After seven months of waiting, college basketball is back. We’ve already released our all-Big Ten third team, second team and individual award picks earlier this week. As we head into the opening night of hoops, our microsite staff picked who we believe are the Big Ten’s best five players, listed below in no particular order.
- Melo Trimble (SO, Guard, Maryland). Trimble, our preseason Big Ten Player of the Year, was the best player on a Maryland team that won 14 conference games in its first year in the league. His 16.2 points per game ranked fifth in conference play, but his efficiency was just as impressive, becoming one of only two players to average at least 15 PPG in fewer than 10 field goal attempts per game. Trimble is the best player on the conference’s best team and should be even better in his second collegiate season.
- Yogi Ferrell (SR, Guard, Indiana). Ferrell and Trimble are likely to battle for the Big Ten scoring title all season long, and the diminutive Hoosier just might win it. He’s a natural scorer (17.0 PPG since 2013-14) who is elite in just about every offensive category. If Ferrell didn’t have such a strong supporting cast, he’d probably run away with the scoring title with ease. He’s also an outstanding facilitator who assists on 26.7 percent of his offensive possessions and rarely turns the ball over (14.2 percent of possessions).