Editorial

Who Is On The Perfect March Madness Starting 5 From Your School Over The Past Decade?

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David Hookstead Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief
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Who are the players from your college basketball program you’d want as your perfect March Madness starting five?

This is a question I see getting batted around social media a bit right now, and I think it’s time for me to weigh in. (RELATED: David Hookstead Is The True King In The North When It Comes To College Football)

I thought about whether or not you should be allowed to go back 20 years, but I think that’s too big of a range. That means we’ll dial it back to the past 10 years. So, over the past 10 years from your program, who do you choose?

I think I found the perfect starting lineup for the Wisconsin Badgers, and it’s as follows:

  • Center – Frank Kaminsky
  • Power Forward – Nigel Hayes
  • Small Forward – Sam Dekker
  • Shooting Guard – Josh Gasser
  • Point Guard – Jordan Taylor

Let’s start with Kaminsky. Kaminsky might go down as the greatest player to ever from Wisconsin, and he went to back-to-back Final Fours.

The dude was silky smooth from deep, was crafty in the post and was a nightmare to defend. There’s not a Badgers fan on the planet who is leaving him off of their list.

Hayes at power forward was a tough choice. I nearly put Ethan Happ in the spot, but opted for Hayes because he’s more athletic, more versatile, can shoot and isn’t a liability from the free throw line.

There were times in his career it felt like he didn’t play up to expectations once he became the main guy, but he’d never be asked to be more than the number three on this starting five.

As the number three option, he would destroy defenses.

Next, we have Sam Dekker at small forward. From a pure athleticism standpoint, Dekker didn’t play against too many guys who were athletically superior.

The dude had some serious bounce, could score and shoot when he got things going. He’s probably the number two option in the offense, and we’ve witnessed with our own eyes how that’s worked out in the past.

Josh Gasser is the definition of a glue guy, but only better. Most glue guys have a little talent, but work their butts off for success.

Gasser was gritty as all hell and outworked everybody. He also had a ton of natural talent. They just don’t really make players like that anymore.

As another member of our back-to-back Final Four teams, I can confidently say we don’t go either year if Gasser isn’t on the floor.

Jordan Taylor at point guard was another tough pick for me, but it was the right selection. Some might suggest Traevon Jackson or Bronson Koenig instead.

I couldn’t take either over Taylor. The former Wisconsin point guard gets lost in the shuffle because the teams after he left were so damn dominant on the national stage.

However, you’d be foolish to think he wasn’t the best point guard we’ve had in the past decade. If he’d been on those Final Four teams, we probably win both years. He’s crafty, a great shooter, creative when it comes to scoring a great passer. Nobody else stacks up when it comes to who I want running the offense.

 

Just for fun, I’ll throw you some honorable mentions. The close but no cigar list included Jon Leuer, Bronson Koenig, Ethan Happ and Jared Berggren.

Let us know in the comments who you’d take!