"Jimmer Fredette is as good a player as I've ever seen in the college ranks," said Utah coach Jim Boylen. "He's not one-dimensional. He can score from anywhere on the court. Probably most impressive is, that for someone named 'Jimmer,' he doesn't seem to piss his pants and I hear he can ride a bike with the training wheels off."
BYU head coach Dave Rose says having the name of a 3 year-old boy with glasses and a severe peanut allergy has driven Fredette to succeed and prove to people that he can do more than sit on the sidelines with his asthma inhaler reading books about dinosaurs.
"As crazy as it sounds, I think his name has helped him," says Rose. "As motivation and also because when the opposing team hears him introduced before a game they naturally let their guard down. It's simply impossible to take someone named 'Jimmer Fredette' seriously or to see him as any kind of real threat no matter how many shot he hits in your face."
Fredette's game has improved over his four years in Provo. His scoring average has gone from 7.0 as a freshman to 16.2 to 22.1 last year and 26.1 so far this season. He has diversified his offensive game, improved his defense and added muscle, but it is still questionable whether he will be drafted by the NBA.
"From what I've been told, no team can imagine uttering his name at the draft," says Rose. "It's just too absurd. Too humiliating. He might have to play overseas in some country with a different language where maybe a name like 'Jimmer Fredette' won't be laughed at. But I fear such a country doesn't exist. He has an embarrassing name in any language."
Fredette says his name won't keep him back.
"I like being Jimmer Fredette," he said, continuing on about something or other as I laughed to myself inside about the name Jimmer Fredette.