Brent Yarina, BTN.com Senior Editor, April 30, 2013
Yesterday, I took a stab at my way-too-early 2013-14 All-Big Ten teams. Today, it's time to take a way-too-early look at next season's Big Ten statistical leaders. From scoring to steals, I offer the top candidates for each category and pick my winners. You have a say, as well. Choose your winner for each category in the polls in this post.
INDIVIDUAL STAT LEADERS
My winner: Drew Crawford – People are sleeping on Crawford, whether it be that he plays for Northwestern or is coming off injury. Fact is, the fifth-year senior can put the ball in the basket. Another thing: Crawford, unlike the other leading contenders, doesn't have a lot of competition for points on his team.
My winner: Mitch McGary, Michigan – We all saw what McGary is capable of during Michigan's run to the national title game, averaging 10.7 rebounds in six tourney games. With his motor and style of play, he'll get his hands on a ton of rebounds as a full-timer.
My winner: Tim Frazier, Penn State – Frazier averaged 6.2 assists in 2011-12, and that's when he didn't have any help around him. He has proven weapons now – D.J. Newbill and Jermaine Marshall are the Big Ten's two leading returning scorers – and he'll probably look to distribute even more following last season's Achilles' injury.
My winner: A.J. Hammons, Purdue – Hardly a bold prediction here, I know. Hammons' 67 blocks as a freshman trailed only Wisconsin senior Jared Berggren (73). Plain and simple, the long and athletic Boilermaker will be a shot-blocking and shot-altering beast.
My winner: Aaron Craft, Ohio State – When it comes to steals, there's Craft and everyone else. Yes, teammate Shannon Scott is a pest on the defensive end, as well, but it's nearly impossible not to go with the guy who averages 2.2 steals per game.
My winner: Ray Gallegos, Nebraska – Gallegos isn't the most efficient shooter, but he has the brightest green light in the Big Ten. Heck, the guy shot 271 treys this past season – an average of 8.2 (!) per game – so he's sure to hit a bundle of triples.
* — Originally had Penn State's Jermaine Marshall listed, but he opted to pursue a pro career.
|About Brent Yarina||BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina covers football and men's basketball for BTN.com. He writes the popular uniform feature "Clothes Call," which also focuses on the latest cosmetic changes across Big Ten arenas and stadiums. Read all of his work here. You can subscribe to Yarina's RSS feed and follow him on Twitter @BTNBrentYarina.|