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Reasonable Expectations for Star Hoops Recruits – Part II April 1, 2009

Posted by flashbuzzer in Sports.
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My previous post provided a synopsis of the college basketball careers of various members of the class of 2001.

This post focuses on players from the class of 2002. I recall that back in 2002, recruiting experts rated this class solidly behind its predecessor.

Again, many thanks to Statsheet for making this post possible.

Raymond Felton – Felton made an immediate impact at North Carolina and was the key cog on their 2005 national championship squad (it can be argued that he was more vital to the Tar Heels’ success than Sean May). He proved to be a superb floor general, averaging 6.9 apg and 1.9 spg over the course of his three-year stay in Chapel Hill. After leading Tar Heel Nation to a 71-31 record, the Bobcats selected him with the #5 pick in the 2005 NBA Draft.

Rashad McCants – McCants also played a vital role in the Tar Heels’ 2005 national title run, making this UNC recruiting haul a smashing success (May was also in this class). He was a fantastic scorer during his three-year college career, averaging 17.6 ppg and shooting 48.4% from the floor, along with a 41.4% mark from beyond the arc. This mercurial talent was then selected by the Timberwolves with the #14 pick in the 2005 NBA Draft.

Carmelo Anthony – Anthony’s one year at Syracuse was spectacular, to say the least. He put up awesome stats, including 22.2 ppg and 10.0 rpg; perhaps the best sign of his importance to the Orange was his 36.4 mpg mark. Anthony led the Orange to a sparkling 30-5 record and the national title in a thrilling 81-78 victory over Kansas. He was then selected by the Pistons with the #3 pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.

Paul Davis – Davis put up decent stats during his career at Michigan State, including marks of 13.2 ppg, 53.7% from the floor, 7.0 rpg and 1.1 spg. Unfortunately, he was never the best player on any of the four Spartans squads that he suited up for. Michigan State went 88-44 from 2002-06 and made it to the Big Dance each year, including Elite Eight and Final Four appearances in 2003 and 2005, respectively.

Daniel Horton – Horton put together a real four-year mixed bag with Michigan. Pros: he averaged 14.7 ppg and 1.7 spg. Cons: he only shot 39.5% from the floor and 35.7% from beyond the arc. The Wolverines went 76-52 and had only two NIT appearances to show for Horton’s time in Ann Arbor, though they did win the 2004 NIT title.

J.J. Redick – Redick finished his career as one of the best two-guards in college basketball history. A consummate winner, his four-year run at Duke included a record of 116-23 and three ACC Tournament titles. His well-documented scoring (19.9 ppg, including 26.0 ppg during his senior season), three-point (40.5%) and free-throw (91.1%) exploits made him a deadly offensive threat; the fact that the Blue Devils never won a national title tarnishes his legacy to some extent, though.

Chris Bosh – all of the hoopla surrounding Anthony obscures the fact that Bosh also had a great “one-and-done” college experience. He put up 15.6 ppg and 9.0 rpg for Georgia Tech, shooting 56% from the floor and 73% from the foul line. The Yellow Jackets only went 16-15 and missed the Big Dance, though. Bosh was then picked #4 overall in the 2003 NBA Draft by the Raptors.

Jason Fraser – though Fraser entered Villanova with plenty of hype, injuries ruined his career. He only put up 5.9 ppg and 5.8 rpg, averaging a paltry 20.4 mpg. The Wildcats did go 85-46 during his four-year stay in Philadelphia, though that sterling record was largely due to stars such as Randy Foye and Allan Ray. To Fraser’s credit, this New York Times article shows that Fraser definitely had plenty going for him off the court.

Anthony Roberson – “Peeper” proved to be a superb offensive threat during his three years in Gainesville, putting up 15.8 ppg and shooting 44.3/40.1/86.4. The Gators went 69-27 and won the 2005 SEC Tournament, beating Kentucky in the final. Florida never made it past the second round of the Big Dance during Roberson’s career, though; he then declared for the 2005 NBA Draft and went undrafted.

Bracey Wright – Wright had a reputation for being a superb long-range shooter, but he only shot 34.9% from beyond the arc during his three-year career for Indiana. His impact on the Hoosiers was debatable, as they went 50-42 and only made it to the Big Dance once, losing to Pittsburgh in the second round in 2003. On the bright side, he averaged 17.6 ppg and dished out 5.1 apg; he also averaged 35.7 mpg. Wright then declared for the 2005 NBA Draft and was picked in the second round by the Timberwolves.

Evan Burns – Burns had an interesting recruiting journey. He initially committed to UCLA, though he failed to gain admission and ended up at San Diego State. Burns’ one season with the Aztecs wasn’t spectacular; they went 16-14 and missed the Big Dance. While his offensive stats weren’t great, he proved to be a great defender, putting up 1.0 bpg and 1.2 spg in 22.4 mpg. Unfortunately, he became an academic casualty and was kicked off the team after the season.

Shelden Williams – the “Landlord” certainly lived up to his moniker during his 4-year run in Durham, averaging 9.1 rpg and 3.0 bpg. He even put up 1.2 spg and shot 57.1% from the floor to boot. As his career completely overlapped with Redick’s, he also went 116-23 during his college career. His high point at Duke came when the Blue Devils advanced to the Final Four in 2004, losing to eventual national champ Connecticut.

Torin Francis – Francis proved to be a mixed bag for Notre Dame during his 4-year career. On one hand, he grabbed 8.6 rpg and tallied 1.4 bpg. On the other hand, he only scored 11.3 ppg and shot 49.7% from the floor. The Irish went 76-49, only making it to the Big Dance in 2003 and losing in the Sweet 16 to Arizona. Francis was never close to being the best player on any of the four Irish squads that he suited up for.

Chris Rodgers – Rodgers never blossomed into the star that Wildcats fans expected him to become. He only put up 6.3 ppg and saw limited playing time, averaging 19.4 mpg. Arizona did go 98-34 during his 4-year career, though other players played a larger role in contributing to that sparkling mark. The Wildcats made it to the Elite Eight in 2003 and 2005.

Hassan Adams – one of those star Wildcats turned out to be Adams. Somehow he stayed four years in Tucson and stuffed the stat sheet in a variety of ways, including averages of 14.0 ppg, 49.9 fg%, 5.4 rpg and 1.8 spg. He was one of the stars on the Arizona squad that pushed top-ranked Illinois to the brink in their 2005 Elite Eight matchup. The Wildcats led the Illini by 15 with 4 minutes to play, and the rest is history.

Kennedy Winston – Winston proved to be a solid scorer during his three-year run in Tuscaloosa, averaging 16.2 ppg. The Crimson Tide went 61-33 during his career, including a spectacular run to the Elite Eight in 2004 that included a second-round upset of top-seeded Stanford. While Winston was the best player on the Tide throughout most of his career, his decision to declare for the 2005 NBA Draft was not vindicated.

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1. Reasonable Expectations for Star Hoops Recruits - Part III « Ringing In - April 11, 2009

[…] Recruits – Part III April 11, 2009 Posted by flashbuzzer in Uncategorized. trackback My previous post provided a synopsis of the college basketball careers of various members of the class of […]


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