AUBURN – When the students go home for the summer the population here drops to just over 30,000, and on Sunday many of them mourned the loss of Korvotney Barber, the leading rebounder (347) and statistically the greatest defensive player in the SEC in 2009 (4.1 wins). Only Blake Griffin, DeJuan Blair and two other players matched his ability to dominate the offensive and defensive glass that season.
On Sunday, sources at Auburn University provided background information to Breitbart Sports on condition of anonymity in their time of mourning. They portrayed Barber as a leader of an incredibly close class of students brought in by then-coach Jeff Lebo. Barber reportedly never was a fan of the water, and therefore surprised at least one person recently by asking them to attend a beach trip this week.
The speculation was that he may not have been familiar with the red flags that warned against going into the area where he was found after an apparent drowning. While Auburn basketball has struggled most years since the days of Charles Barkley, Barber led a dominant run at the end of 2009 that made some consider Auburn an NCAA-bid worthy team.
The Tigers won eight of their last nine regular season games in the SEC, then beat Florida in the opening round of the SEC tournament before finally losing to Tennessee.After not getting an NCAA bid, the team won their first two NIT games before falling to Baylor in a 74-72 heart-breaker to finish 24-12, which prevented Barber from finishing his career in Madison Square Garden.
Barber was one of only five players to finish among the top 20 BCS rebounders in the country on both the offensive and defensive glass. He grabbed 13.5 percent of all of Auburn’s misses, and 22.5 percent of all opponent’s misses en route to the conference high 347 rebounds (see leaders tables below). He was also nationally ranked in shot blocking according to www.kenpom.com, as he blocked 4.9 percent of two-point shots attempted by opponents.
He continued to be a strong player overseas, scoring 13.8 points and 8.0 rebounds per game for Istanbulspor in 2012, and an almost identical 13.2/7.4 for the Lugano Tigers in the past season.
|Top Off Rebounders||Team||OR%||Rank||Top Def Rebounders||Team||DR%|
|DeJuan Blair (both)||Pittsburgh||23.6||1||Blake Griffin (both)||Oklahoma||32.4|
|Dexter Pittman||Texas||17.7||2||Cole Aldrich||Kansas||28.5|
|Tracy Smith||North Carolina St.||17.4||3||DeJuan Blair (both)||Pittsburgh||27.8|
|Jon Brockman (both)||Washington||15.6||4||Craig Brackins||Iowa St.||26.6|
|JaMychRep. Al Green (D-TX)||Alabama||15.6||5||Jon Brockman (both)||Washington||25.7|
|Jordan Hill||Arizona||15.4||6||Luke Harangody||Notre Dame||25.4|
|Murphy Holloway||Mississippi||15.1||7||Luke Nevill||Utah||25.1|
|Chinemelu Elonu||Texas A&M||14.1||8||Marshall Moses||Oklahoma St.||23.9|
|Blake Griffin (both)||Oklahoma||14.1||9||Brian Williams (both)||Tennessee||23.9|
|Corey Raji||Boston College||14||10||Jimmy Graham||Miami FL||23.9|
|Mike Scott||Virginia||13.8||11||Goran Suton||Michigan St.||23.9|
|Ron Anderson||Kansas St.||13.6||12||Mike Davis||Illinois||23.7|
|Yancy Gates||Cincinnati||13.6||13||Michael Washington||Arkansas||23.5|
|Brian Williams (both)||Tennessee||13.6||14||Ed Davis||North Carolina||23.3|
|Korvotney Barber (both)||Auburn||13.5||15||Damion James||Texas||23.2|
|Dwayne Collins||Miami FL||13.4||16||Trevor Booker||Clemson||23.2|
|Taj Gibson||Southern California||13.4||17||Wayne Chism||Tennessee||23.2|
|Hasheem Thabeet||Connecticut||13.4||18||Terrence Williams||Louisville||22.8|
|Delvon Roe||Michigan St.||13.3||19||Joe Krabbenhoft||Wisconsin||22.6|
|Alfred Aboya||UCLA||13.1||20||Korvotney Barber (both)||Auburn||22.5|