NBA Draftees By College Conferences — Who Wins?
With the NBA Draft now over, we thought it would be interesting to check out how the NBA talent for this year was distributed across last season’s college basketball landscape. Here were the findings:
It doesn’t appear that there is much correlation between the number of players that a conference sent to the NBA and how many teams it had in the tournament.
However, it will shock nobody that having six future NBA players was a big reason why the Kentucky Wildcats were able to win the title (although they were also VERY fortunate). Teams like Kentucky, North Carolina, Baylor, Syracuse, etc. were responsible for the majority of the draftees for their entire conferences, and those were the teams that had success in the tournament as well. Of the nine schools with at least two players drafted to the NBA, five of them advanced to the Elite Eight or further.
NBA talent is still generally concentrated at the perennial powerhouses, but some of the notable Cinderella stories had players drafted; St. Bonaventure’s Andrew Nicholson and Norfolk State’s Kyle O’Quinn are examples.
Bottom line, it isn’t absolutely necessary to have NBA talent to win big, evidenced by Louisville making the Final Four without sending any players to the league (although several players on the roster may eventually end up there), but it sure doesn’t hurt either.
So if you want to start looking ahead to next year and see if your team has NBA talent capable of advancing deep into the tournament, check out Myron Medcalf’s Ten Most Indispensable College Basketball Players for 2013.