A 6-0, 185-lb. junior point guard from Houston, Texas had the shooting night of his life -- or most people's lives -- on Saturday. In a 96-75
blowout of James Madison, George Mason's Dre Smith scored a career-high 34 points on astonishing 11-of-12 shooting. But, as you might have heard already, 10 of those shots were 3's, and all 10 of them went in. That is an NCAA record for 3-pointers made without a miss, and kudos to the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record
's WINS radio reference.
Give Dre Smith 28 minutes, and he'll give you the world.... and we'll give him our 11th Mid-Majority Baller of the Week honor.
Smith's performance lit up the possession-based, geek-stat board like no other night has this season. In effective field goal percentage (with weights threes as a regular shot plus a half), his 10 long-distance makes helped him notch a 133.3% mark -- easily the best performance in eFG% for the year, blowing out the 123.1 that former MMBOW Samuel Haanpaa turned in on Dec. 15. Using the NBA Efficiency Model
, which rewards "good" stats (points, rebounds, etc.) and punishes "bad" ones (turnovers and missed shots), Smith scored a 40. Others have had higher numbers, but when you "tempo-free" it by applying the new (new!) Basketball State statistic of "efficiency per possession"
, Smith's .890 was this season's highest one-game number of any player who spent 20 or more minutes on the court. All of this is a long-winded way of saying, dude played a solid game.
Mr. Smith went to Fairfax two summers ago, a key juco recruit that was drawn to George Mason because of the Final Four run. At Cochise Community College (Ariz.), he scored 23.1 ppg and was named a first-team juco All-American. He was previously chased by Creighton and Mississippi State, but he ended up as a Patriot. It took him a little time to adjust to Division I life, averaging 8.0 ppg in half-games in 2006-07, but he heated up big-time in the CAA tourney, averaging 17.3 ppg in the four-day run to the championship game. He was named to the all-tourney first team, and there's no question the Patriots wouldn't have made it to that final step if not for him.
And after hitting a December rut here in 2007-08, George Mason is back to fulfilling the promise of its solid and stacked roster, winning four of its last five games to climb to 5-2 and a tie for second in the CAA race. A lot of that
wouldn't have happened if not for the Patriots' 11.1 ppg man, who also happens to be our 11th MMBOW.
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