Don't sleep on Kenneth Faried

Updated: November 2, 2010, 7:02 PM ET
By Chad Ford

The "big six" college conferences -- the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-10 and SEC -- obviously get plenty of attention when it comes to the NBA draft.

But in the past several years, members of the other group, the mid-majors, have been more than holding their own. In the 2010 draft, six players from mid-major teams went in the first round. Two of them -- Gordon Hayward from Butler and Paul George from Fresno State -- went in the top 10.

In 2009, two mid-major players, Tyreke Evans and Stephen Curry, went in the lottery. In 2008, another six mid-major players made it to the first round.

This season, the mid-major class is solid, though not particularly top-heavy. While there are, once again, a handful of mid-major players that could break into the first round, we currently don't have any ranked as lottery picks.

I spoke with a number of NBA scouts to get a take on five players they'll be scouting closely in the mid-major conferences this season. Here's the breakdown: