Eric Lindsey, the editor and lead writer at CoachCal.com recently sat down with Noel to talk about those expectations and how Noel is different from those who have come before him.
Here's a brief excerpt from the story:
Because of his original three-year plan at Tilton, Noel knew he would have academic work to make up for when he decided to reclassify. While his future teammates enrolled at UK this summer, Noel put aside basketball to finish his academic obligations.
Noel was frustrated knowing he was falling behind his teammates and missing an opportunity to build chemistry with them, but he accepted putting basketball second so he could return to it this fall. Missing out on full-time basketball was a big reason he didn't play up to his standards at a recent camp, Noel said.
"Without the academics I wouldn't be here right now," Noel said. "That was my first priority."
In early August, UK compliance director Sandy Bell woke Noel with a call to tell him he had officially met his academic requirements. Noel was relieved to say the least.
"Even though I know I finished the classes and I finished them strong with an A and a B, I was still nervous because you're nervous until you get the real, official word," Noel said. "I was just in awe."
Click HERE to read the rest of Lindsey's story on Nerlens Noel.