Top 10 Go-to-Guys
Every national championship teams has that one player that they can go to with the game on the line and he will come through in the clutch. Carmelo Anthony was that guy for Syracuse when he was a freshman; Connecticut had Ben Gordon in 2004; and UNC rode Sean May in the title game four years back. Florida and Kansas were partial anomalies the past few seasons with a balanced distribution, but even they had players to go to down the stretch. It is an important ingredient in March. Here are the top 10 go-to-guys in the country:
Remember, this is NOT a ranking of the top players in the country. It is merely a ranking of dependability in crunch time.
1. Sherron Collins, Kansas: There’s not too many players in college basketball with his combination of strength and quickness.
2. Toney Douglas, Florida State: Despite not having much around him, Douglas has carried the ‘Noles to a top-five seed.
3. Ty Lawson, North Carolina: There might not be anyone in the nation who can stay in front of him when it counts and when he needs to get to the rim.
4. Jeff Teague, Wake Forest: Teague has tailed off somewhat down the stretch, but he still has unlimited range and can get to the basket.
5. James Harden, Arizona State: Harden is one of the best all-around players in the country, and his scoring and dishing ability are tough to defend.
6. Matt Bouldin, Gonzaga: Given Bouldin’s penetrating and passing ability, he is one of the best crunch-time playmakers around.
7. Tyrese Rice, Boston College: During the course of his career with the Eagles, Rice has hit big shot after big shot; his clutch shooting is unparalleled.
8. A.J. Price, Connecticut: The Huskies’ offense sometimes stagnates in the halfcourt, but Price often bails them out when necessary.
9. Blake Griffin, Oklahoma: Griffin is certainly the best player in college basketball, but he sometimes struggles to get the ball in the closing seconds.
10. Eric Maynor, VCU: Maynor has proved himself time and time again in clutch moments that he is one of the best in the game down the stretch.
Sam Young, Pittsburgh
Gerald Henderson, Duke
Tyreke Evans, Memphis
Evan Turner, Ohio State
Da’Sean Butler, West Virginia
Jerome Randle, California
A.J. Abrams, Texas
Dionte Christmas, Temple