staff, January 20, 2015

The Big Ten is home to an impressive collection of talented freshmen.

[ MORE: Big Ten Power Rankings | Big Ten Player Rankings ]

In fact, two of the conference's brightest first-year stars, Maryland's Melo Trimble and Ohio State's D'Angelo Russell, made the 25-player Wooden Award midseason list.

Trimble and Russell are right up with the nation's elite freshmen. But how does the rest of the Big Ten's crop of first-year players stack up?

Nearly one-third of the way into the conference season, asked BTN analyst Shon Morris to rank his top five freshmen.

Here's his list.

1. Melo Trimble, Maryland. Poised. Efficient. Steady. That sums him up.

2. D'Angelo Russell, Ohio State. He's explosive and very competitive – that's the thing that often gets overlooked.

3. James Blackmon Jr., Indiana. He's a pure shooter and an underrated rebounder.

4. Bryant McIntosh, Northwestern. Savvy and skilled; he's going to be really good.

5. Nate Mason, Minnesota. He's explosive with the basketball and improving his decision-making. He's also a very defender, which is rare for a freshman.