20 Best Defenders Among the Top 2015 College Basketball Recruits

College basketball coaches spend nearly as much time searching for their next great player as they do working with the ones they already have on the roster. Finding prospects who can lead to future (or sustained) success is a huge part of the job.

And one of the toughest parts of that time spent on the recruiting trail is finding prospects who can play defense.

Most of the highlights in recruits’ mix tapes involve dunks, drives and drained jumpers, but being able to defend and deny is just as important for some when it comes to landing a scholarship with a major program. Being able to score at will is nice, but coaches are also looking for guys who can make a stop and contribute on both ends of the court.

We’ve taken a look at the top prospects listed on 247Sports’ composite rankings and found the 20 best defenders in the 2015 class.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

College Basketball 2014-15: Each Major Conference’s All-Senior All-League Team

In the one-and-done era of college basketball, seniors are usually yesterday’s news. They weren’t productive enough or in the right situation to come out after one or two seasons, and the NBA looks at a 22-year-old very differently from a 19-year-old. The four-year player can often be taken for granted.

Last year, though, the senior class was dominant. All-American candidates like Doug McDermott, Russ Smith, Shabazz Napier, Sean Kilpatrick, Cleanthony Early and Xavier Thames struck blows for the old guys. In fact, of the 11 players named to the consensus All-America team, six were among the “elderly,” while only two freshmenAndrew Wiggins and Jabari Parkergarnered similar honors.

Each major conference has senior talent who can set the pace for its championship race or at the very least entertain the fans. These five-man teams are what each league would likely select if the all-conference teams were comprised exclusively of seniors.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

College basketball countdown: No. 29 UCLA

USA TODAY Sports breaks down the projected NCAA tournament field of 68.

      
 

 

View full post on USATODAY – NCAA Top Stories

Conference Realignment Moves We Wish Would Happen in College Basketball

There isn’t any college basketball conference realignment scheduled for next summer, but there are a few moves we would like to see.

We certainly aren’t complaining about the lack of conference realignment on the horizon. To the contrary, it’s simply delightful to know we won’t have to spend the summer of 2015 trying to remember which teams are now in which conferences.

However, we aren’t nearly naive enough to think there won’t be more bursts of realignment at some point in the next few years.

Rather than sitting back and just watching as great rivalry after rivalry is taken away from us in the name of football revenue, we’ve decided to proactively compromise by suggesting 10 acceptable moves.

Please note that all of these suggestions are made only with men’s college basketball in mind. College football and women’s college basketball were disregarded in the interest of making the best possible men’s college basketball conferences.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

Ranking the Best Team Nicknames in College Basketball

Not every college basketball team can be winners on the court, but with the right nickname and mascot, they can be perennial champions in the world of sports trivia.

With 351 schools participating at the Division I level, there are quite a few different nicknames out there. There are also a lot of repeat monikers, as 15 schools apiece are named Bulldogs or Eagles in some form, 14 have Hawks in their name, and another 13 are some type of Tigers.

You will not see any versions of those nicknames on this list of the best in college basketball. We scoured the ranks for uniqueness, factoring in what the name means to the school and how catchy it is.

Here’s our choice for the 10 best. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

Ranking the Best Home-and-Home Matchups of the 2014-15 College Basketball Season

“Things will be different when we play at our place.”

It’s a statement that, in various forms, college basketball players and coaches have said over the years after a tough loss on the road against a quality opponent. Knowing that there might be a chance to avenge that defeat later on at home provides solace as well as motivation.

Sadly, though, with expansion giving us so many oversized conferences in Division I, the era of the home-and-home series is winding down.

Leagues with more than 10 teams tend not to play enough conference games to allow every school to both host and visit each other, leading to unbalanced schedules that put as much emphasis on whom you play rather than how you play.

Luckily, there are still plenty of great home-and-home conference matchups on the docket for 2014-15.

Take at look at the 10 best set for this season, then let us know which other home-and-home affairs are worthy of making this list.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

College Basketball Teams Best Set Up for Consistent Success Ahead of 2014-15

Is it too early to start thinking about the 2019 NCAA men’s basketball tournament?

Yeah, probably.

But what would you do if you received this unique offer?

Pick 20 teams who you think will make the NCAA tournament in each of the next five seasons. For every team you pick correctly, you win $X; but for every incorrect pick, you owe $2X.

Easy money, right? It’s the same darn teams in the tournament every year!

Well, actually, only 11 teams in the country have been to each of the past five NCAA tournaments. Had you made that bet five years ago, your best-case scenario is minus-$7Xand that’s assuming you somehow had the foresight to know that Kansas State and San Diego State would suddenly dance five years in a row.

But if you found yourself unable to turn down that offer, these are the 20 teams best positioned to make every NCAA tournament from 2015-19.

Teams are ranked by how unlikely they are to miss a tournament in the next half-decade.

 

Recruiting information on the following slides courtesy of 247Sports.com.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

College basketball countdown: No. 33 Memphis

USA TODAY Sports breaks down the projected NCAA tournament field of 68.

      
 

 

View full post on USATODAY – NCAA Top Stories

College basketball countdown: No. 32 Iowa

USA TODAY Sports breaks down the projected NCAA tournament field of 68.

      
 

 

View full post on USATODAY – NCAA Top Stories

College Basketball Stars in 2014-15 Who Will Not Be 1st-Round NBA Draft Picks

At a certain level of college basketball, every player has a potential NBA career at least in the back of his mind. Only the elite few walk right into college with scouts evaluating their lottery potential, while the rest need multiple seasons to refine their bodies or their games.

While some name value helps, college stardom is no guarantee that a player will receive a lucrative pro contract. Players who lack elite size or athleticism are passed over every season, no matter how productive they were in school.

These 10 players will be at least among their conferences’ best this season, but their pro futures don’t look quite as bright. Any of the bunch can still play into the draft, but the odds of becoming first-round picks are against them, barring substantial improvements.

Begin Slideshow

View full post on Bleacher Report – College Basketball

Next Page »