It seems as though we’ve been waiting years for Bradley Beal Elite alums Nick Smith Jr. and Brandon Miller to make their college basketball debuts, but the wait is nearly over and the preseason honors for both players show just how much is expected of each.
Over at Arkansas, Nick Smith Jr. has been selected as a preseason All-American (CBS Sports), All-SEC First Teamer (media, Blue Ribbon Magazine), National and SEC Freshman of the Year (CBS Sports) and National Newcomer of the Year (Blue Ribbon Magazine). He was also named to the Jerry West Award Watch list, given annually by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame to the top men’s collegiate shooting guard.
Pre-Season First Team All-SEC honors for @ntsmith1402 pic.twitter.com/A7Zo6vp3Ei
— Eric Musselman (@EricPMusselman) October 19, 2022
1 of 20…for now pic.twitter.com/h3ej8txHeT
— #10 Arkansas Razorbacks Men’s Basketball 🐗 (@RazorbackMBB) October 25, 2022
Kyle Boone of CBS Sports wrote at length about the opportunity in front of Nick.
“Arkansas runs one of the most guard-friendly systems in the country with Eric Musselman, and Smith, the No. 1 recruit in the 2022 cycle, steps into arguably the biggest opportunity for any freshman in the sport. The team lost 87% of its scoring and 78% of its assists from last season’s team that advanced to the Elite Eight. Smith should shoulder a significant load in both categories as he looks to push the Razorbacks to the top of the SEC.”
At Alabama, Brandon is also putting himself on the radar. He was named to the Watch List for the Julius Erving Award, given annually by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame to the top men’s collegiate small forward. Additionally he was selected to the preseason All-SEC Second Team.
𝗝𝘂𝗹𝗶𝘂𝘀 𝗘𝗿𝘃𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗔𝘄𝗮𝗿𝗱 𝗪𝗮𝘁𝗰𝗵 𝗟𝗶𝘀𝘁
Brandon Miller is 1 of 20 small forwards in the country to be named to the Julius Erving Award Watch List! #RollTide pic.twitter.com/B30kGea8dw
— Alabama Men’s Basketball (@AlabamaMBB) October 26, 2022
𝐎𝐮𝐫 𝐀𝐥𝐥-𝐒𝐄𝐂 𝐒𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬
Brandon Miller – 2nd Team
Jahvon Quinerly – 2nd Team #RollTide | #BlueCollarBasketball pic.twitter.com/OD3zuJWAyE
— Alabama Men’s Basketball (@AlabamaMBB) October 19, 2022
Brandon recently put on a show in a Bama scrimmage, posting 33 points on 12-22 shooting and nine rebounds against No. 14 TCU.
Brandon Miller against TCU on Sunday(scrimmage )
4-10 from 3
He is going to be a star for @AlabamaMBB pic.twitter.com/1S43RFXtNY
— Pistons Draft talk (@happypistonfan) October 18, 2022
Both teams begin their season on Monday, November 7. No. 10 Arkansas will welcome in North Dakota State. No. 20 Alabama plays host to Longwood. The two teams are set to battle head-to-head twice during the regular season, Wednesday, January 11 in Fayetteville and Saturday, February 25 in Tuscaloosa.