NCAA Tournament's Most Valuable Players

Jacqueline KirbyContributor IIIApril 5, 2011

NCAA Tournament's Most Valuable Players

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    The 2011 NCAA Tournament was a great pedestal for many players.  

    Some we have known long before the tournament started, like Harrison Barnes, Nolan Smith, Jimmer Fredette and Kemba Walker.

    For lesser known players, the tournament brought them to household name status and placed them in the limelight.

Kemba Walker

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    Kemba Walker was the tournament's Most Outstanding Player and the recipient of the Bob Cousy Award for being the best point guard in the country.  

    Any objections to the titles?  

    Didn't think so.  

    He averaged 23.7 points per game in the tournament and has helped the team win 11 straight postseason games.  

    If the UConn students have their way, Walker will stay around another year, but it looks like this guy has a promising future in the NBA.  

Jimmer Fredette

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    BYU's Golden Boy Jimmer Fredette made an even bigger name for himself during the tournament. Fredette beat out big names like Kemba Walker and Nolan Smith for the Naismith Men's College Player of the Year Award.  

    Although BYU didn't make it all the way, Fredette put up some impressive numbers for his team.

    In the game against Wofford he scored 32 points, he had 34 against Gonzaga, and scored another 32 in the loss to Florida.  

    Not too shabby there Jimmer!

Harrison Barnes

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    The University of North Carolina Freshman has been impressive throughout the season, but really shined for the Tar Heels in the postseason.  

    He helped lead them to the Elite Eight, with an average of 21 points per game in the tournament.

Derrick Williams

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    The Arizona powerhouse streamed them right past Duke in the Sweet Sixteen game.  In the game, Williams scored four of the teams' five three-pointers.  

    He averaged 22.8 points overall in the tournament.  

    This kid will only continue to improve for the Wildcats in seasons to come. 

Matt Howard

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    He had a less than stellar performance Monday night, shooting just one for 13 and bringing in only seven points for the Butler Bulldogs.  

    But that doesn't mean we can just write off the work he did to help get them to the title game.  

    Howard averaged around 16 points per game in the tournament.

    He has been a role model for the younger players and has left a mark on Butler basketball.

Shelvin Mack

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    The guard for Butler is essentially who propelled them past the Final Four and onto the Championship game.

     Mack averaged 20.3 points per game and scored 24 in the win against VCU.  

Jamie Skeen

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    VCU was the Cinderella story, making the Final Four as an 11 seed, and freshman Jamie Skeen helped get them there by averaging 17.5 points each game.  

Brandon Knight

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    Last, but certainly not least, is Kentucky's Brandon Knight.  The freshman who was named the National Player of the Year in both his junior and senior years of high school (only the third person to do that behind LeBron James and Greg Oden) averaged 16 points in each game leading to their loss in the Final Four to UConn. 

NBA Draft

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    The interesting thing will be to see how many of these players will stick around  and how many will leave for the NBA.  

    Some of their odds have definitely been increased for getting drafted after their excellent play in the tournament.