Twenty-five year-old sophomore, Zach Norvell Junior, has announced his intention to enlist for the NBA draft, becoming the third player from the Gonzaga Bulldogs to ever be enlisted. After a series of smashing wins in his senior season of high school – where Norvell led the Simeon Wolverines in a staggering 30-4 record – he is all set to prove his mantle in the NBA Draft Combine.
Zach Norvell’s Impressive Career
Fast rewind twenty years, and we will find Zach Norvell to be one of the guards at Northern Illinois who was fondly known for his insatiable sweet tooth. Always indulging in cupcakes, honey buns and cookies, washed down with some chocolate milk, Norvell’s teammates nicknamed him, “Snacks”. If Norvell’s son happened to accompany him to the locker room, everyone would laugh and say, “Look! It’s Snacks and Little Snacks!”
With time and necessity, Norvell had to let go of his penchant for sweet snacks so he could shed all those extra pounds to become the star he is today.
Throughout Gonzaga Bulldog’s non-conference schedule, Norvell has entered the season with a bang – offering a spectacular series of games and wins. He was seen to dominate the match against Texas A&M and Creighton, especially throughout the crazy second half when he was, quite simply, unstoppable! As the year progressed, Norvell honed his craft and learned to be more cautious with his shot selection. Even in a tight spot, Norvell never showed a shred of fear or trepidation, and he never tackled a shot he wasn’t willing to take.
That’s the thing we all love about Zach Norvell: unfailing confidence, a larger-than-life persona, an unflinching tenacity and the determination needed to overcome any and all odds.
As NBA drafters continue to place Norvell somewhere in the second round, he is all set to make the jump while concentrating on breaking down the defenses of his opponents with his characteristic explosiveness. This is why we predict, with reasonable certainty, that testing the NBA draft waters will prove to be a worthwhile experience for Norvell. Not only will he get a much better feel of where he actually stands, but Zack will also become crystal clear on his strengths and weaknesses.
Mark Few, head coach of the Gonzaga Bulldogs, has gone as far as to compare Zack Norvell Jr.’s clutch genes to the likes of Gonzaga Bulldog legendary players Dan Dickau and Adam Morrison. Talking about his style, fans know how Norvell has a knack for scoring a shot and then following with another massive hit seconds afterwards. Norvell’s fans and teammates alike have come to expect a string of shots and points from him. In the words of guard Josh Perkins, “As soon as that one goes in, I always look for Zack like, Hey! I am coming to you.”
Redshirt Sophomore (2018-2019)
Appearing in over 37 games and starting 36, the 6-foot tall, 205-pound shooting guard Norvell Jr. is credited with averaging 30.7 minutes per game and leads his team with an impressive 97 3-pointers. According to Mark Few, “Zach has been an absolute joy to coach and a tremendous asset to this program.”
The NABC declared Norvell First Team All-West Coast Conference and Second Team All-District. During his Redshirt Sophomore season, Norvell not only led the West Coast Conference with 97 3-pointers, but also scored an unbelievable 37% of his shots from behind the arc. This record ranks an all-time third in program history in a single season.
Norvell expressed his pleasure at being a part of this incredible program:
“I have grown so much from my first day at Gonzaga both on and off the court,” Norvell said in an interview. “I’d like to thank Coach Few and the entire GU coaching staff for the past three years, and their support with this decision.”
- Figure: Gonzaga Bulldog Roster: 1819R
Zach Norvell’s Strengths
It is Norvell’s consistent hard-working attitude that has brought him this far ahead. During his two seasons working alongside Coach Few and the GU staff, Norvell has made remarkable improvements in all the major areas of his game. His defense rating revealed an improvement of 98 to 94 points per 100 possessions from year one to year two at Gonzaga Bulldogs. His offensive rating, on the other hand, jumped from 120.6 to 126.7 while Norvell improved his assist and turnover ratings considerably during the season despite taking on a somewhat bigger role on the offensive.
Perhaps the biggest part of Zack Norvell’s appeal lies in his uncanny ability to play as a floor spacer. Being a highly skilled and expert scorer, Norvell averaged 27.1 points per 100 possessions during his extraordinary career at Gonzaga.
- Data Courtesy by CBB at Sports-Reference.com
Norvell’s spotless performance during the 2018-2019 season includes 37.8% shots on 2-point jumpers, 375 shots on 3-point jumpers and 42.1% on short midrange shots. In both seasons, he shot more than 80% from the free throw line, including an all-time career best of 86.7% from the FT line in the 2018-2019 season. Norvell’s true shooting rating of 59.2% is widely considered to be above the average of the NBA draft’s other wing players.
Zach Norvell is all set to succeed as a brilliant shooter in the league due to his ability to keep a good distance from the opposite team’s defenders with the help of step backs and hard dribble pull-ups.
Zach Norvell is a product of playing fearlessly in pressure situations with a consistent performance throughout his career. Norvell is not only the third-leading scorer for Gonzaga League, but he is also sociable and confident. He is the man behind the fire that the Gonzags have needed all along. As Coach Few puts it, Zach Norvell has a persona that inspires and motivates the entire team at the Gonzaga League.
Los Angeles Lakers (2019 till present)With the Gonzaga Bulldogs, Zach Norvell proved his ability to play both off and on the ball. He is lethally proficient in the pick-and-roll play, ranking 90th among basketball handlers, according to the NCAA’s rankings. As the Los Angeles Lakers perk up their roster in free agency, Norvell will have his opportunity to get some classic NBA minutes. Norvell already enjoys unique chemistry with Talen Horton Tucker, Los Angeles Lakers’ second rounder and Zach Norvell’s high school teammate at the Simeon Career Academy. The Los Angeles Lakers picked Zach after his two memorable seasons with Gonzaga Bulldogs. Despite having been expected to be picked up as a second-round player by the NBA Draft, he was unfortunately not drafted by any of the teams on the draft during the first two rounds. Therefore, it came as a surprise to Norvell’s fans when the Los Angeles Lakers signed him to a two-way NBA contract. Under the provisions of the contract, Norvell will be able to spend some of his time in the NBA, and the rest in the Gonzaga League. The Los Angeles Lakers have great expectations of Zach Norvell Jr., as he is in his best shooting form, and has the makings of becoming a super spot-up shooter. All Norvell needs to do is to improve his overall ball-handling skills, after which he could run the show single-handedly.
Zach Norvell – the Rising Star of Basketball
While Zach Norvell Jr. earned his nickname “Snacks” due to his love for chocolate and candy, he is also dubbed, “Microwave” for being an emotional spark plug prone to scoring outbursts on the crib. However, no one calls this 6-foot-5 fat anymore. After giving up on candies and sweets, Zach Norvell became a true pescatarian. “I was only eating seafood and trying to stay away from pop and all that type of juice,” Zach said, “and it’s helped me out.” Well, even his controlled diet plans cannot keep Zach Norvell from occasionally giving in to the temptations of chocolate chip cookies. Career Statistics – Zach Norvell Jr. Zack Norvell Jr. is a fine player. He is projected to be the rising star of the world of basketball. While Zach may lack diversity, it only makes him an even stronger shot player instead of being a primary initiator on offence. Even without his signature dribble-drive game, Norvell is cut out to be a basketball star. He has already proved his unmatched prowess to shoot off the dribble in the post, while he shows the definite promise of becoming a crafty finisher when attaching closeouts.
For his fans, Zach Norvell Jr. has a solid feel for the game!