LSU coach Les Miles wouldn’t mind seeing basketball phenom Ben Simmons around the goal line _lowres

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- LSU basketball freshman Ben Simmons talks to the media about the upcoming basketball season Wednesday, July 1, 2015 in the LSU basketball practice facility.

The writers, columnists and analysts at have named LSU freshman forward Ben Simmons a first-team pick on its preseason All-America team.

Columnist Gary Parrish noted that none of the players on the All-American team named after the 2014-15 season return this year, so the criteria included picking players by position — not just the five best players in the country.

“In other words, we decided, each group of five had to be a group that could theoretically take a court together,” Parrish wrote.

Simmons is joined on the CBSSports’ All-American team by guards Kris Dunn of Providence and Buddy Hield of Oklahoma, and forwards Kyle Wiltjer of Gonzaga and Skal Labissiere of Kentucky.

Wiltjer was tabbed as the preseason player of the year.

Of Simmons, Parish wrote: ”Simmons is a uniquely talented prospect who projects as a top-five pick in the NBA draft. The 6-foot-10 forward should be a star in what will likely be his only season of college basketball. He averaged 20.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 3.6 steals and 2.2 blocks during LSU’s five-game tour of Australia this preseason.”

Simmons is expected to rejoin the Tigers’ preseason workouts any day now after the coaching staff held him out of practice the first couple of days because of a sore leg.