Argue all you want about which programs are the best at delivering NBA talent — which ESPN did a couple days ago — the proof is a list ESPN came up with Wednesday on the best 25 players in the NBA under the age of 25.
Four John Calipari-coached players and three former Wildcats are on the list.
Derrick Rose was ranked No. 5, Anthony Davis No. 13, DeMarcus Cousins No. 19 and Eric Bledsoe No. 25. One can make a pretty strong case that John Wall should be on that list as well, but injuries and a struggling Washington Wizards franchise likely pulled him off the list.
ESPN rankings are determined by how their experts would order the players if they were starting a franchise and would have them for the next several years, not just this season.
Check out the full list here. Below is a preview of what the ESPN guys had to say about Davis.
As always, check out our NBA players page to see how all of Coach Cal’s former players are performing in the NBA.
Current: No player had a better freshman season in college than Davis, when considering how he did as an individual and how his team did. Davis has a huge impact on the game on both ends of the court, though his offense should be considered a pleasant surprise. He knows how to use his extreme level of athleticism and length but does so under control. His pace of play is impressive, balancing that energy with discipline and a good feel for when and how to make plays. — Thorpe
Future: As a rookie, Davis has only begun to fulfill the immense potential he showed during his one season at Kentucky. Indeed, Davis is ahead of schedule offensively, but he must bulk up to deal with bigger opponents in the post and become an elite paint defender. That should happen. As he adds strength, Davis will be able to play center, which will open up the Hornets’ offense. — Pelton
Coach Cal on the SEC coaches’ teleconference