While watching college hoops Tuesday night, I thought Rick Majerus raving about the "soft, supple hands" of Boston College forward Craig Smith would be the most disturbing thing I'd see or hear for a long, long time.
And then I read Gregg Doyel's love letter to J.J. Redick.
|J.J. Redick is ranked 68th in 3-point percentage. (Getty Images)|
Et tu, Gregg? Et tu?
Remember, we're talking about pure shooting here. Not Redick's overall scoring ability. Not his defense or ball-handling, both of which were sub-par early in his career but have certainly improved. Not his passing or his overall athleticism, which are run-of-the-mill. Just shooting. If he's such a deadly marksman, there should be a wealth of statistical data to back it up, right?
So let's somewhat-arbitrarily examine Redick's 3-point proficiency in what is universally regarded as a stellar senior season (at least thus far). Among Division I players with at least 100 3-point attempts this season, Redick's shooting percentage ranks (drum roll, please) ... No. 68. The stats on the NCAA's website are a couple of days old, but among players who have made at least 2.5 3-pointers per game, Redick ranks somewhere around No. 26.
Now, I'm no statistician, but I would think that the greatest shooter ever would be higher on those lists. Then again, I would have also thought that the greatest shooter ever would have hit better than 39.9 percent of his 3s as a freshman, 39.5 percent as a sophomore and 40.3 percent as a junior.
Well, maybe he saves his best for the postseason. Let's see how he has fared in the ACC Tournament. From 3-point range, he was 10-of-21 as a freshman, 3- of-17 as a sophomore and 12-of-29 as a junior, for a total of 25-of-67 (37.3 percent).
Maybe the conference tourney isn't a big deal to him, and he turns into a cold-blooded assassin for the NCAA Tournament.
In three trips to the Big Dance, he hit 6 of 21 trifectas, then 15 of 42, then 6 of 24 for a total of 27 of 87. If my math is correct -- which is a big "if" -- that's 31 percent.
OK, well, the best shooter ever would probably get better the deeper Duke goes in the postseason.