CBS Sports college basketball analyst Steve Lappas joined Tiki And Tierney on CBS Sports Radio. You can’t talk college hoops without talking Kentucky. Freshman Malik Monk has been playing out of his mind, but is that sustainable?
“There’s no question they can sustain it,” Lappas said. “Malik Monk is a tremendous player. This guy is as good a NBA potential two-guard as you’re going to find. The only question is he’s maybe a tad undersized. This kid was absolutely amazing. I was so impressed with De’Aaron Fox. I believe he’s the best point guard in the country. He was amazing in that game as quick and athletic as he is.”
Lappas will be on the call Thursday, 12/22 when #3 Kansas takes on UNLV at 9:00PM, ET on CBS Sports Network. Meanwhile, defending champion Villanova is the top team in the nation as they look to repeat. How can they get to that position again?
“This is going to be a lot harder. Not only because it’s the second time around, because this year in college basketball as opposed to last year, you have freshman that are going to be in the blue bloods program. Kentucky, Duke, UCLA, you’re talking about guys that are at a different level than the guys they faced last year. Last year in the Final Four, they faced one lottery pick and that was Buddy Hield. If he was coming out this year, he wouldn’t be in the lottery. You didn’t need pros to win last year. Villanova is going to be right there, but they don’t have a NBA All-Star in their lineup. They’re going to have to beat some teams that have them.”
Another elite team in the nation that people are talking about is UCLA. After beating Kentucky, it seems like this Bruins team is pretty darn good.
“They’re as good as anybody,” said Lappas. “They’ve got two great freshman, Lonzo Ball and T.J. Leaf that have made all the difference in the team. UCLA is one of those teams that I’m talking about that will be in the top five all year.”