Washington Huskies Basketball: Power Ranking the Huskies' Top 5 Players
The Huskies come into this season with a bit of a question on their hands.
Who is gonna be the guy?
With the departure of Isaiah Thomas, Matthew Bryan-Amaning and Justin Holiday, they are left without their top scorers from last season.
I don't think fans should worry too much, though.
The Huskies have recruited great talent and have returning starters who can easily make this team a contender again.
There is also outstanding talent that came off the bench last year that will turn into great college players.
In my opinion, the Huskies' are still the team to beat in the Pac-12, but they get little preseason respect.
I rank the top five guys who will have the most impact on this season, when Washington will be looking for a player to step up and take control.
No. 5: C.J. Wilcox, G
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Wilcox had an impressive freshman season with the Huskies. With Scott Suggs out for what looks to be a few months, Wilcox will step up and fill in his role.
Wilcox will more than likely come off the bench, but this is a good thing for Washington. Wilcox is an amazing three-point shooter and brings a huge spark to the offense on a game-by-game basis.
Wilcox also showed flashes of creating his own space for shots toward the end of last year.
The bottom line is, by the end of the year, the Huskies' are going to want Wilcox on the floor making important baskets in the fourth quarter.
He did it last year in the postseason, and he is only going to get better.
No. 4: Darnell Gant, F
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Gant is arguably the most important factor to the success of the Huskies' this year, and I agree. Darnell Gant plays with a ton of emotion and improves every year.
His offense is getting better with improved back-to-the-basket play as well as decent three abilities.
Gant also plays hard-nosed defense which is a trait of the Washington program. Gant will be a role model for the freshman on the team who are trying to learn to play at a high level.
There will be many games this year that Gant will be the X factor for the young Washington team, and for this, he easily deserves to be on this list.
He also might be the Huskies' most well-rounded player this season.
No. 3: Tony Wroten, G
Wroten, a product of Garfield High School, is similar to another Husky player from the same school. If you're thinking Brandon Roy, you're right. He comes in around the same size as Roy at about 6'5", and a lot of analysts see him as the best passer of his class.
Washington has been blessed with great guards for years, and Wroten is no exception. He will come in and make huge impacts for the Huskies. I expect Wroten to start immediately and maybe even opt for the NBA at the end of the year if he plays well enough.
Wroten might have the most talent on the team, making him capable of becoming the next Washington star for years to come if Romar can convince him to keep returning.
With great size and abilities, Tony Wroten should be a good fit for this squad.
Romar will get Wroten playing top-tier defense and running an explosive offense early in the season.
No. 2: Abdul Gaddy, G
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Gaddy came to Washington as one of the most hyped guards in the country.
After a disappointing freshman season where Gaddy struggled to stop turning over the ball, he was benched in favor of two guards, one being Venoy Overton and the other Isaiah Thomas.
Since then, he has always been in their shadows.
Last year, Gaddy suffered a season-ending injury after showing promise he could lead the team at the beginning of the year. Well, this year, Gaddy is expected to be healthy, and those two guards are gone.
Expect Abdul Gaddy to start living up to his expectations.
He will pick up where he left off last year before getting injured. Before losing his season last year, you can't forget how smooth the offense ran with Thomas playing shooting guard and Gaddy being in charge.
He wants to prove himself this year, and barring a tragedy, he will.
No. 1: Terrence Ross
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Ross will be "the guy" this year simply because he knows how to play basketball. He has a high basketball IQ combined with a wealth of talent.
Ross is also one of the best shooters on the team and showed that last year in the NCAA tournament. He has proven that he can create his own space and score on slashing drives.
Terrence Ross will do more than score for the Huskies this year, though. With good leaping ability, he will be throwing down the basketball and bringing energy to a team that sometimes forgets what that is. He's also going to use his hops to pull down rebounds, something the Huskies failed to do time and time again last year.
Ross is poised to be the best player on this team this year.
He will lead the Huskies in points and should also be pulling down a solid amount of rebounds. Ross will be the new clutch man in the fourth quarter, and he will lead this team to another strong showing in the postseason.
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The Huskies' have a lot of talent and plenty of guys who can become a major factor in how this year pans out. Not every guy on the team shows as much promise as the guys I listed, but there is one player I left out that deserves a mention.
Aziz N'Diaye is a guy who can make big plays for this team. He will lead the Huskies in rebounds this season, and it's hard to argue that won't be a factor. But N'Diaye has problems with committing fouls.
If N'Diaye wants to be a major factor on this team this year, he needs to limit his fouls so that he can play major minutes. His height is a huge advantage for this team, and he plays strong defense, but none of that matters if he continues to sit out because of foul trouble.
This team has guys waiting to step up and make plays this year.
Only time will tell who emerges this season, but I don't feel like I am too far off in my assumptions.