At this point, even the casual college basketball fan should know who Jimmer Fredette is.
On Wednesday night, in the biggest basketball game in Mountain West history, Jimmer led #9 BYU to a 71-58 upset over the San Diego St. Aztecs, ranked #4 in the nation. With dozens of NBA scouts watching Jimmer dropped 43 points to give the Aztecs their first loss of the season and propelled BYU into sole possession of the Mountain West conference. Jimmer, the nation’s leading scorer, has averaged 35 points per game over his last six games and has BYU at a 20-1 record.
He hit NBA three balls with Aztec defenders in his face literally blocking his vision. He was just as impressive going to the basket, slicing through defenders and making acrobatic shots that not even the best players from the Big East could make. It looks like he is shooting a ball that is magnetically attracted to the hoop. Simply put, he is a scoring freak.
Fredette’s background, unlike that of most MWC stars, is somewhat unusual. His brother, and Mormon rapper, TJ, decided the best way to help Jimmer improve his game would be making him play prison ball. That’s right, prison. TJ went to a New York state penitentiary where he had connections and plopped Jimmer, a white suburban kid, onto basketball court with convicted killers. No strings attached, he just let Jimmer play. And not only did Jimmer hold his own with these felons, he made it rain on them. Suddenly the guards’ jobs who worked at the prison jobs became much easier, because nobody could escape because their ankles were broken. Jimmer was by far the best player on the court, going up against the biggest, strongest, meanest, and hardest prisoners New York had to offer. As he kept going back, his reputation grew and eventually everybody in the prison from bloods to crips knew his name.
So if you think an arena with 10,000 screaming fans is hostile, imagine a prison yard basketball court surrounded by killers, drug dealers, and thugs yelling profane racial slurs at you and letting you know what they could do to you when they got out. If the most dangerous people in New York can’t phase Jimmer, college basketball fans sure as hell can’t.
The BYU guard stepped into the national spotlight last year when he scored a mind blowing 49 points at Arizona and continued to put up shocking numbers against opponents in the Mountain West, which has been arguably the strongest mid-major conference the last two years. The casual basketball fan found out who he was when he kicked off the NCAA Tournament last season with a 37 point performance in a double OT victory over Florida, which gave BYU a stunning 30 win season.
He has not only given BYU a reputation as a serious contender, he has given the Mountain West its moment in the spotlight. The last few years the Mountain West has been a breeding ground for solid mid major teams such as New Mexico, BYU, San Diego State, and UNLV.
He is no doubt the most prolific scorer in college basketball in recent memory and is an absolute savage on the court. His toughness can never be questioned and to think that any individual in college hoops can contain him is just absurd. In an era of freshman studs who steal all the hype and strong east coast bias, Jimmer Fredette is a nice, long breath of fresh mountain air.