Being an All-American is one of the most coveted honors in college basketball. Zion Williamson, Deandre Ayton and Lonzo Ball come to mind when discussing all-time great college basketball All-Americans from the past several seasons.
On this week's episode of March Madness 365, Andy Katz breaks down his top-10 All-American candidates for the 2020-2021 college basketball season. Katz listed his projected second-team All-Americans as 10 through 6 and his first-team picks as 5 to 1. This week's episode also features interviews with Kentucky's Olivier Sarr and Kansas' Bill Self and Marcus Garrett.
Here are the first and second-team All-Americans from the 2019-2020 season:
|Myles Powell||Seton Hall|
|Vernon Carey Jr.||Duke|
|Malachi Flynn||San Diego State|
|Cassius Winston||Michigan State|
Here are some of the top contenders for an All-American distinction this season, according to Katz:
10. Trayce Jackson-Davis — Indiana, Forward
Katz has been high on Trayce Jackson-Davis all preseason. He ranks him as the top forward entering the season and in contention to win the Naismith award. Jackson-Davis will be a force for Indiana inside. The Hoosier big man put up 13.5 points and 8.4 rebounds per game last year, and will get a chance to prove himself in a talented Big Ten.
9. Sam Hauser — Virginia, Forward
The Marquette-transfer will be a key UVA offensive weapon this year. Hauser was the second-leading scorer and rebounder on the Golden Eagles during the 2018-2019 season, averaging 14.9 points and 7.2 boards per game.
8. Collin Gillespie — Villanova, Guard
Katz thinks that if you lead your team to a Big East title you should be an All-American. Enter Collin Gillespie — a veteran guard who will assume the leadership role for Villanova this season. Although Katz almost went with Creighton guard Marcus Zegarowski, who will be in contention for Big East Player of the Year, he landed on the senior Wildcat. Gillespie averaged 15.1 points, 4.5 assists and 1.2 steals per game last season.
7. Corey Kispert — Gonzaga, Forward
Corey Kispert is known as Gonzaga's Mr. Everything. A true glue guy who can contribute offensively and defensively lands here at No. 7. Kispert is arguably the best player on the best team in the country. He averaged 13.9 points and four rebounds per game last season.
6. Marcus Garrett — Kansas, Guard
Last year's Defensive Player of the Year will look to do it again for Bill Self and the Jayhawks. Garrett is fresh off of a season where he locked down opponents every game, but if he wants to contribute even more, he'll have to do it on the offensive end. Garrett averaged 9.2 points per game last year, but with him getting more touches as a senior, he'll have plenty of opportunities to put the ball in the basket this season.
5. Jared Butler — Baylor, Guard
Butler is the preseason Big 12 Player of the Year and will likely be Baylor's best player this season. The junior guard scored 16 points per game last season and also made some big plays on the defensive end as well, averaging 1.6 steals per game. Butler will be up against Marcus Garrett and Oklahoma State's Cade Cunningham for the best player in the Big 12 this season, but with the Bears projected to be a Final Four contender, Butler will have plenty of opportunities to prove himself in the spotlight.
4. Remy Martin — Arizona State, Guard
Arizona State will look to win its first Pac-12 title ever — and will rely on their premiere scorer, Remy Martin, to do it. Martin averaged 19.1 points per game last season and will look to score even more this year as ASU's primary playmaker. The Sun Devils' main competition in the Pac-12 will be UCLA, according to Katz, but with Martin shooting the ball like he did last season (43 percent from the field), Arizona State might be the team to beat in the conference this year.
3. Cade Cunningham — Oklahoma State, Guard
Cade Cunningham is the third top guard out of the Big 12 that is expected to make a big splash this season. The main difference between him and Garrett and Butler is that he's a freshman, and probably the best one. Cunningham will look to use this season to prove himself as one of the best players in the country.
2. Ayo Dosunmu — Illinois, Guard
Ayo Dosunmu enters this season as the best guard in the country, and he could easily exit this season as the best player in the college game. The Illinois junior scored 16.6 points per game last season and is a serious threat on the wing for the Illini. Paired with big man Kofi Cockburn, Katz has Illinois as one of the most dangerous teams in the Big Ten and the entire country.
1. Luka Garza — Iowa, Forward/Center
When you come off of a season when you post 23.9 points and 9.8 rebounds per game while playing in the Big Ten, there's a good chance you're going to be a favorite to be the best player in the game the following season. That's the exact position Luka Garza finds himself in the. The Hawkeye big man will look to pick up where he left off last season and push the Hawkeyes to the Big Ten title and even a Final Four run.