Oklahoma will be just fine without Griffin
We're not going with a typical, run-of-the-mill top 25 rundown each day. Instead, we'll cut to the chase and tell you who will be left standing at the end of the year in the Elite Eight.
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We'll hit on one each over an eight-day span — in no particular order. Then we'll unveil my complete bracket just prior to the start of the season on Nov. 8. I had the championship game right last year, but incorrectly picked Michigan State to beat North Carolina.
I have a good feeling about my bracket this time around.
Blake Griffin is gone, and now it's Willie Warren's team.
Warren just may be as talented a scoring guard as anyone in the country, and the Sooners have upgraded the point guard spot with the addition of freshman Tommy Mason-Griffin.
The key for the Sooners comes down to their interior play. Blake Griffin wasn't the only loss up front. Capel also lost Griffin's brother, Tyler, and Juan Pattillo, who was kicked off the team.
Now, the pressure is on 300-pound freshman Keith "Tiny" Gallon and whether he can be a force in the paint.
1. Guard play: You won't find too many backcourts in the nation that can hang with Warren and Mason-Griffin. Warren is an explosive scorer, and Mason-Griffin can run a team and is also capable of scoring.
2. Tony Crocker: Look for the veteran wing to step up and become a reliable second scoring option behind Warren. He averaged 9.6 points last season and will get far more opportunities on the offensive end now that the Griffin brothers are gone.
3. Star power: Warren is as talented as any guard in the country and is capable of creating a shot just about whenever he wants.