Typically, 7-foot-1 teenage centers from the Ukraine can be long-term projects to say the least. This doesn’t seem to be the case with Maryland sophomore Alex Len.
Although Len only averaged 6 points and 5.4 rebounds per game his freshman season in College Park, he finished third in the ACC with 2.2 blocks per game, and took what seems to be as serious of an approach as possible to improving this off-season.
Not only should we expect to see a bulked up Len, who has reportedly packed on a massive 30 pounds of muscle, but maybe we can expect to hear from him a little bit more this season, literally. Aside from the weight room, Len has spent a great amount of time this summer learning the language of the land, and expects for his new understanding of the English language to really pay dividends on the hardwood.
Len stated publicly that he attributed the slow start to his freshman season to finding it difficult to communicate with his teammates. Len said it took him a while to get used to the culture in America, but when he did adjust, it showed on the court. As a freshman, Len recorded one double-double, and scored 12 or more points on five separate occasions, but really showed prowess on the defensive end (as already mentioned), recording 3 or more blocks in 9 of the 22 games that he appeared in.
The Terps will be without two of their best players from last season in Sean Mosley and Terrell Stoglin, but they shouldn’t be slept on this season as they’ll team Len with ACC up-and-comer Nick Faust, and two top-100 freshmen in big man Shaquille Cleare and sweet-stroking Jake Layman.
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