TSFJ's Anonymous All-Americans

The Unsung AAs of College Hoops

With the men's college hoops regular season wrapped up, we now await the parade of awards and honors given out by media outlets and basketball institutions across the country. The Wooden and Naismith Awards, all-conference teams, and of course, All-American teams will be announced throughout the remainder of March.

Many of the All-American lists will look very similar, if not identical. However, here at The Sports Fan Journal we’d like to give recognition to some players who may not get attention from the mainstream outlets, but who deserve some love of their own. Without further ado, I give you TSFJ Anonymous All-Americans (don’t worry, I’ll also give you a straight up All-American list).

Semi Ojeleye, SMU

The six-foot-seven Ojeleye is an impressive all-around player. He has averaged 18.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in helping SMU to a 27-4 record. The Mustangs have quietly climbed into the top 15, and could be make for a tough out in the NCAA Tournament, where they will likely be seeded between a four and six. His frame belies his athleticism, as he possesses impressive footwork and lateral quickness. Offensively, Ojeleye is well-rounded. He attacks the rim with ferocity, has a refined mid-range game and has the range to step out beyond the arc, where he is lethal in the pick-and-pop game. Defensively, he has the quickness to handle small forwards on the perimeter and the power to handle power forwards in the post. Ojeleye is worth your attention.

Charles Cooke, Dayton

Dayton finished the regular season 24-6 and could be a headache in the tournament. A lot of that is thanks to Charles Cooke. Cooke led the Flyers in both scoring and rebounding from his guard spot. He is putting up 16.2 points and 5.2 rebounds per game, while chipping in three assists. Cooke is adept at attacking the rim and can finish at the basket. Listed at 195 pounds, he plays through contact, helping his forays to the hoop. Cooke can step outside the arc, knocking down 40% of his threes. He also has a masterful runner/tear-drop that he adroitly utilizes when he finds himself cut off by a help defender.

Brandon Goodwin, Florida Gulf Coast

Florida Gulf Coast made a name for themselves in 2013 when they dunked all over Georgetown, pulling off the #15 over #2 seed upset. While this year’s iteration of the Eagles will look to build their own identity, Dunk City is still in full effect. FGC plays at breakneck speed and thrive on getting to the hoop. And they still dish out plenty of alley-oops.

At the center of it all is Brandon Goodwin. Goodwin is always ready to get out and run, pushing the pace of the Eagles’ offense. He attacks the basket fearlessly, and when he gets there he can either finish at the rim or punish a help defender by finding his open teammate. Whether it’s in transition, working the pick and roll or in isolation, Goodwin is the engine driving the offense. He has averaged 18.2 points, 4.6 rebounds and four assists while leading FGC to a 26-7 record. If you see Goodwin and FGC in your favorite team’s bracket, be on alert. They will be looking to replicate the program’s 2013 success, and no team wants to be on the short end of what they did to Georgetown.

Jawun Evans, Oklahoma State

With Kansas going for their 13th straight Big 12 title behind the play of Frank Mason and Josh Jackson, Monte Morris’ great play at Iowa State and Johnathan Motley’s role in Baylor’s surprise season, Jawun Evans kind of got lost in the shuffle. But the 6-foot-1 sophomore has been stellar for the Cowboys. He led the team with 18.7 points and 6.3 assists, while helping the Cowboys to a 20-11 record and a likely NCAA tournament berth. Evans just has a knack for putting the ball in the basket. He is adept at finishing around the rim and has made a habit of making high degree of difficulty shots at the basket. While he does most of his damage scoring, he won’t hesitate to set up an open teammate when the opportunity presents itself. Evans deserves mention among the best players in the Big 12.

Angel Delgado, Seton Hall

Seton Hall quietly finished fourth in a very strong Big East. They owe a large part of that success to Angel Delgado. Delgado has been an absolute beast. He has averaged 15.7 points this season, while leading the nation in rebounding with 13.1 per game. He recorded 26 double-doubles. Delgado fell just one assist short of a triple-double in Seton Hall’s Big East Tournament win over Marquette with those nine assists pointing to a huge improvement in Delgado’s game. While he’s a monster on the boards and finds his points in the flow of the offense, he has added the ability to make opponents pay for double-teaming him. If he can continue to pass well out of doubles, he becomes virtually impossible to deal with. The added dimension gives him the ability to score from the post, get easy put-backs off the offensive glass, and now punish double-teams by finding his capable teammates. While guys like Khadeen Carrington and Desi Rodriguez garner a lot of attention, Angel Delgado is the glue.

Honorable Mention: Sindarius Thornwell, South Carolina

Sindarius Thornwell may be the most unknown conference player of the year in history. Lost in the all-Kentucky-everything SEC and the Wildcats’ freshman studs, Thornwell has literally been Mr. Everything for the Gamecocks. All he has done this season is lead South Carolina in points (21.2), rebounds (7.3), assists (2.9) and steals (2.2). Thornwell has recorded five double-doubles this season. In a four-overtime loss to Alabama, he posted 44 points (25-33 FT!) and 21 rebounds. Sindarius can score from all over the court, and if he gets hot watch out for the Gamecocks.

TSFJ Straight-Up All-Americans: Frank Mason (Kansas), Josh Hart (Villanova), Caleb Swanigan (Purdue), Malik Monk (Kentucky), Lonzo Ball (UCLA).

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