Over the summer I projected the stats for UK's freshmen using the past performance of similarly rated recruits. Now I'm back with a similar projection for Terrence Jones. Join me after the jump for a brief look at how recent top rated power forward recruits have improved between their freshmen and sophomore seasons.
First, how did I pick the players I used? Not particularly scientifically. All the players listed below were ranked among the Top 6 PF's for their class on espn.com's recruiting rankings and they all returned for their sophomore seasons. Since Terrence Jones played significant minutes last year, I looked for players who did not play significantly more minutes in their sophomore years than they had in their first years. I want players whose statistical improvement was due to improvement in actual ability rather than inflation in minutes per game. I had to sadly say goodbye to John Henson, Tyler Zeller, and Gani Lawal for this reason. Following those cuts, I was left with Dante Taylor, JaMychal Green, Greg Monroe, Blake Griffin, and everyone's favorite Houston Rocket, Patrick Patterson. Here's the stats for Year 1:
As you can see, they were all pretty good. Even Dante Taylor had an excellent FG%. Stats for Year 2 follow.
Difference is the raw improvement in the average performance Year 2 over the average performance Year 1 for each particular stat. % Improvement is the percent improvement over the Year 1 stats. On average, there was a significant improvement in PPG and Rebounds, with slight improvements in the other categories.
With that preview, let's get to the projection for Terrence's sophomore year. I simply applied the average percent improvement to Terrence's freshman stats.
Subjectively, I think everything there looks pretty good, with one major caveat. I fully believe Terrence could average 19 PPG, but he'll have to shoot better than 47% to do so. I suspect he will not get enough shots to score so many points while shooting under 50%. He also might not average 33 MPG, given UK's added depth (and also because many of the non-conference games could be bigger blowouts than in Cal's first 2 years). Of course, Terrence could also pull a junior-year Patrick Patterson in which he gets better but has lesser stats due to the increased talent around him. I can't wait to find out.