Some sport fans usually root for the underdogs unless their team is playing them. The NCAA Tournament is where the underdogs compete with the Goliath’s of the college basketball world. The first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament showed that mid-majors programs can compete at a high level.
Many mid-major programs have rosters filled with guys who were overlooked in high school, which has made them play in games with a chip on their shoulder. When the opportunity of playing high-major Division I schools comes, mid-major schools look to make their impression. A lot those guys want to show they’re just as good as the guys on the high-major rosters. This also helps the stars on those mid-major squads get noticed by NBA teams as well. Their skills sets are just as good, if not better than the prospects that do get a shot in NBA.
Take a look at Damian Lillard. Lillard played college ball at Weber State and is now one of the NBA’s prolific stars. Sometimes it’s not about the name on the front of the jersey, but it’s about the talent of the player wearing the jersey. Over the weekend, we have seen spectacular games from Ja Morant, Aubrey Dawkins, Fletcher Magee, and Dylan Windler among others, who have all displayed their abilities on the floor which could translate and make them effective at the pro level.
Don’t be surprised to see more of the top NBA prospects come from mid-major schools. At these schools, players typically have more time to develop their games and grow because they’re not on the radar of NBA scouts. Come June 20th there could be quite a few prospects from smaller schools hearing their name called during the 2019 NBA Draft.