Fresh­man had one of great­est col­lege sea­sons

USA TODAY US Edition - - SPORTS - Charles Cur­tis For The Win | USA TO­DAY Net­work

Zion Wil­liamson won’t have a col­lege bas­ket­ball na­tional cham­pi­onship at­tached to his name af­ter Duke fell to Michi­gan State in the Elite Eight.

But af­ter we watched him blow away op­po­nent af­ter op­po­nent, it raises the ques­tion: Where does his 201819 sea­son rank in col­lege hoops his­tory?

For that an­swer, I turned to Sports Ref­er­ence’s co lege bas­ket­ball site. Wil­liamson av­er­aged 22.6 points, 8.9 re­bounds, 2.1 steals and 1.8 blocked shots. Pretty bonkers num­bers, and here’s the proof: Just 63 play­ers since 1992-93 (the site notes stat cov­er­age is­sues be­fore then) have had more than 20 points, 8 re­bounds and 1.5 blocks. We’ll get to the steals in a se­cond.

How many of them, how­ever, were fresh­men, which makes the ac­com­plish­ment more im­pres­sive? (Although in an era with more one-and-done play­ers, first-year stars might get more play­ing time than in the past.) The list is six play­ers long, and two of them from this sea­son joined Wil­liamson: Bol Bol from Ore­gon and Cal State-Northridge’s Lamine Di­ane are on there, as are nota­bles like Dean­dre Ay­ton, Michael Beasley … Kevin Du­rant (can we take a mo­ment to mar­vel at 25.8 points, 11.1 re­bounds, 1.9 blocks and 1.9 steals?).

Let’s add in steals. There have been just 13 sea­sons of 20 points, 8 re­bounds, 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks since 1992-93, in­clud­ing Du­rant and Joe Smith for Mary­land in 1994-95 be­fore he was the No. 1 over­all pick.

There’s one more num­ber: Wil­liamson hit an as­tound­ing 68 per­cent of his shots. Just three play­ers have av­er­aged more than 20 points and 67 per­cent.

I ran a search of 20 points, 8 re­bounds, 1.5 blocks and more than 0.5 3-point­ers made per game and got 20 names, in­clud­ing Wil­liamson and Bol.

No matter how you cut it, Zion had an all-time jaw­drop­per of a sea­son.

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