Northwestern Basketball Season Preview Profiles: Sanjay Lumpkin

Matt King

Sanjay Lumpkin is a freshman from Minnesota who will be asked to replace some of the load left by suspended guard JerShon Cobb. What will he be able to bring to Northwestern this season?

Sanjay! Lumpkin!

The initial Sanjay vibe around Northwestern fans is, to summarize: lol he's an Indian kid playing basketball LOL THAT IS THE MOST NORTHWESTERN THING EVER THERE'S A LOT OF INDIANS AT NORTHWESTERN BUT INDIANS TYPICALLY AREN'T GOOD AT BASKETBALL

But I think it should be a lil bit different. If you look at the stuff people have said about Sanjay, it's safe to say people think he'll be a player at Northwestern.

From Coach Carmody:

“He’s just got a really good feel for the game,” Carmody said. “He really understands how to play. He’s very athletic, cuts very well, and a better defender than I originally thought. And he gets rebounds, which is a plus.”

“He can play right away and fit in. He knows what he can and can’t do.”

From Drew Crawford:

Sanjay is a really talented kid. He has excellent footwork. I think he’s really going to be able to help us. I can go down the list, because pretty much everyone has impressed me a lot.

From College Basketball Talk:

The love child of Sanjay Nahasapeemapetilon and Lurleen Lumpkin? Stranger things have happened.

Okay, that last one was from their post putting him on their all-name team, but still.

Of all the incoming freshman, it seems people think Lumpkin is the one who has the biggest upside. Freshman hype has been misguided in the past - look at Nick Fruendt and Kyle Rowley, considered the stars of a class that featured John Shurna.

Ballin' Sanjays: In the history of college basketball, defined by Statsheet.com, there is just Sanjay Adell, who averaged 16.0 points in three seasons for Ohio in the late 90's and early 2000's.

Get to know your team:

Looking forward:

Rodger: Lumpkin's in a tough spot as a freshman: it seems the onus of replacing JerShon Cobb will fall on the 6-foot-6 shooting guard on a team trying to do big things. At 6-foot-6, he'll likely be a better figure at the top of the 1-3-1 than Alex Marcotullio, but probably won't be as much of a ballhawk as Cobb was. It seems he's less of an athlete, but should be able to at least produce the offensive hole left by Cobb, which has thus far been a litany of step-back jumpers. If Lumpkin does get big minutes, it's important he be able to score points, because right now a lot of that looks like it falls to Drew Crawford.

Loretta8: I remember not being too thrilled with Lumpkin when he signed at NU, largely because he only averaged 12 points a game as a high school junior, but he upped that to 20 a game as a senior so he appears to be improving. I'm not expecting much from him this season in a crowded backcourt, but hopefully he's good enough to contribute this season if his number is called.

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