Breaking Down Andrew Wiggins' College Options and Their Championship Potential
Before Andrew Wiggins can become the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft, he'll have to decide which college he'll attend next season.
The 6'8" small forward has narrowed his list down to four schools: Florida State, Kansas, Kentucky and North Carolina. And although his presence would make each program better right away, all won't have the same shot to raise a championship banner in year No. 1.
CBS Sports college basketball insider Jon Rothstein sums it up best.
Andrew Wiggins makes Florida State a Top 15 team, gives Kansas an alpha dog, augments UNC, and enhances Kentucky's brand. Tick, tock.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) May 7, 2013
Here we'll break down Andrew Wiggins' potential college destinations and determine the championship potential of each.
*Championship potential rated on a scale of 1-10.
Florida State Seminoles
By far the most intriguing of Wiggins' four options, Florida State is hardly a basketball powerhouse. After all, the Seminoles went 18-16 last season and finished .500 in the ACC.
Wiggins would step in right away and become a scorer and an impact player on both ends, but he alone wouldn't be able to lift Leonard Hamilton's team over the likes of Duke and North Carolina in the ACC. That said, it's not at all unrealistic to expect a Wiggins-led Seminoles team to earn an NCAA Tournament bid in 2014.
Still, this is a Florida State team that lost in the opening round of the NIT this past season and then lost its leading scorer Michael Snaer (14.8 PPG).
Wiggins can get the Noles to the dance, but making a deep run against the nation's top teams is asking too much of a freshman in a relatively star-less rotation.
Championship Potential: 3
With or without Andrew Wiggins in 2013-14, the Kansas Jayhawks will be competitive in the Big 12 and looking to earn a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Bill Self has brought in another talented class, one that could become elite with the addition of Wiggins.
If there's a school on Wiggins' radar that can become an instant championship threat with him in the starting lineup, it's Kansas.
The reigning Big 12 champions lost a lot of experienced firepower this offseason, but will bring back players like Naadir Tharpe and Perry Ellis to play alongside Wayne Selden and some other talented newcomers.
With Wiggins holding down the three spot and taking the scoring pressure off guys like Tharpe and Ellis, this is a team that could steamroll through the regular season, land a high seed in the NCAA Tournament and then make a run to Cowboys Stadium, site of the 2014 Final Four.
Championship Potential: 9
John Calipari is set to bring in a tremendous amount of elite talent this offseason, but adding Wiggins to that mix no doubt makes the Wildcats a threat to cut down the nets for the second time in three years.
Sure, Kentucky struggled mightily last season despite boasting some big-name players. But the loss of Nerlens Noel was huge for the Wildcats, and this upcoming season's team will hardly resemble last year's.
Willie Cauley-Stein will return in the middle, but he'll be surrounded by a handful of McDonald's All-Americans, including the Harrison twins. With Wiggins on board, this roster would be unrivaled in terms of talent.
Youth and inexperience would be all that stands in the way of a title.
Championship Potential: 10
North Carolina Tar Heels
North Carolina plays a style of basketball that would showcase everything Andrew Wiggins does well on the offensive end. Roy Williams has gravitated towards an uptempo style of basketball in recent years and you would be hard-pressed to find a player who isn't a fan of it.
Which school has the best shot to win the title in 2014 with Andrew Wiggins?
Losing wing scorer Reggie Bullock to the NBA draft doesn't necessarily help the Tar Heels, but it would open things up for Wiggins if he decided to play in Chapel Hill.
Wiggins could step in and play as an undersized power forward in Williams' small, shooter-heavy lineup. Bullock's absence would allow for more opportunities for Wiggins on the offensive end, and therefore assist him in both developing and ultimately becoming a star for North Carolina.
With Williams directing from the bench and Wiggins, P.J. Hairston, James Michael McAdoo and Marcus Paige delivering on the court, this is an NCAA Tournament team that could challenge for a Final Four berth in 2014.
Championship Potential: 8
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