College Basketball Recruiting: Ranking the Best Dunkers in the 2014 Class

David Aldridge@davidmaldridgeFeatured ColumnistNovember 4, 2013

College Basketball Recruiting: Ranking the Best Dunkers in the 2014 Class

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    The 2014 college basketball recruiting class is loaded with talent.

    Many of the players are already being labeled as future NBA stars, and it’s a class filled with fantastic athletes.

    With so much athleticism, the 2014 class features some dunkers who will become YouTube sensations with their high-flying finishes above the rim.

    Let’s take a look at the best dunkers in the 2014 class.

    These rankings were determined based on these players’ explosiveness and finishing ability.

10. Dante Buford

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    At 6’7”, 209 pounds, Dante Buford is a power forward who loves to run the floor and finish with authority at the rim.

    He’s a 4-star recruit according to ESPN, and his vertical-leaping ability makes him a threat to throw down fantastic dunks at any opportunity.

    Buford is still undecided on where he will attend college but has received offers from Miami, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, South Carolina and USC.

    No matter where he ends up, this talented prospect will have fans excited with his impressive dunking ability.

9. Tyus Jones

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    Tyus Jones is the top-ranked point guard prospect in the class of 2014, but he can do much more than just run an offense.

    Despite only being 6’1”, Jones has an incredible ability to get to the rim and finish.

    Jones can use his speed and explosiveness to blow by defenders off the dribble and then has no trouble rising quickly at the basket for powerful dunks.

    Jones always draws a great deal of attention any time he steps on the court, and he’s delivered quite a few highlight-worthy throwdowns during his recruitment.

    The 5-star prospect from Minnesota remains undecided on where he will attend college.

8. Kevon Looney

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    Kevon Looney caught people by surprise last week when he announced he’d be playing his college basketball at UCLA, but people shouldn’t be surprised when he attacks the rim as a Bruin.

    At 6’8”, 190 pounds, Looney is an athletic stretch 4 with good shooting range who can space the floor and attack off the dribble. His wingspan also makes him a terrific rebounder and finisher around the basket.

    If he gets the opportunity to play in transition for UCLA head coach Steve Alford, Looney should make many impressive plays that finish with him getting into the lane and dunking the ball.

    And as he continues to develop his perimeter shooting, it makes his driving and dunking ability even more dangerous because of his versatility.

7. Goodluck Okonoboh

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    Goodluck Okonoboh isn’t the type of dunker you’d find in a dunk contest, but he’s still an incredibly gifted finisher.

    Okonoboh’s length and leaping ability make him a force around the rim, whether it’s regarding defense, rebounding or dunking.

    He still has a raw offensive game that needs to develop, but he’s an extremely dangerous weapon in pick-and-roll situations where he can grab lobs to the rim. He’s also very effective at scoring off missed shots.

    With his recent commitment to UNLV, Okonoboh is the type of player who will have Runnin’ Rebel fans thinking back to glory days of the program.

6. Brandone Francis

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    Billy Donovan and the Florida Gators are getting one of the best all-around guards in the class of 2014 in Brandone Francis.

    At 6’5”, 205 pounds, Francis has great size and strength, which makes him a tough matchup for smaller guards, whether it’s on the perimeter or when he attacks the rim.

    With Florida’s desire to push the tempo against teams and extend its defense, Francis will likely get plenty of opportunities to attack the basket in transition and finish with some electrifying dunks.

    He shouldn’t have any trouble transitioning to life in the SEC.

5. Grayson Allen

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    It’s not uncommon for Grayson Allen to have a sequence of plays where he knocks down a couple of three-point baskets and then finishes at the rim with an impressive alley-oop.

    It happened a couple of times over the summer in the AAU tournaments Allen participated in.

    The 6’4”, 185-pound shooting guard from Jacksonville, Fla., has already committed to Duke, and Mike Krzyzewski will be getting another talented and athletic guard to add to the bevy of wing players he’s putting together.

    The Cameron Crazies will love getting to see Allen and his dunking ability as a Blue Devil in Cameron Indoor Stadium.

4. Dwayne Morgan

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    Between Goodluck Okonoboh and Dwayne Morgan, UNLV has two high-risers who will make it a habit to play above the rim in Las Vegas next season.

    Morgan is a 6’7”, 180-pound power forward from Baltimore, Md., who excels at playing in transition and using his leaping ability to overpower defenders.

    He’s the No. 34 prospect in the ESPN 100 rankings, and his ability to play alongside Okonoboh should give UNLV a very potent frontcourt other teams will have difficulty stopping.

    Similar to Okonoboh, Morgan needs to improve his offensive skills to become a more complete player, but his dunking ability is already one of his greatest strengths.

3. Terry Larrier

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    Terry Larrier is a 6’7”, 200-pound small forward who should be a perfect fit in Shaka Smart’s system at VCU.

    Larrier is a 4-star prospect according to ESPN, and two of his biggest assets are his explosiveness and athleticism.

    Once Larrier gets the opportunity to play in VCU’s uptempo and attacking style, he will regularly make plays above the rim and throw down dunks that cause havoc for the opposition.

    Larrier plays with confidence and swagger, and it will be exciting to see how Smart features him in the game plan.

2. Cliff Alexander

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    Not only is Cliff Alexander one of the best dunkers in the class of 2014, he’s also one of the best players in the class.

    Alexander is currently the No. 3 ranked prospect in the ESPN 100 rankings, but he’s battled Jahlil Okafor and others for that top spot over the past three years.

    At 6’8”, 225 pounds, Alexander often uses his strength to overpower defenders, and he’s a ferocious finisher at the rim. He’s a physical player who doesn’t mind contact and has good enough hands to make him a very dangerous weapon on lob passes.

    Alexander is still undecided on where he’ll be attending college next year, but he’ll be a key player for any team he joins.

1. Jalen Lindsey

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    Jalen Lindsey is a 6’7”, 180-pound forward from Franklin, Tenn., who is going to be a star for the Providence Friars.

    Lindsey has incredible athletic ability, and he’s been impressing coaches and scouts with his dunks over the past three years.

    He’s improved his shooting range, making it easier for him to attack off the dribble, and he will become even better once he gets into a regular conditioning program and builds his strength.

    The future is very bright for the Friars when it involves a player like Jalen Lindsey.