2016 NBA Draft Big Board: Ben Simmons at top, Skal Labissiere No. 6

We're halfway through the 2015-16 college basketball season and about six months out from the NBA Draft. That means it's time to update the CBS Sports Big Board for the 2016 draft.

This draft is shaping up to be the weakest since the 2013 draft, and is also trending to be considerably weaker than the 2017 iteration. The reason for that largely has to do with the lack of players who have truly stepped forward as elite prospects to this point.

Ben Simmons has been as good as advertised at LSU, but he's far from a perfect prospect due to his lack of shooting ability and defense. Opinion is pretty split on whether or not he's a future all-star or merely just what will be a very good player due to the fairly glaring current weaknesses in his game. Only recently has Duke's Brandon Ingram put his name into the mix for the No. 1 overall spot after a few rough games to start his season. Dragan Bender is only playing 10 minutes per game in Israel, which isn't bad at all on a Euroleague team for an 18-year-old but it also doesn't give him a chance to really make a leap up draft boards. Kentucky's Skal Labissiere has truly underwhelmed, driving his stock down from its preseason heights. Guys like Jamal Murray and Jaylen Brown have merely been fine. 

Basically, no one has really stepped up and taken spots away from other players. That could change as we continue to push through the season. It's also worth noting that this draft could end up having a particular amount of depth as players could declare in order to avoid the 2017 draft, which already looks to feature an elite high school class as well as an elite international class. But for now, the lack of starpower and high level upside in the lottery -- especially beyond the top-three -- makes this class one of the more underwhelming ones we've seen recently.

The best comparison at this point in regard to the draft's strength might be to the 2011 draft. That draft had one player that most had at the top in Kyrie Irving, another player who was a minority opinion as best player in the draft in Derrick Williams, followed by a large group of players in the Nos. 3 through 11 spots who each had their fans. Now, players like Reggie Jackson, Jimmy Butler, and Kawhi Leonard later in the first round have stepped up to give that draft further depth over the last few years, but it's hard to come away from that lottery thinking it was anything but underwhelming. 

Ben Simmons is currently the No. 1 player on this board. (USATSI)
Ben Simmons is currently the No. 1 player on this board. (USATSI)

This one could be the same, and it wouldn't be a total surprise. Here are some other notes:

  • As usual with this board, it's worth pointing out that I do not rank freshmen higher than No. 50 due to the fact that they are unlikely to declare. The players who would slot somewhere in the top 100 are Deyonta Davis, Caleb Swanigan, Jalen Brunson, Tyler Dorsey, Marquese Chriss, and Dedric Lawson. If they end up declaring at the end or move into the top 50, you'll see them. 
  • As noted above, the battle for the top spot is heating up a bit. Simmons would likely be the first pick if the draft was held today, but Ingram is closing in fast. Scouts love Ingram's length, feel for the game, defensive activity level, and ability to shoot at nearly 6-10 with a 7-3 wingspan. It's not a sure thing Simmons goes No. 1, and he'll need to continue to play well to consolidate that ranking. 
  • One thing that could prop up this draft is the international class. I have 14 internationals ranked in my top 62 at the moment, led by Dragan Bender. Bender is a 7-1 forward prospect who plays for Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel, and getting pretty genuine minutes for a team in the Euroleague. He's a great lateral athlete who defends, has great basketball sense, and has also improved as a jump shooter in the last year. It would not surprise me if he ends up in the first overall discussion as long as his buyout situation is not particularly cumbersome (it may be, as he's currently on what's known as a 4+3 deal in Israel, with two years remaining after this one in the first portion. The figures to buy him out before then are not known). 
  • Some guys who have risen up the board since the preseason: Ivan Rabb (now No. 14), Denzel Valentine (No. 22), Malik Beasley (No. 37), and Patrick McCaw (No. 41). It's also worth pointing out that both Pascal Siakam and Kahlil Felder have entered the mix from smaller schools. 
  • Guys who have fallen include Labissiere, Malik Newman, Malik Pope, and Diamond Stone. Labissiere only moves to No. 6 because, again, very few players have really stepped up and made it totally worthwhile to pass his upside. 
  • The toughest guy to peg right now: Dwayne Bacon of Florida State. Mostly, that's because he has one of the most unique situations in the entire draft. On one hand, he's averaging 17.8 points-per-game as a freshman and has clear NBA athleticism and size. On the other hand, he's scored nearly half of his points in transition, was shooting 29.3 percent on jumpers before an explosion on Tuesday night against Florida, and will be 21-years-old before ever playing an NBA game if he declares this year. I've basically split the difference and put him at No. 38. My guess is that by the end of the year, Bacon will probably be seen as a first-round pick. But the shooting has to come around, and he has to continue to be as effective in the halfcourt as he was in the Seminoles' rivalry game against the Gators.

So without further ado, here is your CBS Sports Big Board, featuring the top 150 players for the 2016 NBA Draft.

2016 NBA Draft Prospect Rankings
Rank Player School Year POS HGT WGT
1 Ben Simmons LSU Fr. F 6-10 240
2 Brandon Ingram Duke Fr. SF 6-9 190
3 Dragan Bender Croatia - F 7-1 216
4 Kris Dunn Providence Jr. PG 6-4 220
5 Jamal Murray Kentucky Fr. G 6-4 207
6 Skal Labissiere Kentucky Fr. PF 6-11 225
7 Jaylen Brown California Fr. F 6-7 225
8 Henry Ellenson Marquette Fr. PF 6-10 245
9 Jakob Poeltl Utah Soph. C 7-0 248
10 Cheick Diallo Kansas Fr. C 6-9 220
11 Furkan Korkmaz Turkey - SG 6-7 175
12 Demetrius Jackson Notre Dame Jr. PG 6-1 201
13 Timothe Luwawu France - G/F 6-7 205
14 Ivan Rabb California Fr. C/PF 6-11 220
15 Stephen Zimmerman Jr. UNLV Fr. C 7-0 240
16 Wade Baldwin IV Vanderbilt Soph. PG 6-3 194
17 Caris LeVert Michigan Sr. SG 6-7 205
18 Isaiah Briscoe Kentucky Fr. PG 6-3 202
19 Domantas Sabonis Gonzaga Soph. PF/C 6-11 240
20 Taurean Prince Baylor Sr. F 6-8 220
21 Melo Trimble Maryland Soph. PG 6-3 185
22 Denzel Valentine Michigan State Sr. G/F 6-5 220
23 Diamond Stone Maryland Fr. C 6-11 255
24 Jonathan Jeanne France - C 7-2 200
25 Buddy Hield Oklahoma Sr. SG 6-4 214
26 Damian Jones Vanderbilt Jr. C/PF 7-0 245
27 Grayson Allen Duke Soph. SG 6-5 205
28 Nigel Hayes Wisconsin Jr. F 6-8 240
29 Thomas Bryant Indiana Fr. C/PF 6-10 245
30 Vasilis Charalampopoulos Greece - F 6-9 236
31 Petr Cornelie France - PF 6-11 220
32 Paul Zipser Germany - SF 6-8 210
33 Allonzo Trier Arizona Fr. SG 6-6 210
34 Justin Jackson North Carolina Soph. SF 6-8 200
35 Malik Newman Mississippi State Fr. G 6-3 190
36 Gary Payton II Oregon State Sr. PG 6-3 190
37 Malik Beasley Florida State Fr. SG 6-5 196
38 Dwayne Bacon Florida State Fr. G/F 6-7 221
39 Ivica Zubac Croatia - C 7-0 240
40 Zhou Qi China - C 7-2 209
41 Patrick McCaw UNLV Soph. SG 6-7 185
42 Troy Williams Indiana Jr. SF 6-7 215
43 Monte Morris Iowa State Jr. PG 6-3 175
44 Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk Kansas Soph. SG 6-8 195
45 Ante Zizic Croatia - PF/C 6-9 210
46 Daniel Hamilton Connecticut Soph. G/F 6-7 195
47 Tyler Ulis Kentucky Soph. PG 5-9 160
48 A.J. Hammons Purdue Sr. C 7-0 250
49 Jake Layman Maryland Sr. F 6-9 220
50 Tyrone Wallace California Sr. PG 6-5 205
51 DeAndre' Bembry Saint Joseph's Jr. SF 6-6 210
52 Juan Hernangomez Spain - PF 6-9 225
53 Shawn Long UL Lafayette Sr. PF/C 6-11 246
54 Damion Lee Louisville Sr. SG 6-6 210
55 Brice Johnson North Carolina Sr. PF 6-10 230
56 Michael Gbinije Syracuse Sr. G/F 6-7 200
57 Sasha Vezenkov Bulgaria - PF 6-9 225
58 Alpha Kaba France - PF 6-10 226
59 Pascal Siakam New Mexico State Soph. PF 6-9 230
60 Malcolm Brogdon Virginia Sr. SG 6-5 215
61 Luke Kornet Vanderbilt Jr. PF/C 7-1 240
62 Isaia Cordinier France - SG 6-5 190
63 Kahlil Felder Oakland Jr. PG 5-9 176
64 Malcolm Hill Illinois Jr. SF 6-6 220
65 Dillon Brooks Oregon Soph. SF 6-6 225
66 Danuel House Texas A&M Sr. G/F 6-7 212
67 Ron Baker Wichita State Sr. G 6-4 210
68 Marcus Paige North Carolina Sr. PG 6-2 175
69 Yogi Ferrell Indiana Sr. PG 6-0 180
70 Wayne Selden Jr. Kansas Jr. G/F 6-5 230
71 Chinanu Onuaku Louisville Soph. C 6-10 245
72 Tim Quarterman LSU Jr. G/F 6-6 190
73 James Webb III Boise State Jr. F 6-9 202
74 Marcus Lee Kentucky Jr. PF 6-9 224
75 Malik Pope San Diego State Soph. F 6-10 210
76 Jarrod Uthoff Iowa Sr. F 6-9 221
77 Kyle Wiltjer Gonzaga Sr. PF 6-10 240
78 Isaac Haas Purdue Soph. C 7-2 282
79 Diego Flaccadori Italy - SG 6-5 175
80 Devin Robinson Florida Soph. SF 6-8 195
81 Dorian Finney-Smith Florida Sr. F 6-8 220
82 James Blackmon Jr. Indiana Soph. SG 6-4 195
83 Egemen Guven Turkey - PF 6-10 210
84 Amida Brimah Connecticut Jr. C 7-0 232
85 Zach Auguste Notre Dame Sr. F/C 6-10 245
86 Josh Hart Villanova Jr. SG 6-5 205
87 Ben Bentil Providence Soph. PF 6-9 235
88 Sheldon McClellan Miami Sr. SG 6-5 200
89 Keita Bates-Diop Ohio State Soph. F 6-7 235
90 Axel Bouteille France - SF 6-6 195
91 Georgios Papagiannis Greece - C 7-1 240
92 Kennedy Meeks North Carolina Jr. C 6-10 260
93 Devin Williams West Virginia Jr. PF/C 6-9 255
94 Marko Arapovic Croatia - PF/C 6-9 220
95 Josh Scott Colorado Sr. PF/C 6-10 245
96 David Walker Northeastern Sr. G 6-6 196
97 Joel Bolomboy Weber State Sr. PF 6-9 235
98 Jameel McKay Iowa State Sr. PF/C 6-9 225
99 Anthony Barber NC State Jr. PG 6-2 190
100 Guerschon Yabusele France - PF 6-8 240
101 Moses Kingsley Arkansas Jr. C 6-10 230
102 Tonye Jekiri Miami (Fla.) Sr. C 7-0 248
103 Trevon Bluiett Xavier Soph. SF 6-6 208
104 Vince Edwards Purdue Soph. SF 6-8 225
105 Alex Poythress Kentucky Sr. F 6-8 230
106 Johnathan Motley Baylor Soph. PF/C 6-9 230
107 Paris Bass Detroit Soph. SF 6-8 200
108 Xavier Rathan-Mayes Florida State Soph. G 6-4 208
109 Georges Niang Iowa State Sr. F 6-8 230
110 Isaac Copeland Georgetown Soph. F 6-9 220
111 Cameron Ridley Texas Sr. C 6-10 290
112 Perry Ellis Kansas Sr. PF 6-8 225
113 Kaleb Tarczewski Arizona Sr. C 7-0 250
114 Anzejs Pasecniks Latvia - C 7-1 225
115 Rade Zagorac Serbia - SF 6-8 200
116 Fred VanVleet Wichita State Sr. PG 6-0 186
117 Theo Pinson North Carolina Soph. G/F 6-6 205
118 Daniel Ochefu Villanova Sr. C 6-11 245
119 Boris Dallo France - PG 6-5 180
120 Shevon Thompson George Mason Sr. C 6-11 243
121 Isaiah Taylor Texas Jr. PG 6-3 185
122 George De Paula Brazil - G 6-6 200
123 Nedim Buza Bosnia - SF 6-8 200
124 A.J. English Iona Sr. G 6-4 190
125 Moussa Diagne Spain - C 6-10 220
126 Kenan Sipahi Turkey - G 6-4 180
127 Jonah Bolden UCLA Soph. F 6-10 220
128 Przemek Karnowski Gonzaga Sr. C 7-1 287
129 Rasheed Sulaimon Maryland Sr. SG 6-4 190
130 Rico Gathers Baylor Sr. PF/C 6-8 275
131 Kyle Collinsworth Brigham Young Sr. G 6-6 215
132 Marius Grigonis Lithuania - SF 6-7 202
133 Jalen Reynolds Xavier Jr. PF/C 6-10 238
134 Wang Zhelin China - PF/C 7-0 251
135 Ilimane Diop Senegal - C 6-11 225
136 V.J. Beachem Notre Dame Jr. G/F 6-8 200
137 Marc Garcia Spain - SG 6-6 180
138 Rodney Purvis UConn Jr. SG 6-4 205
139 Lovro Mazalin Croatia - SF 6-6 209
140 John Brown High Point Sr. F 6-8 210
141 Amile Jefferson Duke Sr. PF 6-9 225
142 Thomas Welsh UCLA Soph. C 7-0 245
143 Shavon Shields Nebraska Sr. G/F 6-7 225
144 Robert Carter Maryland Jr. PF 6-9 235
145 Prince Ibeh Texas Sr. C 6-11 265
146 Damonte Dodd Maryland Jr. C 6-11 250
147 Andrey Desyatnikov Russia - C 7-3 220
148 Abdul-Malik Abu NC State Soph. PF 6-8 240
149 Luke Fischer Marquette Jr. C 6-11 245
150 Emircan Kosut Turkey - C 6-11 220
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