Freshman seem to rule the college basketball world now, as all of the top high schoolers can often determine a college program's success for the next season before they move to the NBA.
Last year was the perfect example of this as freshmen Karl-Anthony Towns, Devin Booker, Trey Lyles, and Tyler Ulis nearly led Kentucky to an undefeated season, while Duke's four freshmen (Jahlil Okafor, Justise Winslow, Tyus Jones, and Grayson Allen) led the Blue Devils to the national title.
The ACC will see another heavy influx of top freshman talent this year, with several of the top schools in the conference landing top prospects. Here are the top five rookies in the conference this season:
5) PG Derryck Thornton - Duke
Thronton doesn't have the notoriety that the other three Duke freshmen have, but he's excellent in his own right. A pure point guard, he's very efficient and is great at setting his teammates up while also being a capable shooter and absolute lockdown defender.
4) SG Malachi Richardson - Syracuse
Richardson is a pure shooter with deep range, and his 6'6" frame allows him to get his shot off practically whenever he wants. However, he needs to improve as a slasher and add strength, but he'll have a big impact right off the bat with his shooting ability
3) SG Dwayne Bacon - Florida State
Bacon is the best prospect to go to FSU in a long, long time. At 6'6" and 210 pounds, there's very little Bacon can't do on the basketball court. He's supremely athletic and is great at finishing around the rim (with plenty of spectacular slams from time to time), but also has good ball-handing ability and a reliable three-point shot. Quite frankly, he could end up being the ACC Freshman of the Year ahead of the first two guys on this list.
2) C Chase Jeter - Duke
Jeter is your stereotypical Duke big man in terms of his rebounding ability and the high motor he plays with, but he's also one of the more skilled big men Coach K has had - outside of Jahlil Okafor, of course. Jeter is an effective shot blocker and has a developing post game, but needs to add muscle to his 6'10", 215-pound frame.
1) SF Brandon Ingram - Duke
Ingram has as much potential as anyone in the draft, and could be competing for the No. 1 pick after the college season. He's a 6'8 small forward who has all the skill in the world on the offensive end, but his lack of strength (198 lbs.) will be a big negative going forward. However, he can often make up for his lack of strength with his insane leaping ability that allows him to touch the top of the backboard.Back to the ACC Newsfeed
Related Topics: Malachi Richardson, Duke Blue Devils Basketball, ACC Basketball, Dwayne Bacon, Syracuse Orange Basketball, NCAA Basketball, Florida State Seminoles Basketball, Derryck Thornton, Chase Jeter, Brandon Ingram, College Basketball