In the months leading up to the 2017-’18 college basketball season, BTPowerhouse will be releasing a new series called the 'BTPowerhouse 25,' which features the Top 25 players in the Big Ten as voted by members of the staff. All players set to be on Big Ten rosters for next season were eligible during the staff vote with their top selection receiving 25 points and their 25th and final selection receiving 1 point.
Today we will take a look at Jordan Murphy of the Minnesota Golden Gophers, who comes in at No. 8 in the rankings. Murphy has been productive in two seasons in Minneapolis, and looks to continue to put up some of the best rebounding numbers in the Big Ten this season. Murphy, along with Reggie Lynch, make up Minnesota’s stellar frontcourt. A unit that might be the Big Ten’s best.
'BTPowerhouse 25' - #8 Jordan Murphy
- Eligibility: Junior
- Career Totals: 65 games, 1,756 minutes, 744 points, 547 rebounds, 68 blocks
- 2016-'17 Averages: 27.5 min, 11.3 pts, 8.8 rebs, 1.1 blks
- Positional Role: Power Forward
The word “consistency” comes to mind when talking about Murphy’s numbers. He averaged nearly identical numbers in his first two seasons, but will be looking to have bigger numbers for a Minnesota team that will challenge the top tier of the Big Ten this season.
Murphy’s rebounding and energy are some of the best in the Big Ten. His spark will set the tone for Minnesota every night. If not for the video game rebound numbers Caleb Swanigan put up, Murphy would have led the Big Ten in rebounding in consecutive seasons. Over his two years in Minneapolis, Murphy has put together 21 double-doubles including seven in his last 13 games last season.
Areas For Improvement
As this article points out, scoring is never going to be Murphy’s strong suit. Whether it is in the low post or shooting from 15 feet, Murphy is not going to carry a team in that manner.
Murphy cut his foul average down a bit last season (3.3 to 3.0), but given his energy levels, this is a common concern. Murphy amassed at least four to five fouls in 13 games last season. Seven of those games came in conference play. Minnesota needs Murphy on the floor in conference play if the Golden Gophers want to make a run at Michigan State for the conference crown this season.
Can Murphy average a double-double this season? That’s the interesting question for him entering the 2017-’18 season. His numbers dropped slightly last season with Reggie Lynch coming into the fold, but that frontcourt will likely be better this season, now that they’ve played together longer.
Murphy isn’t going to be the guy that gives you 17 to 18 a night, but a 13 to 14 point and 9 to 10 rebound season seems well within the possibilities. Should Murphy take a step back, it will likely be because he is trying to do too much. As an upperclassmen, I don’t think that is much of a worry.
Enjoy Jordan Murphy this season. His effort alone makes Minnesota an enjoyable watch.
‘BT Powerhouse 25’ Rankings:
- #26-31 - Players That Just Missed The Cut
- #24 - Juwan Morgan (Indiana Hoosiers)
- #24 - Dakota Mathias (Purdue Boilermakers)
- #23 - Jordan Bohannon (Iowa Hawkeyes)
- #22 - Anthony Cowan (Maryland Terrapins)
- #21 - Reggie Lynch (Minnesota Golden Gophers)
- #20 - Kevin Huerter (Maryland Terrapins)
- #19 - Carsen Edwards (Purdue Boilermakers)
- #18 - Robert Johnson (Indiana Hoosiers)
- #17 - Isaac Haas (Purdue Boilermakers)
- #16 - Tyler Cook (Iowa Hawkeyes)
- #15 - Justin Jackson (Maryland Terrapins)
- #14 - Jaren Jackson (Michigan State Spartans)
- #13 - Corey Sanders (Rutgers Scarlet Knights)
- #12 - Jae’Sean Tate (Ohio State Buckeyes)
- #11 - Tony Carr (Penn State Nittany Lions)
- #10 - Scottie Lindsey (Northwestern Wildcats)
- #9 - Amir Coffey (Minnesota Golden Gophers)
- #8 - Jordan Murphy (Minnesota Golden Gophers)
- #7 - to be continued...