February 19, 2008

Gordon leads big week for shooting guards

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: PG | SG | SF | PF | C | Head Coach

The 2007-08 season may be remembered as the "Year of the Shooting Guard."

Four of the top five shooting guards in Rivals.com's latest Power Rankings put together standout performances last week, adding to their already impressive campaigns.

Top-ranked Eric Gordon scored 28 points to carry Indiana to an 80-61 win over Michigan State. The Hoosiers were relying on Gordon more than usual because star big man D.J. White (ranked No. 3 at power forward) went down with a knee injury with five minutes left in the first half and never returned. Gordon is leading the Big Ten in scoring at 21.7 points per game.

Arizona's Jerryd Bayless moved from No. 3 to No. 2 after pushing his streak of 30-plus point games to three in a row. Bayless poured in 33 points in the Wildcats' 83-73 win over California, then added 31 more in a 67-66 loss to Stanford. Bayless was 16 of 16 from the free-throw line against the Cardinal. He is averaging 34.3 points over his past three games.

Memphis wouldn't have remained the nation's only undefeated team if not for Chris Douglas-Roberts, who made the jump from No. 4 to No. 3. Douglas-Roberts scored 32 points and had a 3-point play with 6.5 seconds left to lift the top-ranked Tigers to a dramatic 79-78 win at UAB. It was the 10th 20-point game of the season for Douglas-Roberts.

Davidson sophomore Stephen Curry (No. 4) moved into the top five based on his career-high 41-point outing in the Wildcats' 83-73 win at UNC-Greensboro. Curry has not been held below 14 points in a game this season and is averaging 25.6 points, which ranks fourth in the nation.

Wake Forest's Jeff Teague makes his debut in the rankings at No. 24 among the shooting guards. The freshman scored a game-high 26 points in Wake's 86-73 upset over Duke. He has scored in double figures in 14 of his past 16 games and ranks third in the ACC with 2.1 steals per game.

Tennessee's JaJuan Smith makes his return to the rankings at No. 25 among the shooting guards. Smith went 6-for-6 from 3-point range and scored a career-high 32 points in the Vols' 93-71 win over Arkansas.

The No. 1 spot among small forwards changed hands for the fourth time as Massachusetts' Gary Forbes rose to the top of the list. Forbes is averaging 20.2 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game.

Michigan State's Raymar Morgan, the previous No. 1, was held to a season-low three points on 1-for-5 shooting in the Spartans' loss to Indiana. The rating of a player and coach can fluctuate each week during the season depending on how they fared the previous week, but the power rankings measure overall career performances as well as their most recent results. By the end of the season, our power rankings should provide an accurate indicator of which players and coaches were the best at their respective positions.

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: PG | SG | SF | PF | C | Head Coach

Andrew Skwara is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at askwara@rivals.com.


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