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Mitchell Northam | NCAA.com | April 25, 2019

5 players who could lead men's college basketball in scoring in 2020

Marquette's Markus Howard talks with Andy Katz

At the end of the 2018-19 men’s college basketball season, fans were forced to bid farewell to a pair of the most prolific scorers the sport has ever seen in Mike Daum and Chris Clemons.

The duo couldn’t have been more different. Daum, playing for South Dakota State, was a 6-foot-9 efficient post scorer and a double-double machine, averaged 25.9 points and 11.7 rebounds per-game as a senior. Clemons, a pint-sized point guard for Campbell, was a high-usage 5-foot-9 scorer who could swish game-winning three-pointers and dunk over opponents twice his size.

Clemons averaged 30.1 points per-game as a senior and both he and Daum passed the 3,000-point mark for their careers, finishing as the third and seventh leading scorers in the history of the sport, respectively.

THE 3,000 CLUB: Tracking Mike Daum and Chris Clemons

With both players gone, who is set to claim the mantle of the sport’s leading scorer next season? Who will be the must-watch player every night? Who’s crazy shots will be going viral on Twitter? Who will be making trackers for as they set out to break records?

We took a glance at five candidates who could lead the sport in scoring in the 2019-20 season.

A few stats we checked out when looking at the potential top scorers for next season were per-game averages for points, field goal attempts, three-point attempts, free throws made, and then offensive box plus-minus and usage percentage. Clemons ranked in the top four of each category this past season.

2018-19 Stats

Player

PPG

FGA

3PTA

FTM

OFF +/-

USAGE

Markus Howard

25.0

17.6

8.8

6.7

7.7

37.4

Myles Powell

23.1

16.6

8.7

5.1

8.3

30.9

Jermaine Marrow

24.4

18.5

6.8

6.2

4.5

33.3

Lamine Diane

24.8

21.2

0.7

4.0

-1.8

38.5

Antoine Davis

26.1

21.9

11.6

4.2

5.6

36.4

LOOKING AHEAD TO 2020: Three potential Cinderellas

Markus Howard, Marquette

Howard could’ve left Marquette early for the NBA Draft, but has opted to return for his senior season, which is making the Golden Eagles a trendy pick to win the Big East and make a deep NCAA tournament run next season. Howard was eighth in the nation in field goal attempts last season, fourth in free throws made, fifth in scoring, and fourth in usage percentage. An area he could improve on is his three-point shooting — actually, improve is the wrong word; Howard should be taking more three-pointers. He shot a solid 40.3 percent from behind the arc last season, but didn’t crack the top 10 in attempts. If Howard wants to score more, he should try his luck more often from outside the arc. And more points for Howard is typically a good thing for Marquette. Last season, Marquette won 15 of the 19 games where he scored 25 or more points. The Golden Eagles never lost in the six games where he tallied at least 36 points.

Myles Powell, Seton Hall

Out of the five candidates, Powell was the lowest in points per-game, field goal attempts and usage, but he was efficient, finishing 10th in the nation in offensive box plus-minus with a mark of 8.3 while leading the Pirates to the NCAA tournament. Powell, a 6-foot-2 guard, averaged a career-high 23.1 points per-game while shooting 36.3 percent from the three-point range and 44.6 percent from the floor. He’s opted to test the NBA Draft waters, but if returns for his senior season and his usage numbers increase, his scoring totals and Seton Hall’s chances of winning the Big East should too. Seton Hall won 10 of 12 games last year where Powell scored 27 points or more.

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Jermaine Marrow, Hampton

Could we have back-to-back seasons where the leading scorer in men’s college basketball comes from the Big South? With Marrow in the mix, it’s possible. In his junior campaign for the Pirates, the 6-foot guard finished sixth in the nation in field goal attempts, sixth in free throws made and eighth in scoring. The Pirates were average in their first Big South season, finishing 18-17, but could be better next year if Marrow returns and improves his play. Like many juniors, he has also entered the NBA Draft process.

Lamine Diane, Cal State Northridge

A 6-foot-7 rising sophomore, Diane is the lone big man on this list, but for good reason. He led the country in field goals made last season, knocking down 340 shots. He finished third in field goal attempts, sixth in scoring and second in usage. To lead the nation in scoring, Diane will likely have to expand and improve on his three-point game. Of his 340 made field goals, 333 were from inside the three-point arc. A native of Senegal, Diane was unstoppable in many games last season, scoring more than 28 points and grabbing more than 10 rebounds nine times last season. Still, Cal State Northridge finished just 13-21.

OFFSEASON: The 10 most intriguing college basketball transfers

Antoine Davis, Detroit Mercy

Davis was right up there with Clemons in many statistical categories, putting up big numbers as a freshman. He was fourth in the nation in three-point attempts, fifth in field goal attempts, third in scoring and sixth in usage. Detroit wasn’t very good last season, finishing 11-20, but Titans fans are hoping they’ll be better as Davis continues to grow.

Mitchell Northam is a graduate of Salisbury University. His work has been featured at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Orlando Sentinel, SB Nation, FanSided, USA Today and the Delmarva Daily Times. He grew up on Maryland's Eastern Shore and is now based in Durham, N.C.

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