College Basketball Power Rankings: Next Year's Top 14 Floor Generals

Doug BrodessCorrespondent IJune 29, 2011

College Basketball Power Rankings: Next Year's Top 14 Floor Generals

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    We're about 100 days until Midnight Madness happens across the country.

    College basketball workouts can begin in mid-October, and the top players will be getting ready to storm the courts.

    Going into the 2011-12, we will see the emergence of some excellent floor generals leading the way.

    Let's take a quick look at the top 14 point guards who will be running the show

14. D.J. Cooper: Ohio University

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    D.J. Cooper, the rising junior from Chicago, will be a handful for the other Mid-American Conference schools in 2011-12.

    At 5'11", Cooper last year averaged an impressive 15.8 ppg, 5 rpg, 7.5 apg, and 2.3 spg.

    He was the 2010 MAC Freshman of the Year.

    Cooper not only dishes out a lot of assists, but his assists-to-turnover rate (2.14) shows that he takes good care of the ball.

13. Hank Thorns: TCU

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    TCU's Hank Thorns had a breakout season in 2010-11 and is looking to do even more this year.

    The 5'9" rising senior from Las Vegas averaged 10.7 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 7 apg and 1.2 spg.

    Thorns' 2.71 assists-to-turnover ratio helps the Horned Frogs make the most out of every possession.

    If Thorns can elevate his game this upcoming season, it will help TCU (11-22, 1-15 MWC) get out of the Mountain West cellar.

12. Myck Kabongo: Texas

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    While Myck Kabongo's high school senior numbers (17.1 ppg, 6.0 apg and 5.3 rpg) were not eye-popping, he is widely considered one of the top incoming freshmen.

    ESPN.com has him listed as the No. 2 PG recruit and suggests that he is the "best pure point guard in the 2011 class."

    Rick Barnes will need a big year from Kabongo with the departures of early-entry draft picks Tristan Thompson, Jordan Hamilton and Cory Joseph, as well as seniors Gary Johnson, Dogus Balbay and Jai Lucas.

11. Shabazz Napier: UConn

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    Coming off of UConn's National Championship and with the departure of Huskies' hero Kemba Walker, Shabazz Napier is ready to make some noise in 2011-12.

    Napier's role on last year's team did not showcase his significant offensive talents.

    As a freshman, Napier averaged 7.8 ppg, 2.4 rpg and 3 apg.  

    He is an aggressive scoring point guard that can finish in the lane or find teammates down low or on the perimeter.

10. Josiah Turner: Arizona

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    If everything works as planned, Josiah Turner will be the next big-time PG to carry on the tradition at "Point Guard U," a.k.a. the University of Arizona.

    Turner (6'3") will bring his full scoring and playmaking arsenal to Tucson and help the Wildcats continue to re-establish their place among the top programs in the country.

    In April, Turner was selected the MVP of the Inaugural Converse Mo-Mentorship All-Star Classic in Augusta, Georgia, scoring 26 points with 13 assists and two steals.

9. Scoop Jardine: Syracuse

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    Scoop Jardine is the kind of player that people are either hot or cold about. They either love him or hate him...and those are people from the 'cuse Nation.

    While Jardine hit some big shots and made some big plays, he also has had his share of moments where he didn't come through for Syracuse. 

    Jardine led the Big East in assists this past season.

    He averaged 12.5 points per game. For all the talk of his turnovers, he has a 2-to-1 assist to turnover ratio (205 assists, 100 turnovers). He led the team with 55 steals.

    If Jardine can take even more steps forward in 2011-12 and have more consistency, Jim Boeheim's squad may be ready for a deep run in the NCAA Tournament.

8. Vincent Council: Providence

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    Vincent Council will have to figure out what life will be like without Big East scoring leader Marshon Brooks.

    Council is a talented scoring point guard who averaged 13.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg and 5.9 apg.

    The Brooklyn-native can take care of business on the defensive end too, shutting down his opponent and forcing turnovers. 

7. Aaron Craft: Ohio State

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    Look for Aaron Craft to have a break-out year in 2011-12.

    One of the reasons that Ohio State was and will be one of the top teams in the country is Craft's contribution outside of the normal stat line....a coach's dream. 

    Craft had a very solid freshman season (6.9 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 4.8 apg), but what sets him apart from many PGs is his focus on being a shut-down defender.

6. Marquis Teague: Kentucky

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    John Calipari has done it again. He has the nation's best incoming freshman PG in Marquis Teague.

    With Brandon Knight going on to the NBA, Teague should be ready to take the controls to the Wildcats attack.

    Teague is lethal in the open court and is nearly impossible to stop in transition.

    He is a dynamite finisher in traffic and loves getting to the line.

5. Brad Tinsley: Vanderbilt

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    Remember, you heard it here first....Vanderbilt will challenge Kentucky for the SEC Championship.

    And Brad Tinsley will help lead the way for a veteran Commodore team that will be ready to do some damage in 2011-12.

    Tinsley (10.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg, and 4.6 apg) was one of four Vandy players last season who averaged double figues.

    Tinsley's assist-to-turnover ratio (2.37) was one of the best in the nation.

    Someone once described Tinsley as Steve Nash with hops. Watch this video as Tinsley dunks on Florida's Chandler Parson. 

4. Ray McCallum: Detroit-Mercy

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    Ray McCallum had a fantastic freshman year, playing for his father at Detroit.

    Though he isn't considered a scoring point guard, McCallum led the Titans in scoring in 2011-12.

    His stats were as good as most any PG in the country (13.5 ppg, 4.7 rpg, and 4.9 apg).

    McCallum's high basketball IQ helps him make great decisions and effectively lead his team at both ends of the court.

3. Kendall Marshall

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    When Kendall Marshall took over the UNC point midseason in 2010-11, everything changed for the Tar Heels.

    He ignited a level of aggressiveness and cohesiveness that the team had lacked through the first three months of the season.

    Bottom line: Marshall may have helped UNC avoid a rather disappointing season.

    As a freshman, he averaged 5.5 apg while only logging 23.4 minutes per game. That comes out to right at 10 assists per 40 minutes—one of the best averages in the country.

    Marshall’s assists-to-turnover ratio was a very solid 2.36, which means that he was not only dishing out dimes, but he also wasn’t throwing the ball away.

    Roy Williams is looking for even more from his sophomore floor leader. If Marshall can elevate his game in 2011-12, North Carolina could be cutting down the nets in New Orleans.

2. Tu Holloway: Xavier

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    Tu Holloway made third-year Xavier coach Chris Mack's summer much more enjoyable when he announced that he would be returning to campus for his senior year.

    Holloway is the reigning the Atlantic 10 Conference player of the year and was named to several All-America teams as a junior in 2010–11.

    Holloway is a "do-it-all" PG who led the Musketeers in both scoring (19.7 ppg) and assists (5.5 apg).

    If Holloway can elevate his game just a little, he will be a serious contender for the 2012 national player of the year awards.

1. Jordan Taylor: Wisconsin

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    Look for Wisconsin Badger Jordan Taylor to be the top point guard in the nation in 2011-12.

    Taylor is coming off of an exceptional junior campaign where he was a First Team All-Big Ten selection.

    He is a big reason that Wisconsin made it to the Sweet 16 in the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

    Taylor directs Bo Ryan’s Badger attack with great skill and precision.

    While he doesn’t average a ton of assists (4.7 apg), he rarely turns the ball over (1.1 topg), which means he had one of the best assists-to-turnover ratios in the country (4.2).

    Taylor isn’t just a playmaker. He averaged 18.1 ppg. but may go for more in 2011-12 with the departure of Badger teammate Jon Leuer to the NBA.