The B1G season is underway and although there are plenty of topics to talk about concerning some of the best basketball in the NCAA, I thought it would be nice to take a quick break from analysis and numbers. Every now and then it's nice to sit down and enjoy something that doesn't rile you up, but hopefully makes you crack a smile (Don't sit there and act like you don't watch hilarious kitten videos everyday).
I sat down and tried to find you the most entertaining and interesting topics amongst B1G players and present them to you. Without further delay, here is what I found.
Players from the Smallest City:
Elliot Eliason is a junior center for Minnesota who is averaging 6.5 points and 8.5 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game. He is from Chadron, Nebraska, which has a population of just 5,851. I'm not sure if I'm more impressed by Eliason's production in just 25 minutes per game or that Danny Woodhead is also from Chadron. It shouldn't be too surprising to know Woodhead is from Chadron considering he went to Chadron State, which is located right in town.
Michigan guard, Cole McConnell, is from Atherton, California (6,914). Atherton's claim to fame is that they are one of the wealthiest cities in the U.S. This past October, they moved up in the rankings from #2 to #1. The median income for a household in Atherton is over $200,000. If Cole has to move back home after college, it is possible that he could be neighbors with Willie Mays, Jerry Rice, the former CEO of Google, and the current president and CEO of Hewlett-Packard as they are all residents of Atherton.
I found a few interesting players from small cities, but Colby Wollenman easily takes the cake as player from the smallest city though. The Michigan State sophomore forward is from Big Horn, Wyoming. This small city in Wyoming is home to 490 people as of 2010. The city is growing at an amazing rate though as there were only 198 residents in 2000. That's almost a 250% increase in just ten years!
Players Furthest from Home:
Hanner Mosquera-Perea is from Istmina, Colombia. Istmina is only 2,427 miles away from Bloomington, Indiana (remind me to never complain about how far I had to drive to get home from college) and has some very interesting ties to his hometown. Istmina was founded on March 8th, 1834 by Juan Nepomuceno Mosquera, who happens to be Hanner's great-great-great grandfather. Back then, that area was called San Pablo, but in 1903 it was changed to Istmina.
Normally, Gabriel Olaseni calls London, England home, but for now Iowa City will have to do. He is a junior center for the Hawkeyes averaging 6.4 points and 5.3 rebounds per game this season in just 16 minutes. Olaseni is 4,102 miles from home, but this next player makes Olaseni's flight home feel like a quick nap.
Tai Webster takes the cake for furthest distance from school. Let's hope that Webster doesn't get home sick because he is 7,751 miles away from home! He is a freshman guard for Nebraska who is from Auckland, New Zealand. Webster was rated a four-star recruit in 2013 by ESPN and has played well so far this season for the Cornhuskers. While in New Zealand, he played for their international team: the New Zealand Tall Blacks. Look it up if you don't believe me (I did four times just to make sure I wasn't reading that wrong).
Shortest Players in the B1G
Deandre Mathieu is only 5'9, but has been playing big for the Gophers this season averaging 11.6 points, 4.4 assists, and 2 steals per game. Mathieu started his college career at Morehead State, but then transferred to Central Arizona College. After one season at each, he has landed at Minnesota where he is averaging 28.8 minutes per game.
Benny Parker stands at 5'9 166 pounds and is (not surprisingly) a guard for Nebraska. Parker is just a sophomore who has already had plenty of success in his basketball career. He won two state titles during his high school career playing in Kansas City.
Famous Family Members
Drew Crawford has no excuse when he commits a foul for the Northwestern Wildcats. His father, Dan Crawford, has been an NBA ref since the 1988-1989 season.
Andrew Dakich's father is loved by the B1G community *end sarcasm font*. The Michigan guard is the son of Dan Dakich, an ESPN college basketball analyst who formerly played for Bob Knight in the early to mid 1980s.
Jon Horford, a Michigan forward, probably has the biggest shoes to fill of any B1G player when it comes to celebrity family members. Horford's dad, Tito Horford, was the first Dominican-born player to play in the NBA. He played for the Bucks and the Bullets. Jon's brother, Al, won back-to-back national championships for Florida in 2006 and 2007 and then went on to be the third overall pick for the Atlanta Hawks where he is currently on their roster.
Glenn Robinson III decided to not attend his father's alma mater (Purdue) when he chose to commit to Michigan two years ago. Glenn Robinson Jr. was the first overall pick in 1994 coming out of Purdue after his junior season. "The Big Dog" averaged 30.3 points and 11.2 rebounds per game for the Boilermakers in his junior season and won the Naismith College Player of the Year award.
Roy Devyn Marble decided to play for his father's alma mater, Iowa, when coming out of high school. His father, Roy Marble, was a three-time all-B1G player and Iowa MVP and not to mention Iowa's record holder for career scoring. The Marbles are the only father/son duo to score 1,000 career points at the same school. Entering this season, Roy Devyn Marble had scored 1,134 points compared to his father's 2,116 points.
Please feel free to add in any fun/interesting facts that I might have missed with any of these players. If you think there is someone that fits into one of these categories then throw them in the comments!