Top College Point Guards of the 2000s
The Qualifications for the list:
1. Production through their careers - longevity helps but isn’t required (A one year player’s dominance can trump a four year player that wasn’t quite as dominant)
2. Value to their team - how important they were to their school’s success
3. Tournament success
4. Overall impact on their school’s basketball program going forward
10. Peyton Siva - Louisville (2009-2013)
His performance in the National Championship game solidifies his spot on the list. Siva was an absolute workhorse in his career for Rick Pitino at Louisville. After his freshman year, Siva averaged 5.7 assists, 2 steals with the Cardinals. But the numbers really don’t tell the entire story. His ability to lead the full court press and break down a defense fueled the Cardinals the past three seasons en route to back-to-back Final Fours and this past year’s National Championship.
9. John Wall - Kentucky (2009-2010)
Of the Point Guards that only made it one year in the NCAA before skipping to the League, Wall made the biggest impact on the college scene (with Rose and Evans as close seconds). The former Wildcat was a stud in his one year at Kentucky, averaging 16.6 points, 6.5 assists, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.8 steals and leading the Wildcats to the Elite Eight.
8. Raymond Felton - North Carolina (2002-2005)
Felton helped lead the 2005 Tar Heels to their first National Championship in 12 years. The 2005 Tar Heels featured one of the best all around teams of the past decade with Sean May up front and Rashad McCants in the backcourt, but Felton really helped tie it all together. Averaging 12.5 points, 6.9 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 1.9 steals in his 3 years at North Carolina, Felton’s the top Tar Heel on the list.
7. TJ Ford - Texas (2001-2003)
The 2003 National Player of the year, Ford willed the Longhorns for his two years in Austin. Almost always the quickest player on the court, Ford made everyone on his team better and made a decent team a National Championship competitor. Ford led the Longhorns to a sweet 16 and a final four in his two years, averaging 12.9 points and 8 assists over his career.
6. Mateen Cleaves - Michigan State (1997-2000)
The only player on the list to win the Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player Award, Cleaves led a magical Tournament run for the Spartans in 2000. A natural leader, Cleaves averaged 13.2 points and 7.1 assists in his three years at Michigan State.
5. Chris Paul - Wake Forest (2003-2005)
Although he never made it past the Sweet 16, Paul did everything for Wake Forest from the point guard position: scoring, dishing it out, and playing strong on-the-ball and off-the-ball defense. CP3 Averaged 15 points, 6.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds, and 2.5 steals in his two years as a Demon Deacon, while shooting 47.1% from the field, 83.8% from the line and 46.9% from three.
4. Stephen Curry - Davidson (2006-2009)
2009 was his only season as Davidson’s Point Guard, but it was a pretty darn good season for Curry. The only reason he didn’t take home Player of the Year honors was because of an Oklahoma player named Blake Griffin. In his final year at Davidson, Curry averaged 28.6 points, 5.6 assists, 4.4 rebounds, and 2.5 steals, while shooting 45.4% from the field and 87.6% from the line. Although in Curry’s last season the Wildcats missed the NCAA tournament, Curry led the team to the Elite Eight after an improbable run in 2008, albeit as a shooting guard, but it somewhat makes up for 2009’s disappointing finish. And the stamp he left on the Davidson program is almost incalculable.
3. Jameer Nelson - St. Joseph’s (2000-2004)
In his four years at St. Joe’s, Nelson brought a new life to the basketball program, leading the team to the NCAA Tournament in 3 of his 4 seasons. In his Senior year, he averaged 20.6 points, 5.3 assists, 4.7 assists, 3 steals and took the Hawks to the Elite Eight.
2. Trey Burke - Michigan (2011-2013)
The 2013 National Player of the Year helped bring a new life to the Michigan Basketball program. After nearly 2 decades of struggles, Burke put together a remarkable season in 2013 (18.6 points, 6.7 assists) and led the Wolverines on a great Tournament run.
1. Jason Williams - Duke (1999-2002)
Williams led the Blue Devils to three Sweet 16s and the 2001 National Championship. He also took home the 2002 National Player of the Year Award to complete his trophy case. In his three superb years at Duke, Williams averaged 19.2 points, 6 assists, and 2.2 steals. Although the 2001 team offered a good deal of support with Shane Battier, Mike Dunleavy and Carlos Boozer, Williams glued it all together.
THE NEXT 12 (In no particular order):
Tyreke Evans (Memphis), Derrick Rose (Memphis), Sherron Collins (Kansas), Acie Law (Texas A&M), Ty Lawson (North Carolina), Devin Harris (Wisconsin), Jason Gardner (Arizona), Troy Bell (Boston College), Dan Dickau (Gonzaga), Carl Krauser (Pittsburgh), Deron Williams (Illinois), Mario Chalmers (Kansas)