Instant offense can change the outcome of any college basketball game, and players who can get buckets in a short amount of time are immensely valuable.Sometimes, streaky scorers can serve as their team’s primary offensive option. But in many cases, that sort of player comes off of the bench and provides his team a jolt of energy.
Here are six of the top microwave scorers in the country.
Donovan Mitchell, Louisville
Mitchell came off the bench as a freshman and only played 19.1 minutes per game, but he thrived in his limited burn.
The combo guard averaged 7.4 points per game on 44.2 percent shooting, and provided multiple highlights like this:
Mitchell’s outside stroke needs some work, but he’s absolutely relentless in attacking the rim. Once Mitchell gets into the paint, he’s either looking to dunk on people or draw contact; when he gets the ball, he’s likely going to the cup. The sophomore’s role will increase in 2016-17, and expect him to have a few big scoring outputs in ACC play.
Kelan Martin, Butler
If Mitchell progresses like he should, his college career will look a lot like Martin’s. As a freshman, the Bulldog wing averaged 7.1 points per game in just 14.6 minutes of action. As a sophomore, Martin’s role increased, and he proved to be up to the task. The versatile scorer averaged 15.7 points per game on 44.7 percent shooting and 37.7 percent from behind the arc in 2015-16.
Martin has several tricks in his offensive bag; he’s one of the best pull-up jump shooters in the nation, and he has a size and speed combination that’s very difficult on defenses. His 35-point effort against Georgetown says it all:
On any given night, Martin has the potential to go off.
Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, Kansas
One of the most talented players on an already loaded Kansas roster, Mykhailiuk made huge strides between his freshman and sophomore seasons.
As a freshman, Mykhailiuk shot 30.6 percent from the floor; as a sophomore, that number skyrocketed to 45. Athletic, 6-8 wings with smooth shooting strokes aren’t exactly a dime a dozen, and when he’s cooking, Mykhailiuk is all of those things.
In the Jayhawks’ NCAA tournament opener last season, Mykhailiuk went 9-for-11 from the floor and scored 23 points. Against Texas Tech in February, he went 5-for-5 from 3-point range. Kansas is already a very tough team to beat, but when 'Svi' is cooking, they're virtually unbeatable.
Allonzo Trier, Arizona
Trier is a multi-dimensional offensive force who, in certain games, lives at the free-throw line. Trier averaged 5.4 free-throw attempts per game last season and went 14-for-14 from the charity stipe against Bradley.
Drawing fouls may not be the sexiest skill to have, but it’s an extremely valuable one. In that Bradley game, Trier scored 22 points on five shot attempts. Any time you can put up tallies while the clock is stopped, it’s a positive. Trier averaged 14.8 points in less than 30 minutes per game last season, and both of those marks should rise in his sophomore year.
James Blackmon, Indiana
With Yogi Ferrell’s departure, all eyes will be on Blackmon this season in Bloomington.
That’s likely fine with him. Despite other questions about his game, one thing is undeniable: Blackmon can put up a lot of points in a hurry. He missed 22 games due to injury last season, but when he did play, he scored at will – Blackmon averaged 15.8 points per game.
Blackmon is a fantastic shooter (46.3 percent from deep last season) and is capable of breaking defenders down off the dribble. He scored 33 points on just 15 shots last year against Alcorn State, and if the Hoosiers’ offense is ailing, Blackmon is the guy who can stop the bleeding.
Bryant McIntosh, Northwestern
If Northwestern can become an NCAA tournament team in 2017, McIntosh will have plenty to do with it. An all-around stud, the Wildcat point guard averaged 13.8 points, 3.6 rebounds and 6.7 assists per game in 2015-16.
McIntosh had several big games last season – most notably, he scored 28 points on 19 shot attempts in an upset win over Wisconsin. The junior also poured in 32 points against Columbia and 33 against Loyola. Expect to hear McIntosh’s name quite a bit this season.