Part I: One year later, a look back at ’11 Jordan Brand rosters
With the 2012 Jordan Brand Classic rosters being announced today, let’s take a look back at the rosters of the 2011 game. Just a year out, we’ll consider it a “Where Are They Now?” Take a look at Part 1, the East rosters from 2011:
Khem Birch | Forward | Pittsburgh/UNLV
After averaging just over four points and five rebounds in 10 games with Pittsburgh, Birch announced he was transferring. He is now in Sin City with Dave Rice at UNLV, who is stockpiling arms in his 2012 class and is still in the running for top recruit Shabazz Muhammad.
Michael Carter-Williams | Forward | Syracuse
Carter-Williams hasn’t seen the consistent playing time that some other recruits have enjoyed, which speaks to the talent of No. 2 Syracuse. In about 12 minutes per game, he has tallied right around three points and two assists. His strongest performance came against Tulane, when he put up seven points and had three assists.
Rakeem Christmas | Forward/Center | Syracuse
Considering Fab Melo’s emergence in his sophomore season, Christmas’ minutes have been limited. In Melo’s absence against Yancy Gates and Cincinnati, Christmas had one of his best games of the season, with four points and nine rebounds.
Michael Gbinije | Forward | Duke
Make that three straight freshman who have had limited minutes in their first season. He had his best game against UNC-Greensboro when he had eight points and four rebounds in 14 minutes. He is an athletic forward with some perimeter skills, but a solidified rotation has made it difficult for him to get significant playing time.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist | Forward | Kentucky
Kidd-Gilchrist is arguably the best freshman in the country, possibly only beaten out for that honor by his teammate, Anthony Davis. He is averaging close to 13 points and eight rebounds for the Wildcats, and who could forget this monstrous slam against Portland (shown above)?
PJ Hairston | Guard | North Carolina
Hairston has been a solid contributor for the Tar Heels in his freshman season, with over seven points per game. Now that Dexter Strickland is out for the year with a torn ACL, Hairston and fellow guard Reggie Bullock will pick up more minutes.
James Michael McAdoo | Forward | North Carolina
Make that two players (and we’re not done yet) who have slightly tweaked their formal names since playing in the 2011 Jordan Brand Classic. He was Co-MVP of the 2011 game. At UNC, he has fallen short of some expectations, with many having chalked him up to be a 2012 lottery pick, but he may be finding his stride down the stretch.
Quincy Miller | Forward | Baylor
Miller started out the season on a tear, then ran into some freshman struggles, only to pick it back up in conference play. His 29 points on 12-of-17 shooting weren’t quite enough to lift Baylor over then-No. 5 Missouri, but it showed that Miller is healthy and will be an integral part of any Baylor run in March.
Austin Rivers | Guard | Duke
Early in the season, it seemed Austin Rivers was one of the most polarizing figures in college basketball. There was very little middle ground, as some defended him to the end, while others refused to give credit where it was due. Rivers remains Duke’s leading scorer and best dribble-drive option, meaning he’ll need to show up for the Blue Devils down the stretch.
Shannon Scott | Guard | Ohio State
Scott, like Michael Carter-Williams at Syracuse, hasn’t gotten big time minutes in his first season. He has seen solid minutes in some Big Ten action, but didn’t play much against highly-ranked Indiana and Michigan. Scott is a good young point guard with a strong handle, but is still developing his jump shot.
Marquis Teague | Guard | Kentucky
Teague was dubbed as the next in line of NBA-bound Calipari point guards. Looking at their numbers, it may not be fair to compare because John Wall, Brandon Knight, Tyreke Evans and Derrick Rose were, in most cases, centerpieces. But at the same time it is unfair, as some have done, to call him a disappointment. Fans may just not be used to a different brand of point guard at the helm for Calipari.
Coming soon: Part II, when we recap the West’s roster from 2011.