NBA Draft websites don’t have all the answers, but can provide interesting clues.
NBAdraft.net does a nice job of updating its projections. Its latest mock draft confirms the obvious: No. 2 Kentucky has more talent than No. 13 Kansas University.
As of Sunday night, the site projected six Kentucky players going in the 2012 draft, one for Kansas.
Five Wildcats are projected to go in the top 16. Junior Thomas Robinson, KU’s lone projection, goes 24th, strangely late.
NBAdraft.net has Kentucky’s Anthony Davis, a 6-foot-10, 214-pound freshman power forward from Chicago, going third, behind UConn freshman Andre Drummond and North Carolina sophomore Harrison Barnes.
The other Kentucky prospects:
Marquis Teague, a 6-2, 189-pound freshman point guard from Indianapolis, is eighth.
Terrence Jones, a 6-9, 244-pound sophomore forward who disappointed KU when he made a verbal commitment to Washington before switching to Kentucky, is projected 14th, starting a run of three consecutive Kentucky players.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, a 6-6, 216-pound small forward from Somerdale, N.J., goes 15th.
Doron Lamb, a 6-4, 200-pound shooting guard from Laurelton, N.Y., who had Kansas among his final schools, is 16th.
Darius Miller, a 6-7, 238-pound forward from Maysville, Ky., is the sixth and final projection, going 60th.
The site doesn’t have Kansas senior Tyshawn Taylor getting drafted and cites as reasons his not having the strength and size to play shooting guard, the vision and decision-making to play the point. It also mentions Taylor’s latest suspension as a reason to question his commitment. Here’s guessing Taylor, too quick to bypass, will go in the second round.
Strong guard play gives KU more than a puncher’s chance against favored Kentucky on Tuesday night in Madison Square Garden.
Taylor, a fourth-year starter, junior Elijah Johnson and freshman Naadir Tharpe combined for 16 assists and one turnover in Friday’s season-opening 100-54 victory in Allen Fieldhouse against talent-short Towson.
The 16-to-1 assists-to-turnovers ratio from the guards indicates Kentucky can’t count on Kansas giving away possessions with unforced turnovers. Kentucky will have to earn them with its relentless pressure.
If the super-fast trio of KU guards can attack the Kentucky pressure with scoring plays, Robinson can stay out of foul trouble and Travis Releford can ramp up his rebounding, KU can win.
“They’re scary, scary athletic, that kind of stuff,” Kansas coach Bill Self said of the Wildcats. “They have real guys at every spot and have some depth, and they’re talented. But I think it’ll be a great game and a game there’ll be a lot of hard-rocking athletes on both sides that’ll be getting after it.”
Not unlike the KU-Florida game played in Las Vegas, Nov. 25, 2006. Florida successfully defended its national title that season and had five players chosen in the 2007 draft to KU’s one (Julian Wright). KU won, 82-80 in overtime. Five Jayhawks who played in that game were drafted in 2008.