading scorer Mark Lyons, so Gordon will be asked to make a contribution on offense right away.

The No. 4 recruit (via ESPN) in the nation will be called on to improve to an already-decent Arizona squad in a Pac 12 that doesn’t show many signs of improving. Gordon has the opportunity to be one of the best players in that conference. With his commitment to the school, Gordon also may have lured the No. 18 recruit (via 247Sports), Rondae Hollis-Jefferson from Chester, Pa. to join him.


Kentucky Wildcats

Yet again, John Calipari has landed many of the country’s top recruits and six of them played in this game. The Harrison twins, Dakari Johnson and Julius Randle are just a few names that will be wearing a Wildcat uniform next season.

It remains to be seen which of these athletes will earn time over each other and the current players already on the team, but still, they will make a huge impact on this team. Kentucky fans just hope that the impact will not be as negative as it was for 2012-13.


Wayne Selden

With Ben McLemore and Elijah Johnson not returning next season, Kansas was very fortunate to sign Welden. The 6’5” guard will have to fill that void in the backcourt and he has the talent to do it.

His strength and size causes problems for guards defending him, but if you put someone bigger on him, he also has great range. Welden went 2-for-4 from three point range to add to his 13 points.

The Jayhawks will also be losing senior Jeff Withey, putting more reliance on Welden to step up and score points. The No. 12 recruit (via ESPN) in the nation leads a class that contains three other 4-star recruits, which means Welden has the chance to be a leader on a great team that sits in a weak conference.

With some of the poor Big 12 competition they will face, Welden could put up some impressive numbers in his freshman campaign.