Posted by Coreyo34:

In our hoops forum, one of our posters has posed the question as to which freshmen class–Ohio State’s, UNC’s or Duke’s–has been the most impressive thus far.

Taking that into consideration for the long-term as well as the present, here are some quick thoughts on where the players stand as of now.

PG – Conley has been very impressive thus far, much more so than Lawson. One of the reasons behind that, I think, is that there is much less pressure on Conley–he can share, and is sharing, the ballhandling duties with a junior, Jamar Butler. Lawson has no such luxury. I think once Lawson settles down, he’ll be the formidable weapon most expected him to be from day one.

SG – Daequan Cook, similarly, has been overwhelmingly impressive early on. So, too, has Jon Scheyer. Cook brings more size and athleticism to the fray, Scheyer brings better defense and long-range shooting to the table. Ellington will come around, I’ve little doubt. At this point, I too would give Cook the nod.

SF – Henderson is going to be an All-American at Duke, and I have a hard time envisioning a scenario in which Lighty can reach that status at Ohio State. That is to say, whereas Cook and Conley will be producing big numbers for the Buckeyes, Henderson (and Thomas) will be producing big numbers for the Blue Devils (long-term). Graves will be an “afterthought” in that offense, but I think he’ll still put up 10 a game when he finds his rhythm.

I love Henderson’s playmaking ability. He is really going to be something to behold. Neither Lighty nor Graves has the sort of repertoire that Henderson does.

PF – This is Wright hands down. Not even close, IMO. If he stays healthy, I think he’ll average near a double-double as a freshman, and as the season wears on, I think he will challenge Hansbrough as the leading scorer.

Thomas comes next. As he becomes more aggressive and more assertive offensively, he’ll start putting up some gaudy numbers.

Hunter–who incidentally is not a freshman, but a JUCO transfer–is a wonderful role player for Matta, but will never be the bona fide star that Wright and Thomas will be.

And frankly, that’s just fine. All of these freshmen have their “rple” on their respective teams, and they appear to be well-prepared to play it well.

C – This one will be all Oden.

Now let’s compare the statistics at this very early juncture (and let’s remember to revisit the stats multiple times over the course of the season).

Lawson: 9.5 PPG,3.5 assists,
Conley: 9.3 PPG, 6.6 assists, 3.3 steals

Cook: 17.5 PPG, 1.8 assists, 1.5 steals, 6.5 rebounds
Ellington: 11.5 PPG, 0.5 assists, 1.0 rebounds, 0.0 steals
Scheyer: 10.3 PPG, 2.0 assists, 1.3 steals,

Henderson: 9.7 PPG, 2.0 assists, 1.0 steals, 2.0 rebounds
Lighty: 7.8 PPG, 1.8 assists, 1.0 steals

Wright: 11.0 PPG, 2.5 assists, 1.0 blocks, 3.5 rebounds
Hunter: 8.8 PPG, 2.3 blocks, 1.3 steals, 7.0 rebounds
Thomas: 8.3 PPG, 1.3 steals, 2.7 rebounds

Zoubek: 11.7 PPG, 6.0 rebounds, 1.0 blocks
Oden: N/A