Indiana Basketball: Projected Stats for James Blackmon in 2014-15 Season
James Blackmon Jr. is the crown jewel of Indiana's incoming freshman class. The shooting guard from Marion, Indiana, is regarded as one of the nation's top talents.
He brings dynamic offensive ability to a team that, at times, desperately needed more firepower. Blackmon Jr. is a lock for the starting lineup and will combine forces with Yogi Ferrell to make a dangerous backcourt.
If Blackmon Jr. lives up to the hype, he could put up some eye-popping stats. Here are predictions for next year's stat line.
Scoring and Efficiency
Blackmon Jr. is one of the nation's elite scorers. His performances in the McDonald's All-American Game (13 points) and Jordan Brand Classic (23 points) showed he can put up points. Against the top prospects in America, he more than held his own.
So, his ability to put the ball in through the bottom of the net should translate to the college game. He has a silky smooth jump shot and can light it up from beyond the arc.
There is no doubt that he can lead the Hoosiers in scoring. Yes, the ball will be in Ferrell's hands a lot of the time and Stanford Robinson and Troy Williams will be much improved, but there is still a big hole in Indiana's offense.
Because of this, he should get more than his fair share of scoring opportunities, and if he proves he can score, those chances will only increase.
As far as three-pointers are concerned, Blackmon Jr. made 47 percent of his attempts this season. Will this trend continue in college? Head coach Tom Crean certainly hopes so, but I think 40 to 41 percent is more realistic.
Points per Game: 18.8
Blackmon Jr. has respectable size at 6'3" and was a decent rebounder in high school. In his last three seasons, he pulled down 4.9, 7.9 and 4.4 rebounds per game, respectively.
While at IU, rebounding won't be a priority of his. The Hoosiers have the lengthy Williams and assorted big men to crash the glass.
Still, Blackmon Jr. should be able to grab a decent amount of boards next season.
Rebounds per Game: 3.8
Blackmon Jr. is not really known for his passing. He put up modest assist numbers in high school, averaging 2.2 per game his senior season.
At IU, Blackmon Jr.'s assists total probably won't be very high because that isn't his job. His job is to put points on the board.
Still, he should see a lot of double-teams, thus other players will be open. It will be on him to find them. He probably won't rack up dimes like Ferrell, but Blackmon Jr. is more than capable of getting others involved.
Assists per Game: 2.0
This soon-to-be Hoosier showed pretty quick hands in high school with 1.6 steals per game. He also had almost one block a night (0.9).
At the next level, his block numbers will be minimal, but he's shown he can cause problems on the defensive end. His steals per game won't be anything out of the ordinary, but it's reasonable to expect one a night.
Steals per Game: 1.0
Blocks per Game: 0.5