It is probably still a little too early to be talking about who will win the Player of the Year in college basketball, simply because we don’t yet know how the rest of the season will play out. How many more games will be cancelled, and how do you measure players head-to-head who may not end up playing the same number of games this season? All of that aside, there are a handful of players who are very much in the conversation as we edge ever closer to February. Let’s take a look at 5 players who are currently in contention for Player of the Year so you can get ready to make your bets against their College Basketball odds.
Top 5 Leading Contenders for the Men’s College Basketball National Player of the Year
Luka Garza – Iowa Hawkeyes
If the season were to end today, it would almost certainly be Garza who would be named the Player of the Year in college basketball. Many people were surprised when he chose to return for his senior year, the only consensus First or Second Team All-American to do so. Garza has been totally dominant for the Hawkeyes, averaging 26.9 PPG while taking about 44% of the team’s shots when he is out on the floor. If he continues to deliver at the pace he is doing now, he will be the MVP.
Jared Butler – Baylor Bears
When you have a team as good as Baylor is this season, it’s often hard to pinpoint one player, but you would have to say that this team goes as Jared Butler goes. He is the man who has the ball most often and who dictates the play for the Bears. Given that he is often double-teamed, his numbers are amazing, which you can see by his ability to open things up for his teammates. As long as Baylor remains unbeaten as one of the best teams in the nation, Butler is in the conversation.
Ayo Dosunmo – Illinois Fighting Illini
In his junior season, Dosunmo has taken a massive step forward and is currently averaging 6.5 PPG more than he was last season. Like Garza, he is the team’s primary shot taker, averaging about one-third of the shots while he is on the court. While it is unfair to him in many ways, the losses that Illinois have taken this season against ranked teams may end up hurting Dosunmo, but you still cannot deny that he deserves to be in the Player of the Year talk at this point.
Corey Kispert – Gonzaga Bulldogs
This is a bit of a tricky pick in that Gonzaga has three players who could legitimately stake a claim for Player of the Year right now. Jalen Suggs and Drew Timme certainly deserve consideration, but I am going with the top scorer on the Bulldogs right now, which happens to be Kispert, who is averaging a touch over 20 PPG. His accuracy from inside the arc and the three-point line is off the charts, with few players currently more efficient that he is.
Trayce Jackson-Davis – Indiana Hoosiers
Given the strength of the Big Ten and the number of players there with Player of the Year type numbers, Jackson-Davis is probably a bit of a longshot at this point. He is another player that may get marks against him because his team is not doing enough to support his great work. The Hoosiers would need to deliver something special between now and the end of the season for Jackson-Davis to emerge from a talented pack.
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