Ranking Top 100 (and 1) college hoops players for first 2 months

College football has finally ended, which means it’s time for fans of amateur sports to turn their attention to basketball. And given that there are plenty of fans who tend not to fully tune into college hoops until football ends, that means it’s the perfect time to give you an update on where the game stands midway through the season.

That’s where the CBS Sports Top-100 (and One) comes in.

This is our monthly ranking of the best college hoops players in America. How do I come to these conclusions? This tends to be the criteria I use:

  • Pure production versus competition level. If you’re scoring 20 points per game and doing it against a pretty tough schedule, you probably deserve to be ranked. If you’re piling stats against only average competition, I’ll take that into account. James Daniel at Howard is an example here. He’s currently leading the nation in scoring, but is no longer ranked after struggling with efficiency against better competition over the last month.
  • Talent matters as well. If you’re a freshman that’s still figuring things out, that’s something that I take into account. However, you need to have shown something, and you need to at least be someone who will continue to have a role moving forward. Skal Labissiere is an example of someone who is not ranked for the first part of that sentence, and Cheick Diallo at Kansas is an example of someone not ranked for the latter part.
  • Value matters to me. If you’re playing on a good team and acting as one of the most important pieces, that’s something that’s worth taking into account. If your team crumples without you in the lineup, that’s also pretty important to note. Hi, Fred VanVleet.
  • Offensive production is important obviously, but so is defense. It’s 50 percent of the game, in fact, and it’s why guys like Kris Dunn, Gary Payton II, Malcolm Brogdon, and Frank Mason rank highly here.

So with that, let’s get started. Here is a list of the players who have fallen off of this ranking in the last month, along with where they rated at the time.

Skal Labissiere (40), Kellen Dunham (43), Patrick McCaw (46), Cheick Diallo (54), Gary Clark (75), Jordan Price (77), Dwayne Bacon (78), Jalen Brunson (81), James Blackmon Jr. (85), Bronson Koenig (87), Justin Robinson (92), D.J. Balentine (93), Angel Rodriguez (95), Markus Kennedy (97), Isaiah Briscoe (98), Stephen Zimmerman (99), Isaiah Cousins (100), Rasheed Sulaimon (101), James Daniel (102)

With apologies to Robinson, Luke Kornet, Bacon, Price, Isaiah Cousins, Kennedy Meeks, Yante Maten, Edmond Sumner, Shavon Shields, Isaiah Miles, Elijah Brown, Robert Gray, Kevin Hervey, Caleb Swanigan, Emmett Naar, Evan Bradds, Luke Fischer, Balentine, Rodriguez, Ja’Quan Newton, McCaw, Clark, Ben Moore, Jaron Blossomgame, Gavin Ware, Mo Watson, Josh Hawkinson, Bryant McIntosh, Rodney Purvis, Andrew White, Joel Bolomboy, Ryan Spangler, Charles Mitchell, Nathan Boothe, Myles Davis, James Farr, Thomas Bryant, Nathan Boothe, Marcus Lee, Shevon Thompson, Marvelle Harris, Melvin Johnson, Jordan McLaughlin and Tim Quarterman, here is the full list of 100 (and one).

101. Sindarius Thornwell | G | South Carolina (previous ranking: NR): The South Carolina Gamecocks are one of two teams remaining that are unbeaten in the country, so it would be awfully difficult to have a list representative of college basketball in 2015-16 without a player from their team. You could honestly make an argument for five guys on this team, from Thornwell to Mindaugas Kacinas to Duane Notice to Miguel Carrera to Laimonas Chatkevicius. All of those guys, along with freshman P.J. Dozier, could fit right in within a 102nd to 200th best player ranking, giving Frank Martin one heck of a deep roster to play with.

I’ve gone with Thornwell, as he tends to be the straw that stirs the drink for the Gamecocks offensively. Yeah, he’s shooting under 40 percent, but he’s averaging 12.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game, makes things happen for everyone around him, defends well just like everyone else does and has the high-flying athleticism to throw down dunks like this: