By the numbers: Fort Wayne’s Bryson Scott has taken game to new level
Two years ago, Valparaiso High School boy’s basketball coach Barak Coolman made the prediction that Fort Wayne men’s basketball player Bryson Scott “may lead the nation in scoring.”
I’ll be honest; I figuratively rolled my eyes at the remark, as I felt it was a bit of hyperbole on the part of Coolman, who coached Scott at Northrop High School before leaving to take the job with the Vikings.
As it turned, I was correct and Coolman was wrong.
Scott isn’t leading the nation in scoring in his final season with the Mastodons; he is third in the nation. Score one for the media (sarcasm)!
Here is a “deep dive” into the numbers accumulated this season by Scott, who will close out his Fort Wayne home career Saturday against South Dakota State at the Gates Sports Center (7 p.m.).
Scott had a rather pedestrian night in Fort Wayne’s recent 84-72 Summit League victory at North Dakota State. He totaled just 17 points, which ranked as the 24th most productive game of this season for Scott.
More importantly, the total gave Scott 673 points for the 2017-18 season, which is a new program record.
That is an impressive achievement in its own right, but there were several other aspects to the performance that made it even more noticeable.
Scott reached that mark by hitting 6 of his 14 shots, including half of his four 3-point attempts. So it wasn’t as if he was jacking up shots all over the place in an effort to reach the mark.
In addition, the victory was the first for the Mastodons (18-12, 7-6 Summit League) at North Dakota State in seven years.
In addition to Scott becoming the Mastodons’ all-time leading scorer in a single season, he is just 18 made free throws shy of setting the program record (208 by Sean Gibson, 1992-93) in that category, as well.
Scott has made 191 of his 231 attempts this season (82.7 percent), which is a vast improvement from a year ago.
As a redshirt junior, Scott connected on just 88 of 127 free throw attempts (69.3 percent).
Scott not only ranks third in the nation in points scored, but he also ranks third in the nation in both free throw attempts and makes.
Scott’s productivity isn’t a matter of one player dominating the Fort Wayne offense. The Mastodons have three players (John Konchar and Kason Harrell) averaging at least 14 points per game.
Scott ranks fifth nationally in shot attempts, but he also ranks 6th in made shots.
His 45.1 percent shooting is a respectable number given the fact that every defensive gameplan is focused on slowing him down.
Scott certainly leads the Mastodons in shot attempts, but he also has taken his ability to share the ball to its highest level ever.
A year ago, Scott passed off for 76 assists in 33 games, but he has already soared past that number and Fort Wayne could be playing another month of games.
Scott has totaled 82 assists this season in just 30 games so far.
On 15 occasions this season, Scott has passed off for at least three assists and that number is already more than he totaled a year ago (14).
The recent victory over the Bison also marked another notable number for Scott.
He has now played 931 minutes this season, which is three more than he had all of last season (928) in 33 games.
Fourth-year Fort Wayne coach Jon Coffman is able to utilize Scott more because he is fouling less (he had 62 fouls in 928 minutes a year ago versus 55 in 931 this year) and defending more.
Scott registered 56 steals a year ago, but has already gotten 63 this season and ranks 11th nationally in that category.
With Scott and Konchar (79 steals and ranks second nationally), Fort Wayne is 12th nationally in steals and 27th in turnovers forced.
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