3 NCAA Tournament prospects to watch if the Raptors can keep their first-round pick

Reed Sheppard, Kentucky Wildcats
Reed Sheppard, Kentucky Wildcats / Andy Lyons/GettyImages
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No. 2: Stephon Castle, UConn Huskies

Last season the University of Connecticutt Huskies entered the NCAA Tournament as a No. 4 seed but were a popular pick to make a run deep into the bracket. They did just that, absolutely demolishing the competition en route to the National Championship. This year they did the demolition from the start, and enter the tournament as the top overall seed and the favorite to repeat as champions.

UConn lost three starters to the NBA Draft and still came back better than before, and a major reason why is freshman wing Stephon Castle. After missing time due to injury early in the season he has been a two-way star for the Huskies the past few months, a good scoring threat on the perimeter and a lockdown defender on the other end of the court.

Specifically, UConn has often deployed Castle on an opponent's most dangerous perimeter player and seen him lock that player down. He is also a capable help defender; sometimes elite college man-to-man players can't translate that skill to a team context in the NBA, but Castle should be an excellent defender for his career.

On offense he profiles as more of a secondary ball-handler than a pure point guard, but with Immanuel Quickley and Scottie Barnes the Raptors don't need another lead playmaker. He can handle, pass and score at a solid level in that secondary role, but the real question for him is going to be his jumper. If the Raptors or other NBA teams believe it can be improved then he is a Top-10 lock, potentially even Top-5.