Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been digging into the stats to look for some interesting stats that we may have missed during the season. We’ve found a few, including Shakeel Moore being the 16th best player in the nation in Steal %. But the most important one, and likely the most obvious one comes from Manny Bates.
Bates is now at 147 blocks for his career, landing him at 4th all-time at NC State.
Think about that. He’s a sophomore and he already has 147 blocks. That is just 3 shy of Kevin Thompson, who is 3rd on NC State’s all-time list with 150.
If Bates stays all 4 years and keeps this pace, he will absolutely shatter the all-time record of 243 held by BeeJay Anya, and that is after he passes Thurl Bailey’s 207, which is 2nd in NC State history.
If Bates replicates his first two seasons (one of which was shortened by COVID and the other had game canceled due to COVID) he will finish with 294 blocks. That would be good for 1st place in NC State history by over 50 blocks.
But that’s not the best part. Beejay Anya, averaged 1.88 blocks per game in his career, while Thurl Bailey averaged 1.68 per game.
Manny Bates is averaging 2.77 blocks per game. That is almost a full block better than NC State’s all-time shot blocker, Beejay Anya.
So yeah, if Bates keeps this up, and there is no reason to think he won’t, then he will be in the history books. However, with Funderburk likely gone, Bates also becomes NC State’s best offensive option in the post. If he can improve over this offseason even half as much as he did last season, then Bates may enter the conversation of the most productive big in NC State history. To do that he’ll need to up his scoring average by about 5 points (15ppg range) and up his rebounds by about 3 per game (9 rpg range).
Will he make that big of a jump offensively and on the boards? I’m not sure, but if there’s one guy on this roster I’m not going to bet against, it’s Manny Bates.