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17 Names You Don't Know Now But Will By The End Of March Madness

They may not be household names yet, but the magic of March can change that.

The beauty of the NCAA Tournament is that once the field of 68 gets set, it no longer discriminates. If you play like a star, the nation catches on. If you succumb to the pressure, there is nowhere to hide. Of course, we know that the upset reigns supreme this time of the year as well, which also sets the table for new stars to emerge. In the past, it's been unknowns like Davidson's Stephen Curry or Northern Iowa's Ali Farokhmanesh (recall his iconic 3-pointer to help topple Kansas) or Valpo's Bryce Drew, all the way back in 1998. Whether they go on to achieve NBA success is immaterial -- March is about so much more.

With that in mind, here are 17 names you don't know now but will by the end of the madness.

  • Gary Payton II, PG, SR, Oregon State
    GP2 is a one-man press breaker who has catapulted the upstart Beavs into the dance for the first time since his dad did it wa
    Leon Bennett/Getty Images
    GP2 is a one-man press breaker who has catapulted the upstart Beavs into the dance for the first time since his dad did it way back in 1990. Jr. is a superior athlete, however, and at a rangy 6 feet 3 inches and 190 pounds, he has a terrific frame to support a sensational all-around game. The senior point guard averages a robust 16 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists for Wayne Tinkle.
  • Carrington Love, PG, SR, Wisconsin-Green Bay
    He's got the name and the game! Love, who ranks third nationally in steals (2.6), is the heartbeat of the surging Phoeni
    Dave Reginek/Getty Images
    He's got the name and the game! Love, who ranks third nationally in steals (2.6), is the heartbeat of the surging Phoenix, which is making its first tournament appearance in two decades. A playmaking dynamo with great quickness and attacking ability, the 6-foot-1-inch senior triggerman averages nearly 18 points per game, and has become a reliable 3-point shooter as well, connecting on 35 percent of his tries.
  • Justin Sears, F, SR, Yale
    Sears is a high major four man playing at Yale, and perhaps the main reason why the Bulldogs are in the tournament for the fi
    Lance King/Getty Images
    Sears is a high major four man playing at Yale, and perhaps the main reason why the Bulldogs are in the tournament for the first time since the Kennedy administration. At 6 feet 8 inches, he is a plus athlete who finishes at the rim and can make a 15 footer. Against Duke earlier this season, he totaled 19 points and 6 rebounds.
  • Chris Flemmings, G, JR, UNC-Wilmington
    Flemmings is a versatile combo guard with tremendous size at 6 feet 5 inches, and a guy who can single-handedly will the
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Flemmings is a versatile combo guard with tremendous size at 6 feet 5 inches, and a guy who can single-handedly will the Seahawks to the second weekend. The junior averages 16 points on a splendid 51 percent shooting, and will get a wonderful opportunity to showcase his ability in a first-round tilt with in-state foe Duke.
  • Thomas Walkup, F, SR, Stephen F. Austin
    Walkup is the emotional leader of yet another terrific Lumberjacks team that went undefeated in the Southland. A classic unde
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Walkup is the emotional leader of yet another terrific Lumberjacks team that went undefeated in the Southland. A classic undersized mid-major forward, Walkup -- who captured his second straight Player of the Year honor in the conference -- does pretty much everything but shoot the 3, averaging a healthy 17 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists. America will fall in love with him if SFA can get through the first weekend, or even pull off an early upset.
  • Brandon Taylor, PG, SR, Utah
    America loves explosive guards in the tournament, and it loves undersized overachievers that much more. Case in point: Brando
    Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images
    America loves explosive guards in the tournament, and it loves undersized overachievers that much more. Case in point: Brandon Taylor. We talk a lot about his 7-foot teammate, All-American center Jakob Poeltl, but Taylor is the heartbeat of Larry Krystkowiak club. The Los Angeles native takes -- and makes -- big shots, and will be the anchor to another second weekend run for the third-seeded Utes.
  • Domantas Sabonis, PF/C, SOPH, Gonzaga
    Sabonis is an extremely active body with excellent bounce and dexterity around the rim. The son of the great Arvydas Sab
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Sabonis is an extremely active body with excellent bounce and dexterity around the rim. The son of the great Arvydas Sabonis, Domantas -- at 6 feet 11 inches -- isn't as bulky as his father, but has a similar feel for the game. Possessing a deft touch, the lefty averages over 17 points and nearly 12 rebounds for the Zags.
  • Wes Washpun, PG, SR, Northern Iowa
    Washpun has essentially doubled his scoring and assists average (14 and 5) as a senior and become the best player for a
    Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images
    Washpun has essentially doubled his scoring and assists average (14 and 5) as a senior and become the best player for a Northern Iowa team that has already beaten both Iowa State and North Carolina this season. He is a sensational athlete who loves the big moment, as we saw when he drilled the game-winner in the Missouri Valley Conference title tilt.
  • Ben Jacobson, Head Coach, Northern Iowa
    Jay Wright 2.0, anybody? Making his second consecutive tournament appearance with the Panthers, the 45-year-old Jacobson is o
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
    Jay Wright 2.0, anybody? Making his second consecutive tournament appearance with the Panthers, the 45-year-old Jacobson is one of the bright young coaching stars in the game today. Per usual, his team is predicated off of offensive execution focused on the long ball. While this is surely not his best offensive team in Cedar Falls, it remains a matchup problem: Four Northern Iowa players shoot at least 38.5 percent from deep.
  • DeAndre Bembry, G-F, JR, Saint Joseph's
    The Atlantic Ten Player of the Year, Bembry has been a silent assassin for Phil Martelli ever since he stepped on campus. Des
    Mitchell Layton/Getty Images
    The Atlantic Ten Player of the Year, Bembry has been a silent assassin for Phil Martelli ever since he stepped on campus. Despite not having the 3-pointer in his arsenal, the 6-foot-6-inch junior wing (17 points per game on 48 percent shooting) is as tough a matchup as it gets because of his smooth playmaking ability in the half-court. Bembry -- who rebounds and dishes as well -- is the feathery engine for the Hawks and his basketball IQ speaks for itself.
  • Josh Hart, G-F, JR, Villanova
    Another wing starring in Philly is Josh Hart, who has been sensational all year for a team that was ranked No. 1 at one
    Rich Schultz/Getty Images
    Another wing starring in Philly is Josh Hart, who has been sensational all year for a team that was ranked No. 1 at one point. And yet, how many people really appreciate this guy? In a starring role for Jay Wright, the 6-foot-5-inch junior swingman has often played four spots, while averaging 16 points and 7 rebounds, at a hyper-efficient 51 percent clip. 'Nova will go as far as he takes them.
  • Isaiah Whitehead, SG, SOPH, Seton Hall
    Seton Hall is dancing for the first time in a decade, and coach Kevin Willard has his sophomore shooting guard to thank for i
    Mitchell Layton/Getty Images
    Seton Hall is dancing for the first time in a decade, and coach Kevin Willard has his sophomore shooting guard to thank for it. Whitehead, a Brooklyn native who stayed close to home, has been a revelation, averaging 18 points -- including recent 33-, 25- and 22-point outbursts -- and 5 assists for the streaking Pirates. The high riser can shoot the triple (38 percent), and has a strong 6-foot-4-inch, 210-pound frame to get into the painted area -- hence the 5.8 free-throw attempts.
  • A.J. English, SG, SR, Iona
    English, whose dad played in the NBA, is a pure scorer who hoists over 9 triples a game, connecting on 37 percent. His 22.4 p
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    English, whose dad played in the NBA, is a pure scorer who hoists over 9 triples a game, connecting on 37 percent. His 22.4 points ranks 10th in the nation, and he has just the type of awkward, herky-jerky game that hoop fans will gravitate toward. Iona is a tricky team to play because of its propensity to force quick shots in its zone, and English is very fun to watch as a result.
  • Bryn Forbes, SG, SR, Michigan State
    The Lansing native and former Cleveland State standout has enjoyed a sensational senior season, increasing his 3-po
    Rich Schultz/Getty Images
    The Lansing native and former Cleveland State standout has enjoyed a sensational senior season, increasing his 3-point total from 70 made triples as a junior to 108 already this year. We hear mostly about Denzel Valentine, and rightfully so, but the sweet-shooting Forbes is a highly dependable sidekick who has connected on 48.4 percent from deep, the seventh-best clip in the country.
  • Sheldon McClellan, SG, SR, Miami
    McClellan, the Texas transfer, is a pure scorer who can really fill it up from distance (40 percent 3s) and who savors the ma
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    McClellan, the Texas transfer, is a pure scorer who can really fill it up from distance (40 percent 3s) and who savors the marquee moments. In crucial wins this year versus Utah and Duke, he had 27 and 21 points respectively.
  • Kellen Dunham, SG, SR, Butler
    The 6-foot-6-inch Dunham, an Indiana native, is an explosive scorer on a Butler team that knows where its bread is butte
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images
    The 6-foot-6-inch Dunham, an Indiana native, is an explosive scorer on a Butler team that knows where its bread is buttered. Dunham runs off a slew of screens, and he has the ultimate green light, averaging over 16 points on 43 percent 3-point shooting.
  • Josh Hagins, PG, Arkansas-Little Rock
    Hagins comprises half of the terrific Little Rock backcourt, flanking fellow senior Marcus Johnson Jr. Hagins has tremendous
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Hagins comprises half of the terrific Little Rock backcourt, flanking fellow senior Marcus Johnson Jr. Hagins has tremendous quickness and a real knack for getting to the rim. His 12.8 points, 4.7 assists and 1.4 steals per game pace the upset-minded Trojans out of the always dangerous Sun Belt.

Email me at jordan.schultz@huffingtonpost.com or ask me questions about anything sports-related on Twitter at @Schultz_Report, and follow me on Instagram at @Schultz_Report. Also, check out Bleacher Report Video for my full college hoops analysis throughout the entire tournament. And tune in to my SiriusXM Radio show Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3-6 p.m. EST on Bleacher Report channel 83.

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