Gonzaga vs. Texas: Players to Watch

Roman Veytsman

Gonzaga vs. Texas (1 p.m. U.S. Airways Center) first part of doubleheader in Hall of Fame Challenge

Players to Watch:

Gonzaga: Senior guard Derek Raivio 6-foot-3, 177 pounds (18.9 points per game, 4.5 assists per game)

Sophomore forward Josh Heytvelt: 6-foot-11, 238 pounds (17.3 points per game, 7.5 rebounds per game)

Texas: Freshman forward Kevin Durant 6-foot-9, 225 pounds (22.3 points per game, 9.5 rebounds per game)

Sophomore guard A.J. Abrams: 5-foot-10, 155 pounds (19.7 points per game, 2.8 rebounds per game)

Hall of Fame Challenge Fabulous Freshman:

Texas: Durant, guard D.J. Augustin 9.7 points per game), forward Damion James (8.2 points per game)

Six of the Longhorns’ seven leading scorers are freshmen. Aside from a test against Michigan State, which Texas lost 63-61 Nov. 16, this freshman-laden team has yet to be a challenged by a disciplined and talented team like Gonzaga.

Gonzaga: guard Matt Bouldin 7.9 points per game)

Part of a long line of great Gonzaga guards from John Stockton to Matt Santangelo to Dan Dickau to Derek Raivio, Bouldin has a “”high basketball IQ,”” according to Bulldog head coach Mark Few.

Illinois: center Brian Carlwell (3.5 points per game)

This 6-foot-11 behemoth is still a project but his physicality will give him a chance to become a legitimate center for Bruce Weber’s ball club.

Arizona: Chase Budinger (19.4 points per game)

A co-MVP of the McDonald’s All- American game with Durant, Budinger like Texas’ freshman, is leading his team in scoring. College basketball fans may be seeing the two best freshmen in the nation in back-to-back games on Saturday, until of course Ohio State’s Greg Oden makes his debut for the Buckeyes.