What college basketball fans do not see much anymore are four-year stars, guys who stick around and play four years of the college game before trying to make a career in professional basketball. Seniors should be celebrated and, as such, we celebrate the top seniors in college basketball this season.
CALEB MARTIN, NEVADA Martin and his twin brother Cody transferred from N.C. State to play for head coach Eric Musselman at Nevada beginning last season. Martin averaged 18.9 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in earning the Mountain West Conference’s Player of the Year honors last season. Martin’s versatility should once again help Musselman lead the Wolf Pack deep into the NCAA tournament.
LUKE MAYE, NORTH CAROLINA Maye went to North Carolina not knowing if he had a scholarship. Head coach Roy Williams did put Maye on scholarship, but he didn’t play much as a freshman. He began to excel as a sophomore and had a breakout season last year as a junior. Maye averaged 16.9 points and 10.1 rebounds per game for the Tar Heels and then entertained the NBA Draft before opting to play his senior season. His time in the NBA will come, but for now, he’ll average another double-double as a senior this year.
MIKE DAUM, SOUTH DAKOTA STATE Like Maye, Daum is a 6-8 double-double machine for the Jackrabbits, a team that has earned three straight trips to the NCAA tournament. Daum averaged 23.9 points and 10.3 rebounds per game last season and will likely do the same in 2018-19 as he tries to lead SDSU to a first-round tournament win.
ETHAN HAPP, WISCONSIN Happ could have left Wisconsin after each of his previous three seasons but chose to stick around. He is a two-time All-Big Ten forward who is as good a post player as the nation has seen in recent years. Last year, Happ averaged 17.5 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. He is much more than just a post player though and that should become evident as this season wears on.
JUWAN MORGAN, INDIANA Another Big Ten senior that should lead his team to the NCAA tournament. Morgan averaged 16.5 points and 7.4 rebounds a game last year and should do even better this season in an offense that will be led by All-Everything freshman Romeo Langford. At 6-8 and 240, Morgan will be one of the nation’s better power forwards.
B.J. TAYLOR, UCF He is likely the least well-known of any player on this list. Taylor played in only 16 games last season due to injury. What he did in those 16 games is why he will be one of the country’s best seniors in ’18-’19. Taylor averaged 15.9 points per game and is a preseason favorite to be the American Athletic Conference’s Player of the Year. He is expected to lead UCF to the NCAA tournament.
JAMES PALMER JR., NEBRASKA The Cornhuskers went 22-11 last season, the first time Nebraska won more than 20 games since the days of legendary coach Danny Nee in the 1990s. Nebraska went 13-5 in the Big Ten thanks to the play of Palmer who averaged 17.2 points and 4.4 rebounds a game. Palmer returned to Lincoln to try and help head coach Tim Miles get the Cornhuskers back to the NCAA tournament which they last made in the 2013-14 season.