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November 12, 2013 at 12:01 PM

Darin Johnson rises above Pac-12 freshmen in stellar debut

Guard Darin Johnson tries to make it past a line of Redhawks defense, including Jarell Flora, left, and William Powell (21) in the second half. (Lindsey Wasson - Seattle Times)

Guard Darin Johnson tries to make it past a line of Redhawks defense, including Jarell Flora, left, and William Powell (21) in the second half. (Lindsey Wasson – Seattle Times)

If you were putting together a Pac-12 preseason all-freshman team (see below), it probably wouldn’t include Washington guard Darin Johnson.

However, the 6-5 guard from Sacramento’s Sheldon High scored more points in his debut than any other freshman in the conference.

Johnson finished with 16 points on 5-for-15 shooting from the field and a 5-for-5 performance at the line. He also collected seven rebounds, including three on the offensive glass.

“I take (from this game) confidence and aggressiveness,” he said. “Knowing that you can be aggressive offensively and defensively. And never rest. Keep grinding to get better and better.”

Here’s a look at other notable debuts from Pact-12 freshmen:

— UCLA’s Zach LaVine (14 pts)

— California’s Jabari Bird (14 pts)

— Arizona’s Aaron Gordon (13 pts/10 reb).

— Utah’s Parker Van Dyke (12 pts)

— Utah’s Ahmad Fields (11 pts/10 reb)

— Arizona’s Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (10 pts)

— Utah’s Kenneth Ogbe (10 points)

And here’s a look at the debut performances from former standout Washington players:

Quincy Pondexter – 21 points vs. Pepperdine, Nov. 12, 2006

Tony Wroten Jr. – 18 points vs. Georgia State, Nov. 12, 2011

Isaiah Thomas – 10 points vs. Portland, Nov. 15, 2008

Terrence Ross – 6 points vs. McNeese State, Nov. 13, 2010

Brandon Roy — 5 points vs. Stanford, Jan. 18, 2003

Nate Robinson — 0 points vs. Wyoming, Dec. 5, 2002

And speaking of a Pac-12 preseason all-freshman team, here’s what we put together:

PAC-12 PRESEASON ALL-FRESHMAN TEAM

F – Aaron Gordon ………………….. Arizona

F – Rondae Hollis-Jefferson …….. Arizona

F- Wesley Gordon ………………….. Colorado

G – Jabari Bird ………………………. Cal

G – Nigel William-Goss ……………. Washington

Honorable mention: Utah’s Ahmad Fields, Washington State’s Ike Iroegbu, UW’s Darin Johnson, UCLA’s Zach LaVine, Cal’s Jordan Matthews, Utah’s Parker Van Dyke and WSU’s Que Johnson.

Comments | More in News, Notes, Pac-12 news | Topics: Darin Johnson

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