The 2013 2K Sports Classic features some of the most storied college basketball programs in the country. On Thursday, Nov. 14, the action will continue with three games featuring six teams from six different conferences.
Which players should you be watching during Thursday's action?
|2013 2K Sports Classic: Thursday's Schedule|
|Date||Time (ET)||TV||Road Team||Home Team|
|Thursday, Nov. 14||7:00 p.m.||ESPN 3||Detroit||(19) Connecticut|
|Thursday, Nov. 14||7:00 p.m.||N/A||Toledo||Boston College|
|Thursday, Nov. 14||11:00 p.m.||Pac-12 Network||UC Irvine||Washington|
Ryan Anderson, Boston College Eagles
Opponent: Toledo Rockets
2013-14 Season Averages: 35.5 MPG, 21.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 1.5 APG, 1.5 BPG
The Boston College Eagles have started the season with two consecutive losses by a combined margin of 17 points. After falling 82-78 in overtime to the Providence Friars, Boston College lost to the Massachusetts Minutemen 86-73.
The one bright spot has been Ryan Anderson.
Anderson is a 6'9", 216-pound forward who has developed into one of the better offensive big men in the ACC. He crashes the offensive glass, passes well and has dramatically improved his shot selection.
That has shown early on.
Through two games, Anderson is averaging 21.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.5 blocks on 53.6 percent shooting from the floor. This is one year after he tallied 14.9 points and 8.0 rebounds on a field-goal percentage of 47.6.
Boston College is favored against Toledo, and if it's going to get the job done, Anderson will need to shine. Expect him to step up.
Shabazz Napier, Connecticut Huskies
Opponent: Detroit Titans
2013-14 Season Averages: 35.0 MPG, 16.0 PPG, 9.0 RPG, 8.5 APG, 1.5 SPG
If you're looking for this year's Trey Burke, look no further than Shabazz Napier of the Connecticut Huskies. The senior combo guard has the dream combination of scoring prowess, clever facilitating and opportunistic defense that creates National Player of the Year hype.
Through two games, he's put that on full display.
Napier opened the season by flirting with a triple-double, dropping 18 points, seven rebounds and seven assists against the Maryland Terrapins. In his second game, he succeeded in accumulating a triple-double with 14 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists against the Yale Bulldogs.
What's he going to do in game No. 3?
To find out that answer, you should watch him go up against the Detroit Titans. Napier has been building toward an NBA future for years and would be a lottery pick if he weren't relatively undersized.
After 2013-14, don't be shocked to see Napier become a household name.
C.J. Wilcox, Washington Huskies
Opponent: UC Irvine Anteaters
2013-14 Season Averages: 37.0 MPG, 22.0 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 4.0 APG, 1.0 BPG, 1.0 SPG
For those unfamiliar, the Washington Huskies are led by scoring guard and NBA prospect C.J. Wilcox. He is one of the best slashers in the country, knows how to turn defense into offense and projects to be a quality sixth man at the next level.
In terms of his style of play, the most adequate NBA comparison would be Kevin Martin of the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The 6'5", 195-pound senior posted 22 points, seven rebounds, four assists, one block and a steal in his first game of the year. In 2012-13, he finished with averages of 16.8 points and 4.3 rebounds, converting a career-best 75 three-point field goals.
He's now converted 213 and counting on 39.2 percent shooting from distance.
Going up against UC Irvine, fans can expect to see Wilcox tear apart the opposing defense as both a jump-shooter and a slasher. He's at his best on spot-up jumpers, but Wilcox can slash when necessary and finish at the rim.
He's going to make an NBA roster, so watch this kid early and often.