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2011-12 Dream Team: Building blocks for a perfect season


CBSSports.com's stable of college basketball writers -- Gary Parrish, Jeff Goodman, Matt Norlander and Jeff Borzello -- have decided to put together their own "Dream Teams" of sorts. In short, each writer has drafted a team of 13 players currently playing college basketball, a coaching staff and recruits to target in the Class of 2012.

There are, of course, stipulations:

- Team can't have more than one player from a single school (ie. Must choose either Anthony Davis or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist from Kentucky, not both).

- At least four players on the team must come from a non-BCS affiliated league.

- Bench players must actually come off the bench for their real team.

- One player will be chosen to redshirt because, frankly, no one uses all 13 of their scholarships.

- Player positions are the discretion of the writer (ie. Whether Jared Sullinger is a center or forward).

Gary Parrish

Jeff Goodman

Matt Norlander

Jeff Borzello
Starting lineup
SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist Harrison Barnes Thomas Robinson Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
PF Jared Sullinger Thomas Robinson Jared Sullinger Perry Jones
C Perry Jones Jared Sullinger Anthony Davis Jared Sullinger
PG Kendall Marshall Phil Pressey Jordan Taylor Phil Pressey
SG John Jenkins Jeremy Lamb Austin Rivers Jeremy Lamb
Top three reserves
Jeremy Lamb Michael Kidd-Gilchrist Harrison Barnes John Henson
Tu Holloway Tu Holloway Marcus Denmon Tu Holloway
Thomas Robinson Festus Ezeli Scott Machado Brad Beal
Two mid-major reserves
Mike Moser Scott Machado Orlando Johnson Casper Ware
Doug McDermott Kent Bazemore Doug McDermott Doug McDermott
Two true "bench" players
Mike Rosario Dion Waiters Ryan Boatright Dion Waiters
Adonis Thomas Adonis Thomas Will Sheehey Adonis Thomas
Cody Zeller Yancy Gates Javon McCrea Jahii Carson
Coaching staff
Mike Krzyzewski Mike Krzyzewski Brad Stevens John Calipari
Mike Hopkins Mike Hopkins Kevin Ollie Scott Spinelli
Jerrance Howard Butch Pierre Tommy Lloyd Jerrance Howard
Kenny Payne Bill Barton Russell Springmann Russell Springmann
Recruits to target
Shabazz Muhammad Kyle Anderson Shabazz Muhammad Shabazz Muhammad
Kyle Anderson Marcus Smart Kyle Anderson Marcus Smart
Jarnell Stokes Kaleb Tarczewski Cameron Ridley Anthony Bennett
Alex Poythress Sam Dekker Ricardo Gathers Brice Johnson

Gary Parrish's comments
Starting lineup

SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky: This team has enough scorers. So on the wing I just need somebody with a big motor who is tough and can guard. Kidd-Gilchrist is my guy.

PF Jared Sullinger, Ohio State: As long as his back his healthy, Sullinger is the best big in college basketball and capable of a double-double every night.

C Perry Jones, Baylor: I'll let Sullinger do the scoring and Jones do the shot-blocking and stick-back dunking. That's a formidable front line.

PG Kendall Marshall, North Carolina: Nobody gets his teammates better shots than the UNC point guard. I want Marshall running my team because he's smart enough to know to feed Sullinger and Jones until somebody proves they can be stopped.

SG John Jenkins, Vanderbilt: I have to keep opposing defenses from collapsing on my dominant bigs. That's where Jenkins comes into play. He shoots it well enough to keep folks honest.

Top three reserves

Tu Holloway, Xavier: If we're tied late I'm getting Holloway on the floor. And he's hitting the game-winner. And then we're zipping 'em up.

Jeremy Lamb, Connecticut: Lamb is as smooth a perimeter player as there is in the country. And he's great at runners. And I like a player who can hit runners.

Thomas Robinson, Kansas: Whenever Sullinger or Jones needs a break, I can insert a guy averaging 18 and 11 for the Jayhawks.

Two mid-major reserves
Can't be from a Power 6 league or Gonzaga, Xavier or Memphis

Doug McDermott, Creighton: McDermott is averaging 24 points per game and shooting 61 percent from 3-point range. If a defense needs to be stretched, he'll stretch it.

Mike Moser, UNLV: Moser got 16 points and 18 rebounds against North Carolina. Sure, he can come off my bench.

Two true "bench players"
Must come off the bench for their respective teams this season

Mike Rosario, Florida: Rosario provides instant offense for the Gators. And for me.

Adonis Thomas, Memphis: Thomas is a versatile wing who can guard multiple positions. That makes him a nice reserve.

One player taken with the intention to sit out

Cody Zeller, Indiana: I'm assuming I'm losing all my bigs after this season. Zeller is more than capable of sliding in and scoring big next year. Or now, really. But especially next year.

Coaching staff
Assistants must actually be assistants

Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski, Duke: Nobody is better at taking a group of stars and making them one team. See the Olympics as proof.

Associate Head coach Mike Hopkins, Syracuse: If he's good enough to be Syracuse's coach-in-waiting, he's good enough to be my associate head coach.

Assistant Kenny Payne, Kentucky: We're recruiting players, right? Then I want World Wide Wes' good friend on my staff.

Assistant Jerrance Howard, Illinois: We're recruiting Chicago, right? Then I want the guy who does it better than anybody on my staff.

Recruits to target

Shabazz Muhammad: He's the best prospect in the country. Hopefully he wants to play for the winningest coach of all-time.

Jarnell Stokes: Stokes is a tough big who can score and rebound. And he might be able to enroll in January, which would be nice.

Kyle Anderson: There are some who think this might be Ben Howland's last year at UCLA. If so, Anderson is back on the board.

Alex Poythress: I need the Knicks to stink, fire their coach and hire John Calipari to have a shot at Poythress. Fingers crossed.

Jeff Goodman's comments
Starting lineup

SF -- Harrison Barnes, North Carolina: He'll be a star on this team because he'll get plenty of open looks on the perimeter. He's at his best off the catch - and that's what we'll need from him.

PF -- Thomas Robinson, Kansas: There's no way anyone can contain my interior duo of T-Rob and Sully in the paint. Good luck trying.

C -- Jared Sullinger, Ohio State: No one can stop him down low. He can score in the post and also control the glass. I'm just praying his back holds up.

PG -- Phil Pressey, Missouri: He's the ideal guy to run this team because he doesn't need to score -- and just makes those around him better. He's jet-quick and can pressure the ball.

SG -- Jeremy Lamb, UConn: He's one of the best perimeter shooters in the country - and can do more than just shoot it. Our spacing on this team will be unreal.

Top three reserves

Michael Gilchrist, Kentucky: He's an animal. Plays so hard, you don't have to run anything for him: and he'll be fine with coming off the bench.

Tu Holloway, Xavier: He's no gangsta, but he's tough as nails. Holloway can score, run a team and defend. I'll take him any day. As versatile of a point guard as there is.

Festus Ezeli, Vanderbilt: We plan on playing Sullinger major minutes, but Ezeli is a terrific backup (he plays both ends of the court) just in case Sully's back doesn't hold up.

Two mid-major reserves
Can't be from a Power 6 league or Gonzaga, Xavier or Memphis

Scott Machado, Iona: One rule I always told myself if I was ever a coach; make sure you have three point guards on the roster just in case something happens to one of them. Machado leads the nation in assists at 11.4 per game.

Kent Bazemore, Old Dominion: With all this talent, all we need coming off the bench is a lock-down, versatile defender. Bazemore is just that - and more. He can score, too.

Two true "bench players"
Must come off the bench for their respective teams this season

Dion Waiters, Syracuse: He's tough, has accepted his role off the bench and can get buckets. Quickly.

Adonis Thomas, Memphis: It's just a matter of time before Thomas is a star. We need a backup wing with size on the team and he's the ideal fit.

One player taken with the intention to sit out

Yancy Gates, Cincinnati: Did you see that right-hand he threw to knock down Kenny Frease? We won't ever play him, but he'll be intimidating on the bench. No one will mess with us. No one.

Coaching staff
Assistants must actually be assistants

Head Coach -- Mike Krzyzewski, Duke: There may be better straight-up recruiters, but there's a reason this guy has won more than 900 games and has multiple national titles.

Associate Head coach -- Mike Hopkins, Syracuse: He's the coach-in-waiting at Syracuse for a reason. He knows the game, can recruit and also connects with the players. Future star.

Assistant -- Butch Pierre, Oklahoma State: If I want one guy in a head-to-head recruiting battle, I'm putting my money on Pierre.

Assistant -- Bill Barton, Pittsburgh: One of the most overlooked aspects is working to help get your guys eligible. There's no one more adept at this than Barton -- who learned how to evaluate a transcript while at Notre Dame Prep. He can also recruit.
Recruits to target

Kyle Anderson: He's a 6-foot-8 point guard who is the best passer in the entire class. There's no debate on that. Ben Howland won't be happy, but I'm going to try and get him to de-commit from UCLA and play for my program.

Marcus Smart: He's a shooting guard who plays both ends of the court -- and just wins. He's headed to play for Travis Ford and Oklahoma State, but after hearing my pitch to come in and replace John Jenkins, he'll change his mind.

Kaleb Tarczewski: The 7-footer from New Hampshire just keeps getting better. He's tough, coachable and he's not going to jump to the NBA the first chance he gets. In fact, he could be a four-year kid. Now, stealing him away from Sean Miller and Arizona could be tough.

Sam Dekker: Love this kid. He's a big wing who can stroke it, gets to the basket and also likes to defend. I'm not sure I'll be able to get him away from Bo Ryan and Wisconsin, but I'm sure as heck gonna try.

Matt Norlander's comments
Starting lineup

PF Thomas Robinson, Kansas: Hes coming into his own, will be a lottery pick and can put a team on his back as well as or better than any other player on my team.

PF Jared Sullinger, Ohio State: Vocal leaders dont need to be point guards. Why would I not opt to have someone with so much confidence, player-of-the-year potential and the work ethic and actions to back up his talk?

C Anthony Davis, Kentucky: He is an alien life form, and everyone else is human, so this was pretty much a no-brainer.

PG Jordan Taylor, Wisconsin: I do love big men, but I need a point guard that can play defense as well as be a unique playmaker. Taylors not having the type of year this season he did last, but Im keeping the faith.

SG Austin Rivers, Duke: With all the bigs Ive got, I need a guard to keep defenses consistently wobbly. No one can put the ball on a string like Rivers no one can check him in college who is the perfect antidote to rolling with three bigs like Davis, Sullinger and T-Rob. Rivers doesnt do defense, but everyone else in the starting five does.

Top three reserves

Harrison Barnes, UNC: Its said Barnes lacks fire and aggressiveness. Im still putting him on my team; maybe being a sixth man reboots BarnesBot. Too many tools and too polished of a player to not have/strongly consider him for your team.

Marcus Denmon, Missouri: Denmon can be the most complete 2 in the nation this year. He is the highest scorer in points per possession for players who are involved in at least 20 percent of their teams possessions (thats really, really good).

Scott Machado, Iona: This is where compiling a team and its pieces matters. I need a third non-BCS/Xavier/Gonzaga/Memphis guy, and I need a backup point guard. So whos the best out there? Id love to take my boy Nate Wolters at South Dakota State, but Machados been one of the best assists/steal point guards out there. And hes a point guard with a body, too.

Two mid-major reserves
Can't be from a Power 6 league or Gonzaga, Xavier or Memphis

Orlando Johnson, UC Santa Barbara: If this was a pick-your-five-for-the-playground team, Johnson makes the group.

Doug McDermott, Creighton: McDermott is arguably having the best all-around season of any player in college basketball so far.

Two true "bench players"
Must come off the bench for their respective teams this season

Ryan Boatright, UConn: The ultimate change-of-pace guy here. He does wonders as a sparkplug for UConn, and hed do the same here. A shifty athletic freak is always go to insert during the five-minute stretches of the middle of the first and second halves.

Will Sheehey, Indiana: I wonder if any bench player is getting more minutes per game this season than Sheehey, who understands where he should be and what he needs to do on the floor.

One player taken with the intention to sit out

Javon McCrea, Buffalo: My thought process is this: 1) I need four mid-major players, so I couldnt go to an obvious guy. 2) If Im redshirting someone, itd better be a freshman or sophomore. McCrea is the latter, and at 6-6, hes basically a poor mans Sullinger. He could be the MACs best player, and if he manages to stay four years, Buffalo in 2014 could resemble Morehead State from last season, McCrea playing the role of Kenneth Faried.

Coaching staff
Assistants must actually be assistants

Head Coach Brad Stevens, Butler: Im taking a head coach of a program for the next 15 years, so Im taking Stevens. No concerns about cheating, all positive pub, and he actually embraces tempo-free statistics and uses them to his advantage.

Associate Head coach Kevin Ollie, UConn: Can and should be a very successful coach in college and soon. Does he replace Calhoun? Seems like the best choice to me.

Assistant Tommy Lloyd, Gonzaga: The man has earned his respect from peers around the country and turned into one of the better recruiters out there.

Assistant Russell Springmann, Texas: He seems like hes ready and should be a coach any day now, but Ill keep him on my staff as long as possible, again, because he can recruit so well.

Recruits to target

Shabazz Muhammad : If Im losing half my team to the NBA, hes going to take a chance, Id hope.

Kyle Anderson: He's a unique talent and probably the biggest matchup problem in the 2012 class. A true point forward, Anderson's a bright kid with a bright future.

Cameron Ridley: I need to chase after a replacement center, and I like Ridley more than fellow 2012 big men Isiah Austin and Kaleb Tarczewski.

Ricardo Gathers: A beast of a power forward, I'd like a good complement to Anderson in the frontcourt. Gathers hovers around No. 30 in the rankings, but he can ascend to be one of the best in his class.

Jeff Borzello's comments
Starting lineup

SF -- Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky: He's not as talented as some other wings, but he does everything at both ends and is already a leader despite being a freshman. Above all, he loves to win.

PF -- Perry Jones, Baylor: When he's focused, Jones is as talented and productive as any player in the country. Sullinger and Kidd-Gilchrist would certainly bring out his enormous potential.

C -- Jared Sullinger, Ohio State: It's almost impossible not to put Sullinger on your team. He's a dominant low-post player and continues to get better, while also being a leader in the locker room.

PG -- Phil Pressey, Missouri: When attempting to run a full-court press and an up-tempo team, what better point guard than Pressey? He's a blur with the ball and creates havoc at both ends.

SG -- Jeremy Lamb, Connecticut: Lamb has arguably the smoothest offensive game of any player in the country. He can knock down shots from deep and also beat his player and get to the rim.

Top three reserves

John Henson, North Carolina: With Sullinger as my starting center, Henson can come off the bench and use his length and athleticism to block shots and be the last line of defense for my press.

Brad Beal, Florida: Beal is one of the best shooters in the country, regardless of class. He is deadly from the mid-range and is also efficient from behind the arc. Cut out of the Ray Allen mold.

Tu Holloway, Xavier: With the game on the line, there's no one better than Holloway to get a big basket. He is clutch and tough, and is able to put a team on his back down the stretch of games.

Two mid-major reserves
Can't be from a Power 6 league or Gonzaga, Xavier or Memphis

Doug McDermott, Creighton: Blew up playing for the U-19 team over the summer, and has carried that over this season. Is an effective inside-outside option and can do a little bit of everything.

Casper Ware, Long Beach State: He's experienced, he's talented and he's got swagger. Ware can beat defenders off the bounce to create plays for others and has deep range behind the arc.

Two true "bench players"
Must come off the bench for their respective teams this season

Dion Waiters, Syracuse: Waiters is a go-to-guy waiting to happen, but has shown his ability. He's physical and athletic, able to play both guard positions. Would be an asset in transition as well.

Adonis Thomas, Memphis: One of the best players in the high school ranks last season, Thomas is a physical forward who can finish inside and also defend multiple positions. Has a high ceiling.

One player taken with the intention to sit out

Jahii Carson, Arizona State: He's already redshirting for the Sun Devils; he can do the same for me. Moreover, with Holloway and Ware leaving, Carson is perfect at the point guard position.

Coaching staff
Assistants must actually be assistants

Head Coach -- John Calipari, Kentucky: No one in the country is better at getting talent, and then managing that talent without chemistry issues. He would have a field day with this entire roster.

Associate Head coach -- Scott Spinelli, Maryland: Spinelli is an excellent recruiter in multiple areas, and is a tremendous evaluator of talent. He's also an underrated X's and O's coach on the sideline.

Assistant -- Russell Springmann, Texas: There is zero doubt that Springmann will be a head coach within a few years. He's an outstanding recruiter and is well-respected by many in the industry.

Assistant -- Jerrance Howard, Illinois: Bottom line: the guy flat-out gets players. Howard has a variety of contacts all over the country, and has the coaching acumen to be a head man pretty soon.

Recruits to target

Shabazz Muhammad: Clearly the best prospect in the country. He's an unbelievable scorer and virtually unstoppable when going to the rim. The lefty will get buckets at any level; he's a lock star player.

Marcus Smart: Smart is one of the most intense and hard-working players in the country. He values winning above anything else, and is a tremendous perimeter defender. Coaches love him.

Anthony Bennett: He has arguably improved more than anyone in the class over the past year. Bennett is an outstanding inside-outside scorer, and continues to get rave reviews every night out.

Brice Johnson: There are some that say Johnson is a future NBA lottery pick. With the way he is improving and his natural length and athleticism, Johnson is a guy that would be great in my system.


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