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Dave Telep, Evan Daniels, Greg Hicks and Eric Bossi sounded off on the Class of 2010. The analysts were asked 8 questions and this is the first of a two-part series.
1) Game on the line, you need a bucket. Which senior are you drawing the play up for?
Telep: Harrison Barnes would be the easy choice but I’m gonna be uncommon. I’m getting out my dry erase board and diagramming a play for Jared Sullinger. The guards and wings get all the hype so I’m going Russell-Chamberlain style. I would gently (kids, cover your ears) persuade my point guard that he’s to toss the ball into the big fella by any means necessary. I would then motion to my wife to call the restaurant. She would then make a reservation for 30 minutes from now because there is no way Big Sully doesn’t either score or go to the line.
Daniels: There are a handful of guys that I’d feel confident about going to during crunch time. Harrison Barnes, Brandon Knight and Will Barton are immediate names that come to mind, but the guy I’m going to with is 5-foot-11 floor general Joe Jackson. A tough kid that backs down from no one, Jackson managed to lead the Memphis Magic through a brutal Las Vegas schedule to the adidas Super 64 title. On the way he made big play after big play, including a handful of game winners. I have a feeling Josh Pastner will be confident drawing up plays for him once he puts on the Memphis jersey.
Bossi: I think that Brandon Knight, Josh Selby and Kyrie Irving would all be fine choices because they can create off the dribble. But, I think Harrison Barnes is the best player in the country and if I've got one play, I want the ball in the hands of my best player. Plus, I like that you can pretty much set a play up for him anywhere on the floor.
Hicks Since I only cover the West Coast, I will limit myself to players in the west. I'll go with Tyler Lamb. He can shoot the three, put the ball on the floor to create his own shot and he has the size and strength to finish inside against contact.
2) Who will be the last person from the Top 25 to sign and why?
Telep: I’m going with C.J. Leslie. Last year, Leslie had a front row seat for John Wall’s recruitment and let’s be honest, if you’re a big time player and enjoy the attention, John’s recruitment was a recruiting junkie’s dream. I think since C.J. de-committed, he’s been on his own timetable and I’ve always thought he’d be a spring guy.
Daniels: Heading into signing day there are 11 uncommitted prospects, including the nation’s top two players – Harrison Barnes and Brandon Knight in Scout.com’s top 25. I expect Barnes, Tobias Harris, and Josh Smith to sign early. That leaves Knight, Terrence Jones, Josh Selby, C.J. Leslie, Jelan Kendrick, Cory Joseph, Ray McCallum and Justin Coleman.
Word is Coleman is likely headed to junior college, so that leaves us with six players to choose from. Knight, Joseph, McCallum, Kendrick and Selby have taken multiple visits and seem to be on top of their respective recruiting processes. So I’m going to go with Leslie. He’s been a bit all over the map with his recruitment and has canceled visits on multiple occasions. He doesn’t appear to be close to making a decision, then again it’s hard to get a great feel because he rarely speaks to the media.
Bossi: I'm going to go with Josh Selby here. He picked Tennessee early, things didn't work out and I see him taking his time with things this time around.
3) If you had a charter plane and could fly anywhere in the country to see one player who would you go see?
Telep: I feel like we don’t know Vander Blue’s game well enough. I’d fight the urge to search for the best player in Hawaii and fire up the jet and head for Wisconsin.
Daniels: Will Barton was the name that immediately came to mind. The Memphis bound wing is a talented prospect with an impressive skill set. What’s special about Barton, a top 10 prospect, is he doesn’t take possessions off, he plays hard on both ends, he’s tough and he loves to play basketball. He plays every possession like its his last and he always seems to be enjoying himself.
Bossi: Easy answer, Tony Mitchell. I saw that young man do some truly impressive things in Las Vegas during July, but I've only seen him play a few times and don't feel like I've got a great handle on his game. He's one of the few highly rated guys who I feel like I don't have a good enough evaluation on, for that reason I pick him.
Hicks: I'd go see Josh Smith. He's the best prospect in the west and I'm curious to see what kind of progress he's made since July.
4) You've got a magic wand. You could wave it and put one recruit into the Scout.com Top 100. Who would it be and why?
Telep: I’m concerned that Ahmad Starks could turn into a Pac-10 clone of Jerome Randle and Tyjuan Porter. Equally worried that Kevin Noreen won’t win any style points but my gut says Boston College knows what to do with him.
Daniels: The guy I’m going with is Texas A&M commit Keith Davis. Having watched him a handful of times prior to his junior season and then watching him this past summer, he’s a guy that has made improvements over the past year. Davis, a 6-foot-9, 235-pound power forward, is quite effective on defense, has a nice set of hands and an improving offensive game.
Bossi: I'm going to go with Josh Huestis here. I like his size, athleticism versatility and I feel like he's got plenty of room for growth with his game. I think he'll be able to play multiple spots in college and Stanford has landed a good one in the 6-foot-7 forward.
Hicks: Ben Vozzola. He's got everything you look for in a shooting guard. Length, quickness, very good shooter, excellent passer, terrific feel. San Diego head coach Bill Grier got a steal in Vozzola.