Yeah Buddy!

Player of the Week

Buddy Hield – Oklahoma

Buddy HieldBuddy HieldLast year’s Big 12 Player of the Year has started the season about where you’d expect him. Senior, Buddy Hield has absolutely demolished his first 3 opponents to the tune of 25.3 points per game, which includes an 11-19 clip from beyond the arc. Oklahoma’s star shooting guard needs just 106 more points to slide into 10th place on the Sooner’s all-time scoring list, and if he holds to this pace that will be an accomplishment achieved before the start of 2016.

Heading into Sunday’s matchup vs Wisconsin, Hield’s 25.3 point per game scoring average has been at the expense of some weaker opponents. Memphis, McNeese State, and Incarnate Word’s best efforts to stop him came up far short, but as the Sooners prepare to take on the Badgers, and then #8 Villanova, December 7th, Buddy hopes to carry his hot hand into a thicker portion of OU’s schedule.

Who’s Hot

Wayne Selden – Kansas

As Kansas stormed their way to the Maui Invitational title this past week, Wayne Selden never failed to score at least 15 points outside the lower 48 states. He caught fire from beyond the arc, and the Co-MVP of the tournament went 12-17 from downtown. He also found other ways to get involved, which included a 7 assist game versus Chaminade, and a 7 rebound game in the Championship versus #19 Vanderbuilt. Selden’s production jump from his freshman to sophomore years was pretty marginal, but an early glimpse into his junior campaign has revealed a more confident attitude, and a slew of 5 straight double digit scoring games.

Devin Williams – West Virginia

As the Mountaineers sit 5-0 early in the 2015-16 season, it’s the play of their most mountainous athlete, Devin Williams, which jumps out as a major contributor as to their early season streak. The 6’9’’ Junior has strung together 5 straight double doubles, and a production line that reads 19 points per game, 11.4 rebounds per game, 1.8 assists per game, while shooting 65% from the floor, and 78% from the line. William’s has always had both a rugged physique, and a soft shooting touch, but he’s clearly putting the two together at a level in which we have yet to see until recently. Continued play at this level, is a great sign for a team looking to replace the scoring of Juwan Staten.

Who’s Not

Isaiah Taylor – Texas

While Longhorn point guard, Isaiah Taylor, has never been known as a knock down shooter, his early season marks won’t lead anyone to believe he’s made major strides shooting the ball. Four games into his junior campaign, the 6’3’’ point is shooting just 30% from the field, and 20% from long range. After going off for 27 points in the season opener, Taylor has cooled dramatically, and if you look at his last 3 games he’s 0-3 from downtown, and just 6-27 from the floor. While I believe Coach Smart was a great hire for Texas, there are always growing pains when going through a coaching change. For Texas to bounce back, and get above 500, they’ll need a more efficient version of Isaiah Taylor going forward.

Norense Odiase – Texas Tech

After putting together a solid freshman season, Norense Odiase has struggled a bit in the early stages of his sophomore year. The Red Raiders’ burly power forward has mustered just 5.5 points per game on 42% shooting from the floor over his first 4 games. Foul trouble has been a major factor in the production drop, but he’s also seen dips in his shooting percentage, and free throw clip from last year. Odiase is a key player in TTU’s main core, and for them to continue to grow as a team, he’ll need to stay out of foul trouble, and chip in more buckets for Tubby Smith’s gang to keep racking up wins.

Top 3 Newcomer Producers

1.Chris Olivier – Oklahoma State

Chris Olivier has made his presence felt for the Cowboys with a collection of stat stuffing performances this November. After playing his last 2 seasons at EIU, Olivier has wasted no time making his presence felt in the Big 12. The 6’7’’ forward currently leads the league in blocked shots (2.6) and leads the Cowboys in scoring with 15 points per game. A conference newcomer, but a very experienced collegian, Chris Olivier’s on court mileage is both great for his competition jump, and for the Cowboys seasonal projection.

2.Vladimir Brodziansky – TCU

With a year under his belt at the juco ranks, 6’10’’ Vladimir Brodziansky has been quick to make a name for himself at the D1 level. In his first collegiate game, the versatile Slovakian racked up 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists versus SE Louisiana. On 58% shooting from the field, Vladimir has averaging 13.4 points and contributing across the board for a team looking for guys to step up after losing a vast amount of senior talent from the year before. With nearly 3 years left of eligibility, Brodziansky looks like a staple for the Horned Frogs going forward.

3. Dean Wade – Kansas State

While Kansas State had not been predicted to do much this season, the Wildcats are playing to prove people wrong. The 4-1 Cats have benefitted tremendously from 6’8’’ freshman, Dean Wade. While #9 North Carolina slowed his early season production, he’s still averaging 11.8 points, 5.4 rebounds, and shooting a very impressive 8-15 from three point range, through 5 games. Ranked a 4 star by Rivals, Wade’s ability to be a threat on the perimeter both shooting, and on the drive are great sign for his career going forward.

Follow David Ray on twitter @DR_NBADraft

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