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Checking out the top point guards and moving one to No. 11

Wichita State’s Fred VanVleet averages 13.4 points and 5.3 assists.
Wichita State’s Fred VanVleet averages 13.4 points and 5.3 assists. The Wichita Eagle

Let’s look at these point guards.

Before that, however, understand that there are 351 NCAA Division I basketball schools. If you’re in the top 20 of point guards, you’re in the top five percent.

If you watch Fred VanVleet play every game and understand what he means to the one of the nation’s top teams, it’s understandable to consider his exclusion from the Cousy Award list top 10 an unforgivable error. (Remember, it’s not permanent. The list is “fluid” according to organizers, so VanVleet isn’t excluded from consideration).

If you’re going to insist on VanVleet in the top 10, somebody’s got to go. That’s not easy. Oregon State’s Gary Payton II is the least attractive of these very attractive candidates to my eyes. I’d drop him to No. 11.

My guess is Kris Dunn will win it. He’s having a great season in a great conference. I’m not sure that he is a pure point guard as much as he is an excellent guard who has the ball in his hands a lot. I know he’s a great player and I would rank him the favorite.

In March, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame will announce five finalists.

Name, School (Record)

Points

Assists

Assist-to-turnover ratio (national rank)

Rebounds

Notable

Kyle Collingsworth BYU, (16-7)

15.1

5.9

2.2 (110)

7.8

Four triple-doubles

Yogi Ferrell, Indiana (18-4)

17.5

5.7

2.0 (132)

4.3

47.1 percent on three-pointers

Gary Payton II, Oregon State (12-8)

16.3

5.5

2.1 (122)

8.1

27.5 percent on three-pointers

Monte Morris, Iowa State (16-5)

15.1

6.9

4.6 (3).

3.9

52.5 percent shooting percentage

Tyler Ulis, Kentucky (16-5)

19.3

6.9

3.0 (28)

3.4

87.9 percent foul shooting

Melo Trimble, Maryland (19-3)

14.5

5.4

2.1 (126)

2.9

33.9 percent on three-pointers

Demetrius Jackson, Notre Dame (15-6)

16.5

5.2

2.5 (74)

3.5

37.6 percent on three-pointers

Kay Felder, Oakland (15-8)

25.6

8.8

2.5 (68)

3.7

2.1 steals ranks No. 24 nationally

Kris Dunn, Providence (18-4)

17.4

6.9

1.9 (173)

6.1

3.2 steals ranks No. 2 nationally

Nic Moore, SMU (19-2)

15.7

4.8

2.4 (81)

2.3

37.6 percent on three-pointers

Fred VanVleet, Wichita State (16-5)

13.4

5.3

3.2 (T19)

3.6

44.1 percent on three-pointers

Paul Suellentrop: 316-269-6760, @paulsuellentrop

Cousy Award finalists

Kyle Collinsworth, Brigham Young

Yogi Ferrell, Indiana

Monte Morris, Iowa State

Tyler Ulis, Kentucky

Melo Trimble, Maryland

Demetrius Jackson, Notre Dame

Kay Felder, Oakland

Gary Payton II, Oregon State

Kris Dunn, Providence

Nic Moore, SMU

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