In the NBA there are many players that will go down as one of the greatest players of all time. Of course many players chose not to attend college and go straight to the NBA but most of the NBA greats attended college.
College basketball during the regular season is much more competitive than the NBA. They are fighting every week for position in their own conference. The most talented college players are the ones that are most highly regarded coming into the NBA draft. However there are very good and savvy players in the NCAA that NBA teams should not even hesitate to draft.
Everybody knows that a great NBA player has many qualities and virtues. If you look at all of the NBA top 20 greats you will realize that they all posses an immense mental toughness, resilience, leadership, skills, and the most important of all The ability to compete for a win night in and night out.
What did you notice from Kobe Bryant during the 2009 playoff press conferences? He did not care. He was in a zone. He had not won a championship and had just been bounced the year before by the Boston Celtics. Great players will not stop until they win. They are resilient.
Leadership, is the art of motivating a group of people to achieve one common goal. In this case an NBA championship. Winning as much as possible. Reggie Miller was down 6 points with 8.9 seconds to go in game one against the Knicks. The game was over. No it wasn't Reggie Miller would not give up. He needed that win. He wanted it. He hit 2 straight threes from ' no mans land ' to tie the game. That is leadership.
This year we have seen a variety of great collegial basketball players. We have seen the John Walls, the Evan Turners...etc. What do they both have in common? They did not make the final four after having very successful regular seasons. They won their corresponding conference tournaments and were awarded a high seed.
However a team that was very much under the radar during the first part of the regular season was West Virginia coached by Bob Huggins. They were off to a good start in the big east winning 11 straight games but they went through a rough stretch and lost 3 times in one month.
The West Virginia team was disappointed. They were slowly deteriorating. However, the bounced back and started winning again. They made it to the conference tournament with a first round bi. The team was struggling late against mediocre teams like Cincinnati, what did they do?
Da'sean Butler. Hands down the clutches player in NCAA basketball. He hit 12 game winners throughout the conference tournament. Including his shot against Georgetown and ' Bryantesque ' bank 3 to beat cincinnati.
Da'sean Butler knows how to win. He wants to win. He got the ball late in the game and came through for the Mountaineers. He's skilled at the 2 spot, and can get hot very fast. You have to pick you're poison with him, jump-shot or drive? He is the player with the biggest desire to win in the NCAA. For this sole reason i believe that he will be the most likely to become an NBA great.