I know, I know, neither hoops season is very far along, but with our boys off to an 0-2 start and expectations extremely low, I've decided to keep an eye on some players in the college game that could end up wearing white, black, and blue next season. Hopefully I'll do this periodically but I can't promise anything.
Michael Beasley, F 6-9 235 Freshman, Kansas State
In an exhibition game against Not-really-a-college-state Beasley put up an impressive line of 35 points, 15 rebounds, 6 steals, 4 assists, and 4 blocks. Not bad. The most impressive part of that line? He did that in only 28 minutes. K-State pulled a bit of a coup just to get this kid - rated #2 behind OJ Mayo - to Mahattan, let alone keep him after Huggy-bear dipped to West Virginia. He alone has them in the top-25 and he'll have every opportunity to keep them there - or atleast close anyways. I expect him to have a Kevin Durant/Carmelo Anthony type of season individually, but probably not quite the team success those two had. All I can say is, if you haven't seen this kid play yet, make sure to watch any K-State game you can because you'll be watching something special. Of course you could probably just wait til next year and watch him in the NBA.
Derrick Rose, G 6-4 195 Freshman, Memphis
This kid has been, and will continue to be, splashed all over everywhere. Partially because he was the #3 rated recruit behind OJ Mayo, they play a similar game, and his team is ranked #3 in the country with a solid shot at a title in March. As far as his game, he didn't disappoint against We're-not-good-university putting up 17 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocks. He did all that in 25 minutes and he only had 1 turnover. I think OJ Mayo may have a better season individually but I think Rose will help lead his team in meeting many of the expectations people hold for the Tigers. I expect him to have a college career similar to that of Stephon Marbury: He'll break your ankles, taunt you, then bury a big three in a big game, on his way to the NBA. That's where the comparisons to Starbury end though. This kid will be special.