Hometown: Minna Nigeria
Previous School: New Mexico Junior College
Gideon George Player Preview
It was an eventful offseason for Gideon George. After entering the transfer portal for three days and testing the NBA Draft waters, Gideon ultimately decided to return to BYU for his third and final season in Provo. Gideon had official workouts with the Denver Nuggets and Utah Jazz and is hoping to get on NBA teams’ radars during his final season.
Gideon was BYU’s fourth leading scorer last season and second leading returning scorer, averaging 8.8 points and 5 rebounds while shooting 44% from the field and 35% from three. His three-point shooting turned around the second half of the season, and peaked in a career high 27-point performance on 5-9 three-point shooting versus Northern Iowa in the NIT second round. After starting the season 3/21 from 3 when he was dealing with the effects of a flu that caused him to lose 12 pounds, Gideon shot 41/105 (39%) the rest of the season beginning with the Diamond Classic over Christmas.
With a 7-foot-1 wingspan, Gideon is in the prototypical “3 and D” mold that NBA teams covet. Gideon is BYU’s longest perimeter player and most versatile defender on the team. He has consistently defended positions 1-4 and caused problems with his length.
One thing I want to see more from Gideon is being more active on the glass. Gideon had 16 rebounds versus Texas Southern and 11 boards versus Creighton, but didn’t have a double-digit rebounding game the rest of the season. BYU is undersized in the frontcourt, so they will need Gideon to be aggressive on the glass like he has shown at times in his career.
Season Expectations: Starter, Key Player on Offense and Defense
Gideon has the potential to be one of BYU’s one or two best players. He has shown great flashes and has become more consistent during his time at BYU, now it’s time for him to be great every night. BYU had a scrimmage versus Stanford Saturday in Santa Cruz, and sources tell me Gideon was arguably the most impressive player on the floor. He has the ability to take over games.
Gideon was a really good shooter down the stretch of the season, but BYU needs him to show it for the whole season and shoot 40% from three. BYU will be more aggressive defensively this season, and Gideon’s length and versatility on the perimeter will be one of the most important factors for BYU to be more disruptive. I want to see a season from Gideon where he averages 11+ points on 40% shooting from three and averages 7+ boards a game. If he does those things and continues to be a defensive pillar, then I think he will find himself on a G-League roster next season with the opportunity to compete for a NBA contract.