1. Jordan Adams, UCLA
The 6-5 guard has begun his career on a mission. He's not shy about shooting, but his effort is off the charts. Through four games he's averaging 23.5 points and 4.2 boards. He's struggled from the 3-point line (32%) but has more than made up for it by his ability to get to the line and knock them down. He's attempting over 8 free throws per game and has made a cool 97%.
2. Alex Poythress, Kentucky
Poythress is the freshman most likely to scare the crap out of you. He might break someone this year on a dunk. He got off to a slow start vs Maryland, but has since made 17-20 2s (85%), with a large portion of them coming on dunks. Through three games he's averaging 16.7 points and 6.7 rebounds.
3. T.J. Warren, NC State
The flash of how good this kid is going to be may have come while his team was getting rolled by Oklahoma State. As one upperclassman after another seemed to quit on the game, Warren just played harder. He's made 69% of his 2s and half his 3s, and is averaging 16.5 points and 4.2 rebounds.
4. Brandon Ashley, Arizona
Ashley has wasted no time establishing himself as a powerful presence in the Pac 12. He's averaging 13.7 points, 7.7 rebounds and 1.7 blocks, but most impressive is that 46% of his points have come from the free throw line because he's drawing a ridiculous 9.4 fouls per 40.
5. Michael Kessens, Longwood
Who is the only freshman in the nation averaging a double-double? It's Longwood's Michael Kessens. Averaging 15 points, 10.3 rebounds, 2.3 blocks and 2 steals - he's filling up the statsheet. Unfortunately, his team is 0-3.
6. Jimmy Hall, Hofstra
It's no secret that guys who play at St. Anthony's (NJ) can ball. And this 6-7 freshman for the Pride is no different. His line through five games is 12.8 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.4 blocks. 22 of his rebounds have come on the offensive end (4.4 a game!) and on those possessions he's extended Hofstra has scored 24 points.
7. Nerlens Noel, Kentucky
Once people stop having absurd expectations for Noel they'll be able to just enjoy him for what he is. And what he is someone who is going to have his name all over the play-by-play in the boxscore. Even with a four-point opening game he's still averaging 11.7, and that is accompanied by 8 boards, 3.3 steals, 2.3 blocks and 2 assists.
8. Tim Williams, Samford
Williams began his career with consecutive double-doubles. That ended when the level of competition went up (Louisville and Memphis), but all the 6-8 forward did in those two games was average 18 and 6 while making 63% of his 2s.
9. Archie Goodwin, Kentucky
Another Kentucky player who fills up the statsheet? Shocking, I know. Goodwin is averaging 15 points, 3.7 boards and 3 assists. He's also gotten to the line more than 7 times a game.
10. J.T. Yoho, Wright State
Wright State is off to a 3-0 start, and a large part of that is Yoho. The 6-6 forward is averaging 15.3 points and 6 boards, but the best part is his efficiency. He's 7-9 on 2s (78%) and 8-11 on 3s (73%). He's also only turned the ball over twice in 85 minutes.
*Note: redshirt freshmen who appeared in games last season were not considered (sorry Marcus Thornton and Dylan Garrity), and to appear on this list they need to have played at least 3 games this season (sorry Anthony Bennett and Jahii Carson).
I just found this site and was going to bookmark it until I realized you didn't put Marcus Smart in this article. That's literally the dumbest thing I've ever seen in my entire life. That would be like writing an article called "The top 10 players in the NBA" and leaving out Lebron James. Unreal. I looked over the list 5 times to make sure my eyes weren't deceiving me.
Good stuff, but no Sam Dekker from Wisconsin? Just hit career high 16 points in 15 minutes last night.
@andycoppens this was published before yesterday's games. But even so, who would get kicked off to accommodate Dekker who is averaging 10.5 and 3?
@Michael Rogner lol, not quibbling with the list, just had to give you a jab or two. But, I'm thinking that Tim Williams could be a good candidate to be replaced based on the level of competition they've played to this point in the season. Overall this is a great list though.