College Basketball Predictions: Top 15 Slam Dunk Artists in the Nation

Eric HampfordContributor IIINovember 9, 2011

College Basketball Predictions: Top 15 Slam Dunk Artists in the Nation

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    If you are a fan of the game of basketball, you know that the slam dunk brings a jolt of excitement and energy to a team that no vivacious coach can accomplish. It lights up arenas, recharges fans, and can swiftly change the momentum of a game on one single play.

    Every year, a new wave of young stars leave their mark on the college game with their own aerial assaults. We are glued to our TV's waiting for when the next thunderous dunk will happen, and tune in to ESPN's daily Top 10 plays like giddy school children, wondering which college star will take home the award for "best dunk of the day."

    For the 2011-2012 season, here are the top 15 slam dunk artists in all of America, who will be rattling rims all season long.

1. Deuce Bello, Baylor

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    It's not often that an incoming freshman can come into college and immediately be ranked as the best dunker in the nation, but Deuce Bello isn't your ordinary freshman. He is one of the most athletically gifted players to grace a college court in quite some time, and you can expect him to make a number of posterizing dunks in his inaugural college season.

2. Jared Cunningham, Oregon State

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    The star of Oregon State's basketball team may be headed toward a future in the NBA, but he is notorious for his explosive leaping ability. Beavers fans are ready for more highlights from the 6'4" junior this season.

3. Harrison Barnes, North Carolina

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    The superstar North Carolina sophomore has the drive to be an NBA legend, to go with the athleticism to disgrace ACC defenders for as long as his reign in Chapel Hill lasts.

4. Rodney Williams, Minnesota

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    The 6'7" junior may be disappointing fans with his lackluster play so far in his career, but he has yet to disappoint Gopher nation with his big-time dunks.

5. DeQuan Jones, Miami

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    One of the best dunks that the college game has seem in quite some time. Even if this was his only dunk at Miami, he deserves to be on this list...but fortunately for fans, he has more up his sleeves for this season.

6. Quincy Acy, Baylor

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    Between Quincy Acy, Deuce Bello, Perry Jones III and Quincy Miller, there could be a dunk record set by the Baylor Bear team this season. Calling this team athletic is an insult.

7. Mason Plumlee, Duke

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    Though Duke players tend to be targeted by fans and media who despise the program, you can't argue that Mason Plumlee can fly like few others in the United States.

8. Andre Drummond, Connecticut

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    The superstar freshman will make national news this year with his game-changing ability and All-World potential, and part of his dazzling package is his rim rattling assaults.

9. John Henson, North Carolina

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    The freakishly long Henson is a top-notch dunk artist, and takes the crown as the best shot-blocker in America for this season.

10. Andre Roberson, Colorado

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    Though the Colorado Buffaloes lost Alec Burks and Cory Higgins to the NBA and graduation, there is still a gem left in Boulder, the high-flying sophomore Andre Roberson.

11. Shay Shine, High Point

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    Looking for a high-riser at the lower end of the Division 1 spectrum? Look no further than Shay Shine. The kid even has a name that should be in lights.

12. Doug Anderson, Detroit Mercy

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    From community college to mid-major program, Doug Anderson is ready to make his highlights known nationally while playing with Detroit-Mercy.

13. Jahii Carson, Arizona State

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    The sub six-footer will bring fans to Pac-12 games because he brings a leaping ability to the conference not seen since Nate Robinson donned a Washington Huskies uniform. Though his eligibility is currently in question, if he ever does suit up for the Arizona State Sun Devils, expect tons of highlight-reel dunks.

14. Jeffery Taylor, Vanderbilt

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    Vanberbilt could be on the verge of a special season, and Jeffery Taylor is one of the main reasons. 

15. Elijah Johnson, Kansas

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    Though he hasn't done much in a Kansas Jayhawk uniform, there's no denying what Elijah Johnson is capable of. Bill Self called him one of the most athletic players he has ever coached.