Frank Franklin II/Associated Press
Nick Johnson, Arizona, PG/SG, Junior
Johnson is the engine that makes Arizona go, and if the Wildcats want to emerge from the West Region, they'll need him fully charged for a run.
He's averaging 16 points a game this season as the team's most explosive playmaker. And he just might be the most athletic guard in the region. Johnson plays well above the rim, leading to a number of high-flying slams throughout a game.
He's struggled at times this season with shooting consistency, but if Johnson is connecting on the perimeter, as well as finding his teammates in the drive-and-dish game, he becomes one of the more dynamic two-way guards in the country.
Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State, PG/SG, Sophomore
A tremendous NBA prospect and floor general, Marcus Smart has the ability to take over games. Individually, he was extremely productive this year—he averaged nearly 18 points, 5.7 boards, 4.7 assists and 2.8 steals a night. And at 6'4", 220 pounds, he's as physically overwhelming as any guard in the country.
Smart's decision-making and shooting consistency have held him back in terms of efficiency, but when he's locked in, you won't find a guard who can make a bigger impact at both ends of the floor.
Doug McDermott, Creighton, SF, Senior
There isn't a spot on the floor he can't score from. Doug McDermott is averaging 26.9 points a game this year, his third season in a row he's averaged over 22, and the fourth season in a row he's shot over 40 percent from deep.
Step-backs, pull-ups, one-legged fadeaways, post-ups—McDermott is an offensive threat from any and every angle.
Only four times all year did he fail to notch 20 points in a game, and he ended his regular season with a 45-point explosion at home. Whether he's a lottery pick or not, I'm not sure there's much debate over who the best offensive player in college basketball is.