Written by Nicole Auerbach at USAToday.com
Fourteen schools, four classes and six conferences are represented on the 2016 USA TODAY Sports men’s college basketball All-America teams. Nearly all of them will have the chance to lead their teams to a run in the NCAA tournament.
The teams, with players listed in alphabetical order:
Buddy Hield, Sr., G, Oklahoma — An efficient scorer from nearly any spot on the court, Hield was the nation’s best pure shooter and most terrifying deep threat. The Big 12 Player of the Year dazzled even in defeat; his 46 points in a triple-overtime loss at Kansas was the singular performance of the season. Hield was the nation’s second-leading scorer, averaging 25.1 ppg, but the most impressive stat is this: Last season, Hield shot 35.9% from beyond the arc; this year, he shot an eye-popping 47.3%.
Brice Johnson, Sr., F, North Carolina — Johnson had shown flashes of this throughout his first three years with the Tar Heels. The talent was always there; consistency was the question. Johnson put it all together night in and night out this season, making himself one of the country’s most improved players and its most dominant. He led the ACC in rebounding, field goal percentage and double-doubles (19 total, 12 in league play). He averaged a double-double (16.8 ppg, 10.8 rpg) throughout the regular season and anchored one of the nation’s most consistent teams during a wild year.
Jakob Poeltl, So., F, Utah — Poeltl’s decision to bypass the NBA this past offseason was one of the biggest and most pleasant surprises for college basketball fans. The Austrian 7-footer is the most dominant player in the Pac-12, and one of the nation’s most dominant big men in general. He’s nearly doubled his output from last season, averaging 17.5 points to go along with 9.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. The future NBA lottery pick carried Utah to a second-place finish in the Pac-12 regular season, and can perhaps carry the Utes deep into March.
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