Jaylen is the Name for 2017

3 Nov

Some may remember from the 1980’s show Newhart, Larry with his brother Darryl and his other brother Darryl.  Well college basketball has its own version of that with Northwestern State’s Jalan West with his hoop brother Jaylen Adams of St. Bonaventure and his other brother Jalen Adams of Connecticut.  If you have a variation of the name Jaylen, chances are you will put up major numbers during this season.

Jalan West stepped foot on the Northwestern State campus in 2011 when he redshirted for the year.  Fast forward to 2017 and the same West has been granted a rare seventh year of eligibility after tearing his ACL during the first game of his senior year in 2015 and subsequently tearing the same ligament in July of 2016 and receiving back-to-back medical redshirts.  When he was on the floor, West was a star for the Demons and the Southland Conference in general.  After being named Freshman of the Year averaging 10 points and five assists.  As a sophomore he jumped up to over 19 points, six assists and four rebounds.  The second game of his sophomore he tallied 30 points, six assists and nine rebounds in a 19 point win over Auburn.  He was the only player in the country to average at least 19 points, four rebounds, six assists and 2.5 steals.  As a junior he jumped up to 20 points a game and 7.7 assists per contest, good enough to lead the nation. So entering his final season big things were expected of Adams and he was off to a good start with 25 points and six assists against Ole Miss before he suffered his injury which has led him to a long road back and his seventh year of eligibility.

Heading north from Louisiana to New York where St. Bonaventure is home to someone who is on a similar statistical path to West.   Senior guard Jaylen Adams averaged 10 points and 4.5 assists as a freshman and over 20 points and six assists last year.  Now entering his final season with the Bonnies he is one of the most dynamic guards in the country and has St. Bonaventure potentially on the cusp of their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2012.   The Bonnies were picked to finish second in the Atlantic 10 (behind Rhode Island) and Adams was selected to the First Team All A-10.  Look for Adams’ numbers to increase yet again this season.

In Connecticut junior guard Jalen Adams gets the keys to a Huskies team that has been depleted by graduation and transfers.  Adams made a significant jump between his freshman and sophomore seasons.  In his first campaign he averaged 7.3 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists and last season he nearly doubled each of those categories with 14.4 points, 4.3 rebounds and 6.1 assists.  Adams really put himself on the map during the Maui Invitational where he averaged 28 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds over the three games in Hawaii.  Conference play will be an important indicator for Adams, last season his points per game dropped to 14 against American foes.

There are certainly more high-profile names elsewhere in the country but at least in Louisiana, New York and Connecticut this will be the year of Jalan, make that Jaylen, I mean Jalen.

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