Fresh Perspective

Oct. 31, 2005

By Phil Kasiecki

Special to from Hoopville


The high school class of 2005 won't go down as one of the best in recent years by a long shot, despite the high number of players who opted for the NBA Draft instead of college.  Only three of those players went in the first round, and although six went in the second round to set a record with nine overall, it was clear that this group lacked the depth of other classes.


Many very good prospects chose the college route, and among them will be some who will make instant impact this season.  The class of 2005 may not be loaded with talent like the one before it, but many teams will need their freshmen to contribute right away and some will be capable.  This year's group of freshmen is heavy on the wing, as point guards and big men were in short supply.


Here are some who should make a major impact on their teams.


Jon Brockman, F, Washington:  A beast on the low post, Brockman will start right away and be a major source of production in for the Huskies.


Mario Chalmers, G, Kansas:  The Jayhawks will need him to step right in and run the show.  Look for him to do just that and make his young teammates better.


Lewis Clinch, G, Georgia Tech:  Don't be surprised if the rebuilding Yellow Jackets have him starting before long, as he's an excellent shooter and knows how to score.


Tyler Hansbrough, F, North Carolina:  The best of the talented freshmen on the defending national champs, he'll be counted on to produce from Day 1.


Dominic James, G, Marquette:  He'll be handed the keys to the offense right away.  He can score the ball and distribute well.


Jerel McNeal, G, Marquette:  Along with James, he's a prime reason the future is very bright for the Golden Eagles.  He knows how to win and does several things well.


Josh McRoberts, F-C, Duke:  A big-time talent, McRoberts can be a go-to guy and can blend in like a role player on a loaded team.  He's big, strong and runs the floor very well.


Tasmin Mitchell, F, LSU: Simply put, he does things that help a team win games.  He's a combo forward with a great basketball acumen and excellent skills and strength.


Jeremy Pargo, G, Gonzaga:  He was a big steal for the 'Zags, as he can flat-out score the ball.  He'll get major minutes sooner rather than later and be a key player this season.


Greg Paulus, G, Duke:  Paulus was a stud quarterback in football, so it's only natural that he's also a stud point guard on the hardwood.  He'll have some good options for his passes this year.


Shawne Williams, F, Memphis:  He wisely decided not to try the NBA route, as he's a great athlete with solid small forward size and skills.


Julian Wright, F, Kansas: Down the line, he could wind up being the best player in this class.  He's very athletic, versatile on offense and knows how to win, the last of which will be important on this young Kansas team.


Some other freshman to keep an eye on include:


Alade Aminu, F, Georgia Tech

Korvotney Barber, F, Auburn

Chris Bethel, F, Fordham

Rashad Chase, F, Georgia State

Leo Criswell, F, Missouri

Eric Devendorf, G, Syracuse

Micah Downs, F, Kansas

Byron Eaton, G, Oklahoma State

Bobby Frasor, G, North Carolina

John Garcia, F, Seton Hall

Marcus Ginyard, G, North Carolina

Vernon Goodridge, C, Mississippi State

Jamont Gordon, G, Mississippi State

Danny Green, G-F, North Carolina

Trey Hampton, F, Mississippi

Richard Hendrix, F, Alabama

Lawrence Hill, F, Stanford

David Huertas, G, Florida

Charles Jackson, F, Illinois

Tommie Liddell, G, St. Louis

Charles Little, F, Dayton

Dior Lowhorn, F, Texas Tech

Anthony Mason, Jr., F, St. John's

Wes Matthews, G, Marquette

Cyrus McGowan, F, Arkansas

Mike Mercer, G, Georgia

Nate Minnoy, G-F, Purdue

Ahmad Nivins, F-C, St. Joseph's

Julius Powell, F, Clemson

Kevin Swinton, F, Wake Forest

Ricky Torres, G, St. John's

Terrence Williams, G, Louisville

Sam Young, F, Pittsburgh

Luke Zeller, C, Notre Dame



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