Tag Archives: Kobe Webster

Eleven Under-the-Radar Freshmen That Every Fan Should Know About

Taylor, Terry
The play of freshman Terry Taylor is a big reason for the 5-3 start in conference play for Austin Peay. (Source: Austin Peay Athletics) (Header: HBCU Gameday)

LONDON, Ont. — To say the least, the 2017-18 college basketball season has been an exciting one, and we still have over two months of action left before another dreaded off-season.

Conference play is in full swing for every league across the NCAA, and the contenders are starting to separate themselves from the rest of the pack. There have been several surprise teams, both for the better and for the worse, that have caused some shakeups in leagues that many thought were locks for particular teams this season.

With the excitement comes the plethora of emerging young talents from coast to coast. Freshmen from all across the country have emerged as potential stars with their respective programs, and have taken on starring roles in their first seasons in the NCAA.

For whatever reason, the majority of freshmen outside of the Big Seven conferences (B1G, B12, Pac-12, ACC, SEC, AAC, BEast) don’t get their fair share of attention on a national scale. Most media outlets will only focus on the biggest names and the top programs, all while turning a blind eye to players who are just as deserving. One player, in particular, ranks sixth in the nation in scoring, yet many fans don’t know his name.

That needs to change, and in a hurry.

Here are 11 freshmen that fans from coast to coast need to become familiar with, as they are poised  for big things over their collegiate careers, including one of the nation’s elite scorers who just so happens to play in the nation’s capital.
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January 3rd Game of the Day: Western Illinois Leathernecks at South Dakota Coyotes

Gilbeck, Brandon (4)
Junior forward Brandon Gilbeck (52) is averaging 3.1 blocks per game this season, which is tied for the 11th-best mark in the country. (Header: South Dakota Athletics)

VERMILLION, SD — Wednesday’s Game of the Day features a pair of teams who don’t care for your preseason predictions in the Summit League.

Last season, the South Dakota Coyotes were picked to finish seventh in the Summit League standings. Instead, they went 12-4 in conference play to take home the regular season crown. It was their first regular season conference title in school history. With that, they also made their first-ever appearance in the National Invitational Tournament.

Fast forward to this season, and seemingly everyone wrote off the Western Illinois Leathernecks before the season started, picking them to finish eighth in the eight team league. All the Leathernecks did during non-conference play is put together an 8-4 record, matching their win total from all of last season.

Now, the Leathernecks have their sights set on climbing in the Summit League standings and proving everyone wrong, much like the Coyotes did last season. While they may not win the conference title, they have a young nucleus that will only get better with each passing year.

On Wednesday, Western Illinois opens up their conference slate with a road game against the Coyotes. South Dakota is 1-0 in Summit League play, having picked up an 82-71 win over the Denver Pioneers to close out 2017.

Here’s everything you need to know in advance of Wednesday’s match-up between the Leathernecks and Coyotes. Continue reading January 3rd Game of the Day: Western Illinois Leathernecks at South Dakota Coyotes

College Court Report Freshman of the Week: Kobe Webster, Western Illinois Leathernecks

Freshman guard Kobe Webster is emerging as a star for Western Illinois in 2017-18. (Source: Western Courier)

CANMORE, Alta. — After finishing in eighth place in the Summit League standings last season, many people were picking against the Western Illinois Leathernecks heading into 2017-18.

In the preseason Summit League poll, they were picked to finish eighth once more. With the departure of the IUPUI Jaguars to the Horizon League, that meant the Leathernecks were projected to finish last. They received 60 points in the poll, whereas the seventh place team received 104.

Based on their start to 2017-18, it’s safe to say that the Leathernecks have used that as motivation early on. Despite the loss of guard Garret Covington, among others, the Leathernecks are 5-2 this season, with a win over the aforementioned Jaguars to boot.

Leading the way is Dalan Ancrum, who is among the nation’s leading scorers with an average of 21.8 points per contest. A player we were high on during the preseason, Brandon Gilbeck, is among the nation’s leading shot blockers once again, averaging 3.2 per game.

However, with Ancrum being a senior, the Leathernecks needed their guard of the future to step up early on in 2017-18. They may have found their next star, in freshman guard Kobe Webster.

The native of Indianapolis, IN opened his collegiate career with a stat line of 19 points, eight assists, five rebounds, and four steals to lead Western Illinois to a season opening win. He sits second on the team in scoring, and has been a big factor in their strong start to the season.

For his efforts this past week, a stretch that saw the Leathernecks split a pair of games to open a four-game home stand, Western Illinois freshman guard Kobe Webster is the College Court Report Freshman of the Week for November 27 – December 3, 2017!
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