Predicting the Best Freshman Dunkers in College Basketball in 2013-14 Season
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
The 2013 class is so well thought of that several NBA teams spent the offseason preparing for tank-a-palooza.
Here's an idea for the poor fans in those cities who will have to endure bad basketball: Devote yourself to the college season and start praying one of these freakish athletes lands on your team.
The dunkers in this class are so good that, in two years, it wouldn't be shocking to see half the NBA Slam Dunk Contest participants come from the 2013 class.
Learn their names. And prepare to be mesmerized.
Honorable Mention: Anton Gill, Louisville; Jordan Bell, Oregon; Kendrick Nunn, Illinois; Kasey Hill, Florida; Isaiah Hicks, North Carolina; Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Arizona; Kuran Iverson, Memphis; Moses Kingsley, Arkansas; Jarell Martin, LSU.
10. Jabari Bird, California
Some guys just look cooler than everyone else when they dunk. Jabari Bird is a smooth wing who should slide right into Allen Crabbe's spot at Cal.
9. Jordan Mickey, LSU
Jordan Mickey can jump from just inside the free-throw line and dunk. The fact that he can do that, and he's No. 9 on this list, should tell you something about how gifted the dunkers are in the 2013 class.
Mickey and fellow LSU freshman Jarell Martin could form one of the best dunk tandems in the country. The only thing holding Mickey back from being a regular on the highlights could be the fact that he plays the same position as Martin.
8. Deonte Burton, Marquette
Deonte Burton would make Dr. J proud. Burton has Julius Erving's "Rock the Baby" dunk down. Like Erving, Burton loves to cup the ball on most his dunks, and at 6'4", that's not easy to do.
7. Wayne Selden, Kansas
This is the beginning of a run of angry dunkers on the countdown.
KU's Wayne Selden tries to the rip the rim down every time he dunks. Selden is one of the strongest guards in the 2013 class, and he makes sure you know that when he throws down.
It's going to be a highlight fiesta of vicious attacks of the rim in Lawrence this season, as Selden's dunk brother Andrew Wiggins also likes to dunk with vigor.
You've been warned, Allen Fieldhouse rims.
6. Julius Randle, Kentucky
Julius Randle is sure to put some poor big men in the SEC on a poster this year.
Randle will go over and through anyone in his way to the rim, and once he gets there, you might as well just get out of the way.
If you want to compare him to another great dunker, Josh Smith would be a good comparison. They're both lefties and both finish with force.
5. Troy Williams, Indiana
So let me get this straight. Indiana fans were treated to one of the most entertaining athletes/dunkers in college basketball last season, Victor Oladipo, and now that Oladipo is gone, they get Troy Williams?
Nicely done, Tom Crean.
Don't take this as a comparison of Williams to Oladipo—Williams is a rangier athlete. But like Oladipo, when he sniffs the rim, it looks like he gets shot out of a cannon.
4. Zach LaVine, UCLA
If you're holding a dunk contest with the best dunkers in college basketball, UCLA's Zach LaVine might just be the favorite.
It's hard to find a guy so confident in his dunking ability that he'll bust out that between-the-legs J.R. Rider dunk during an actual game. LaVine is smooth and fluid, and it's going to be a lot of fun to see him get out on a break this season.
3. Chris Walker, Florida
Chris Walker has yet to enroll at Florida and the plan, according to CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish's source, is that Walker will enroll and be eligible to play in late December.
Let's hope that happens.
Walker has some Shawn Kemp to his game. He's a freak athlete who tries to dunk everything. The best three dunkers in this class are so good you could mix the order and no one (other than the fans of the school of each particular dunker) would complain. In fact, Walker was the winner of the McDonald's All-American Dunk Contest, so he has a good argument to be at the top.
2. Aaron Gordon, Arizona
Pause the video above at the top of Aaron Gordon's leap. Yep, that's his head even with the rim.
Gordon put on a show during the U-19 World Championship. It was easy to see why he's often compared to Blake Griffin. Griffin might not be the best dunk contest dunker in the world, but he's arguably the best game dunker, and that's what also sets Gordon apart.
Like Griffin, Gordon can pull off incredible dunks in traffic. And that one-handed alley-oop finish was not just a freak occurrence. He did it again during an actual game at the U-19s.
1. Andrew Wiggins, Kansas
Andrew Wiggins will make pregame warm-ups a spectacle at Kansas.
Wiggins rises and floats so effortlessly that some of his dunks that are ridiculously difficult—like his between-the-legs-reverse 360 at the McDonald's All-American Dunk Contest—look easy.
The first time Wiggins played in front of Kansas fans this summer at Bill Self's basketball camp, he threw down a highlight dunk... in 11 seconds!
Aaron Gordon is a worthy dunking adversary, but the people have spoken with their 3 million plus YouTube views; they cannot wait to see Wiggins.