Continuing our NBA Draft coverage, Joe Loyd authored this piece on future NBA prospects on Big 12 North teams.
The NBA Draft is fast approaching this month and many stars from the Big 12 this past season are expected to hear their names called. In his latest 2010 mock draft ESPN's Chad Ford has nine Big 12 players being taken in the first round.
James Anderson - Oklahoma State
Cole Aldrich - Kansas
Xavier Henry - Kansas
Ekpe Udoh - Baylor
Willie Warren - Oklahoma
Tiny Gallon - Oklahoma
Avery Bradley - Texas
Damion James - Texas
Craig Brackins - Iowa State
With these players gone, it's time to look forward and see who the legitimate NBA prospects are for each Big 12 team.
See them all after The Jump
Iowa State - Umm, no prospects here to jump start the Mayor's term in office.
Nebraska - No prospects on this roster unless you count Christian Standhardinger's chances in Germany when his time is up in Lincoln.
Colorado - Surprisingly one intriguing prospect is on CU's roster, Alec Burks, the 2010 Big 12 Freshman of the Year. In his true freshman year with the Buffs this 6'6" SG averaged 17.1 PPG and 5.0 RBG. Burks has the size to play at the next level but he has to improve his jump shot if he hopes to make the NBA. While you shouldn't expect Burks to be jumping to the League after this season he is a legitimate prospect that will have scouts keeping tabs on him.
Missouri - While Missouri has some very nice college players on their current roster like Kim English & Laurence Bowers, there isn't a true NBA player on their team. If Tony Mitchell's school situation gets cleared up and he is able to make his way to Columbia, Mizzou fans will get a high NBA prospect to watch. Mitchell is listed as a small forward standing 6'8" and is tabbed as the #12 recruit in the Rivals 150 rankings. According to the recruiting experts Mitchell is an explosive athlete and top-notch scorer. Expect him to try and leave for the NBA after one season, assuming he plays the one season for the Tigers.
Kansas - As is the case every year, the Jayhawks will have at least one player from this year's team who will be earning a handsome paycheck next year in the NBA. The first player that comes to mind is #1 Rivals prospect, PG Josh Selby. Listed at 6'2", chances are Selby would not be attending college if the rules weren't in place making him briefly stopover in Lawrence much like Xavier Henry was forced to do last season. Another player who some believe will opt to leave after the season is Marcus Morris who averaged 12.8 PPG last year and at times appeared to be the best player on the floor for the #1 team in the country. With an expanding perimeter game, Morris could give himself a chance to be solidly in the first round of the 2011 draft if he chooses to leave his brother Markieff behind. Two players who barely made a blip last year but intrigue scouts are Elijah Johnson & Thomas Robinson, both former top recruits in 2009.
Kansas State - While most pundits have the Wildcats solidly in their pre-season top ten lists for the upcoming season, their roster isn't stacked with NBA prospects as you might expect. The player with the highest ceiling is Wally Judge who struggled mightily at times and needs to step up this season but he is a 6'9" athlete with great upside. Jacob Pullen got some draft chatter after his outstanding run in the NCAA Tournament but standing only 6'0", it's more likely he makes the investment in a passport or a portable DVD player for the NBDL bus trips. One intriguing player to watch in regards to possible NBA prospects this upcoming season is Freddy Asprilla, who averaged 14.3 PPG and 9.3 RBG his freshman season, albeit for Florida Atlantic. Having never seen Asprilla play a game in the Big 12, one can't legitimately say he is an NBA prospect but he is a player to keep an eye on.
Submitted by Joe Loyd, Special to Big 12 Hoops