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Xavier Power Rankings: 12/1

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The team is rolling along right now and has hit #12 in the nation. Here's how we rank the contributors so far.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

First of all, anyone who contributes for a top-15 team - to say nothing of one that's rolling the way Xavier is right now - should be feeling at least a little bit good about himself. How good about himself he should be feeling is kind of subjective, but at the very least we should be able to figure out who should be entitled to the most self-satisfaction. I've sorted them out for you below.

12. RaShid Gaston
This is kind of a null category, as RaShid is sitting out that transfer year. Someone has to be making Jalmes Farrnolds fight for boards in practice though, and I'm guessing Gaston is that guy. Walk-ons and redshirts do a lot of dirty work without the hope of meaningful court time; at least next year figures to be a good one for Gaston.

11. Kaiser Gates
Between his hair and his penchant from jacking jump shots as soon as he touches the ball, Gates isn't lacking for flair. Someday his production will match that. He has shown promising signs, but there's still work to be done.

10. Sean O'Mara
It's important to be able to fill a niche if your skill set isn't one that forces its way into the starting lineup, and Sean does just that. He is a guy who gets big, clears space on the boards, and plays like he knows he has five fouls to give. He has shown some deft moves in the post, but a couple of times he has gotten a little ahead of himself and forgotten to catch the ball. I still like a Jason Love comparison for him.

9. Makinde London
He had that spinning pass to O'Mara. He had that huge blocked shot. He flashed a nifty behind-the-back in traffic against UD. The athleticism and skill set are there for whenever Makinde's opportunity arrives. In the meantime, he's a luxury off the bench as a help defender.

8. Larry Austin, Jr.

The Dayton game was great for Edmond Sumner, but it also featured Larry's return to peak Larry. Take the shots the defense forces you to take, control the ball, get it to the right guys. Throw in some more-physical-than-average defense for a point guard and you have the perfect reserve for ten minutes a game on the ball.

7. JP Macura
Not only does JP play with an undeniable flair, he also has the natural antagonist's knack for knowing which guys are going to be irritated by otherwise innocuous gestures. Witness him helping an opponent return a dead ball to the official. Witness him gently bumping into someone as teams line up for free throws. Everyone can score and then tell people about it or brush a pick and go down like they've been hit by a claymore; JP's real genius is in killing an opponent's sanity by a thousand paper cuts, then acting stunned when the dude blows up and grabs a tech. Also, he's good at basketball.

6. Edmond Sumner
There are still turnovers and forced shots and the occasional overdribbling, but that first half against Dayton showed off why we're so high on Sumner's potential. First he dribbled his man into a backpedal on the right wing then quickly rearranged his own feet and drilled a three. Then he came down on the left wing, cooly lined one up from NBA range, and jarred it. He's looking a lot like the kind of guard against whom you're just going to have to pick your poison and hope he doesn't get hot.

5. Remy Abell
Remy is in many ways the exact opposite of Edmond. Mostly he keeps the ball moving around the perimeter or into the post and then runs his cuts. Then he'll occasionally just outrun everyone down the court or nail one of those soccer throw-in jumpers of his and you'll look up and see he has 11 points on 4 field goal attempts. Teams need glue guys.

4. Jalen Reynolds
Jalen has an ORtg of 110 on the year against all opponents, 115 against top 100 teams, and 130 against top 50 teams. None of this does much to dispel the popular notion that Jalen is a guy who plays to the emotion of the game, which is obviously better than a guy who shrinks under the bright lights. If he can shake the little fouling problem he has, he'll dominate. Finding a way to stay off the officiating crew's radar in general would also be a plus.

3. Myles Davis
A lot of what Myles does doesn't show up in the box score, but enough of it does that he's still third on the team in ORtg. He has starting working in the sort of hesitant, probing dribble drives that allowed Tu Holloway to get to the middle of the defense, and he has shown that he can bring the ball up under pressure in big situations. The team just looks comfortable finding Myles with the ball. After a slow start, he is shooting 40% from deep over the last four games.

2. James Farr
Effort never slumps, and James has been efforting his little heart out all year. As we discussed this morning, nobody in the nation rebounds like James does, and that effort has led to easy buckets on stickbacks. He has also developed a solid post game to his left hand and a knack for rim protection.

1. Trevon Bluiett
The team's go-to scorer, though not a guy who often looks like he's forcing his way into the game. He has a nasty mid-range game and a deep arsenal of moves to free himself up for space to shoot that jumper. Much has been made of his changed body, and his increasing production on the glass really frees Xavier up to be flexible and play small. Knocking down 43.6% of his threes is just the cherry on top at this point.