Top 12 Backcourts
As we all know, guard play is what wins games in March. Teams need solid perimeter production if they want to make a deep run in the Madness. The following teams have the best backcourts in the nation:
1. North Carolina: With Ty Lawson completely healthy, the Tar Heels are tough to equal in the backcourt. Wayne Ellington is one of the best shooters in the country, and Larry Drew and Bobby Frasor are solid off the bench.
2. Gonzaga: Jeremy Pargo has slipped somewhat since last season, but Matt Bouldin has become one of the best players in the country. Steven Gray is a dynamite three-point shooter who can get hot.
3. Memphis: Since John Calipari moved Tyreke Evans to the point guard spot, the Tigers have not lost. Antonio Anderson is a lockdown defender and Doneal Mack is a very effective three-point shooter.
4. Washington: One of the more underrated backcourt duos in the country. The diminutive Isaiah Thomas is impossible to stay in front of, while Justin Dentmon is a very good scorer. Venoy Overton comes off the pine.
5. Syracuse: Fresh off their Big East Tournament run, the Orange are on a high note. Jonny Flynn is a phenomenal point guard, while Eric Devendorf is scoring at a high rate lately. Andy Rautins can shoot.
6. Villanova: The Wildcats have a deep and talented perimeter group, starting with Scottie Reynolds. Corey Fisher and Corey Stokes can score, and Reggie Redding is the team’s defensive stopper in the lineup.
7. UCLA: The Bruins aren’t as good as they have been in years’ past, but Darren Collison and Josh Shipp are still around on the perimeter. Throw in NBA prospect Jrue Holiday, and this team has talent.
8. Oklahoma State: The Cowboys have one of the deepest and most explosive perimeter groups. Byron Eaton has improved greatly, Terrel Harris and Keiton Page can really shoot, and James Anderson is ready to break out.
9. Marquette: Even without Dominic James, don’t underestimate this Golden Eagles perimeter. Jerel McNeal is one of the top players in the country, and Wesley Matthews is an all-Big East player.
10. BYU: The Cougars have one of the more underrated perimeter duos in the country in Jimmer Fredette and Lee Cummard. Both can really shoot the ball, and Cummard is one of the best players around.
11. LSU: The Tigers are long and athletic across the board, and the perimeter is no different. Bo Spencer can shoot and defend; Marcus Thornton is an all-SEC player; and Garrett Temple is a lockdown defender.
12. Siena: The Saints have the backcourt talent to be a surprise team in the NCAA Tournament once again. Kenny Hasbrouck is an explosive guard, while Ronald Moore is one of the more effective point guards around.