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Northwestern men’s basketball player previews: F Robbie Beran

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The four-star recruit should help provide depth for a young NU frontcourt.

Via @NUMensBball on Twitter

Who he is:

First-year; forward; 6-foot-7; 207 pounds; Richmond, Va.; former four-star recruit.

Stats (HS senior year):

19.3 PPG; 8.8 RPG; 2.2 APG; 2.8 BPG; .506 FG%

Strengths:

Beran possesses a great mix of length and athleticism that aids him on both sides of the court. Defensively, he’s already shown a terrific talent for shot-blocking (though admittedly against considerably lesser opponents as compared to what he will face going forwards), averaging over 2 per game during his senior season.

Offensively, he’s shown the ability to score all over the floor and could definitely be a matchup nightmare for some teams. His quick release from the perimeter pairs well his scoring ability off of the bounce, keeping defenders on their toes at all times.

Weaknesses:

The biggest concern for Beran going into the season is likely his 207-pound frame, which could hinder him at time against some larger forwards that he’ll see during Big 10 play. Aside from that, it will mainly come down to whether or not his scoring and defensive abilities will translate immediately to the college level.

Expectations:

As with any incoming freshman, it’s hard to pinpoint exactly what to expect from Beran this season. Being as highly-touted a recruit as he was, there is certainly some hype to see what Beran can in his first season as a Wildcat. Luckily for him, there will be plenty of opportunity to find that out.

Beran will likely start the season behind sophomore F Pete Nance, who came in as a highly-ranked recruit last year as well. Unlike Nance, however, there is a good chance that Beran will be able to see a considerable amount of playing time out of the gates due to the lack of experience in the frontcourt.

Expect Collins to work Beran into the gameplan early in the year, as he told us he would at Big Ten media days, saying “We only have ten guys, and I’m planning to use all of them.” Northwestern's head coach said he will be encouraging Beran to shoot early and often, seeming to think that is one of the skills the talented forward possesses that will most naturally and quickly translate to the next level.

Especially if he manages to put on a few pounds of muscle, proves he won’t get lost/bullied defensively, and showcases the confidence his coaches expect, don’t be surprised if you see Beran work his way to a larger role as the season goes on.