Noel Twitter

The most followed college basketball players on Twitter

In September I wrote about the 16 most followed basketball players on Twitter. I decided to revisit that list and see who had been gaining followers. The leader in September was Shabazz Muhammad, with 84,135 followers. No one else even had 60,000. But Shabazz only gained a little over 3,000 followers during the season, despite using Twitter regularly.

Nerlens Noel, who had been in 2nd, gained more than 10 times that number during the season. We'll call that the 'Kentucky Effect'. When your coach has more Twitter followers than every other Division I head coach combined, and one of the 16 most followed players in the country is a Kentucky walk-on, then you know you're at a basketball (and Twitter) crazed school.

Of the 16 players I looked at, Shabazz gained the smallest percentage of followers during the season, and I have absolutely no explanation for this. Even Andre Dawkins – who isn't playing – increased his following by almost 6% (to Shabazz's 4%).

Regardless, here are the September 2012, and March 2013 counts.

player team September March Difference
Shabazz Muhammad UCLA 84,135 87,355 3.7%
Nerlens Noel Kentucky 59,420 92,564 35.8%
Seth Curry Duke 50,374 70,251 28.3%
Dexter Strickland UNC 49,860 55,839 10.7%
Kyle Wiltjer Kentucky 46,338 55,750 16.9%
Cody Zeller Indiana 33,472 51,548 35.1%
Reggie Bullock UNC 32,132 40,231 20.1%
Leslie McDonald UNC 29,167 32,033 8.9%
Quinn Cook Duke 27,682 36,080 23.3%
PJ Hairston UNC 27,005 35,714 24.4%
Alex Poythress Kentucky 25,908 36,326 28.7%
Jarrod Polson Kentucky 25,780 37,917 32.0%
Archie Goodwin Kentucky 24,890 35,243 29.4%
Christian Watford Indiana 24,355 32,602 25.3%
James Michael McAdoo UNC 24,030 28,290 15.1%
Andre Dawkins Duke 21,217 22,557 5.9%

 

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