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Top Forwards for 2010-11: Duke's Singler Looks to Repeat

Jesse Siegel

Siegel covers college football, college basketball and minor league baseball for RotoWire. He was named College Sports Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.



1. Jeffery Taylor, Vanderbilt

Taylor's freshman season was outstanding, as he averaged 13.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. He still needs to develop his long-range jumper, but he gets to the free-throw line due to his ability to draw contact on his way to the hoop. Perhaps his greatest skill is his defense, though, as he averaged 1.1 steals per game and is a general ball-harrasser on the perimeter. If he can find his shooting touch, Taylor could be an all-around dynamo for the Commodores.

2. Marcus Morris, Kansas

With Cole Aldrich, Xavier Henry and Sherron Collins gone, Morris will be asked to shoulder much of the load for the Jayhawks. He was no slouch last season in a complementary role, averaging 12.8 points and 6.1 rebounds. Morris shot a blistering 57 percent from the field, and if he can continue his improved shot selection and get some help from his brother Markieff, Morris should be in for a standout season.

3. Elias Harris, Gonzaga
Harris rebounds extremely well for a small forward, averaging 7.1 boards per contest during his freshman season. He wasn't a bad scorer either, shooting 54.7 percent from the floor en route to a 14.9 ppg average. His length can be disruptive on the defensive end. Harris will be asked to be more of a leader in 2010-2011 with Matt Bouldin graduated. He appears more than capable of the task.

4. Jordan Hamilton, Texas

Hamilton will be thrust into a starring role with the departures of Damien James, Dexter Pittman and Avery Bradley. The leading returning scorer for the Longhorns, Hamilton could be poised for a breakout season. He can hit the three, but doesn't mind taking the ball to the rack as well. He shot just 41 percent from the floor last season and will have to improve his consistency in that regard, but he possesses all the tools to succeed.

5. Harrison Barnes, UNC

Arguably the nation's best freshman entering the season, Barnes is often described as the "total package." He has a great feel for the game, including when to pull up and when to take the ball to the hole. His shooting stroke is almost effortless, while his athleticism allows him to rebound with the bigs and score down low, even at 6-foot-6. He'll be asked to put UNC back on the map after an abysmal '09-10 campaign -- no easy task. However, he is certainly not lacking in confidence, something needed to rebuild the Tar Heels.

6. Perry Jones, Baylor

Jones has been compared to Tracy McGrady. He's a 7-foot swingman with off-the-charts athletic ability. Although he has a tendency to get bodied by more physical opponents, he has freakish raw talent and can shoot the ball extremely well for a big man. He runs the floor, rebounds and will swat his share of shots due to his length and versatility.

7. Jamar Samuels, Kansas State

Samuels improved across the board in his sophomore campaign, averaging 11 points, 4.9 boards and 1.2 assists for the Wildcats. With Denis Clemente gone, he'll be asked to shoulder more of the scoring load for K-State, making him an extremely capable fantasy contributer. Still, Samuels will have enough help from Jacob Pullen and Curtis Kelly to roam free and wreak havoc in the paint on both ends of the floor.

8. Tim Abromaitis, Notre Dame

Abromaitis is a scorer first, shooting 42.9 percent from beyond the arc on his way to 16.1 points per contest last season. With Luke Harangody on the NBA's Celtics, Abromaitis needs to rebound better and be a team leader with Ben Hansbrough. He can play multiple positions and cause major matchup problems for opposing defenses.

9. Kevin Jones, West Virginia
It might be the Kevin Jones Show in Morgantown this season, as Da'Sean Butler and Devin Ebanks are both NBA-bound. Jones made a huge leap from his freshman to his sophomore season, increasing his scoring by more than seven points per game, while also rebounding better and shooting at a high percentage. Perhaps his biggest jump came in his three-point shooting; he came to West Virginia with the three-point line out of his range. Yet as a sophomore, he shot 40.4 percent from beyond the arc. His combination of toughness inside and outside shooting touch makes him a valuable fantasy contributer and gives him the chance to really star this season.

10. Draymond Green, Michigan State

Green is undersized, but still managed 7.7 rebounds in 25.5 minutes last season. He also has incredible ball skills for a big man, averaging three assists per game, while also showing the ability to score at 9.9 points per tilt. With Raymar Morgan graduated, Green will be the focal point of the Michigan State frontcourt. If he can stay out of foul trouble, Green has the chance for a special season.

11. Will Barton, Memphis
High School
12. Terrence Jones, Kentucky
High School
13. Kris Joseph, Syracuse
10.8 ppg, 5.5 rpg
14. Tyler Honeycutt, UCLA
7.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg
15. Rodney Williams, Minnesota
4.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg


1. Kyle Singler, Duke

Singler returns to the Blue Devils after a dream season in which Duke won the national championship. Instead of turning pro, the senior will look to improve his 17.7 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game from last season. Singler can score from anywhere on the court and is a fierce, underrated rebounder. With Brian Zoubek and Jon Scheyer gone, Singler will be even more vital for the Blue Devils than he was last season.

2. Jon Leuer, Wisconsin

Leuer was a beast last year, shooting a blistering 52.2 percentfrom the floor, including 39.1 percent from beyond the arc en route to a 15.4 scoring average. Leyer also mixed it up down low, using his 6-10, 230, frame to tally 5.8 boards per game and swat 1.3 shots per game. Leuer proved his all-around meddle with 1.6 assists, as well. With Trevon Hughes no longer a Badger, Leuer will be the centerpiece of Bo Ryan's squad.

3. Lavoy Allen, Temple

Allen is an undersized center but is a double-double machine, averaging 11.5 points and 10.7 rebounds in '09-10. Allen posted 12 double-doubles for the owls, and nearly remained in the NBA draft before finally withdrawing his name. While he is tenacious on the glass, he also showed good patience in dishing out 2.4 assists per game. A man among boys, Allen's domination in the paint should continue as a senior.

4. Tracy Smith, NC State

Smith decided to come back for his senior season and is poised to feast on opponents this year. He averaged 16.5 points and 7.3 rebounds, 1.1 steals and even a block per game as a junior. A back-to-the-basket offensive player, Smith is athletic enough at 6-8, 247, to impose his will on opposing defenders. He shot 52.4 percent from the floor and will look to improve his shot selection en route to a standout farewell season.

5. Alex Tyus, Florida

Tyus improved on his defense and rebounding last season, despite the slight dip in points scored. Still, he tallied 11.8 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.0 block per game for the Gators. With Kenny Boynton and Erving Walker dishing him the rock and taking pressure off, Tyus has the chance to sparkle for the Gators with easy buckets and rebounds galore.

6. Matt Howard, Butler

Howard was the muscle on Butler's run to the title game. The former Horizon league POY took a backseat to Gordon Hayward and Shelvin Mack, as his points and rebounds both decreased to 11.6 points and 5.2 boards per clip. However, with Hayward in the NBA, Howard will be asked to shoulder the scoring load a bit more, and he has proven more than capable of doing so in the past. Foul trouble will be the only mitigating factor for Howard.

7. Christian Watford, Indiana

Watford had a sensational freshman campaign, managing 12.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. Naturally, he had some growing pains, including shooting just 37.5 percent from the field, but shot selection will improve with maturity. He can also step back and shoot the three, and he can hit the boards hard, so this versatile sophomore has the chance to be really special for the Hoosiers.

8. Curtis Kelly, Kansas State

The Connecticut transfer had a breakout campaign last year in his first campaign in Manhattan. No, not that Manhattan. The Bronx native took his game to the next level for K-State, averaging 11.5 points and 6.2 rebounds en route to the Wildcats' storybook season that ended in the Elite Eight. Kelly will team with Jamar Samuels to form one of the most potent frontcourts in the land.

9. Mike Davis, Illinois

A banger first and foremost, Davis pulled down a career-high 9.2 rebounds per game last season for the Illini. Davis gets plenty of putbacks and can hit a short jumper when teams leave him. He tallied 14 double-doubles last year and has the chance to improve on that stat if his offensive game can come around.

10. Chris Wright, Dayton

Wright explored his NBA options, but decided to give his senior season a chance instead after averaging 13.7 points and 7.3 boards as a junior. He's an athlete first and a basketball player second, having not quite peaked yet or realized his full potential. As such, the Flyers would like to see him take the leap from freak athlete to star all-around baller in 2010-2011.

11. Herb Pope, Seton Hall
11.5 ppg, 10.7 rpg
12. Jeff Allen, Virginia Tech
12.0 ppg, 7.1 rpg
13. Renardo Sidney, Mississippi State
14. C.J. Leslie, NC State
High School
15. Kenneth Faried, Morehead State
16.9 ppg, 13.0 rpg