Youth movement: Keep an eye on these Big Ten freshmen
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As the second month of the college basketball season gets underway, a crop of talented Big Ten freshmen have flourished.
Here are some freshmen to keep an eye on as we roll along toward conference play.
Michigan State: The Spartans have a deep freshman class, headlined by perhaps the Big Ten’s top newcomer in Miles Bridges. Bridges has ridiculous athleticism and was Michigan State’s leading scorer (16.6 ppg) and rebounder (8.8 rpg) before being sidelined with an ankle injury. Hopefully Bridges returns soon, and the Big Ten can continue to be blessed with highlights like these.
Big man Nick Ward has been holding down in the post for the Spartans to the tune of 12.1 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. It should be fun to see him square up with some of the conference’s other talented bigs.
Maryland: The Terps also have a few impact freshmen in the early-season in guard Anthony Cowan (10.2 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 3.6 apg) and forwards Kevin Huerter (7.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and Justin Jackson (10.3 ppg, 6.2 rpg.) This block by Huerter in the Terps’ win over Georgetown put an exclamation point on his arrival in College Park.
Minnesota: If the last name Coffey sounds familiar, it’s because current freshman Amir Coffey‘s father Richard had a big career for the Gophers himself before having a cup of coffee (ha) in the NBA. Like the 9-1 Gophers, Amir has had a fast start, leading Minnesota in scoring at 13 points per game.
Penn State: Pat Chambers’ newest freshmen class is a strong one, and freshmen Mike Watkins, Tony Carr and Lamar Stevens have combined to score 33 points and grab nearly 18 rebounds per game. Here’s Watkins imposing his will down low:
Iowa: Tyler Cook was only six games into his Hawkeye career before being sidelined with a broken finger, but he proved he’ll be worth watching for years to come. Cook is second on the Hawkeyes in scoring and rebounding at 13.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per contest. And he’s definitely first in dunks.