If I may I'd like to poke at the hornet's nest that is ESPN and its family of networks. If you're sick and tired of hearing about a select few college basketball players, some of which are grossly overrated, I've got the squad for you. I've got players you don't hear about everyday, yet they're having a huge effect on college basketball's landscape now, and they'll have a huge impact come tourney time.
You won't find Tyler Hansbrough on my team. Nor Stephen Curry or Blake Griffin. Darren Collison, Kyle Singler, Luke Harangody? Nuh uh. Nope, this team is made up of guys the casual college basketball fan has never heard of. But don't get me wrong, these guys aren't on Dick Vitale's all Aretha Franklin team. They're ballers. They don't get a ton of pub and respect, but they definitely deserve it. You can have the rest of the country, and I'll take my chances with these 10.
So here they are. Anonymity's Runnin' Obscurities.
Jodie Meeks - Kentucky . The 6-4 combo guard is dangerously close to being kicked off my squad. Any more 50 point outbursts on national television, and he'll get as much run on ESPN as Mommas Griffin and Curry. But still, the nations's leading scorer is just now being recognized as one of the best players on a Kentucky team that has been headlined by Patrick Patterson and enigmatic coach Billy Clyde Gillespie. Keep dropping half a hundred on 10-15 three point shooting, Jodie, and you're out of here. I promise.
Jeff Teague - Wake Forest. Joining Meeks in the back court is not only the best player you've never heard of in the ACC, but he's that conference's best player period. The 6-2 sophomore has run roughshod over the competition in January averaging 32 points per game for the month, highlighted by a 34 point explosion in an upset win against the Tar Heels. Teague is shooting a ridiculous 55% from three land and 54% overall, but he still gets teammates involved to the tune of 4 dimes a contest. You can add this somewhat obscure super star to the list of outstanding ACC guards. Somewhere the relatively anonymous Randolph Childress is smiling.
Jerome Jordan - Tulsa. Roaming the pivot area for my squad is the 7-0 junior center from Kingston, Jamaica, Jerome Jordan. Unlike another center from Jamaica, Patrick Ewing, Jerome has gotten virtually zero run from national talking heads. That will change as long as Jordan keeps putting up double doubles night in and night out, while shooting an outstanding 61% from the field and 77% from the foul line. And he's a complete player that defends the paint with 2.4 blocks per game, while altering many more shots inside the paint. Proof positive that you can hide an aircraft carrier.
Trevor Booker - Clemson. Rebounding and glasseating on Jerome Jordan's weakside, I've added a four man that puts the power in power forward. The 6-7 240 pound manchild averages nearly 16 points and 10 rebounds per game adding nearly 3 blocked shots for good measure. He's as complete a frontcourt player as you're going to find in the country. If he's not first team all-ACC at big forward, they should quit naming an all-Conference team.
Derrick Brown - Xavier. Rounding out my somewhat invisible starting five is the 6-8 hybrid foward out of Xavier. Not only does Brown bring the inside out presence every coach covets in a three man, but Brown is also a tenacious defender whose length bothers opposing small forwards and shooting guards. Brown's ability to slash to the goal, shoot from deep, and guard on the other end gives him the nod as my starting small forward. That, and the fact that no one outside of the A-10 has heard of him.
Off my Bench
Manny Harris - Michigan. He makes things go for Beilen's rebuilding efforts in Ann Arbor. Probably the biggest reach on the team because he's been terrorizing the Big 10 for two years now.
Nolan Smith - Duke. A Dukie makes a surprise visit to the all-Obscurity team. Since Smith replaced all-Overrated Greg Paulus at the point, the Blue Devils have vaulted back into the national scene. Smith doesn't have eye popping stats, but he's the catalyst for a top 5 team.
Matt Howard - Butler. My second team center. He excels getting position inside and has unmatched skills around the basket. Only a sophomore, Howard's a legit back to the basket star who makes Butler a serious bracket-buster threat as a mid-major.
Terrence Williams - Louisville. The most versatile player in Pitino's stable of versatile players. Williams is the Cardinal's go to guy when needed, or when he becomes tired of just blending in. How many other players lead their team in assists and rebounds?
Michael Washington - Arkansas. This junior just keeps dominating top 10 teams and first round NBA talent. He's my power forward and likely starter if I'm starting an all "Al Davis, Just Win, Baby" squad.
Who's your team? Who's got next?