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2013’s final update of College Basketball’s “fab freshmen”

 

As 2013 draws to a close and conference play inches closer with 2014 only a few short hours away, let’s take a look at how each of college basketball’s superstar freshmen have played throughout their nonconference schedule.

 

Jabari Parker

PARKER
  • Minutes per game: 30.2
  • Points per game: 21.3 (Leads NCAA Freshmen)
  • Rebounds per game: 8.0
  • FG%: .548 (.377 from three)
  • Double-doubles: 4

 

Up to this point, Jabari Parker has solidified himself and the top freshmen in college basketball, and maybe even the top player overall. Parker’s NBA ready scoring ability has lifted him to double digit scoring numbers in every game thus far including eleven 20+ point showings. Offensively, Parker can and has done it all this season from low post moves to creating his own mid-range shot to hitting clutch three pointers. Not only is he an offensive juggernaut but he is also a rebounding machine with eight a game. Jabari Parker has drawn comparisons to Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James for good reason, he is a star. His athleticism is very underrated but a little bit more polished defensive game wouldn’t hurt either.

 

Overall Grade: A+

 

Julius Randle

RANDLE

  • Minutes per game: 29.6
  • Points per game: 18.1
  • Rebounds per game: 10.6
  • FG%: .564
  • Double-doubles: 9
  • Scored in double figures every game this season
  • Scored 20+ points in five games
  • Latest NBA Mock Draft position: 6th

 

Julius Randle exploded onto the college basketball scene after finishing each of his first seven games with a double-double. Randle has proved night after night why he is a very special player with his ability to completely dominate teams with his physicality in the post. To take his game to the next level during conference play, being able to hit some jump shots and reduce his 3.2 turnovers per game would leave a smile on the faces of Kentucky fans. Not to mention, drastically improve the Cats chances for a 9th National Championship

 

Overall Grade: B+

 

 

Andrew Wiggins

WIGGINS

  • Minutes per game: 31.0 (Leads team)
  • Points per game: 15.9
  • Rebounds per game: 5.4
  • FG%: .470 (.341 from three)
  • Double-doubles: 1
  • Scored in double figures 11 of 12 games
  • Scored 20+ points in four games
  • Latest NBA Mock Draft position: 2nd

 

Let’s try to be realistic when it comes to Andrew Wiggins. The expectations placed on his shoulders might have been a little too high with the LeBron James comparisons although there is no denying this kid is something very special. The biggest cause for concern with Wiggins is his passive nature, which is scary for a guy who has scored in double figures in all but one game and scored 20+ points in four games. If Wiggin’s late game heroics in the near comeback on the road against Florida where he single handedly carried Kansas is any sign of Wiggins taking the next step, Kansas will be a team nobody wants to play come March.

 

Overall Grade: A

 

 

Aaron Gordon

GORDON

  • Minutes per game: 30.2
  • Points per game: 12.5
  • Rebounds per game: 7.6
  • FG%: .500 (.389 from three)
  • Double-doubles: 4
  • Scored in double figures 11 times
  • Latest NBA Mock Draft position: 7th

 

This highlight reel of a human being has played very well and consistently through the first 13 games of his college career. Gordon has found himself to be nearly un-guardable around the rim with ferocious dunks and crafty layups rarely seen by someone of his size. His tremendous athleticism has allowed him to be a constant force on the boards as well. Aaron Gordon is likely a 1-and-done player, but during conference play he must show an improvement in his jump shooting and free throw shooting (.452%) if the Wildcats’ dreams of a deep tourney run will come true.

 

Overall Grade: B-

 

 

Joel Embiid

EMBIID

  • Minutes per game: 21.6
  • Points per game: 10.8
  • Rebounds per game: 6.9
  • Blocks per game: 2.3
  • FG%: .667
  • Double-doubles: 2
  • Scored in double figures 7 times
  • Latest NBA Mock Draft position: 3rd

 

At 7’0 with a 7’5 wingspan, Joel Embiid is an absolute load in the post. Embiid has utilized each game this season to show us exactly how good this kid could end up being. Joel runs the floor exceptionally well and finishes powerfully in transition, which could be credited to his soccer and volleyball background. Still a very raw product, but Embiid has begun to dominate offensively, defensively, and on the boards on a nightly basis and his draft stock has risen because of it. Kansas is known for their big men and Embiid could very well be the next big thing to come out of Kansas.

 

Overall Grade: B+

 

 

*All mock draft positions are taken from Bleacher Report. To see the full first round projections, check out http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1893515-2014-nba-mock-draft-jabari-parker-overtakes-andrew-wiggins

 

 

@CodyDanielKSR

Article written by Cody Daniel

4 Comments for 2013’s final update of College Basketball’s “fab freshmen”



  1. Elwood Blues
    8:42 pm December 31, 2013 Permalink

    Would you mind explaining how you give Randle a B+ while his numbers are better than Andrew’s, whom you gave an A?



  2. bigblue091812
    9:55 am January 1, 2014 Permalink

    The most dumb ass thing I’ve ever read, a B+ for Randle and an A for Wiggins, you must have been smoking crack with Ware and Behanan.



  3. specialetta
    3:31 am January 2, 2014 Permalink

    Agree with above post on only giving Randle a B+ is just unreal. A kid that is double and trippled teamed each game. Posting all his double doubles and he gets a B+…shame on you.



  4. twocoach
    12:35 pm January 2, 2014 Permalink

    Joel Embiid will be the best player out of this NBA Draft Class. He is going to be incredible. Parker is better now, but Embiid is special and is improving leaps and bounds every game. This is only his third year playing the sport and he is being compared to Olajuwan. His footwork and post moves are fantastic and he has only scratched the surface.

    If the team that drafts #1 overall has a solid center under contract they should pick Parker. If they do not, they should pick Embiid. The nice thing about this upcoming draft class is that you have a little of everything; an elite PG in Marcus Smart, elite wings in Wiggins and Parker, elite PF prospects in Randle and Gordon and an elite C in Embiid. Teams can really draft on a need basis instead of a “best available player’ basis and improve their team with a top tier prospect.

    As for Wiggins, what the author fails to mention is that he is an elite defender. Julius Randle is one of the worst college defenders I have ever seen and Parker isn’t much better. And Parker’s numbers are exceedingly high because he plays on a team with ZERO other serious offensive threats. Put either Wiggins or Randle on that team instead of Parker and they would be going for 20+ every night as well.

    As a KU fan, I wish Wiggins was more aggresssive on the offensive end but not at the expense of the team’s success. He has been excellent at not forcing anything bad and playing within the system. KU runs their offense through the post and Wiggins overall has been great at both ends of the floor.

    He has also played his best in Kansas’ biggest games. 22 and 8 in 25 minutes against Duke, 22 @ Colorado, 26 @ Florida. The lone exception was his poor 10 pt game against Nova in the Bahamas when he had the flu. He has been consistently moeny when it matters which is more than Randle can say. Randle was great against Michigan State and then below average against Baylor, Carolina and Louisville. I don’t give much credit to big stats gained against bad teams. Big game stats are more important than total stats.