Now I see why the NBA scouts are salivating over West Viriginia's Devin Ebanks. Like the Mountaineers, Ebanks was barely visible in the first eight minutes of today's subregional at HSBC Arena. But during a five-minute stretch when West Virginia surged into the lead, the kid's athletic gifts were readily apparent.
Ebanks, a native of Long Island City, is a 6-9, 215 forward. He's a little on the thin side, but the ideal size for an NBA small forward. He has the ballhandling skills to play the "3" in the big-time, too. Ebanks brought the ball up the floor on a couple of occasions without any difficulty. He ran the break better than a lot of point guards, dishing off at the top of the key and taking a return pass for a rousing dunk. Ebanks also made a nice spin move into the lane to draw a foul during the Mountaineers' run.
There are forwards with better stats and more decorated college careers -- including his teammate, Da'Sean Butler. But the NBA is a tough league to crack and the scouts are looking for players with the athletic makeup to fit in. Ebanks does. That's why he's seen as a player who could go from 8 to 10 in the draft if he decides to come out this year. He hasn't announced his intentions yet.
--- Jerry Sullivan