Friday, September 18, 2009

Don't Overlook Guards Nelson, Crawford

In making a personal list of preseason MAAC all stars a few posts ago, the process involved an initial list of more than two dozen names. Ultimately, the list got reduced to 15, five on each of three teams.

Clearly, there were some difficult omissions and cases could easily be made for their respective inclusions.

Bottom line is that there are quality players beyond the 15 this blogger selected, and probably several of those will ultimately wind up on the post-season's all-star squads.

Here are two that came closest to making this blogger's list;

- Anthony Nelson, 6-1 junior guard, Niagara: Someone has to provide direction for the uptempo Purple Eagles' attack, and it's Nelson who does it superbly. He averaged 8.1 points, 5.5 assists (2nd best in the conference last season) and 4.5 rebounds. His assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.5 not only was 2nd best in the MAAC, but 15th best nationally.

- Darryl Crawford, 6-4 senior guard, Manhattan: A very sound shooting guard for a team that exceeded expectation for much of last season. Crawford averaged 14.4 points and 4.4 rebounds last year. He was the Jaspers' leading scorer and finished 10th in the conference in that category last season. He also had 2.3 assists per game, and his 1.3 assist-to-turnover ratio was more than respectable.

This particular list could probably include nearly a dozen other players. This blogger's conclusion is that there is considerable individual talent in the league this season. But Nelson and Crawford were the two players yours truly agonized about before ultimately leaving their names off the top 15.

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