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Todd HolcombTodd Holcomb

March Madness: Georgia players to watch in NCAA men’s tourney

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More than 20 former Georgia high school players will be playing in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, which begins Tuesday.

Here are five players to keep a close watch on, plus a list that accounts for the 23 that we’ve identified. Let us know if we missed anybody.

Jordan Adams, UCLA (Central Gwinnett) – Adams, a 6-foot-5 guard, is a first-team all-Pac 12 player whose 3-point shot against Arizona was the difference in the conference tournament championship game on Sunday. Adams averages 17.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.7 steals. In high school, Adams was Central Gwinnett’s football quarterback and led the basketball team to the Class AAAAA semifinals, then transferred to Oak Hill Academy in Virginia. UCLA is a No. 4 seed in the South Regional.

Malcolm Brogdon, Virginia (Greater Atlanta Christian)The AJC’s 2011 all-classification player of the year, Brogdon is the leading scorer (12.6 ppg) for ACC champion Virginia. Brogdon  is second on the team in rebounds (5.6 per game) and assists (2.6). A 6-5 guard, Brogdon was a reserve as a true freshmen, then missed last year with a foot injury. Needless to say, he’s had a breakout year. So has Virginia. Brogdon is a first-team all-ACC pick this season as voted by the coaches, and Virginia is the No. 1 seed in the East.

Tekele Cotton, Wichita State (Whitefield Academy) – Cotton is hoping to play in his second straight Final Four. He’s  averaging 10.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game for undefeated Shockers. Cotton has started in all 34 victories. Cotton was a good high school player from a high-profile program but not a blue-chip recruit. Hard to understand why not. Watch his athleticism on this dunk. Wichita State is the No. 1 seed in the Midwest Region.

Jordan McRae, Tennessee (Liberty County) – McRae, a 6-foot-6 guard, is the Volunteers’ leading scorer (18.6 ppg) and top 3-point threat (75 of 202). McRae was a top recruit out of high school. Scout.com rated him the No. 9 shooting guard in the country. He’s got pretty good leaping ability, too. Tennessee plays Iowa in a play-in game for a No. 11 seed on Wednesday.

Shannon Scott, Ohio State (Milton) – Ohio State’s sixth man, Shannon Scott had perhaps the best game of his career Saturday in the Big Ten semifinals, a loss to Michigan. The point guard scored 18 points and had six assists, five rebounds and three steals. Scott made the Big Ten’s five-player All-Defensive Team. Scott, the son of former UNC and NBA great Charlie Scott, played for Milton’s 2010 state champion team. Ohio State is a No. 6 seed in the South Regional.

Other Georgia players in the tournament:

Ebuka Anyaorah, North Carolina Central (North Gwinnett)

Frank Booker, Oklahoma (Westside-Augusta)

Jibri Bryan, Mercer (Benedictine)

*Karl Cochran, Wofford (Walton)

*Daniel Coursey, Mercer (Benedictine)

A.J. Davis, Tennessee (Buford)

Madarious Gibbs, Texas Southern (East Coweta)

**Shaq Goodwin, Memphis (Southwest DeKalb)

Brannen Greene, Kansas (Tift County)

Langston Hall, Mercer (Chamblee)

Michael Hall, Harvard (Woodward Academy)

Kyle Meyer, Iowa (Northview)

Armani Moore, Tennessee (Mount Paran Christian)

Darious Moten, Mercer (Bowdon)

Evan Nolte, Virginia (Milton)

Tony Parker, UCLA (Miller Grove)

Kevin Ware, Louisville (Rockdale County)

Damien Wilson, Memphis (Pebblebrook)

*Team’s leading scorer.

**Team’s leading rebounder.

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