McDonald's All-America Player Analysis

HoosierNation.com takes a closer look at the performances of 10 of the players in last week's McDonald's All-America game, including future Hoosier Eric Gordon, Scout.com's top-ranked player O.J. Mayo, game MVP Michael Beasley, and more...

Jeryd Bayless, Arizona – Bayless was a player IU showed some interest in early, and he was a player who Eric Gordon singled out afterwards for impressing him with his play. The future Arizona Wildcat finished with 11 points on 3-of-7 shooting, including a pair of 3-pointers. He loves to try to get into the lane and then use a fade away jumper to put points on the board. He's listed at 6-4 and 200 pounds, although he appeared to be much more slightly built than 200.

Michael Beasley, Kansas State – The future Bob Huggins player was clearly the best player on the court at Freedom Hall, earning MVP honors after 23-point, 12 rebound performance. Beasley was 2-of-3 behind the arc, but it's in the paint where he's a real load. He's every bit of the 6-10 and 240 pounds that he's listed at, and he's extremely athletic as well. He should be a very good fit with Huggins as well. Beasley is a high energy, emotional player who will get after things at both ends of the floor. He'll be a very special player from day one in the Big 12. Don't be surprised to see him climb from his current No. 5 ranking in Scout.com's national rankings.

Nick Calathes, Florida – The two-time defending NCAA champs are expecting a mass exodus to the NBA and are going to be potentially starting from scratch next year, but they've got a really good one coming on board in Calathes. He's ranked 14th nationally by Scout, and probably deserves to be a little bit higher. He was as good a passer as there was in the game, either in halfcourt sets or in transition. He hit Georgia Tech-bound big man Gani Lawal with a perfectly placed alley oop on a fast break. Offensively he has a nice mid-range game and has good size at 6-4 and 175 pounds as well. He'll be a very good one for Billy Donovan – or whomever is coaching the Gators next season.

Johnny Flynn, Syracuse – Jim Boeheim is getting a couple of very good ones in Flynn and Donte Green. Flynn is 6-0, 172-pound point guard who is extremely fast with the ball in transition and creative as well, displaying the ability to find people in traffic. Scout.com's 23rd-ranked player in the class, Flynn is also an exceptionally gifted athlete, as evidenced by his explosive dunk at the close of the first half where he put the ball on the floor from the wing and soared in for a tomahawk dunk that brought his teammates on the sidelines to their feet. He finished with nine points and a game-high six assists and will be a big contributor right away for Syracuse.

Eric Gordon, Indiana – The future Hoosier was his team's second-leading scorer with 13 points, but it was a relatively quiet 13. He hardly touched the ball in his first two stints on the floor in the first half, eventually getting his first points after coming up with a steal and then working a give-and-go with eventual game MVP Michael Beasley. Scout.com's second-ranked player in the '07 class became much more aggressive late in the game, looking to attack off the dribble and get to the rim or the free-throw line. Gordon didn't necessarily separate himself from the other elite guards who played at Freedom Hall, but he didn't do anything to suggest he's over-ranked in the class, either.

Kosta Koufos, Ohio State – Other than Indiana's Gordon, Koufos is the second-most anticipated Big Ten arrival for next season. He started quickly in the McDonald's game, scoring on a pair of putbacks and a 3-pointer in the game's first four minutes. But he did very little the rest of the way, finishing with nine points and two rebounds in a game-low 11 minutes of action. During his limited action, though, he did show the offensive versatility to play inside or out, and he's a physical presence as well – he has the size to bang with the conference's big bodies right away.

Kevin Love, UCLA – It was a solid – but not necessarily dominant – performance by the Bruin-to-be. Love finished with 13 points, six rebounds and three assists and showed plenty of versatility with his 6-10, 255-pound frame. He stepped outside and knocked down 1-of-2 3-pointers, and it appeared to be a shot that is very much within his range. He's also a very adept passer, showing the ability to find open perimeter shooters when presented with double teams.

Jai Lucas, Undecided – Lucas received the second-biggest ovation during pre-game warm-ups (to Patrick Patterson) because he's still considering going to the University of Kentucky, which had a large contingent of fans in attendance at Freedom Hall. Lucas is awfully slight at 5-10 and 150 pounds, but is very good in transition. Like Flynn, he's extremely quick with the ball and can get defenders turned around easily. He's also not shy about going at the basket and drawing contact to try to get to the free-throw line. He did have a couple of shots blocked, though, when he was unable to get the whistle from the referee.

O.J. Mayo, USC – Scout.com's top-ranked player in the '07 class struggled badly, going 4-of-17 from the field and 1-of-9 from behind the 3-point arc. He had a chance to overshadow his long night with a potential game-winning 3-pointer in the closing seconds, but his wide open look missed and his East team fell 114-112. Mayo's struggles were more a result of taking plenty of ill-advised shots and going for a few too many highlight reel plays. He does have the ability to play either guard position and can come up with the spectacular play. But at least based on what he did last week, it's hard to imagine him being able to fit in well with a team-oriented offense.

Derrick Rose, Memphis – Indiana missed out on a good one in Rose, who is headed to play for John Calipari at Memphis. While O.J. Mayo is a point guard who thinks about scoring first, Rose thinks about creating for his teammates instead. He was another player who can get defenders on their heels when he has the ball in the open floor, and he's big enough at 6-3 and 185 pounds to be a factor on the glass as well. He attempted only five shots and one 3-pointer in his 22 minutes of action, but totaled five points, six rebounds and a team-high five assists for the West squad.

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