NCAA Tournament Sweet 16: Top remaining reserves

By Jeff Borzello | College Basketball Writer

Arizona's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is a defensive stalwart and a finisher on the break. (USATSI)
Arizona's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is a defensive stalwart and a finisher on the break. (USATSI)

More: NCAA Tourney News | Bracket Hub | Expert Brackets

We ranked the 80 starters remaining in the NCAA Tournament, but few teams make the Sweet 16 based on the performance of the starters alone.

Let's run down some of the top reserves who have helped their teams advance to the regional semifinals, and what they bring to the floor:

Bryce Alford, UCLA: The coach's son has passed Zach LaVine as the primary player off the bench due to his shooting and secondary ball-handling ability.

Wayne Blackshear, Louisville: Has had to play bigger since the departure of Chane Behanan, and he will need to make plays against Kentucky.

Willie Cauley-Stein, Kentucky: Got booted from the starting lineup by Dakari Johnson, but Cauley-Stein's size and athleticism make him a factor.

Dorian Finney-Smith, Florida: Will Yeguete is a terrific defender, but Finney-Smith makes Florida more dangerous offensively when he is on the court.

Rico Gathers, Baylor: At times, Isaiah Austin isn't tough enough on the glass. That's where Gathers comes in. He's extremely strong and is relentless on the boards.

Anthony Gill, Virginia: Gill has scored in double-figures in six straight games, and is averaging 15.0 points and 6.5 rebounds in two tourney games.

Nigel Hayes, Wisconsin: The freshman forward has provided a major boost off the bench for long stretches this season. He's a player who can score with his back to the basket.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Arizona: Has stepped up his play since the injury to Brandon Ashley, even though Gabe York starts. Excellent two-way player.

Naz Long, Iowa State: Iowa State wouldn't be in the Sweet 16 without Long's outside shooting; he's hit clutch shot after clutch shot this season for the Cyclones.

Dwayne Polee, San Diego State: Polee has developed into a necessary second scorer for the Aztecs. Has put up 15 points and six boards in each of the tourney games.

Vee Sanford, Dayton: Part of what makes Dayton so good is its bench – and Sanford is the best option off the pine for head coach Archie Miller.

Travis Trice, Michigan State: Trice's real impact comes when Keith Appling is hobbled or hurt. With Appling's inconsistency, Trice has become a major piece.

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