The National Collegiate Athletic Association, better known as the NCAA, is a governing body for collegiate sports in the United States. The NCAA oversees and regulates 1,098 colleges and universities that sponsor over half a million athletes to compete each year in the NCAA.
The NCAA Basketball Tournament is one of America’s most popular sporting events, drawing millions of viewers every year. This tournament is a single-elimination event that features 68 teams competing for the national championship.
This year’s season has already started, and many players are starting to make their mark on the sport. This article will look at seven freshmen who have made a big splash in college basketball this season.
The physical guard from the Duke Blue Devils men’s basketball team has been performing superbly since coming back from a calf injury. Keels is averaging 15.3 points over the last four games of the Duke Blue Devils and hit 8:15 from three-point range in that period. He finished with 11 rebounds and 25 points on Thursday in a win at Clemson.
“I feel like I’m in a pretty good groove right now,” Keels said. “Coach (Mike Krzyzewski) has been doing a good job of getting me the ball in spots where I can be successful.”
Krzyzewski noted that Keels is an essential piece of the team. “Trevor is a big part of what we do,” Krzyzewski said. “He’s going to be more and more important as we go forward.”
Although Smith has been slumping lately, he is still a dangerous player for other teams in the SEC. He showed off his big guns with several shots to keep the team in the game before losing momentum last Tuesday at Arkansas. With his versatile and well-rounded marksmanship, Smith remains a serious problem for other teams in the conference.
In Duke’s loss to the Virginia Cavaliers, Paolo Banchero bounced back from a challenging game against Clemson and Boston, scoring double-digit points. The versatile forward’s three-point percentage is down to 31.6%.
However, in his last six games, Banchero has four double-doubles. On top of that, he’s in the mix or selection for ACC Player of the Year.
Plus, Banchero is likely the number one overall in the NBA Draft this season. Banchero is a matchup nightmare for most teams. He can score in the post, shoot from deep, and handle the ball well enough to create his shot. If you’d like to bet for this player, be sure to learn and understand the College Basketball odds.
The seven-footer Gonzaga men’s basketball player reached double figures in all ten WCC games. Chet Holmgren continues to impress as he scored 13 rebounds and 11 points over St. Mary’s.
What’s more, the Bulldog player is shooting 58.3% from the three-point range against other teams. Holmgren is proving himself as an asset for the Bulldogs and is making a big name for himself.
AJ Griffin has been on a hot streak from beyond the arc as of late, scoring 15 points from three-point range in the last six games. And this is excellent news for Duke as they head into postseason play; it means that Griffin is coming into his own at just the right time. Griffin can take some of the scoring load off of senior guards when he plays like this.
Griffin’s recent hot streak is also a testament to his hard work in practice. Coach K has been stressing fundamentals with his team in preparation for the postseason, and Griffin has taken that instruction to heart. He knows that if he wants to continue scoring at a high level, he must put in the time and effort.
TyTy Washington suffered a leg injury in the second half against Florida’s matchup on Saturday. Because of this, it’s still uncertain if he will play this week.
But aside from the injury, Washington had a superb season. He proved to be a capable scorer, a fierce defender, and a secondary ball-handler.
The six-foot speedster scored five steals and 18 points in a win on Wednesday at Mississippi State. Chandler has been steady all season for the team as they have won the past seven games.
Without a doubt, he will continue to be a pivotal contributor to the offense and defense as they head into an important game. Plus, Chandler will indeed spearhead one of the best defenses in the country.
The 2022 NCAA freshman rankings are in, and they are sure to cause a stir. They are putting their best foot forward to make an impression on the NBA coaches and help their respective teams win a championship. For sure, it will be interesting to see how this class develops over the next two years.