Blog Entry

Jordan Taylor still not getting his due respect

Posted on: February 7, 2011 12:55 pm
Edited on: February 7, 2011 12:58 pm
 
Posted by Matt Norlander

If it's going to take another big win or two or six before Wisconsin gets the pub and love it deserves, how long is it going to be until Jordan Taylor is seen as one of the best in the country at his position?

Voters for the Bob Cousy Award need more evidence, apparently. A day after Taylor went for 30 points and six assists in a beauty of a game against Michigan State, the 10 finalists for the best-point-guard-in-the-country award were announced Monday, Taylor getting snubbed. Xavier's Tu Holloway was also somewhat-egregiously kept off the dwindled list.

Your finalists, in alphabetical order:
  1. Cleveland State's Norris Cole
  2. Villanova's Corey Fisher
  3. BYU's Jimmer Fredette
  4. San Diego State's D.J. Gay
  5. Kentucky's Brandon Knight
  6. Illinois' Demetri McCamey
  7. Saint Mary's Mickey McConnell
  8. Duke's Nolan Smith
  9. Washington's Isaiah Thomas
  10. UConn's Kemba Walker
Taylor cannot win his way back on to the ballot. No doubt this year is a good one for point guards in college basketball (yet the sport is rightfully perceived to being in a down cycle), but Taylor and Holloway should replace McCamey and Fredette. Jimmer is not a true point guard, folks.

Back to Taylor, who is averaging 17.8 points, 4.6 assists, 4.4 boards per game. You could build an argument around him being overshadowed by a better player on his team in Jon Leuer, but even Leuer continues to be criminally under-appreciated at his own position (power forward).

No wonder Bo Ryan so frequently looks like this.

Taylor's in the top 10 nationally in 11 categories, most notably turnover percentage and offensive rating. Only seven other guys give the ball away at a rarer rate than Taylor — none of those players are the ones listed above. Taylor is eighth; Kemba Walker is 36th. More than half the finalists don't even crack the top 100 in ball security, arguably the most important facet of point guard play.

As for the offensive rating, Taylor's the 10th-most effective offensive player in the nation as of Monday afternoon. Awesome numbers. In fact, Wisconsin has three in the top 10, which has got to be bending hoops laws in some way, perhaps hurting Taylor by proxy. McConnell of Saint Mary's is seventh in offensive rating, for the record.

Award-snubbage isn't the most desirable of topics — college basketball already has about 25 too many statues handed out each year — but the stiff-arm delivered to Taylor here is eyebrow-raising. Few players (read: much less than 10) contribute with incredible effectiveness in nearly every offensive category like Taylor does. Is it possible he's being overlooked because Wisconsin's still fighting off an unfair stench that lingers from the Big Ten's past play. Yep.

Photo: Getty Images
Comments

Since: Jan 13, 2011
Posted on: February 7, 2011 5:21 pm
 

Jordan Taylor still not getting his due respect

I love Jordan Taylor, and he definitely belongs on this list, but how is Jimmer not a true point guard? What are your criteria?



Since: Jan 2, 2011
Posted on: February 7, 2011 4:56 pm
 

Agreed

Taylor also has the second best Pure Point Raing (which might be more accurate than A:TO) of anyone on that list, behind only McConnell. It really is a bummer he wasn't included.
One guy who has had a strong PPR all season with other impressive numbers is Ohio's DJ Cooper. He's averaging 17.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 7.7 apg, and 2.4 spg. Yeah, the level of competition might be different in the MAC, but those numbers are gaudy enough that it's tough to ignore. 
Another mid-major PG to not ignore is SDSU's Nate Wolters, at least for future versions of this list (he's only a sophomore). Incredible PPR that puts him in tops of all of DI (he never turns the ball over) and is also his team's leading scorer. .


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com