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College / Nov 14, 2011 / 12:00 pm

Monday Madness: College Basketball’s Weekend In Review

Jared Sullinger

Jared Sullinger (photo. Ohio State Athletics)

Hidden between the lines of the most depressing sports stories of the week – Penn State’s cover-up scandal putting a dark cloud over college football, and the NBA lockout threatening to put pro basketball on indefinite hiatus – are two words that should cheer up anybody who frequents this site: “college” and “basketball.”

The first full weekend of college hoops 2011-12 has been played, and it was indeed full: 24 of the Associated Press Top 25 teams were in action, just about every player you’ll see on next year’s mock draft boards graced the court, and the sidelines were populated with enough top-flight coaches to fill a Barnes & Noble with motivational books.

It was like college basketball’s Black Friday – with a Black Saturday and Black Sunday thrown in just because. Who were the stars and stooges of the show? Let’s get to it:

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  • http://www.dimemag.com Aron Phillips

    This is awesome.

  • baloogawhales

    Kendall Marshal is fun to watch. Nothing too flashy, but his passes are sharp, on point, and hits his targets in stride. A true point guard, who is unselfish and keeps his head up.

    What is your opinion? You think his skills were translate well into the NBA? He is 6′ 2″, but doesn’t seem to have elite speed.

  • http://www.dimemag.com Austin Burton

    I think Marshall will be good in the NBA. He’s like Jason Kidd (the older version) or Ricky Rubio (if he’s as good as I think) in the sense that he is such a good passer and a smart point guard that it doesn’t matter if he’s not as fast as D-Rose or as strong as Westbrook. Marshall can play the position the way it was meant to be played.

  • TJ 2

    yeah i think he can be successful also, like he literally thinks about passing as the last resort! if this was the NBA Tyler Zeller would owe him part of his paycheck the way he gets him easy shots! and John “Everybodys little brother” Henson doesnt look a day over 16, if he can get a little nasty streak in him, UNC wins the title easy!

  • http://www.dimemag.com Austin Burton

    I still want to see how UNC handles a defense like Syracuse (zone), Louisville (press) or UConn (beastly) before I’ll say they’re the easy national title pick.

  • Yoooo

    Kendall Marshall is actually 6’4-6’5 and a little stronger than you think. Plus being a lefty is always an advantage for some reason

  • baloogawhales

    I don’t see UNC having trouble bringing up the ball against the zone, but the zone may disrupt their offensive flow. It’ll increase the difficulty of throwing the ball in the post into Zeller or Henson, since they like to work the ball inside/out.

  • baloogawhales

    bringing up the ball against the press defense**

    -edit-

  • http://www.dimemag.com Austin Burton

    Dexter Strickland is the next-closest thing UNC has to a point guard after Marshall, and he’s more of a two-guard. That could be a problem against a press, but at the same time, Barnes and the other non-PGs can make up for the lack of pure ball-handling just by making smart decisions.

    Against a zone, having a guy like PJ Hairston who can knock down threes is huge, but then he’s still a freshman.

    I think UNC has the right mix to beat anybody, but depending on what matchups they draw in the Tournament, they’re not upset-proof.

  • Baloogawhales

    Oh and the guy who plays after Henson is a beast. Forgot what his name is hit he has good size moves and fluidity to his movements. Obviously u can tell I go into ncaab this year lol

  • http://www.psychodrama.com Chicagorilla

    @Austin

    You are correct in that UNC doesn’t have another PG, but the one PG they have is all they really need. If he gets hurt then there’s a problem. But in college a good PG is almost impossible to press because he’ll always make the good pass to break your press, and that’s all it really takes.

    Also being a freshman doesn’t matter anymore as far as college goes. These guys play so much highly competitive AAU ball and summer camp ball that they are well prepared by the time college comes around. PJ Hairston will be just fine, but don’t forget about Bullock and Barnes as shooters.

    UNC’s big advantage is the two 7fters. You can double Zeller if you want, but that leaves John Hensen crashing the boards vs a zone that’s really hard to box out.

    This is shaping up to be a great college season, sorta like the last two NBA seasons.