This article is part of our Freshman Haze series.
It is a New Year! The freshmen who started the season two months ago have now played nearly half a season's worth of games. Many of the players in this week's Haze did not start the season well. It took some time to adjust to the college game, but they are starting to get it. As we turn the corner of the season to conference play, these players will have a chance to go up against similar competition and see how they do. Some players are nonconference warriors and some come to play when the games are even more important. Let's start in the Big 10.
Luka Garza (C)
The hype train around Garza started over the summer, as the 6-foot-11 forward averaged 22.5 points and 10.3 rebounds in four games in an exhibition tour of Europe. He was even mistakenly picked in the first round of a league. While he has not been bad, Garza hasn't been stellar either, with 10.4 points and 6.6 rebounds. He simply has not been able to play enough minutes to be a highly productive freshman. The most recent results are promising. Garza scored a career-high 25 points and did not miss a field goal in eight attempts (with three 3-pointers). Big 10 play awaits and remains to be seen what kind of effect Garza will have.
Trent Frazier (G)
Mark Smith was expected to be the most productive Illini freshman and he has not been terrible (8.3 points), but the 6-2 Frazier has