Terrence Ross – Washington shooting guard Terrence Ross will look to build on what was a very solid freshman campaign. He only averaged 8.0 points per game, but showed the kind of potential he had with a 25 point outburst against Oregon, and a 19 point performance in a NCAA tournament loss against North Carolina. Ross has always been a threat from behind the arc, both in catch-and-shoot opportunities and off of one or two quick dribbles. If he wants to really see his offensive game open up, he should look to complement his natural shooting ability with an improved handle. He’s certainly quick enough to be an effective slasher, and athletes that can score in multiple ways usually see success at the next level.
Trevor Mbakwe – Mbakwe impressed a lot of people last season, as he averaged a double-double in the Big Ten. In his first season as a Golden Gopher, he led his team with 13.9 points per game (on a team-high 58.2% shooting) and a conference-leading 10.5 rebounds. Defensively, he’s a tough, physical player that uses his length and athleticism to contest anything that goes up in his area. He’s had a few issues off the court and he’s a little old for his class (he’ll be 23 on draft day in 2012) but if he can polish up his offensive game he could be a potential mid-late first round pick.
Khris Middleton – One could argue that Texas A&M forward Khris Middleton has already broken out. The 6’7" Aggie managed to double his scoring output from 7.2 PPG as a freshman to 14.4 as a sophomore by making noticeable improvements in both his ball-handling and mid-range scoring ability. The majority of his points still seem to come in transition, via pull-up jumpers and opportunities around the rim. He has all the building blocks to see another significant jump in development next season. All he needs is a little more all-around polish before he’s considered a late lottery to mid first round prospect.
Kevin Parrom – After missing half of his freshman season, Parrom bounced back to have a solid sophomore campaign for the Arizona Wildcats. He displayed excellent overall efficiency, shooting 50.8% from the field, 41.8% from behind the arc and nearly a 2.0 assist to turnover ratio. He does most of his damage off the ball, setting himself up on the perimeter for catch and shoot opportunities. With an increase in minutes, we should see a very solid bump in production from Parrom. That added production alongside a strong backcourt consisting of in Josiah Turner, Nick Johnson and Kyle Fogg should put the Wildcats in Pac-12 contention next year.
Dewayne Dedmon – Thanks to his soon-to-be coach, Kevin O’Neill, DeWayne Dedmon has quickly received a bit of national coverage. The JUCO transfer has never overwhelmed people with his stats in the past, but O’Neill has brashly predicted that the 7-footer will average a double-double and be a first round pick next season. While that might be a bit far-fetched, and expecting the kid to replace super-center Nikola Vucevic isn’t exactly realistic either, Dedmon will be an impact player next season and an interesting NBA prospect down the road.
Allen Crabbe – Crabbe was expected to be an immediate impact player at California last season and he didn’t disappoint, especially in the second half of the season. The 6’6" shooting guard averaged 16.4 points per game in conference play. In those 16 games against the Pac-10, he averaged a blistering 48.1% shooting behind the arc (on 37 makes). Despite being a below average athlete, he’s got the range and confidence to continue to improve in this area. Crabbe’s not exclusively a shooter either, as he can hold his own on the defensive end and contribute on the boards. Don’t be surprised if he becomes one of the best scorers in the Pac-12 next season.
Maalik Wayns – Wayns established himself as a legitimate scoring threat in his sophomore season at Villanova, managing to score 13.8 points per game despite having to share the perimeter with Corey Fisher and Corey Stokes. Wayns is a speedy point guard that is at his best in isolation situations. He possesses the first step needed to get into the paint and the creativity to finish once he gets there. His aggressive scoring mentality is a double-edged sword as he ends up taking quite a few questionable shots (40% shooting from the field), but also gets to the free throw line a lot (5.2 FTA). With Fisher and Stokes out of the way, Wayns will get all the opportunities he needs to potentially have a breakout season.
Olek Czyz – After sitting on Duke’s bench for a season and change (redshirt sophomore season), Polish forward Olek Czyz made the decision to transfer to Nevada. He’s an explosive athlete with good scoring instincts and a nice shooting stroke, though he never had much of a chance to show them off under Mike Krzyzewski. In his first season getting significant minutes, Czyz showed inside/out potential. The senior looks good on the block and he’s able to put the ball on the floor and finish at the rim. He struggled a bit with consistency last year, but the potential is definitely there.
Doron Lamb – A key piece of Kentucky’s impressive recruiting class from a season ago, Doron Lamb played a big part in the Wildcats’ run to the final four. The sharp-shooting guard is a model of efficiency, shooting 49.7% from the field and 48.6% from behind the arc. Though he’s usually spotting-up and playing off of his teammates, his ball-handling ability is adequate and he can finish well in transition. Lamb will fit in well with sophomore Terrence Jones and in the incoming freshman class consisting of Marquis Teague, Michael Gilchrist, Kyle Wiltjer and Anthony Davis. Lamb is a big-time scorer from a big-time program and he could be in lottery discussions next season.
Nurideen Lindsey – You might not be as familiar with Lindsey as you are with Wayns or Lamb, but there is a good amount of talent in this 6’4” scoring guard that will be playing in the Big East with St. John next season. Though he certainly has the quickness and athleticism to play the point, he’ll likely be playing as an off-guard next season. He isn’t a polished outside shooter, but he’s a dynamic scorer that can get in the paint effortlessly and draw a lot of contact. There was some talk of him being an early 2nd round pick if he declared for the 2011 draft, but if he proves he can play well this season on a bigger stage, it’s not unrealistic to project him as a first rounder.