All Conferences Part 3, Rankings 1-8
The time has come to rank all eight teams in the All Conferences Tournament. Remember, I am ranking these teams based on who is on each team. It has nothing to do with the conference itself, just the starters and 6th man that accompany them. I have also added coaches for each conference to spice the debate up a little but. So without further adieu, here are the rankings.
1. Big East, coached by Jim Boeheim
PG- Levance Fields, SG- Jerel McNeal, SF- Earl Clark, PF- Luke Harangody, C- Hasheem Thabeet, 6th- DeJuan Blair
Why?: This team is absolutely stacked and, cliche as it sounds, has everything. They’ve got great passing guards in Fields and McNeal, outside shooters in McNeal, Clark and Harangody, outstanding post players in Harangody, Thabeet and Blair, and about as quick of a defense as can be put together. This team will be able to run, but a slowed tempo may suit them better with Thabeet and Blair in the game to go along with spot shooters in McNeal and Clark that have the ability to drive.
2. ACC, coached by Mike Krzyzewski
PG- Ty Lawson, SG- Jeff Teague, SF- Kyle Singler, PF- Tyler Hansbrough, C- Trevor Booker, 6th- Jack McClinton
Why? This team could make a strong case for the number one overall seed, but I do not think that they have the depth of the Big East team. Hansbrough and Booker make probably the best offensive connection in the front court, and Lawson and Singler are outstanding passers. Teague is the best outside shooter on the team and the best athlete. Just as the Big East team is, the ACC has a little bit of everything and will play a little more inside on offense.
3. Big 12, coached by Bill Self
PG- Sherron Collins, SG- James Anderson, SF- Damion Jones, PF- Blake Griffin, C- Cole Aldrich, 6th- Craig Brackins
Why? Another big team highlighted by their frontcourt in James, Griffin, and Aldrich. Griffin, the frontrunner for Player of the Year, highlights this team and I can only imagine what he could do with Sherron Collins passing to him. Damion Jones plays big as well at the 3 position and Cole Aldrich does not give up any room in the paint. James Anderson is the wildcard on this team, with outstanding range on offense and good size on defense.
4. Pac-10, coached by Ben Howland
PG- Darren Collison, SG- James Harden, SF- Chase Budinger, PF- Jordan Hill, C- John Brockman, 6th- Nic Wise
Why? While the talent level may not be there, the experience sure is. Highlighted by two seniors and three juniors, including the anchor in Darren Collison, make this team very tough especially on the defensive end. Other than Harden and Budinger, they may struggle to score but they will play some of the best defense in this tournament. Three Wildcats was surprising to see, but I really like their individual talent and they are currently riding a very hot streak.
5. All other Conferences, coached by Bob McKillop
PG- David Holston, SG- Stephen Curry, SF- Mike Rose, PF- Josh Heytvelt, C- John Bryant, 6th- Lester Hudson
I really thought that this team was going to be easy to put together, but it ended up being a lot tougher than I expected. There are a ton of outstanding players in other conferences, and looking at this team, they can score with anyone. Heytvelt gives them a good inside presence on defense, but this team shoots lights out with Curry, Holston, and Hudson. It will be interesting to see if they can hold their own on defense but they will be in the 80′s in every game during this tournament.
6. SEC, coached by Bruce Pearl
PG- Devan Downey, SG- Jodie Meeks, SF- Nick Calethes, PF- Patrick Patterson, C- Jarvis Varnado, 6th- Marcus Thornton
Why? I tried to determine these last three seeds and had a hard time doing so, but based on the fact that I think the SEC holds the best player out of the SEC, C-USA, and Big Ten gives them the nod at number 6. Thank Jodie Meeks. Devan Downey is a fantastic passer, and Nick Calethes is as close to a point guard that a small forward can get. This is going to get open looks for Jodie Meeks, and he does not need much to drain. Patterson and Varnado give a great front court defensively and aren’t too shabby on the offensive end. Look out for this team.
7. C-USA, coached by John Calipari
PG- Brock Young, SG- Jermaine Taylor, SF- Aubrey Coleman, PF- Robert Dozier, C- Jerome Jordan, 6th- Tyreke Evans
Why? I really like this team for their balance, much like the top teams in the bracket. Young leads the nation in assists and Jermaine Taylor averages 25 points per game. That’s a deadly combo if you ask me. Aubrey Coleman is another sleeper on the offensive end and Robert Dozier does a little bit of everything.
8. Big Ten, coached by Tom Izzo
PG- Kalin Lucas, SG- Manny Harris, SF- Evan Turner, PF- JuJaun Johnson, C- Goran Suton, 6th- Robbie Hummel
Why? Come back in a year or two and you’ll see this exact same team in the top 4 AT LEAST in the tournament. It’s not a knock to the Big Ten at all, but they are a year away. It’s the fact that this team has 5 sophomores with Goran Suton manning the middle. It’s tough to play with a team full of sophomores and have any long term success in a tournament. Lucas, Harris and Turner can score with the best of them but I don’t know if they are ready yet to play with the Big Boys.
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