Last night was the first round of the 2024 NBA Draft. There hasn't been a ton of hype around this year's draft class. I consider myself a basketball fan and follower of the sport, yet I knew only two players taken in the top five (Reed Shppard from Kentucky to the Houston Rockets and Stephon Castle from UConn to the San Antonio Spurs).

Picks 17 and 26 were the top highlights of round 1. Two former Big Sky Conference studs were taken.


The 17th overall pick was Dalton Knecht to the Los Angeles Lakers. Knecht finished his career with the Tennessee Volunteers, but prior to his time in Knoxville, he spent two seasons at Northern Colorado. As a Bear, he was productive scoring 14 points per game and grabbing 5.3 rebounds per game.

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But what he did at Tennessee was special. Playing against higher competition in the SEC, Knecht scored almost 22 points per game, shooting nearly 46 percent from the floor and 40 percent from deep. The Colorado native had showings of 40, 39 (x2), 37 (x2) and 36 points. His 5th-year senior season earned him a First Team All-American nod and recognition as the SEC Player Of The Year.

It was much more surprising to see pick number 26: Dillon Jones. There was no question that Dillon Jones was crazy talented, but there wasn't a lot of buzz around him as a first-round pick. CBS Sports "analysts" constructed 7 pre-draft predictions and Jones wasn't slated on one.

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Jones played 119 games at Weber State and scored over 1,700 points. He capped off an all-time great career scoring 21 points per game his senior season.

Since 2012, there have been five draft picks out of the Big Sky Conference. Three came from Weber State (Damian Lillard, Joel Bolomboy and Jones.)

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Gallery Credit: David Schultz

10 Cities That Need An NBA Team

There have been rumors swirling for years that the NBA is looking to expand. The last time the league expanded, is when it added the Charlotte Bobcats back in 2004.

Now, as we often do every offseason, we're wondering where the NBA would add a team if it were to expand? Would it be a brand new market? Add an additional team to a large market? Or bring a team back to an old market?

Let's look at the most likely possibilities, and cities that deserve an NBA team!

Gallery Credit: Cort Freeman

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