Part one had teams ranked from 25 to 17. Here's the next batch of delicious NCAA Basketball cookies.
16. Baylor Bears (28-8, lost Elite 8 to Duke)
Perry Jones. Perry Jones. Perry Jones. Here's more Perry Jones. Depending on what Scott Drew does with UCLA transfer J'Mison Morgan, Perry could either start at the three or the four next to Quincy Acy. LaceDarius Dunn was just allowed to resume practicing on Friday but is still suspended by the team. Regardless, Perry Jones is almost definitely a one-and-done top five pick in the 2011 draft. His versatility makes Baylor a title contender. At 6'11, 220, there is no ceiling.
Charlie Day Wild Card: J'Mison Morgan came to Westwood with a ton of hype, a five-star prospect and the third best center in the crop. He severely underperformed at UCLA but under Scott Drew, he could become relevant again and an NBA future would resurface.
Jump backwards through adolescence with me after the jump.
15. Missouri Tigers (23-11, lost second round to West Virginia)
Due to Mike Anderson's coaching style, nobody ever really stands out for Mizzou. The best bet right now is Kim English. With J.T. Tiller and Zaire Taylor gone, English will be the focal point of the offense. He's got a killer jump shot that, if he can up his percentages, will play in the NBA. He's terrific moving without the ball and does a good job playing in the open court. With a good season, he's a sure-fire second round pick that can help right away. Strength and size will always be obstacles for him.
Charlie Day Wild Card: If Laurence Bowers can stay healthy, he's got some Carl Landry in him that could translate into an NBA career. He'll make a terrific role player.
14. Purdue Boilermakers (29-6, lost Sweet Sixteen to Duke)
I feel terrible for Robbie Hummel. JaJuan Johnson is the only true pro prospect of the bunch. He's a lanky 6'11 center with a nice outside shot but weaknesses on the boards. Putting up a less than stellar pace adjusted 9.1 rebounds per-40 minutes, Johnson hasn't been rebounding at a pro level. But since Hummel's out, the next tallest player in the lineup is sophomore D.J. Byrd, at 6'5, there will be plenty of rebounds to be had for JJ. He's a less skilled J.J. Hickson right now, and it's not just because of the multiple J's. Gotta bulk up to get into the first round.
Charlie Day Wild Card: If Lewis Jackson gets injured again, the point guard minutes would go to freshman Terone Johnson, a local kid from Indianapolis. He's got great range to bring defenders in, and the first step to blow by them when they do. His skillset makes the Boilermakers a guard-oriented team, and one that's really tough to defend if they're hitting shots.
13. Illinois Fighting Illini (21-15, lost NIT to Dayton)
This team is flat-out loaded. Senior Demetri McCamey has been around for what feels like a decade and he'll probably get a second round nod this year, but he demands the ball too much to contribute at the pro level. The most exciting prospect is easily freshman Jereme Richmond, loaded with physical tools as a 6'6 wing player. He's explosive in the open court, ferocious on the boards, and he doesn't mind getting physical on defense. It's likely that his role won't be much this season because of seniors McCamey, Mike Tisdale, Mike Davis and Bill Cole, but watch out for him in 2012.
Charlie Day Wild Card: He got some pub last season, but Brandon Paul could be a guy that breaks out in 2011. His rough freshman year was an experiment by Bruce Weber, who gambled and lost on the young guard who made just a third of his shots. If he attacks the basket and finds a rhythm from the outside, he's another guy to look out for when the draft boards come up.
12. Gonzaga Bulldogs (27-7, lost second round to Syracuse)
Now that Matt Bouldin is in Europe, German sophomore Elias Harris takes over as the team's best player. He's got a game reminiscent of Syracuse's Paul Harris (no relation), only he's got the height that Paul always lacked, standing in at 6'8. He prefers playing in the lane, so his position now and going on will most likely be power forward. Elias has a unique ability to be physical and drop his shoulder into defenders, then make an athletic move around them and finish smoothly at the basket. He's mid-first right now and with another good season, could rise into lottery territory.
Charlie Day Wild Card: Robert Sacre quietly became the best big man not named Omar Samhan in the west last season. The 7-foot senior needs to be more aggressive on the boards but I could see a Brian Zoubek-like ascent onto draft boards for him this season.
11. Kentucky Wildcats (35-3, lost Elite 8 to West Virginia)
John Wall DeMarcus Cousins Patrick Patterson Eric Bledsoe Daniel Orton Brandon Knight, Doron Lamb, and Terrence Jones will comprise 60% of the starting lineup when the ball is tipped against East Tennessee State on Friday. Knight is the most NBA-ready of the bunch, combining his excellent athleticism with a heady point guard game that will translate flawlessly into today's NBA point guard. He's not as strong or as capable of taking over a game as John Wall, but Kentucky's got themselves a terrific number one again. Lamb is a shoot-first, shoot-second, shoot-third guard that will excel at the college level, but probably not this season. The NBA will be more of a challenge for him since he demands the ball on the offensive end. He may leave after this season, but staying for another year or two to built up a reputation would help his stock. Jones is a tweener forward in the vein of Thaddeus Young only with a jump shot. He's not a great ball-handler and can't disappear from game to game like he did in high school, but he should get a great shot at taking Patrick Patterson's spot at the 4 for John Calipari and could take off for the pros if he finds a willing suitor. It's funny that Darius Miller, DeAndre Liggins, and Darnell Dodson are the veterans on this Kentucky team.
Charlie Day Wild Card: Eligibility is holding up Turkey's Enes Kanter from being one of the top prospects in the country off the bat. He's a 6'9 center that's capable of coming in and almost duplicating Cousins' impact for the Wildcats this season. Once he's granted his eligibility, expect a top 10 pick in the 2011 draft and the best player of the four excellent freshmen.
10. Syracuse Orange (30-5, lost Sweet Sixteen to Butler)
No Andy Rautins, no Wesley Johnson, no Arinze Onuaku. But Rick Jackson is still around to anchor the paint, and with him is freshman Fab Melo, a 7-foot, 274 pound specimen from Brazil. He'll be handed the starting center job by Jim Boeheim, giving the Hall of Fame coach his tallest contributor since Craig Forth graduated (Craig Forth Fact: He's currently coaching JV Girls Basketball in Albany). He needs to work on typical big man things like footwork and positioning, but the potential is very obviously there and you can be sure Jimmy B is going to get all he can out of him. I promised myself I wouldn't make a Carmelo Anthony reference. Crap.
Charlie Day Wild Card: This isn't a wild card I suppose, but last year's 6th man Kris Joseph will be breaking out this year, you can bet your sour cherry Big League Chew Bubblegum on that. He'll be taking Wes Johnson's position at the three. The Niagara Falls native will continue to show his athleticism and improve his basketball ability, turning himself into a Ryan Gomes/Corey Brewer type player going into the 2011 draft. Baye Moussa Keita, C.J. Fair, and Dion Walters will also contribute as freshman. Looks like another Sweet Sixteen trip (and possibly more, depending on Fab) for the Orange(men).
9. Florida Gators (21-13, lost NIT to Penn State)
Kenny Boynton is an undersized guard with terrific ability that had a mixed bag of results in his freshman campaign. A very good shooter in high school, Boynton shot just 38% from the field for the Gators, and worked with a shooting coach all summer to get his shot where it needs to be. With Erving Walker distributing, Boynton isn't going to wow anybody with his point guard play, and definitely profiles as an off-the-bench guard at the next level. He's such a good scorer that he'll get a late-first round look, but because of his size, a Leandro Barbosa 2-guard role seems to be his ceiling.
Charlie Day Wild Card: The Gators have all five starters returning, but somebody who could challenge Vernon Macklin for minutes at the 5-spot is freshman Patric Young. Even though he's missing the "k" in his first name, he's not missing anything in his athleticism, being described by Walker and Billy Donovan as an athletic freak with a never-ending motor and an unparalleled work ethic. With a big 6'9 frame, it'll be interesting to see how Donovan divvies up his minutes up front.
There's two! Come by soon for part three, the sequel where the characters get stale and the plot is too convoluted to get any sort of point across.