Player of the Week
Reggie Bullock - North Carolina
It wasn't even two weeks ago that some were wondering if this Tar Heel team had been vastly overrated. They were 0-2 in conference play and 10-5 overall coming off of a home loss to Miami. Oh how quickly things can change in college basketball. After Saturday's win against Maryland the Heels sit at 2-2 in conference and are poised to make a run. Bullock was the player of the game against the Terps. He set the tone early hitting 3's, getting out in transition and getting to the free throw line. He had his season high by half time as North Carolina jumped out to an early lead. He cooled off in the second half but at that point game was out of reach. Bullock's ability to stretch the floor with his range will be pivotal going forward as it keeps defenses honest and opens up the middle of the floor for James McAdoo. Last season, Bullock had a tendency to fall in love with the deep ball but with his expanded role on offense this season he has made a point of getting into the lane more. He has become a more efficient scorer this season. He's taking fewer shots from behind the arc and it shows as his shooting percentages are up across the board.
Travis McKie - Wake Forest
McKie is one of the lesser known talents in the ACC. The forward has played for a rebuilding Wake program for the last three seasons and gets very little exposure outside of Tobacco Road. McKie has averaged at least 13 points per game during his first two and a half season with the Demon Deacons. While the team has struggled mightily early on during ACC play, McKie has been the lone bright spot. He has two double doubles in his last two games and carries much of the load offensively. He is an athletic wing prospect that does a little bit of everything. He hits the offensive glass, gets to the free throw line and can step out and hit the 3 ball. His 11 offensive boards over his last two games is a very telling stat. Wake hosts NC State on Tuesday night and have been known to give up their fair share of offensive rebounds. Look for McKie to make a big impact against the Pack.
Josh Hairston - Duke
With Ryan Kelly out indefinitely, Duke needed someone to step up and fill his shoes. Hairston got first crack at replacing Kelly but hasn't really done much to impress his coaches. He had a decent game against the Wolfpack and had a season high eight points but was ineffective defensively against [Player: C.J. Leslie]. He got the start again against Georgia Tech but would up in foul trouble early on and only played 11 minutes. Amile Jefferson ended up playing a lot more and made the most of it scoring six points and notching 10 rebounds in the win. Hairston has always been a role player for Coach K but has a shot to make a case for more minutes. At the moment he isn't making that case but he still has time to show what he can bring to the table.
Top 5 Seniors
Mason Plumlee - Duke
No player in the ACC has helped his draft position this season more than Plumlee. Labeled as somewhat of a bust for most of his career, the big man has come out firing this season and his finally imposing his will on others in the paint. His post moves are more fluid and his footwork has improved tremendously along with his free throw shooting.
Michael Snaer - Florida State
Snaer hasn't had the type of season most were expecting from him. He's improved his numbers across the board but those can be deceiving as most of his big games came against sub par competition early on. Still, Snaer is an above average defender with active hands and good athleticism. Could be a potential steal late in the second round.
Kenny Kadji - Miami
Kadji has really excelled under Jim Larranaga. He is one of the more versatile players in the ACC. He is long and athletic with an improving jump shot and overall offensive game. He is a poor man's Lamar Odom without the basketball IQ. He has played well since Reggie Johnson went down with an injury and has the 'Canes atop the ACC standings.
Richard Howell - NC State
If Howell were two inches taller he'd be a first round draft pick. He is a relentless rebounder with a fairly decent offensive game. His only problem is that he's only 6'8 and he's playing the center position. His play in the second half of the Duke game was the main reason why the Wolfpack pulled off the upset. He is the engine that makes NC State go.
Erick Green - Virginia Tech
Green can flat out score the basketball. He's already gotten the tweener label by most draft experts and that will hurt his draft stock as teams like for players to have a primary position. He is quick with the ball and can get to wherever he wants on the floor. A once afterthought on draft boards, Green has to be viewed as a solid 2nd round pick at this point.