The 2012 NCAA Tournament field has been announced, and for Wizards fans, it means it's time to really start thinking about the NBA Draft. Is it sad that we've come to this point for what feels like the zillionth year in a row? Yes. But it's all we've got right now, so we just have to live with it.
Anyway, now that the schedule has come out (check out SB Nation's printable bracket, by the way), here are the games with top NBA Draft prospects. All rankings are via the Draft Express Top 100 prospects list.
7 p.m., ESPN2: Mississippi State vs. UMass, NIT: If you're looking for a polished offensive big man who could be had in the late-first/early-second round, you could do far worse than Arnett Moultrite (No. 25), a UTEP transfer that has starred for the Bulldogs this year. He's not an especially good defender, but he's surprisingly efficient in all different ways offensively.
9 p.m., FOX College Sports: Weber State vs. Utah Valley State, CIT: If you get this channel, it might be worth checking out Weber State's Damian Lillard (No. 13), a point guard off the radar of most who has dazzled in a small conference. NBA scouts shouldn't ignore him.
10 p.m., HDNET: Washington vs. UT-Arlington, CBI: Terrence Ross (No. 19) and Tony Wroten (No. 30) are in action in this CBI game. I don't have a ton to say about either.
3:10 p.m., TruTV: Syracuse vs. UNC-Asheville: The Orange don't have any top top prospects, but one guy to watch is guard Dion Waiters (No. 23), a sophomore combo guard who can get into the lane and hit the open shot. He's currently the Orange's sixth man, but he's probably their best prospect because of his ability to push the ball and run pick and roll. The rest of his game is pretty raw, but if you can run pick and roll and overpower defenders like he can, you have 70 percent of what you need to succeed on the offensive end in the NBA.
4:40 p.m., TNT: Vanderbilt vs. Harvard: I've watched Vanderbilt a ton this year and come away impressed by three guys. Small forward Jeff Taylor (No. 20) doesn't have elite athleticism, but his game is really polished and he really moves well without the ball. I'm also a big fan of shooting guard John Jenkins (No. 46), who, like Taylor, is really polished, can really shoot and maneuvers off screens very well. Finally, while his numbers have been so-so this year, I was always impressed with the way Festus Ezeli (No. 34) played against Anthony Davis. He has a chance to be a good defensive center in this league if he can become a bit more consistent.
6:50 p.m., TBS: Kentucky vs. Miss Valley State/Western Kentucky: You all know that the guys to watch are Anthony Davis (No. 1), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (No. 2) and Terrence Jones (No. 11). We'll learn more about them as the tournament goes on.
7:20 p.m., TNT: Gonzaga vs. West Virginia: I'll admit to being intrigued by West Virginia's Kevin Jones (No. 39), a burly, if undersized power forward that reminds me a lot of Udonis Haslem and Chuck Hayes. If he can improve his outside touch (28 percent from three in his college career), he'd be a nice addition as a late-first/early-second round pick.
7:27 p.m., TruTV: Baylor vs. South Dakota State: I've never been a big fan of Perry Jones III (No. 8), because he's too inconsistent and I'm not sure what position he is, but he's played really well of late and a good NCAA Tournament run could really raise his stock. I'm actually a bigger fan of Quincy Miller (No. 19), a really solid all-around wing who deserves more playing time than he gets. For South Dakota State, keep an eye on Nate Wolters (unranked), a junior guard who averages 21 points and over five rebounds per game. If you love the small-college guys, he's worth watching.
9:20 p.m., TBS: Connecticut vs. Iowa State: I'm not a huge fan of either Andre Drummond (No. 4) or Jeremy Lamb (No. 12). Both seem too up and down to me. Drummond has all the potential to be an elite center prospect, but plays too small for my liking, while Lamb doesn't really do too much more than score, in my opinion. Nevertheless, both have a chance to show off their all-around games and boost their stock.
9:45 p.m., CBS: Indiana vs. New Mexico State: Cody Zeller (No. 19) is one of those solid big men who get overlooked because they don't do anything fancy. You have to watch him closely to appreciate his game, so here's a good chance to do it.
9:50 p.m., TNT: Ohio State vs. Loyola (MD): Jared Sullinger (No. 5) is sure to be the most divisive prospect we consider. He's uber-efficient, but he's also a bit slow-footed, which hurts him on defense. If we are to learn anything new about Sullinger in this tournament (which I doubt, honestly), it'll happen later, not in this game.
9:57 p.m., TruTV: UNLV vs. Colorado: UNLV power forward Mike Moser (No. 29) has really come on this year, and not too many people (myself included) have watched him play a lot. He could really raise his stock with a strong NCAA Tournament.
12:40 p.m., truTV: Cincinnati vs. NC State: Wolfpack swingman C.J. Leslie (No. 42) has really come on as of late, carrying the Wolfpack in their ACC Tournament run. He's really athletic and an excellent slasher, but I'd like to see him improve his perimeter shot a bit. If he can, he's a legitimate NBA prospect worth watching.
2:10 p.m., TNT: Florida vs. Virginia: Given how few true shooting guards exist in the NBA today, I think Bradley Beal (No. 7) is getting slept on by scouts. The Gators have two other really good guards, which has a dual effect on Beal. On the one hand, he can't show the full depth of his game. On the other hand, he's had to learn how to be efficient, and that's a skill that'll serve him really well in the NBA. I much prefer him to Jeremy Lamb, personally. There's also Patric Young (No. 22) and Mike Scott (No. 69) to watch.
3:10 p.m., TruTV: Georgetown vs. Belmont: Don't laugh, but I think Henry Sims (No. 66) is a legitimate prospect. He's pretty young for a senior (21 years old now) and it's rare to find a center who can pass and post up like him. I'd definitely draft him in the second round. I'm not nearly as enamored with Hollis Thompson (No. 70), but others like him.
4:10 p.m., TBS: North Carolina vs. Lamar/Vermont: We'll learn much more about Harrison Barnes (No. 6), John Henson (No. 9), Tyler Zeller (No. 10) and Kendall Marshall (No. 19) going forward. Personally, I think Henson's too low and Zeller is too high. Why draft Zeller over his brother when his brother is younger?
7:15 p.m., CBS: Duke vs. Lehigh: If you can stomach it, it's worth seeing if Austin Rivers (No. 16) and Mason Plumlee (No. 27) are legitimate prospects.
9:57 p.m., truTV: Kansas vs. Detroit: We'll learn more about Thomas Robinson (No. 3) as we go, but all of you know I'm a big fan.