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Maryland’s Stone, Trimble to enter NBA Draft

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With forward Robert Carter Jr. having already decided to forego his remaining college eligibility, Maryland announced two more important NBA Draft decisions Monday night.

Freshman forward Diamond Stone and sophomore point guard Melo Trimble have both decided to enter the 2016 NBA Draft. However, while Stone will sign with an agent and as a result end his college career, Trimble will not be signing with an agent. Trimble would have until May 25 per the new NCAA rules to withdraw from the draft should he decide to return to Maryland for another season.

Stone’s decision to hire representation isn’t all that surprising, as he arrived on campus as a McDonald’s All-American ranked sixth in the Class of 2015 by Rivals.com. Stone averaged 12.5 points and 5.4 rebounds per game as a freshman, and DraftExpress.com projects him to be picked 23rd in the June draft.

Trimble’s projected to be an early second round selection, a tough spot to land given the difference in contract guarantees (or lack thereof) compared to a first round choice. As a sophomore Trimble led the Terps in both points and assists, averaging 14.8 points and 4.9 assists per contest. Trimble’s scoring average dropped some from his freshman season, when he averaged 16.3 points per game, but this was to be expected given the other weapons at his disposal.

Unfortunately his percentages also dropped, going from 43.8 to 41.4 percent shooting from the field and from 40.0 to 33.5 percent from beyond the arc.

Trimble’s decision is a critical one for Mark Turgeon as he and his staff prepare for 2016-17. While rising junior Jaylen Brantley would have a season of Division I experience under his belt, he played just 8.4 minutes per contest. Should Trimble remain in the draft even more responsibility falls upon the shoulders of incoming freshman guards Anthony Cowan and Kevin Huerter.

Stone, Trimble lift No. 4 Maryland to 70-65 win over Huskers

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LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) Freshman Diamond Stone had 16 points, 10 rebounds and a season-high eight blocks, and No. 4 Maryland held off Nebraska 70-65 on Wednesday night.

Melo Trimble had 14 of his 20 points in the second half as the Terrapins overcame a slew of turnovers to remain a half-game behind conference co-leaders Indiana and Iowa.

Stone dunked off an assist from Trimble to give the Terps (20-3, 9-2 Big Ten) the lead for good, 60-58, and he dunked again after rebounding Jake Layman’s missed free throw to make it 66-61 with 2 minutes to play.

The Huskers were within three points when Trimble put the game away with two free throws with 8.2 seconds left.

Andrew White III had 19 points and nine rebounds to lead Nebraska (12-11, 4-6). Shavon Shields was just 4 of 17 from the field and finished with 11 points and seven rebounds.

Maryland committed 18 turnovers, its most in a conference game this season, but the Huskers converted them into only nine points. Nebraska was unable to overcome its season-worst 31.8-percent shooting.

The Terps blocked a season-high 13 shots.

Nebraska was within 68-65 with 35 seconds left when Shields fouled Stone, an 81 percent free-throw shooter. Stone missed his third straight free throw of the game, though, but he was able to block Shields’ layup try at the other end.

After White missed what would have been a tying 3-point attempt, Layman came up with the rebound. Trimble was fouled and shot the clinching free throws.

The Terps had lots of chances to put away the game but couldn’t against a Nebraska team that has dropped four of five Big Ten home games.

Maryland turned the ball over 13 times in the first half and mostly got away with it because of Nebraska’s poor shooting. The Huskers brought the crowd to their feet when White dunked a lob from Benny Parker to tie it 27-27. After Layman’s hook-shot air ball, Jake Hammond made a free throw to put Nebraska in front by a point, but Stone’s jumper from the free throw line gave the Terrapins a 29-28 halftime lead.

TIP-INS

Maryland: Stone has scored in double figures in 16 of the past 19 games. … The Terps lead the nation in wins (19-2) in games decided by six points or less the past two seasons. … They entered the game as the only team in Big Ten to have five players averaging 10 or more points.

Nebraska: The Huskers were assessed a bench technical early in second half after Trimble stripped the ball from Shields right in front of coach Tim Miles. … They matched their season low with six turnovers and have had 10 or fewer in five straight games. … Glynn Watson Jr. has scored 10 or more points in seven straight games.

UP NEXT

Maryland hosts No. 18 Purdue on Saturday.

Nebraska hosts Rutgers on Saturday.

LATE NIGHT SNACKS: No. 4 Maryland, No. 7 North Carolina win

Associated Press
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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Dayton 85, Arkansas 81 (OT)

Despite blowing a 23-point lead the Flyers managed to pick up the win in overtime to move to 10-2 on the season. Charles Cooke III led six Dayton players in double figures with 18 points, and one of the other five was senior forward Dyshawn Pierre. Suspended for the fall semester, Pierre saw his first action of the season Wednesday night and finished with 11 points, four rebounds and three assists.

Moses Kingsley led the Razorbacks with 26 points and 11 rebounds, but far too often down the stretch Arkansas guards forced up shots as opposed to getting the ball to the one man Dayton couldn’t stop. Anton Beard’s three-pointer with 1.4 seconds remaining in regulation forced the extra period.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

No. 4 Maryland 70, Penn State 64: Terrapins not named Diamond Stone combined to score 31 points. Stone: 39 points on 10-for-15 shooting from the field and 19-for-25 from the foul line, and 12 rebounds. The freshman was special, and his play of late in the sixth man role is a positive sign for Mark Turgeon’s team. But has much changed from last season for Maryland when it comes to how they handle games?

No. 5 Virginia 71, Oakland 58: The Cavaliers erased a one-point halftime deficit to take care of the dangerous Golden Grizzlies in Charlottesville. Kay Felder scored 30 points but no other Oakland player scored in double figures (Felder only had three assists) as Virginia’s defense wore down Greg Kampe’s team. Anthony Gill scored 17 points and Mike Tobey, who scored a total of 20 points in the six games prior to tonight, added 16 for Virginia.

Pittsburgh 72, Syracuse 61: In the ACC opener for both it was the Panthers who made the big plays down the stretch to defend their home floor. Jamel Artis cracked the Syracuse zone on multiple occasions, finishing the game with 18 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Michael Young added 15 and seven rebounds for Jamie Dixon’s Panthers, who are now 11-1 on the season. Trevor Cooney and Tyler Roberson scored 15 apiece to lead the way for the Orange, who were also bludgeoned on the backboards by Pittsburgh (19 offensive rebounds, 22 second-chance points).

STARRED

Diamond Stone, Maryland: On a day in which his teammates struggled offensively Stone produced the best outing of his young career, scoring 39 points and grabbing 14 rebounds in the Terrapins’ 70-64 win over Penn State.

Dererk Pardon, Northwestern: In his second game after the injury to Alex Olah led to Northwestern burning his redshirt, Pardon scored 28 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in a win at Nebraska.

Grayson Allen, Duke: Allen made frequent trips to the foul line, shooting 15-for-17 on a day in which he scored a career-high 33 points in the Blue Devils’ win over Long Beach State.

Mark Donnal, Michigan: Donnal also established a new career-high in a win, scoring 26 points to go along with nine rebounds, three blocks and two steals. Prior to Wednesday, Donnal scored a total of 38 points this season.

Pancake Thomas, Hartford: Thomas was outstanding in the Hawks’ 82-80 double overtime loss at Rider, posting a line of 35 points, 17 rebounds and five assists.

STRUGGLED

Mike Williams, Rutgers: Williams had a rough go of it in the Scarlet Knights’ 79-72 loss to Indiana, missing all six of his shots from the field and going scoreless.

Joey King, Minnesota: The Golden Gophers’ leading scorer on the season, King scored seven points on 1-for-8 shooting in a 78-63 loss at Ohio State.

Patrick McCaw, UNLV: Since looking like a Mountain West POY candidate in early December the sophomore has struggled mightily. In a loss to Fresno State Wednesday night, McCaw scored just two points and committed five turnovers.

THE REST OF THE TOP 25

  • No. 15 Duke surpassed the 100-point mark for the second straight game as they got things going late in the first half of their 103-81 win over Long Beach State. The Blue Devils scored 61 points in the second half, and Grayson Allen scored a career-high 33 points.
  • No. 19 West Virginia rolled to an 88-63 win at Virginia Tech, forcing 22 Hokie turnovers and dominating the boards as well. Jevon Carter, who made his first field goal attempts scored 18 for the Mountaineers.
  • No. 7 North Carolina opened ACC play with an 80-69 win over Clemson in Chapel Hill. Marcus Paige led five Tar Heels in double figures with 18 points, and Clemson’s streak of never having won at UNC continues.
  • No. 24 South Carolina took care of Francis Marion, 78-56. Freshman Chris Silva finished with 13 points, six rebounds and three blocks.
  • No. 11 Iowa State did what was expected and took care of Coppin State, winning 104-84 in Ames. Abdel Nader scored 21 points and Georges Niang tallied 15 and nine rebounds for the Cyclones, who had six players score in double figures.

OTHER NOTABLE RESULTS

  • It wasn’t pretty but Indiana managed to hold off Rutgers 79-72 in the Big Ten opener for both. The Hoosiers played without the injured James Blackmon Jr., who was ruled out with a knee injury.
  • Caris LeVert accounted for 22 points, ten rebounds and six assists and Mark Donnal scored a career-high 26 as Michigan beat Illinois 78-68 in Champaign.
  • Northwestern (13-1) is now off to the best start in program history after they won by nine at Nebraska. Dererk Pardon went for 28 and 12 in his second game of the season.
  • Houston won its conference opener in the American, holding off USF in Tampa. Devonta Pollard scored 20 points and Rob Gray Jr. added 19 for the 11-2 Cougars.
  • In a matchup of expected Patriot League contenders Army got off to a hot start and then held on to win 88-82 at Lehigh. Tanner Plomb scored 23 and dished out five assists for the Black Knights.
  • Trailing by one at the half, Seton Hall put together an impressive second half on both ends of the floor as they won 83-63 at Marquette in the Big East opener for both. Desi Rodriguez scored 19 points and Khadeen Carrington tallied 17, ten rebounds, five assists and four steals.
  • Evansville won its Missouri Valley opener, beating Indiana State 70-62 with D.J. Balentine (nine rebounds, five assists) and Egidijus Mockevicius (16 rebounds) scoring 22 points apiece.
  • Northern Iowa also won its Valley opener, as they whipped Bradley 80-44. The Braves scored just 16 points in the second half, and Jeremy Morgan led five Panthers in double figures with 18 points.
  • Little Rock moved to 11-1 with a nine-point win (69-60) at South Alabama in the Sun Belt opener for both. Josh Hagins scored 17 points for the Trojans.
  • UT-Arlington, which like Little Rock picked up some solid wins in non-conference play, won its Sun Belt opener by 15 over reigning tournament champion Georgia State (85-70). Kevin Hervey finished with 17 points and eight rebounds for the Mavericks.
  • Playing with just seven available scholarship players, Rhode Island picked up an 88-85 overtime win at Brown. Four McGlynn led the way with a career-high 33 points while also grabbing six rebounds.
  • New Mexico ended its four-game losing streak with an 88-76 win over Nevada in the Mountain West opener for both. Elijah Brown scored 24 points and Tim Williams 20 for the Lobos, who also received 14 points and 11 rebounds from center Obij Aget.
  • Fresno State went to Las Vegas and beat UNLV 69-66, with Marvelle Harris scoring 22 points and Torren Jones adding 18 while also grabbing eight rebounds.

Diamond Stone saves No. 4 Maryland with 32-point second half

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New season, same old Maryland.

The Terps outscored Penn State 25-6 in the final 6:30 of their Big Ten opener on Wednesday night as the No. 4 team in the country erased a 13-point second half deficit, winning 70-64.

Diamond Stone was the savior for Mark Turgeon and company. He scored 32 of his career-high 39 points in the second half, adding 12 boards — eight of which were offensive — and two blocks. He was 10-for-15 from the floor and got to the free throw line 25 times in large part because he was just too big and too strong for anyone on Penn State’s front line.

The Comcast Center crowd was not as loud or as raucous as usual — that’s what happens with these pre-New Year’s Eve games — and when you throw in the weird weekday start time, it would make some sense that Maryland would show up out of sync. They shot 25.0 percent in the first half and, outside of a 10-0 run to start the second half, looked downright awful for much of the first 33:30, when they were down 58-45.

It’s not a stretch to say that Stone is the only reason they were in this game, the only reason that they were able to make that late run.

Not only did he score 32 second half points, but he scored 23 of Maryland’s first 29 points after the break. Melo Trimble, who finished with 10 points and six assists, made the biggest plays in the final minutes, hitting a pair of big threes and notching a couple of critical assists, but he was largely irrelevant, finishing 3-for-15 from the floor. Rasheed Sulaimon and Jared Nickens were both 0-for-5 from the field. Jake Layman at least had a pair of buckets for the Terps.

This was the blueprint for Maryland games last season.

Struggle in the first half, look unimpressive for stretches of the second half, makes the plays they need to make in crunch-time to get the win. That’s why their computer rankings were never as impressive as their actual rankings.

That’s a habit that they’re going to want to break.

Carter, Stone shine as No. 4 Maryland beats Marshall 87-67

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COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) Maryland center Diamond Stone is finding his scoring touch just in time for his Big Ten debut.

The freshman continued his recent strong stretch Sunday, finishing with 16 points as the fourth-ranked Terrapins pulled away for an 87-67 victory over Marshall.

“He makes it look so easy,” Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said of Stone, who was 8 of 10 from the field.

Forward Robert Carter added 19 points as Maryland (11-1) shook off 19 turnovers and countered Marshall’s perimeter-focused offense with a heavy emphasis on inside play.

“That was our plan,” Turgeon said. “I thought we shot too many jump shots early. But we settled down. We went inside.”

After a sluggish start to the season, Stone has scored in double figures in his last five games, including a career-best 16 points three times. And the McDonald’s All-America has done it primarily while coming off the bench, he says, for the first time “since fourth grade.”

He was Turgeon’s first sub against Marshall and played a career-high 25 minutes in his final game before Maryland opens the Big Ten season against Penn State on Wednesday.

“I kind of accepted it and I realized that we’re a team and it’s not just all about me,” Stone said of his role. “And if we’re winning and I’m coming off the bench, then it’s a good win.”

Rasheed Sulaimon added 14 points, while Melo Trimble had 13 and hit three 3-pointers, part of a season-high 13 for the Terrapins.

Stevie Browning was one of four Marshall players to score 11 points. He grabbed seven rebounds for the Thundering Herd (4-9), who made 6 of 31 3-point attempts, missing 12 straight in the second half as the Terrapins pulled away.

“Our bigs have got to shoot better,” Marshall coach Dan D’Antoni said. “We can’t go conventional, we’re not built for that. If we tried to go mano-a-mano with a team like this, they would probably pretty handily take care of us pretty quick.”

Maryland was up by 10 points at halftime and took control with a 25-10 run that stretched across much of the second half.

Trimble got it started with a jumper and a 3-pointer to make it 59-43, and Stone followed with two inside baskets.

Carter added his final points of the game on a thunderous transition dunk off a feed from Trimble, and Jake Layman and Jaylen Brantley each hit two 3-pointers.

Brantley’s second, off a pass from Trimble, made it 77-51 with 6:32 to play.

“It’s a great win for us,” Turgeon said. “If you’d told me we were going to be up 25, 26 against this team, I knew we had to play well to do it.”

TIP-INS

Marshall: The Thundering Herd fell to 5-18 all-time against current Big Ten schools, including 2-3 against Maryland. … Marshall had not played a team ranked higher than Maryland since facing No. 3 Syracuse in December 2011.

Maryland: The Terrapins improved to 7-0 at Xfinity Center. … Maryland plays one more nonconference game, at home against Bowie State on Feb. 9. … Senior guard Trevor Anzmann scored his first career points with a 3-pointer in the game’s final minute.

BRANTLEY’S REUNION

Brantley finished with eight points and hit 3 of 4 field goals against his former team, one game after scoring a career-high 14 points against Princeton.

“I think his confidence has come the furthest, and that’s really what’s important,” Turgeon said of the sophomore transfer.

`OUT OF GAS’

Marshall hit only 1 of 13 3-point attempts in the second half after missing all 13 of its second-half 3-pointers on Dec. 17 against West Virginia, its other game against a ranked opponent.

“We ran out of gas in the second half,” D’Antoni said.

UP NEXT

Marshall hosts Western Kentucky next Sunday.

Maryland hosts Penn State on Wednesday.

College Basketball’s Impact Freshmen

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TEN NAMES YOU NEED TO KNOW: Here are the ten best freshmen in the sport.

1. Ben Simmons, LSU: A native of Australia, Simmons has been getting huge national buzz already as a potential Player of the Year candidate this preseason. As one of college basketball’s most versatile players this season, Simmons has a chance to put up regular triple-doubles while leading LSU to a bunch of wins. The 6-foot-10 Simmons can rebound, handle the ball in the open floor and pass with elite vision. If there’s any part of his game that remains a question mark, it’s his perimeter jumper — which has always been workable but inconsistent.

[MORE: Top 100 players | CBT Top 25]

2. Skal Labissiere, Kentucky: Perhaps the most talented freshman of this class, the 6-foot-11 Labissiere has a ton of upside and could dominate stretches on both ends of the floor this season. A native of Haiti, Labissiere can defend the rim and rebound and he’s also a dynamic offensive threat who can score from a number of positions on the floor. When Kentucky’s guards run high ball screens with Labissiere this season, he should have the ability to score rolling to the basket or finding space for his jumper. Handling the strength of older and more experienced opposing big men might be Labissiere’s biggest obstacle this season.

3. Jamal Murray, Kentucky: If Labissiere is Kentucky’s most talented freshman, then Murray could be the most productive this season. The Canadian guard looked like a potential superstar during portions of this summer in the Pan-Am Games, especially when he went for 22 points in the fourth quarter and overtime alone against the United States. At 6-foot-5, Murray has great size for a lead guard and his pull-up jumper is deadly. His vision is also solid and he spend the summer playing with and against professionals and top college players in high-stakes international settings. If Murray finds good balance within Kentucky’s deep perimeter attack, he could have a huge year.

4. Brandon Ingram, Duke: Duke was able to keep Ingram from leaving the state of North Carolina and they’re hoping the Kinston native can be their next superstar wing forward. Ingram won’t be nearly as physically developed as players like Jabari Parker and Justise Winslow as freshmen, but he’s got an offensive arsenal that more than makes up for it. At 6-foot-9, Ingram can spray jumpers from nearly anywhere on the floor and he has the mentality of a cold-blooded scorer. With an advanced pull-up game and improving toughness going to the rim, Ingram became a three-level scorer later in his high school career. If his frail body can handle the day-to-day rigors of college basketball, Ingram will have a big year.

5. Jaylen Brown, Cal: It was a surprising commitment when the 6-foot-6 Brown decided to leave Georgia and head out west, but the Golden Bears are happy to put him on the floor immediately. A big and physical wing who can attack the basket or the glass, Brown improved his perimeter jumper and handle as high school went along. A gifted scorer, Brown is a load to handle in the open floor with a full head of steam and he’s the type of player who could have some poster dunks this season thanks to his brute strength at the rim. If the perimeter jumper is consistently going down, Brown is going to be a force.

MORE: Top leads guards | Top off guards | Top Wings | Top Bigs

Jaylen Brown, AP Photo
Jaylen Brown, AP Photo

6. Henry Ellenson, Marquette: Underrated nationally coming into the season after missing the senior all-star games with injury, Ellenson is a new-breed big man who has open-floor skill and an ability to space the floor. The Wisconsin native stayed home to play with his brother Wally at Marquette and now the Golden Eagles have a 6-foot-10 freshman who can handle like a guard and hit 3-pointers to stretch the floor. With Ellenson teaming with junior big man Luke Fischer, Marquette instantly has one of the most intriguing front courts in America entering the season and Ellenson’s skill level makes him a tough cover.

7. Cheick Diallo, Kansas: If the NCAA deems him eligible, Kansas will get a gigantic lift from the high-motor big man. A star during the senior all-star circuit this spring, Diallo rebounds and defends the rim with the best of them and he’s also improving as an offensive player. At his best in transition, the 6-foot-9 Diallo runs the floor like a guard and has the length around the rim to erase shots that many others couldn’t get to. Diallo’s warrior-like mentality should help raise the level of play for the Jayhawks when he’s on the floor. The question is: when will that be?

8. Malik Newman, Mississippi State: Ben Howland is going to put the ball in Newman’s hands right away and the pressure will be on the in-state guard to immediately produce. A natural scorer with deep range on his pull-up jumper, the 6-foot-3 Newman can go on silly scoring runs where he’s pulling up 3-pointers and nailing them in consecutive possessions like Kevin Durant at Rucker Park. Although his efficiency and ability to be a high-level point guard will come into question at times this season, Newman will be one of the best freshman scorers in college basketball.

9. Diamond Stone, Maryland: How happy is Melo Trimble to have a post scorer like Stone entering College Park? The native of Wisconsin is a load to handle on the interior as a post scorer, as he showed moves going over both shoulders in high school. Also a candidate to knock home a 3-pointer when he’s a trailer on a break, Stone can fall in love with his jumper a bit too much, but now he has a ton of talent around him to help him settle into the post. The 6-foot-10 center has good hands, is a productive rebounder and should be a tough cover with Robert Carter also being a post option for the Terps.

10. Stephen Zimmerman, UNLV: Runnin’ Rebels fans are thrilled to keep Zimmerman home and the 6-foot-11 lefty is skilled enough to make an immediate impact. The product of local powerhouse Bishop Gorman is an advanced passer for a big man and he’s also shown an ability to score in a variety of ways. Also a good rebounder and communicator as a back-line defender, Zimmerman’s leadership qualities could be an underrated aspect of him joining the UNLV program. The pressure will be on Zimmerman to help lead UNLV back to the NCAA tournament, but he’s built for the challenge.

RELATED: Top 100 players | All-AmericansMid-Major Power Rankings

FIVE POTENTIAL D’ANGELO RUSSELLS: Here are five guys outside the top ten that could play their way onto an all-american team come the spring

1. Jalen Brunson, Villanova: The son of former NBA veteran Rick Brunson, Jalen was tremendous as the starting point guard of the USA U19 World Championship team and went 40 minutes without a turnover in the gold-medal game to help secure MVP honors. The 6-foot-2 lefty has a tremendous basketball IQ and can hit pull-up jumpers from everywhere.

2. Tyler Dorsey, Oregon: An impressive scorer who regularly put up 40-point games in high school, Dorsey will be asked to help replace Joseph Young. The 6-foot-4 Dorsey’s ability to hit jumpers and get to the basket should immediately translate to the college level.

3. Caleb Swanigan, Purdue: Now that he’s been cleared by the NCAA, the 6-foot-9 Swanigan can focus on being a bruising force alongside centers A.J. Hammons and Isaac Haas. Swanigan is rugged and physical, but he’s also more skilled than he appears.

4. Dwayne Bacon, Florida State: One of the most physically-ready freshmen entering college basketball, the 6-foot-6 wing had a tremendous senior season and should be able to help the Seminoles in the scoring column. Bacon’s athleticism is top notch and he should have some highlights this season.

5. Allonzo Trier, Arizona: With freshman Ray Smith Jr. going down to injury, the 6-foot-3 Trier could be asked to play more minutes for the Wildcats. The Nike EYBL’s first four-year player, Trier is experienced in big games at the high school level and should be an immediate contributor.

MARCH HEROES?: Here are five freshman that could play a big role come March.

1. Jalen Adams, UConn: Kevin Ollie has a ton of perimeter options this season, but the speed of the 6-foot-1 Adams will make him a great change-of-pace guard off the bench in the early season.

2. Aaron Holiday, UCLA: The younger brother of former Bruin Jrue Holiday, Aaron is already starting alongside Bryce Alford this preseason and he’s showed positive signs on the defensive end with his activity.

3. Carlton Bragg, Kansas: The 6-foot-9 Bragg is skilled as a shooter and also physically gifted enough to rebound and score in the post. If Cheick Diallo is not cleared to play, Bragg’s role could expand even further.

4. Ryan Cline, Purdue: In desperate need of perimeter shooting, the Boilers kept this 6-foot-5 sharpshooter in the state of Indiana and he should help the spacing around Purdue’s talented big men.

5. Thomas Bryant, Indiana: Likely to start in the middle for Indiana, the 6-foot-10 Bryant brings a lot of energy and tenacity to the interior. The Hoosiers will count on Bryant to rebound and defend the rim early as his offense continues to grow.