Sports

Upperclassmen Dominate The Starting Lineups Of The Final Four Teams

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

David Hookstead Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief

Upperclassmen are all over the starting lineups of the Final Four teams.

According to ESPN’s Trey Wingo, 14 of the 20 starters in the tournament for Michigan State, Virginia, Texas Tech and Auburn are either juniors or seniors. Only two starters, Aaron Henry at Michigan State and Kihei Clark at Virginia, are freshmen. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

This might seem like an inconsequential stat, but it’s really not. In the era of one-and-done, it’s nice to see the upperclassmen dominate the scene.

It’s great to see guys who stuck around for three and four years are having a monumental impact on the March Madness field. That’s what college basketball should be all about.

 

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Michigan State and Virginia may have the only freshman starters, but they’ve also got several guys who are seasoned vets. (RELATED: Michigan State Beats Duke In The Elite 8)

Cassius Winston for the Spartans and Ty Jerome for the Cavaliers are both great examples of two players putting their time in, and leading their teams to the promised land of the Final Four.

 

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Kentucky, Duke and several other programs are bought into the idea of one-and-done players. They hunt down the best recruits they can, coach them up for a year and then let them bolt for the NBA ASAP.

There’s a lot less development these days. It’s nice to see programs that groomed guys over a period of years get some success.

It’s another example of why we love March!

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