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2021-22 Marquette Men’s Basketball Preview Roundtable: Biggest Impact Freshman?

The Golden Eagles have five first year players on the roster. Who is going to shine the most?

Wilson High School Basketball Player Stevie Mitchell During The 2019 Boys Basketball Season
Is Stevie Mitchell, the pride of Wilson High School, set to become the standout Marquette freshman?
Photo by Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

The 2021-22 college basketball season is quickly approaching, and thus, we turn our attention to previewing the upcoming Marquette Golden Eagles men’s basketball season.

To that end, we’ve got a stacked up list of questions about the forthcoming campaign, and we’ve gotten the #mubbPAC of Paint Touches, Anonymous Eagle, and Cracked Sidewalks back together to take a crack at answering them. There will be a new question every weekday afternoon between now and the start of the season, so be sure to stop back every day to find the new one.

Onwards, then, to the question of the day!

Who will be the biggest impact freshman on the team?

For clarification relative to what Marquette is listing on their website, we’re talking about the guys in their first year of college basketball here: Emarion Ellis, Keeyan Itejere, Kam Jones, David Joplin, and Stevie Mitchell.

Joe McCann, Cracked Sidewalks: Justin Lewis is listed as a redshirt freshman on the school’s official roster, so I pick him! Okay, I’m kidding. As far as first-year players, I will take Stevie Mitchell. He may not start opening night, but he is going to get a lot of opportunities to prove he’s a Big East quality point guard, and I think he will. He may be getting a lot of minutes by the time we get to February.

Ben Snider, Anonymous Eagle: It’s definitely Stevie Mitchell. Tyler Kolek should be fine as the 3rd guy off the bench to provide some extra range, but getting a first year point guard with a new coach to click by the end of the year will be huge going forward. And if, somehow, he impresses early and can prove that he can lead a decent offense, there could be a little more immediate potential for this team.

Alan Bykowski, Cracked Sidewalks: Kam Jones, and I feel pretty confident in that one. I think Kam was overlooked in high school and what he does is tailored perfectly to how Smart wants this team to play. He’s a long athlete that can get inside and hit from outside. He looks like a potential lockdown defender given development. I think he’ll get minutes right away and will be that junkyard dog type of player that’s hard to take off the court, even if it doesn’t always show up in the box score. I could see Mitchell and Joplin also contributing, but think they’ll take longer.

Carter Chapley, Anonymous Eagle: It’s Stevie Mitchell. This team needs a point guard and Mitchell is the most likely of the young guards to take the step to be That Guy for this team. He will get plenty of opportunities because of it and by season’s end it’s likely he’s a relied upon piece.

Tim Blair, Cracked Sidewalks: Mitchell. Following a stellar high school career, the 6’2” guard hits campus with the right skill set at the right time. Mitchell will get every opportunity to contribute, and in a system that lacks a true point guard, his expected versatility will be vital.

Andrei Greska, Paint Touches: If I hadn’t procrastinated, I would have said Stevie, but after hearing and seeing all the smoke coming out of the Kam Jones camp, I think it will be him. This team needs scoring from the guards, and it appears he is quite good at that.

Patrick Leary, Anonymous Eagle: This is probably my biggest blindspot, but I’m seeing lots of David Joplin hype. While I get what people are saying about Mitchell, he has had to deal with the setback of that preseason heel injury. While point guard is the team’s biggest hole, the subtly second biggest hole is athletic, strong wings, which basically consists of Morsell and Joplin. Morsell probably leads the team in minutes but Joplin, at least physically, seems like a natural impact freshman.

Todd Welter, Cracked Sidewalks: I still think Mitchell just because at some point he needs to be given the keys to the offense to see if he is the long term point guard. Emarion Ellis is super, super talented so he could also be a big impact player among the true freshman.

John Gunville, Anonymous Eagle: Maybe a little bit biased here because I really like the guy, but Stevie Mitchell. Offensively, he has pretty much everything you could want from a guy: he can make his own shot at the hoop, from midrange, from deep, and he can distribute well. His skills lend themselves nicely to being a driving force of the offense, especially when he is affording a little bit of extra space with guys like Justin Lewis on the floor alongside him.

Phil Bush, Cracked Sidewalks: It rhymes with Mevie Stitchell. Dude can score, create, and hopefully defend. That last part will be the key, if Stevie can defend to Shaka’s expectations, he will get a lot of minutes. Lots of minutes means lots of offense which will be his forte.

Brewtown Andy, Anonymous Eagle: After hearing the coaches talk at various events and reading all the possible updates coming out of preseason practices and attending Haunted Hoops, I’m left with no other possible option here even though I am probably the president and founder of the David Joplin Fan Club. But, I gotta go with Kam Jones. It appears that the emphasis is being put on turning him loose on the unsuspecting college basketball populace, and I, for one, am here for it.

Poll

Which freshman will have the biggest impact in 2021-22?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    Emarion Ellis
    (3 votes)
  • 2%
    Keeyan Itejere
    (2 votes)
  • 34%
    Kam Jones
    (31 votes)
  • 12%
    David Joplin
    (11 votes)
  • 48%
    Stevie Mitchell
    (44 votes)
91 votes total Vote Now