Saturday, October 17, 2009

Gaucho preview: James Nunnally

James Nunnally had a stellar freshman season, averaging 7.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game. But his overall season statistics are a bit misleading, as the sophomore wing really didn't come into his own until later in the season, when he scored double figures in six of the last seven games. Over the course of the season, Nunnally gradually improved, becoming acclimated to the faster pace and physical nature of Division 1 NCAA basketball.

The 6'5" Nunnally had a breakout game against the University of North Carolina Tarheels, the eventual NCAA champions. He scored 22 points and had 7 rebounds against the best team in the country, all within 26 minutes of play. Another highlight was the regular season finale against Long Beach State, when Nunnally made the winning basket--a running 3-point buzzer-beater, on his way to 20 points for the game. For the season, Nunnally made 36.1% of his 3-point shots, but made 66.7% over the last 4 games.

Nunnally has a well-rounded offensive game, with the ability to finish inside, shoot the outside jumper and find his open teammates. With improved strength, explosiveness, basketball IQ, handles, and defensive intensity, Nunnally could become one of the best perimeter players in the Big West Conference.

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