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Player Profile: Ben Simmons

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A look at the nation's best player.

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

If you've watched ESPN at all in the last 3 months, you've probably seen them talk about LSU's freshman forward Ben Simmons, who many believe will be the first pick of the 2016 NBA Draft. He is currently leading the Tigers in points (19.6 ppg), assists (5.8 apg), blocks (1.4 bpg), steals (2.3 spg), and rebounds (13.1 rpg). One of the reasons Simmons is such a great player and NBA prospect is due to his ability to handle the ball and run the court like a guard, while also being 6'10. Simmons is fully capable of grabbing a rebound and taking it coast to coast to the other end and scoring all on his own.

Simmons also creates a match up nightmare for opposing defenses because of his ability to score and pass. At 56% shooting on the year and his ability to drive around slower opposing bigs, it's difficult to stop Simmons from scoring without sending help. But, because he sees the court so well and is such a capable passer, sending help will usually end up in open 3's for the Tigers.

The Deacs will definitely have their hands full with Simmons on Tuesday. It will be vital that they defend him without fouling and box out to keep him off the glass. I wouldn't be surprised to see Manning employ some of the same double teams he used last year against Duke and, at the time, top NBA prospect Jahlil Okafor. However, if anyone is late on their rotation (like Wilbekin is below) the Tigers will have some open looks from beyond the arc.