The Kentucky Wildcats don't have the greatest depth in the world, but they do have a tremendous six pack of players that could all play key roles in the team winning the National Championship this season. Here are our 2011 Final Four predictions for our picks to click for Head Coach John Calipari and company.
Where else could we possibly start than with Brandon Knight? Knight was the top freshman scorer this year in the nation, averaging 17.3 points per game. He has had some up and down games in this tournament, including posting just two points against the Princeton Tigers in the first round in that near miss against the Ivy League champs, but he has had himself two very, very strong games as well. Knight dropped 22 on the North Carolina Tar Heels in the Elite 8, and without his efforts, this team would be home watching instead of being the favorite for many players making their 2011 Final Four predictions.
If this really is a tournament of three point shooting, the men that are going to have to be watched closely are Doron Lamb, Darius Miller, and DeAndre Liggins. These three players are all shooting at least 40 percent from beyond the arc, and Lamb has been particularly special this season at 48.1 percent. All three have the ability to be double digit point scorers, and none of them have any doubts whatsoever about uncorking the long shots when left open.
The big man in the middle, Josh Harrellson was largely looked upon as a big stiff at the start of the season, but he has really come on strong at the best time of year. Harrellson was the man that had the huge game that saved UK and let it live for another day for the 2011 Final Four predictions. He had a double-double in that game with 15 points and 10 rebounds. He has had four games with at least a dozen points, and he has had at least eight boards in all four efforts to boot.
Put this in some perspective. Harrellson only had nine games all season long in which he scored at least 12 points, and only in seven of those in the regular season, did he have at least eight boards. Now, he's done in four games in a row against some of the best teams in America.
Of course, it really helps that a lot of attention has been given to the other big man in the bunch, Terrence Jones. Jones was another one of these freshmen that came on strong this year, and he averaged 15.8 points and 8.7 rebounds per game. No, Jones hasn't really had the numbers to warrant being a pick to click for our 2011 March Madness predictions, but we remind you that he has gone against John Henson and Jared Sullinger in this dance, two of the best bigs in the entire country. No one else should be able to hold this monster down on the inside if he is unleashed here in Houston.