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10 of The Best Men’s College Basketball Players since 2010

Updated: Apr 2

College Basketball has seen an immense amount of change over the last decade plus. From the rise of NIL, conference realignment, legendary figures in the game stepping away and a global pandemic, yesterday’s game is not today’s game. However, one thing that has remained constant is the exceptional talent that the sport possesses. In honor of the start of basketball season, let's take a look at the ten best players to step foot on a college campus since the start of the 2010s.

  • Zion Williamson - 2019

    • A human highlight reel before he stepped foot on campus in Durham, the hype Zion Williamson generated around college hoops during the 2018-2019 season had the likes of Jay-Z & Barack Obama showing up to Cameron Indoor Stadium to see him play. With averages of 22 PPG, 9 RPG, & 2 AST, along with spectacular, ESPN worthy dunks & blocks on a nightly basis, Williamson brought an energy to the sport of basketball that hadn't been seen since an 18-year old Lebron James in 2003. Zion’s lone year at Duke saw him win the Naismith Player of The Year and become the consensus #1 overall pick in that year’s NBA Draft.

  • Anthony Davis - 2012

    • Kentucky is no stranger to having special talents walk through the doors of Rupp Arena, but Anthony Davis made it clear during his 2011-2012 season with the Wildcats that he was a generational talent the likes that program had not seen up to that point. With averages of 14 PPG, 10 RPG and an eye-popping 4.7 BPG, along with a dominant run which saw the Wildcats win the National Championship, Davis was far & beyond the best player on college basketball during his time and a no-brainer top selection in the 2012 NBA Draft.

  • Kemba Walker - 2008-2011

    • New York is often referred to as the “Basketball Mecca” for the amount of talent & success that area has produced as well as the influence it’s had on basketball culture overall. Bronx native Kemba Walker joined UCONN in 2008 and was a good scorer for his first two seasons under Jim Calhoun. However, it wasn’t until his junior year during the 2011 season which saw Walker go from good to great. During that season, Walker put up 23 PPG, 5 RPG, 4 APG and shot 47% from beyond the arc. During that year's March Madness, Walker’s game went up another notch which culminated in a National Championship in Coach Calhoun’s last season coaching.

  • Buddy Hield - 2012-2016

    • Buddy Hield’s college career is one that saw constant improvement each year he was in Norman. He averaged a consistent 14 PPG his first 3 years as a Sooner and was a constant presence in the Big 10. However, his senior campaign during the 2015-2016 season is what sets him apart from many other players who stayed all four years. A scoring machine averaging 25 PPG with spectacular performances in March. With a resume that includes being a 2-Time Big 10 Player of the Year & a consensus All-American, Buddy Hield has the resume of one of the best players to ever step foot in Norman.

  • Jalen Brunson - 2015-2018

    • A 2-Time National Champion, 2018 AP Player of the Year & a consensus All-American, Jalen Brunson was one of the most accomplished players during his time with Villanova. Capping off his college career with a 18 PPG season and a National Championship off of a Kris Jenkins Buzzer-Beater.

  • Trae Young -2018

    • There hasn’t been an NCAA Basketball video game since the year 2009, yet Trae Young put up video game like numbers while playing for the Sooners. 27 PPG along with 8 AST, multiple 40 point games, all while being a freshman at OU. Young carried that immense talent into being a Big 12 Freshman of the Year and was selected by the Dallas Mavericks (later traded to the Hawks for Luka Doncic) in the 2018 NBA Draft.

  • Trey Burke - 2011-2013

    • Standing at 6 '1, Trey Burke made his presence felt immediately as a member of the Wolverines during his freshman year. His sophomore campaign saw him go from a legit threat at the guard position to being one of, if not the best player in the country. Burke put up averages of 16 PPG, 5 AST, and a tendency to knock down the biggest shot in the biggest moments. Burke would leave Ann Arbor with a Naismith Award, AP Player of the Year Honors, and NCAA All-Tourney Honors for his clutch performances in March Madness.

  • Jahlil Okafor - 2014

    • Jahlil Okafor can be described as a player that was one of the last of his kind. A true back to the basket big man who was the catalyst of that 2014 Duke National Championship squad (Coach K’s Last Natty). Okafor put up averages of 17 PPG, 8 RPG, and is credited as one of the most skilled bigs in college basketball during his lone season in Durham. Okafor would take home ACC Player of the Year Honors and was drafted by the 76ers in the 2014 NBA Draft.

  • Doug McDermott - 2011-2014

    • “The 5th All Time Leading Scorer in College Basketball History” is the recognition that will follow Doug McDermott for his entire career. A scoring machine who broke nearly every school record at Creighton with career averages of 21 PPG, 7 RPG and a 45% shooting percentage from three. McDermott left Creighton as the nation's first 3-Time All American since Patrick Ewing did it with the Hoyas in the 80s.

  • Russ Smith - 2010-2014

    • Russ Smith’s time at Louisville may become one of the more underrated careers of the last decade plus. The Brooklyn native is a National Champion, a consensus All-American and the all time leader in steals at the University of Louisville. His sophomore & junior seasons saw him put up averages of 18 PPG & 2 STL all while being the heart & soul of that championship winning Louisville program in the early 2010s.

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