Despite Selection Sunday angering the Drexel fans, anticipation of the NCAA Tournament could not be any more bubbling. I've admittedly watched a lot less college basketball this season due to my inclusion in The Real World: Los Angeles (the real one) but that doesn't make me any less thrilled that we're going to have a veritable sea of NBA prospects to watch and scrutinize and daydream about on a national stage.
To keep all of those fancy prospects in the right place, Jonathan Tjarks has assembled all the NBA Draft players to watch in the South region - which is basically where they all are anyway. The two biggest names (LITERALLY!) are Kentucky's Anthony Davis and UConn's Andre Drummond.
Davis, a 6'11, 220-pound fly-swatter with a 7'4 wingspan, has a chance to be the Defensive Player of the Year, the National Player of the Year and the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. A 6'3 high school junior who grew eight inches in one summer, he's the evolutionary answer to super-sized jump-shooters like Kevin Durant and Dirk Nowitzki. Drummond, a 6'11, 270-pound center with dunk contest athleticism, is the only player in the country who could knock Davis off his perch.
Definitely hoping we get to see this matchup in Round Two or 1.5 or whatever they're calling it.
Also: we've got our first taste of a 2012 NBA Mock Draft, although they've been around since 2009, that we're willing to share with you. The Sixers don't have lottery aspirations yet, but a trade into the top 14 isn't out of the question, especially with the NBA Trade Deadline looming. Here's my guy, from Ziller and Tjarks:
3. NEW ORLEANS HORNETS: QUINCY MILLER, BAYLOR
Miller is 6'9, 200 pounds with a 7'4 wingspan, great ball-handling skills and an excellent jumper (shooting 46 percent from the field, 38 percent from the three-point arc and 80 percent from the free-throw line as a freshman). He's trapped on a poorly coached Baylor team, and he'll need to put on some weight and continue recovering from a torn ACL he suffered last year, but he has what Hubie Brown would call "tremendous upside potential."
Not quite what the Sixers need considering the Evan Turner/Andre Iguodala roadblack at the 2-3, but Quincy's my man. Maybe it's because he's playing on the most NBA Draft-heavy Baylor Bears team since the John Wall Kentucky Wildcats, maybe it's because his name is Quincy and I love referring to him as Q, but I'm super high on this kid. Lanky with a long wingspan and a smooth ability to score always gets me. If he puts on the weight, I'll be riding the Quincy Train for some time.
Also: Just a friendly reminder to join the Liberty Ballers Tournament Pool from TwistyWristy. Winner gets a pair of Tanner's lucky socks!
Go Tournaments! Can't wait 'til we start our Top 30 again!