Another chapter of March Madness has closed, it's time to look back on the previous 52 games and update the player rankings!
The NCAA tournament is a star factory. Every year in March, we're introduced to new stars, or reacquainted with ones from the past. With the eyes of the nation on them, there are always special players who step up and make the most of their team's opportunity on the big stage.
Yes, the Shockers were shocked by an #8 seed after Kentucky gave WSU a taste of their own medicine, but how about Ron Baker's 20 points? He also pulled down 5 boards, and dished out two assists in a losing effort.
19. Joe Harris, Virginia
In a 78-60 victory for the Cavs in Raleigh, Harris scored 16 points off of 6 for 10 shooting. Not only was he effective on the offensive side of things, but he limited Memphis Tiger guard Joe Jackson to just 7 points.
18. Jordan Adams, UCLA
Adams really had a solid pair of games for the Bruins thus far in the tourney. Overall in this tournament, Adams is 12-for-16 shooting the three ball. Yes, that is 75%. In the Bruins 17-point demolition of SF Austin, he racked up 3 assists.
17. Nik Stauskas, Michigan
You might expect this dude to be higher up, but there is that many more stars in the 76th edition of March Madness. Stauskas is averaging 16.0 points per game in the NCAA tournament thus far.
16. Aaron Gordon, Arizona
Freshmen in the tournament: inconsistent, nervous, SCARED. Not so with Aaron Gordon, who scored 18 points in the Cats 84-61 victory over Gonzaga. 5 of his 8 field goals were slam dunks.
15. Scottie Wilbekin, Florida
He scored 21 points in the Gators win over Pitt two nights ago, including 2 steals, 2 assists, and 3 rebounds. 7 of those points came in the last 7 minutes.
14. Doug McDermott, Creighton
The Doug Blue Jays may have lost to Baylor, and McDermott may have "only" scored 15 points, but this scoring machine had such a spectacular career at Creighton that I just had to include him on this list.
13. Josh Richardson, Tennessee
Richardson is known for his incredible defense. I mean, it's incredible. He scored 26 points against Mercer for the Vols, including 10 points in a 1:52 minute span in the first half.
12. Julius Randle, Kentucky
Another freshman beast, Randle scored 13 points and tallied 10 rebounds in Kentucky's stunning upset of undefeated Wichita State.
11. Andrew Harrison, Kentucky
A very efficient Andrew Harrison scored 20 points to lead his team past #1 seeded Wichita State. Seven of his points came from the free throw line.
10. Branden Dawson, Michigan State
Dawson had a career night against the Harvard Crimson, scoring 26 points (he only averaged 12.6 since his return). His 12 for 15 shooting was the best shooting percentage by a BIG 10 player in the NCAA tourney since 1992!
9. Cleanthony Early, Wichita State
I don't care if his Shocker team lost, Early is a beast. Scoring 31 points against Kentucky is hard, and on top of that, he grabbed 7 boards. Sadly, it was not enough to give the Shockers their 36th win of the season.
8. Xavier Thames, San Diego State
Thames is living up to his role as a senior guard, scoring 30 points. Combined with his six assists, Thames was responsible for more points (45) than the Bison scored as a team (44).
7. Luke Hancock, Louisville
Hancock's favorite month of the year is obviously March, as senior scored 21 points in the Louisville Cardinal's win over Saint Louis.
6. T.J. Warren, North Carolina State
Yes, the Wolfpack lost in the Round of 64. I'm giving credit where credit is due, and this sophomore is a beast. The ACC player of the year scored 28 points in a Wolfpack loss to the Bilikens. He surpassed the Wolfpack record for most points in a season.
5. Jarnell Stokes, Tennessee
There is only one word for Jarnell: BEAST. That's too weak a word. This big boy is an absolute monster! One of only three players to average a double-double (including Julius Randle) each game, Stokes is averagin 20.3 points and 15 rebounds a game so far this tournament.
4. Bryce Cotton, Providence
Cotton's amazing career ended in a bitter loss to North Carolina in San Antonio. But Cotton scored a career high (fitting, right?) 36 points, and tallied 8 assists, grabbed 5 boards, and had two steals on his final night in a Providence jersey.
3. DeAndre Kane, Iowa State
Kane led all scorers (in his respective game) with 24, including the Cyclone's final two baskets, to lead Iowa State into the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2000. He had a double-double (adding 10 rebounds), and added 5 assists in a winning effort.
2. Adreian Payne, Michigan State
Payne was the Spartan's star in a blow-out victory over the Delaware Blue Hens with 41 points, a Michigan State record for a tournament game. In the Spartans 3rd-round game, Payne fell back to earth with 12 points and 4 rebounds. It's the 41-point performance, and his tournament free-throw shooting (20-21) is why he is here.
1. Shabazz Napier, Connecticut
Strapped with foul trouble, Napier scored 21 of his 25 points in the second half of UConn's upset over former Big East rival Villanova. He made 7-for-9 shots after the half, including some NBA-distance 3 balls. The AAC player of the year has a total of 49 points, 13 rebounds, and 9 assists in two tournament games.