Nerlens Noel on historic defensive pace

Nerlens Noel - photo by Walter Cornett |
Nerlens Noel – photo by Walter Cornett |

came to as the nation’s No. 1-ranked recruit. He was a skinny, 6-foot-10 kid. He had signature hair (albeit atop his head, not on his face). He had a ridiculous reputation as a shot blocker. So, yeah, folks were going to compare him to Anthony Davis. Which seemed (and sort of still does) wildly unfair. But then there’s this …

Ten games into his college career, Noel ranks top-10 nationally in blocks (39) and steals (28), and he’s on pace to finish top-five in freshman history in both categories – although neither stat was recognized by the NCAA until 1985-86. Noel is also second among players in rebounds per game (9.0). And get this: He’s the only player in the country averaging at least 10 points, nine rebounds, three blocks, two steals and two assists per game.

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