The class of 2010 just finished high school, but we’re already treating some as one-and-dones. That’s college hoops today. Credit Fran Fraschilla with some forward thinking.
The ESPN analyst breaks down the top 10 one-and-done freshmen for 2010-11 (apologies to those who don’t have an ESPN Insider account) and there’s no surprise at the top: North Carolina-bound Harrison Barnes.
The 6-8 swingman may not have the “upside” some scouts crave, but he’s a polished, savvy player who’s already wowing onlookers with his overall game and composure. When you have the total package, you’ll be at the top of these lists.
It wouldn’t surprise me if Barnes stuck around Chapel Hill for a few years given his academic desires and the likelihood that he’ll love college (to say nothing of an impending NBA lockout). If college hoopheads are lucky, we’ll get two, maybe three years out of Barnes. Anything beyond that would be gravy.
The rest of the list – which isn’t much different from the top players on Rivals and Scout – doesn’t have many surprises. Kyrie Irving, Brandon Knight, Enes Kanter, Jared Sullinger, Josh Selby, C.J. Leslie are all on there. The only mild surprise was seeing Perry Jones at No. 2.
Not that Jones, a 6-11 center headed to Baylor, isn’t deserving of that spot. By most accounts, he’ll step right into the Bears’ starting lineup and make an instant impact. It’s just the first time I’ve seen him elevated ahead of those other prospects. Perhaps that’s a factor of Jones heading to Baylor, which isn’t yet among college basketball’s top programs despite its Elite Eight finish and high hopes for 2010-11.
If Jones lives up to this billing, that could change. And make Fraschilla look prescient.
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