Player of the Week:
Quincy Miller, Baylor
The 6'8" freshman and future lottery pick has started off the season with a bang for the Baylor Bears. Through three games, he is averaging 18.0 points and 4.7 rebounds per game in 24.7 minutes of action. His second half shooting efficiency has been amazing as well. He is shooting 67% from the floor, 71% from 3-point range, and 82% from the free-throw line coming down the stretch in games, which is very promising for the Bears. Though his overall statistics will certainly go down when Perry Jones III returns from his suspension, it has been a very promising start to the season for the former blue chip recruit. He is showing that he will be an impact player all season long for the Big 12 favorite.
Cezar Guerrero, Oklahoma State
The freshman point guard is showing the country that he deserved more attention from college coaches and recruiting analysts coming out of high school. The 6'0", 175 pound Guerrero came to Oklahoma State quietly, following all the press and accolades of teammate LeBryan Nash, the stud wing-forward from Dallas. However, he is beginning to carve his own niche in Stillwater. In an overtime win against Texas-San Antonio Wednesday night, he had his coming-out party at Gallagher-Iba Arena. He hit eight 3-pointers on his way to an Oklahoma State freshman record of 29 points. He hit a game-tying 3-point basket with 8.8 seconds left in regulation, which helped the Cowboys take control of the game in overtime, as well as keep them undefeated at 3-0. He also contributed five assists and five rebounds off the bench.
JCovan Brown, Texas- 35 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals in a 100-91 win over Rhode Island
Royce White, Iowa State- 21 points, 14 rebounds, and 4 assists in a 74-65 loss to Drake
Rodney McGruder, Kansas State- 18 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists in a 72-67 win over Charleston Southern
Andrew Fitzgerald, Oklahoma
The 6'8", 250 pound junior power forward had a tough outing against Idaho State this week. The Sooners big man notched only 7 points, 1 rebound, and 2 blocked shots in their win over the Vandals. He shot only 2-7 from the field and was nonexistent in the post. For a player that was touted to build on a promising sophomore season, he needs to pick his play up from here on out. If he does, he will complete a scary inside tandem for the team with Romero Osby.
Top 5: Breakout Candidates
1.) Thomas Gipson, Kansas State- The freshman power forward is off to a scintillating start for head coach Frank Martin and the Kansas State Wildcats. In a 74-61 win over Loyola (IL) this week, he scored 19 points, grabbed 7 rebounds, and blocked 2 shots in 28 minutes of action. He will see a lot of playing time this season, and his production should be one of the highest of any freshman in the conference.
2.) Phil Pressey, Missouri- The 5'10" speedster holds the keys to an explosive Missouri offense. The sophomore is currently averaging 13.3 points, 4.0 assists, and 3.7 rebounds per game. If he keeps these numbers up, all of his talented teammates will benefit, and the Tigers could roll through the Big 12 season on their way to a memorable month of March.
3.) Romero Osby, Oklahoma- The junior and Mississippi State transfer is turning some heads with his play thus far in an Oklahoma uniform. The 6'8" forward is averaging 17.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per contest. He is providing a stable inside presence for the Sooners, and if Andrew Fitzgerald puts up the numbers he is capable of, Oklahoma could surprise a lot of teams this season.
4.) Ty Nurse, Texas Tech- The 6'1" junior college transfer is having the immediate impact in the Red Raiders backcourt that they so desperately needed. He is averaging 22.0 points per game for a squad that is looking for a scorer. He led Midland College to the NJCAA Division I Championship game last season, and his leadership at Texas Tech will be crucial for them to survive in the conference this season.
5.) Jean-Paul Olukemi, Oklahoma State- The bouncy 6'5" junior guard will be counted upon to carry a heavy load for the Cowboys this season. So far, he is producing. With averages of 12.7 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 2.1 assists, he is showing coaches and fans that his versatility on both ends of the floor could pay big dividends this year.
- Texas A&M star Khris Middleton will miss 3-4 weeks with a knee injury, leaving the Aggies scrambling for someone to replace his production on both ends of the floor. It is a reported hamstring injury, and he will be sorely missed by his team.
- Oklahoma State has once again been devastated by a plane crash, this time killing its head and assistant women's basketball coaches. Please keep the OSU family in your thoughts and prayers, and expect both the men's and women's basketball teams to play with heavy hearts this season.
- Thomas Robinson is already looking like an All-American candidate early on this season. Most recently, he accumulated 11 points and 12 rebounds against a very strong Kentucky frontcourt. Expect him to put up big-time numbers in Big 12 play.
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