Syracuse Orange Blogger Awards: Best Freshman

USA TODAY Sports

The next award will be given to the Best Syracuse Freshman.

We've tallied up the votes and the 2013 Syracuse Orange Blogger (S.O.B.) Awards have been decided. Let's honor the players, coaches, fans and moments from the 2012-2013 Syracuse Orange basketball season (and we'll honor our contracts as well).

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When considering who to choose for Best Freshman, the instant reaction is to vote for Jerami Grant. He plays with great energy; he's great on the glass. When James Southerland was out mid-season, Grant filled in nicely, even dropping 14pts, 6 reb and one monster block on big brother Jerian's Notre Dame squad.

Yet, when guys play as sporadically the typical Syracuse frosh, it's hard to make an accurate comparison. I generally don't really like per 40 numbers, but like any good columnist would, I'm going to cherry pick them to support my argument. If you look as DaJuan Coleman's per 40 numbers, they are almost all comparable or better than Grant's. DC2 rates better than Jerami in the major cetegories, points per 40 (Grant 10.8, DC 15.2) OReb % (Grant 8.9, DC 13.4) and DReb% (Grant 13.6, DC 20.6). As much as we fans like to rave about Grant, and rightly so, the pace neutral numbers support Coleman being the more productive player.

Logically it follows that if Coleman had been able to get more minutes, his per game average and overall numbers would be better. Now, here's the part where you say, "But if Coleman was any good, he would have gotten more minutes." I don't think so. Coleman, Christmas and Keita simply can't play power forward for any significant amount of time. It's as simple as that. So, with two veterans ahead of him, there was simply no real chance for Coleman to get any burn. Jerami, on the other hand, was behind only CJ Fair, which provided him more opportunity to see the floor. I'd argue that, if in Grant's place, knowing that he was pretty much a guaranteed 5-10 MPG, Coleman would have performed much better.

Mine, though, isn't the only opinion that matter. Let's see what they rest of the Nunesians think.

Sean keeps it simple...

Obviously, he's [Grant] the only freshman who made a real impact. Don't be surprised if we're talking about whether or not Grant is going pro this time next year.

Andy (apregs) concurs...

Grant is the only frosh who contributed real minutes when it mattered to the team. Even if Coleman was healthy late in the year, Grant still wins this award. He showed off why he'll probably be the next in a now long line of successful sophomores to make the NBA jump.

As do The Invisible Swordsman...

Jerami Grant offered a solid contribution on the wing, and remained in Boeheim's rotation throughout the season…a complement in itself! Did you know he's related to Horace Grant???

Dan Lyons...

It has to be Jerami, right? While his playing time faded down the stretch after Boeheim shortened the rotation, he helped keep the team afloat during the James Southerland suspension, and he still looked solid in his minutes down the stretch and in the NCAA tournament. I think DaJuan will have a much better year next season, but Jerami has what it takes to be a star, and he showed that this year.

And John Casillo...

It's Jerami Grant, and I'll even spare this space the rant about Trevor Cooney's stupidity, too. Playing sparingly, Grant impressed with his shooting and rebounding when given the chance and I'm pretty excited for how he'll progress next year. While not ultra-dependable, Grant never tried to do too much, which may have actually been his best attribute.

Yet Jared E. Smith had a surprise pick...

Trevor Cooney. Sure the redshirt freshman from Wilmington, DE struggled this season scoring just 3.4 points per game with a 26.7-percent shotting from behind the 3-point line. But, to me, it is not about stats it is about what you do in big moments, when your team needs you the most, and Cooney may have single-handedly sparked Syracuse Final Four run with his 10-point performance against Georgetown in the Big East Tournament. His confidence to keep chucking up 3s despite them not going in, allowed the Orange to get revenge on the Hoyas and help give the squad the confidence it needed to make their unpredictable March run.

And, last but least, the TNIAAM readers who voted Jerami Grant as best freshman by a staggering margin, 97% (456 votes) to 2% (12 votes).

So, without further ado, it's my pleasure to officially announce that Jerami Grant wins the S.O.B. Award for Best Syracuse Freshman.

Check out the rest of the 2013 S.O.B. Awards, categories and previous winners by clicking here or visiting the S.O.B. Award Hub.

Look for more S.O.B. winners today and through the week...

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