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Prospect Profile

Kemba Walker

  • Full Name: Kemba Walker
  • Position: Guard
  • Height/Weight: 6-1 / 172
  • Birthdate: May 8, 1990
  • College: Connecticut
Charlotte Bobcats Round 1: Pick 9

Strengths:

  * Great speed and quickness
  * Explodes to the rim
  * Shoots a ton of free throws
  * Improving jump shot
  * Excellent at drive, draw and dish
  * Good rebounder for his size
  * Transformational leader

Weaknesses:

  * Size could make it difficult to defend bigger NBA point guards
  * Had to be a high-scoring point in college. Can he make adjustment to playmaker in the NBA?
 

NBA projection:
Walker will be a lottery pick and can excel in a fast-paced system where he can play just as he did in college. He loves to run, get to he rim, make free throws and have the ball in his hands at clutch time.

2010-11 Season:
Walker led Connecticut to the NCAA championship in unprecedented fashion. The Huskies finished ninth in the Big East but won the league tournament by taking five games in five days, then won six straight games to claim the school's third national championship. Walker was chosen a consensus first-team All-American and won the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation's top point guard.

Key statistics:
23.5 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 4.5 apg, 2.3 tpg, 1.9 spg, 37.6 mpg, .428 FG, .330 3PT, .819 FT

Cool statistic:
Walker scored 965 points this season and became the first player in UConn history to pass the 900-point barrier. He saved some of his best performances for the postseason: 33 points (along with 12 rebounds, six steals and five assists) against Syracuse in the Big East Tournament; 18 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds against Bucknell in the NCAA Tournament; 33 points against Cincinnati in the NCAAs; and 36 points, tying a school record for an NCAA Tournament game, against San Diego State.

Reminds me of:
Chris Paul

What Insiders Say:
Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun
"I told him it's time for him to move on. Just like he will this summer when he completes all his schoolwork, he'll graduate. He's graduating basketball-wise too. … In life, you gotta keep going. He's ready to move on.  He's ready to move on as a man. He's ready to move on as a basketball player—emotionally and physically. He's completed the finest basketball season in the history of this university. He's done everything humanly possible you can do, including a national championship. He won a lot of awards—the Bob Cousy Award—and he didn't win a few. But he got the singular most important trophy you can get, and that's a national championship. That's what he's all about. That's the type of man he is."

What Outsiders Say:
San Diego State coach Steve Fisher
"He's just an amazing player. Our goal was to try to contain him, [but] he's almost impossible to stop."

Arizona coach Sean Miller
"Part of the impact of Kemba Walker isn't just his own scoring, it's how many shots and opportunities he creates for the other players on his team, because a lot like our team, they have some really good players other than him and we respect him a great deal."

Bucknell coach Dave Paulsen
"He does a million things: Getting in the paint, scoring in the paint, getting to the foul line. He's unbelievable how he gets to the foul line. And the last thing is, he creates so much attention that their big guys get so many offensive rebounds, because your big guys are looking to help [guard Walker]. They're trying to help and trying to rotate, and then [UConn] just comes in and blasts you on the glass."

Chris Dortch is the editor of the Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook.

 

Connecticut
Season G MPG FGM FGA PCT FTM FTA PCT RPG APG SPG BPG PTS AVG
2008-09 36 25.2 110 234 .470 88 123 .715 3.5 2.9 1.1 0.2 321 8.9
2009-10 34 35.3 152 377 .403 155 202 .767 4.3 5.1 2.1 0.4 497 14.6
2010-11 41 37.6 316 739 .428 258 315 .819 5.4 4.5 1.9 0.2 965 23.5
Totals 111 32.9 578 1350 .428 501 640 .783 4.4 4.1 1.7 0.3 1783 16.1
Three-point field goals: 2008-09, 13-for-48 (.271); 2009-10, 38-for-112 (.339); 2010-11, 75-for-227 (.330). Totals: 126-for-387 (.326).

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