Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Not Exactly Street Legal

With the recent rumors/allegations/stories of Jets QB Mark Sanchez having a relationship with a 17-year old girl, we got thinking about some of the underclassmen in college basketball the Daily Onions has a "crush" on (you see the connection, right? A little weird, bit of a stretch, yes...but just go with it). The requirements for our list include the player being a freshman or sophomore, and that's about it. Let's get to it:

The Well-Known: These four individuals have been talked about in Daily Onions previously.

Jared Sullinger - Freshman - THE Ohio State University: We've said it before and we'll say it again. Sullinger is close to a lock for Big Ten player of the year, and is at least in the conversation for National Player of the Year. He is a very important reason that the Buckeyes are one of our Final Four teams as of now.
Barnes and UNC are back on track
Terrence Jones - Freshman - University of Kentucky: Athletic player with lots of different tools - can score inside and outside, can rebound (11 last night, including 5 on the offensive glass, block shots (4 last night). He loves to take a few dribbles and spin when he drives, and teams are starting to pick up on that, so he'll need to add something else to his repertoire (yes, I just said repertoire).
Tobias Harris - Freshman - University of Tennessee: As we mentioned yesterday, Harris spurned Syracuse for Tennessee. He's got a great basketball body at 6-8, 225 - and is averaging a solid 14 and 7 this season. Projected to be a late first rounder, let's hope he's on our favorite sophomore list next year, and not riding the pine in the Association.
Harrison Barnes - Freshman - University of North Carolina: We felt a little bad for Harrison, since he was named to a preseason 1st Team All-American without playing a college game. He had a very slow start, which made that honor even more puzzling. But he, and UNC, has started put things together as they are 7-1 in the conference. BIG test for Harrison and Co. tonight at Cameron Indoor.

Sneaky: These players aren't going to wow you every game (maybe a play here and that as you'll see), but they do the little things, fill up the stat sheets in a lot of different areas and are players most coaches would love to have as their supporting cast.

Dominic Cheek - Sophomore - Villanova University: Despite playing for one of the biggest rivals of my alma mater, Cheek is a Jersey kid (St. Anthony's) that played for Bob Hurley Sr., so you know he plays hard. He can knock down the open shot, can defend and will do the dirty work for you.
Alex Oriakhi - Sophomore - UConn: Jeez, another player from a rival school. The man in the middle for UConn isn't quite raw, I'd say medium rare. He's a big body and has some nice moves and a nice touch around the basket (averages 10 and 8 this season). Should aspire to be the next Rick Jackson.
CJ Fair - Freshman - Syracuse University: Finally, someone in Orange. For those Cuse fans out there, Fair is Josh Pace 2.0. His coming out party was his performance at Pitt when Kris Joseph was out. Since then, when given the opportunity, he's been a spark off the bench. He's what you'd call a glue guy.
Aaron is "Crafty" (heyooo) with the ball for the Bucks
Aaron Craft - Freshman - THE Ohio State University: You can book Craft as an extra in the Hoosiers remake as well (Central Casting: Craft and Sheehey are both white with buzzcuts. Sullinger, Lighty, Diebler, Lauderdale, and Buford are the names most people know, but Craft is starting to make a name for himself at the point position. He comes off the bench, runs the team, makes a few defenders look stupid here and there, and goes about his business. The Buckeyes only go seven deep, so he is an important piece off the bench.
Will Sheehey - Freshman - Indiana University: An under recruited swingman from Florida, Sheehey puts the myth that "white men can't jump" to rest. Don't believe me - check this out. Blake Griffin watched this clip and was impressed. If they were remaking the film Hoosiers, Sheehey could be one of the players. Tom Crean has Sheehey and the rest of the squad playing hard as heck, and they've had some decent wins in the last two weeks (Illinois, Minnesota).

In Name Only: These three deserve to be at least mentioned on this list. To be quite honest though, because of their west coast location (woo hoo East Coast Bias!!!), Daily Onions hasn't been able to see many of their games. Instead of just rehashing their stats of the web, we'll just leave it as a mentioning of their names. In case you get stuck at a dinner party discussing the best underclassman in the country - make sure you mention these three.

Perry Jones - Freshman - Baylor University - Projected as the a top 3 pick in the 2011 NBA Draft.
Jordan Hamilton - Sophomore - Texas - Has the Longhorns as a potential 1 seed in the tourney.
Derrick Williams - Sophomore - Arizona - Best player in the Pac-10, potential top 3 pick in the 2011 NBA Draft.

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