Blog Entry

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

Posted on: November 13, 2011 10:38 am
Edited on: November 13, 2011 10:47 am

By Matt Norlander and Jeff Borzello

We're going to be tracking the play of the elite freshman--and the ones who aren't ranked highly, but come out of the woodwork nonetheless--this year. We couldn't contain ourselves, so here's our first look at the newbies' first games. We'll come back to this list and recap/update how they're doing nearly every week throughout the season. And again, there will definitely be some first-year guys who burst onto the scene. We'll keep you abreast of their trend lines, too.

We've taken the top 20 according to As the year goes on, we may create our own top 20 of sorts, yet still keep eyes on all of these young guys, too.

Borzello peeked in on the top 10; Norlander took the 11-20 guys.

1. Anthony Davis, Kentucky — 23 points, 10 rebounds, five blocks vs. Marist
The nation's top prospect (right) had the debut everyone expected. He also shot 10-for-13 from the floor -- and did it in only 23 minutes.

2. Andre Drummond, Connecticut — 0 points, four rebounds vs. Columbia
Playing with a mask, Drummond came off the bench but didn't make an impact offensively. Still acclimating to the college game.

3. Austin Rivers, Duke — Averaged 15.5 points and 3.5 assists in two games
His change in body language and attitude from game one to game two was more important than statistics. 

4. Quincy Miller, Baylor — 17 points, four rebounds vs. Texas Southern
It will be interesting to see once Perry Jones III returns, but Miller is the go-to-guy offensively for the Bears. 

5. James McAdoo, North Carolina — Four points, three rebounds vs. Michigan State
McAdoo showed flashes of his potential in his 17 minutes. Will be productive as the sixth man going forward.

6. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky — 15 points, seven rebounds vs. Marist
John Calipari moved Kidd-Gilchrist into the starting lineup and it paid off. Also made plays on the defensive end.

7. Brad Beal, Florida — 14 points, three assists vs. Jackson State
Beal struggled from behind the arc, going 1-for-6 from deep, but he was able to create shots for himself and teammates.

8. Marquis Teague, Kentucky — 16 points, four assists vs. Marist.
Will be one of the nation's most explosive point guards throughout the season, and a pest for opposing point guards.

9. LeBryan Nash, Oklahoma State — 13 points, five rebounds vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
Right off the bat, Nash is the first option for the Cowboys' offense. Struggled shooting the ball in the opener.

10. Adonis Thomas, Memphis — Starts season on Wednesday vs. Belmont
Thomas is likely to start, but with so many options and so much depth, his output could be somewhat limited.

11. Myck Kabongo, Texas — Plays Sunday night vs. Boston University. We’ll update this post once that game goes final.

12. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Georgia — Fifteen points, four rebounds, two fouls vs. Wofford.
The freshman started and led the Bulldogs in scoring. Considering he got 33 minutes, this was a bright early sign.

13. Cody Zeller, Indiana — Sixteen points, 10 rebounds, three steals, two blocks vs. Stony Brook.
Zeller’s expected to bring Indiana to a higher level this year, even if that level isn’t necessarily the NCAA tournament. Zeller looked really good against at slug-it-out Stony Brook team.

14. Branden Dawson, Michigan State — 10 points, seven rebounds vs. North Carolina.
What a way to open your college career: on an aircraft carrier against the No. 1 team in the country. Dawson did well.

15. Khem Birch, Pittsburgh — Two points, three rebounds vs. Albany.
Birch came off the bench. He took only one shot (and missed) in 17 minutes of play.

16. Josiah Turner, Arizona — Averaged 3.5 points and two assists in two games.
We have the benefit of looking at Turner after two games, last Monday and Wednesday vs. Valpo and Duquesne. He’s yet look comfortable.

17. Wayne Blackshear, Louisville — He’s out until December with a shoulder issue, remember.

18. Jabari Brown, Oregon — Seven points, six turnovers, two rebounds vs. Vanderbilt.
Brown went against the second-best team of any freshman on our list (only Dawson at Michigan State took on a tougher foe). The six turnovers, Ducks fans have to hope that’s a one-time thing.

19. Tony Wroten, Washington — Eighteen points, seven rebounds, three assists vs. Georgia State.
Among the best all-around performances from any guy on this list. Wroten ready to be the next electric UW guard?

20. Rakeem Christimas, Syracuse — Six rebounds, five points in 20 minutes vs. Fordham.
Christmas is the guy replacing the ever-solid Rick Jackson down low. Plenty disagree on his impact ability this year. It takes time for big men to adjust to that zone concept—Christmas played acceptable, all things considered.

Photos: AP


Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: November 14, 2011 2:24 pm

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

BTW, are you a Michigan fan, a UK fan, or just a complete homer? I think the latter fits well.

Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: November 14, 2011 2:23 pm

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

i could care less about the cats or their fans, but when a jack*** UNC fan claims the 1st test will be against UNC in December and is clearly wrong, a BASKETBALL fan needs to interject. Thanks for your opinion though. It is valued!!

Since: Aug 26, 2009
Posted on: November 14, 2011 11:21 am

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

My earlier post is in response to BILLBADAZ

Since: Aug 26, 2009
Posted on: November 14, 2011 11:18 am

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

Why do louisville fans care so much about UK and its players?I think they are all undercover CATS fans!It's ok come on out from under them covers we won't hurt you.#UK4LIFE
P.S  CARDS SUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!C-YA NEW YEARS EVE!

Since: Jul 8, 2009
Posted on: November 14, 2011 11:12 am

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

I know I'm being a homer but I believe Chane Behanan of Louisville has looked like one of the ten best freshman so far. He's averaging a doubl-double (12pts, 13 rebs) in about 27 minutes of action. I know the Cards havint played a notible opponant yet but who has right? I look for him to continue his play against Butler.

Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: November 14, 2011 10:30 am

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

Anthony Davis 1st real test will be tomorrow, against Kansas, Thomas Robinson and the 7 foot Jeff Withey. He may get pushed around under the basket and will have to do much of his scoring beating the big men up and down the floor. Should be an exciting game, I just think UK has too much speed and talent. Henson and Davis both need to eat though, for real.

Since: Apr 5, 2009
Posted on: November 14, 2011 1:33 am

Following the Frosh: Our first glimpse

Davis will be a great player, but he will get his first real test against John Henson on December 3rd.  A test that quite frankly is not fair as he will not pass at this early stage in his one and done college career. Henson is just too skilled, too strong, and his 7'8" wingspan is physically unavoidable for Davis.  The rotation of Henson, Zeller, McAdoo, and Barnes will be far more explosive than anything he will have faced at this point in the season.  The scary thing, Henson's only going to get better so hopefully they will meet again in April if Kentucky's Freshmen can mature and endure the grind.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or