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Top 5 Players Thus Far in NCAA Basketball

The NCAA basketball season is already in its eighth week, but many feel it is just beginning. Of course, much of that might be since college football has just ended.

Now that we are eight weeks into the season, the national player of the year talk should start and this will be the first list of the top 5 to come this season.

The John Wooden trophy is coveted by each and every player who laces up a pair of sneakers, but only one will walk away with the distinction of the nation’s top NCAA basketball player.

Here is my top five as of early January. Of course, this list could and most likely will change as conference schedules heat up and injuries take their toll, but you need to start somewhere.

Doug McDermott – This Creighton forward is averaging over 24 points and 7 rebounds per game. He is shooting over 51% from 2-point land and a very good 43% from 3-point territory. Opponents should stay away from fouling McDermott as he is shooting nearly 91% from the charity stripe. He grabs a number of defensive boards per game, draws offensive fouls and rarely finds himself in foul trouble. McDermott will be hard to knock out of this spot going forward. If McDermott keeps playing the way he has this season, he could conceivably finish his career at Creighton with 3,000 points. Jabari Parker – the Duke freshmen is an unbelievably talented player. However, he was benched by Coach K., in the second half of a blowout loss last week, which not only hurt his pride, but his image just a bit. He however is a huge part of the Duke puzzle, and not only is the best player for the Blue Devils on offense, but defensively the team would be far worse without him. He is not all offense. His talents are on both ends of the court.

Marcus Smart – The Oklahoma State Cowboys star is an all around player. Last week in one of the Cowboys games, he had 24 points, 11 boards and 5 assists while making 6 steals. Some say Brown is the nation’s most complete player. With a scoring line like the one he put up this past Wednesday, he just might be at the top. However, 4 of 11 from the field is not the best but 16 of 20 from the charity stripe is not bad.

Casey Prather – the Florida Gators hoop star is easily as good if not better than everyone on this list. He has the third highest offensive rating in the country of any player that used over 28% of his team’s possessions. He is averaging 17 points per game and over 5 rebounds, while dishing out more than 2 assists. He has not been a star prior to this season, and the season is long, but thus far, he belongs where he is in the top 5.

DeAndre Kane – this Iowa State Cyclone has been underappreciated all season. He has great numbers and his team is sitting at a lofty 14-0 to boot. The point guard helped Iowa State blow out a previously undefeated Baylor team on Tuesday 87-72. That night he scored 30 points, dished off 9 assists, hauled down 8 rebounds and had 5 steals. He is averaging over 16 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists per game. His play this season easily puts him in the Wooden Award race.

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