Luke Winn's Top 10 Backcourts
Presenting our top 10 backcourts for 2006-07, ranked on the basis of their overall strength. Note that in many instances -- in offenses such as Kansas' or Marquette's -- the three position is considered part of the backcourt.<br><br><br>Headliners: Sean Singletary (left), J.R. Reynolds <br><br>The 6-foot Singletary, a three-year starter, is the best returning point guard in the ACC -- and also his team's leading scorer at 17.7 ppg. Reynolds, who averaged 17.2 ppg, was electric down the stretch and was the Cavaliers' lone selection on the All-ACC Tournament team.
Headliners: Jamaal Tatum (left), Tony Young, Bryan Mullins <br><br>Seniors Tatum (15.0 ppg, 3.2 apg) and Young (11.6 ppg) have been to the NCAA tournament in each of their first three seasons in Carbondale. Mullins, meanwhile, was named the Missouri Valley's Freshman of the Year last season after leading the league in steals at 2.9 per game.
Headliners: Nate Funk (left), Josh Dotzler, Nick Porter <br><br>The Bluejays are being slotted as the class of the Missouri Valley on the strength of their backcourt. Funk, who averaged 17.0 points last year before injuring his shoulder -- and receiving a medical redshirt -- is back for a fifth season and should be the top mid-major star.
Headliners: Loren Stokes (left), Antoine Agudio, Carlos Rivera <br><br>Stokes, Agudio and Rivera form the best backcourt trio you haven't heard of, and will be the key to the Pride's pulling a George Mason and making a surprise NCAA tournament run out of the Colonial Athletic Association. Stokes (17.4 ppg) and Agudio (17.2 ppg) provide most of the scoring punch, while Rivera had 117 assists to only 60 turnovers at the point.
Headliners: Antonio Anderson (left), Chris Douglas-Roberts, Willie Kemp, Andre Allen, Jeremy Hunt <br><br>The Tigers will be better off using Andre Allen and Willie Kemp at the point in place of the departed Darius Washington, and Douglas-Roberts, a versatile wing who shot 53.1 percent from the floor last season, could emerge as their new top scorer.
Headliners: Mustafa Shakur (left), Jawan McClellan, Marcus Williams, Nic Wise <br><br>Shakur is a solid four-year starter at the point for the Wildcats, and McClellan would already be a star had he not missed most of last season (due to academic ineligibility and a knee injury). Williams, meanwhile, is a future NBA shooting guard and Zona's biggest scoring threat.
Headliners: Dominic James (left), Jerel McNeal, Wes Matthews <br><br>The Golden Eagles will use a scary -- and mostly unsung -- trio of guards to make an outside run at the Big East title. James is a future NBA floor general, and coach Tom Crean plans to push the pace to make up for Marquette's lack of an elite big man.
Headliners: Arron Afflalo (left), Josh Shipp, Darren Collison <br><br>The speedy Collison is set to take the point-guard reins from Jordan Farmar, and the presence of Afflalo (one of the college game's best shooters) and Shipp (an electric scorer who missed most of 2005-06) should help smooth the transition.
Headliners: Tywon Lawson, Wayne Ellington, Bobby Frasor, Marcus Ginyard, Wes Miller (left) <br><br>The Heels are bringing in the country's top prep point guard (Lawson) and top shooting guard (Ellington). They could eventually become UNC's next Felton and McCants, but in the meantime they still have to battle such talents as Frasor, Ginyard and Miller for playing time.
Headliners: Brandon Rush (left), Russell Robinson, Mario Chalmers, Sherron Collins <br><br>The Jayhawks' three-headed monster (with superstar freshman Collins in reserve) comprises the nation's top backcourt. Rush, a sweet-shooting, physical wing, leads the scoring barrage while Robinson and Chalmers wreak havoc on defense.