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College, NBA Draft / Jun 16, 2008 / 5:46 pm

’09 NCAA Champs Decided Today?

IMAGE DESCRIPTIONTyler Hansbrough

This year’s NCAA Final Four teams are all being impacted in varying degrees by the ’08 NBA Draft.

National champions Kansas just learned that their entire starting five and sixth man from the title game aren’t coming back, as underclassmen Mario Chalmers, Darrell Arthur and Brandon Rush have announced their intention to remain in the Draft. With seniors Russell Robinson, Darnell Jackson and Sasha Kaun also out, that leaves junior-to-be PG Sherron Collins and sophomore 7-footer Cole Aldrich (who drew more than a few “Who the f*** is THAT?!?” reactions during the Big Dance) to run the show for a team that will rely heavily on incoming freshmen Trevis Releford (Okla.), Tyshawn Taylor (N.J.) and Quintrell Thomas (N.J.), all Top-100 recruits.

Memphis is of course losing underclassmen Derrick Rose and Chris Douglas-Roberts, plus senior Joey Dorsey, but are at least getting early entrants Robert Dozier and Antonio Anderson back to provide support for incoming frosh superstar Tyreke Evans.

UCLA is losing Lottery pick locks Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook, but Josh Shipp is coming back. At the moment Luc Richard Mbah a Moute hasn’t declared his intentions, however that may not even matter in the long run because UCLA is bringing in the nation’s best recruiting class. Led by Gatorade National Player of the Year Jrue Holiday, it also includes All-Americans Drew Gordon, Malcolm Lee and five-star recruits J’Mison Morgan and Jerime Anderson.

Finally, North Carolina learned earlier today that Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington and Danny Green will all be coming back to school, bolstering Tyler Hansbrough‘s supporting cast to go along with Class of ’08 All-American signees Ed Davis and Tyler Zeller in the frontcourt and Larry Drew in the backcourt. With the crew they have coming back along with the newcomers, the Tar Heels have to be the front-runner for the ’09 championship.

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  • Big Sia

    UNC = 2009 NCAA CHAMPS

    You heard it here first bitches.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=Q1kxZpyREdE

  • http://www.barackobama.com Jim

    Hmmmmm, pretty sure you aren’t the first one to predict that.

  • The Duke of Casserole

    Watch out for those Syracuse boys. Eventhough Donte Greene bounced they are getting Devendorf and Rautins back. They also have 4 star recruit Mookie Jones (NY) to go along with Jonny Flynn and Paul Harris…they could be tough!!!!

    -D.o.C.

  • doc

    Wayne Ellington my boy but I think that squad will come up short again.All it takes is a team with one stud to knock them out the box.

  • http://myspace.com/bigfreeze101 Big Freeze

    Go Gators

  • Junio

    Everybody said that last year…..

  • Yoooo

    Last years UNC squad with there incoming freshman class is scary good. They forgot to mention the Morris twins Kansas is getting. They’re tough at 6’8 and can shoot the 3.
    But UNC is gonna open shop all year.

  • Celts Fan

    that Cole Aldrich dude actually looks pretty good. The next Nick Collison maybe?

    UNC got the entire class back huh, should be a chip (though UCLA’s got something to say about that too.)

  • Celts Fan

    *the Nick Collison that conned Seattle into using a lottery pick on him, not the clown he’s become in the L (sorry AB)

  • JC

    I agree with Big Freeze. Still kinda confused as to why Mareese Speights is a legit first rounder this year, but hey… lol

  • http://dimemag.com Austin Burton

    Nick Collison isn’t bad. He had some monster rebounding games (because if you’re the only guy on your team working the glass you’re bound to grab at least 10) and is a good role player.

  • Dre

    UNC 2009 Champs… enough said!!!

  • nicky

    hold your horses, guys, i know it sounds good now, but the more you go around all “yeah baby UNC #1, champions 2009!” etc., A) the more you make people hate Tar Heels fans and B) the worse you look later when or if they choke in the tournament…and mark my words, with Roy on the bench choking is always going to be a possibility…i respect Coach Williams and all that but he definitely gets 95% of the responsibility for the loss to Kansas in the Final Four.

    anyway, let’s not forget what’s truly important, bitchslapping Duke nice and hard a couple times next season.

    by the way, Go Tar Heels…