5. Stud- Matthew Mayer
Matthew Mayer's basketball life has been filled with twists and turns. After helping the Baylor Bears win the national championship, he planned to enter the 2021 NBA Draft. Mayer eventually changed course, opting to return to Baylor for a bigger role as a starter. During the 2021-22 season, Mayer averaged 10 points and five rebounds, en route to starting every game for the Bears.
Mayer flirted with the idea of joining the 2022 NBA Draft but eventually decided to play out his final year of eligibility, albeit in a different uniform, as the man with the mullet transferred to Illinois. The 6'9 Mayer had his best season to date with the Fighting Illini, averaging 12.5 points and 5.3 rebounds, while displaying the ability to be a streaky shooter (33 percent from deep on 6.2 attempts).
Mayer ultimately went undrafted and found himself on the Rockets' Summer League roster, although he didn't suit up until Jabari Smith Jr. and Tari Eason were pulled from the Vegas games. In Monday's championship game, Mayer had the hot hand from deep, as he shot a perfect 2-for-2 on his triples, finishing with eight points in the game.
All in all, Mayer didn't miss a shot, as he went 3-for-3 from the field, and grabbed seven rebounds (second-most on the Rockets) despite coming off the bench. The 6-foot-9 Mayer flashed the ability to make the most difficult shots look easy and left many Rockets fans clamoring for the franchise to give him a two-way contract.
He certainly helped his cause in the title game, as he was +11, which was a team-best (although his defense will need work).