The mailbag returns for its second installment, this time with one question and a long answer.
Kevin from Tallahassee, Fla., asks:
Some media pointed out that Creighton’s Doug McDermott averaged more points than minutes for a little while early this season. Any Cougars accomplished this even on a game-by-game basis?
After going through this year’s four games and all of last season, 11 different times BYU players either scored more points than they played minutes or were within one point for every minute played.
So far this season, only Eric Mika against Mount St. Mary’s with 20 points in 21 minutes and Matt Carlino with 26 points in 22 minutes against Stanford have accomplished the feat or gotten close to it.
The leader last year was Tyler Haws with three games of more points than minutes. Brandon Davies had two, as did Bronson Kaufusi. Anson Winder and Cory Calvert each did it once.
You probably noticed these players don’t all have the same things in common. Davies and Haws started almost every game and averaged 29 and 34 minutes per game last year, while the others averaged less than eight minutes per game and came off the bench.
For the starters, it came down to outscoring their minutes played, so their good shooting nights gave them a chance. Davies shot 20 percent better from the field than his season average in his two games, while Haws shot between five and 15 percent better from the field in his three games.
This season, when Mika and Carlino accomplished the feat, their shooting was also up. Mika shot 90 percent from the field, while in his other three games he’s shot .526 from the field. Carlino was at 50 percent against Stanford, 15 points higher than his other games.
As for the players who accomplished the feat coming off the bench, it took a hot start and some other help. Winder scored four points in four minutes against Loyola Marymount. He recorded two steals to help get him two good looks. Against Weber State, Calvert was 3 of 4 from the field, but also hit a 3-pointer and made multiple free throws. Kaufusi accomplished both of his with a steal each time and being perfect from the field in his limited minutes.
So scoring more points than minutes played means what exactly? For a starter who plays a fair amount of minutes, it means they had an efficient scoring night. For a player coming off the bench, it means they were able to get high percentage shots quickly in a short amount of time. It probably isn’t a repeatable skill, McDermott is currently averaging 28 minutes and 25 points and no one came close to averaging something close last season, but it should make for an important contribution to the team. After all BYU is 9-1 in games when a player scores more than or almost as many points as minutes played. Check out the list below:
Mika vs. Mount St. Mary’s 21 minutes and 20 points
Carlino at Stanford 22 minutes and 26 points
Davies vs. Georgia State 29 minutes and 28 points
Davies vs. Northern Arizona 26 minutes and 27 points
Haws vs. Cal State Northridge 33 minutes and 32 points
Haws vs. Virginia Tech 35 minutes and 42 points
Haws vs. Washington 38 minutes and 37 points
Winder vs. Loyola Marymount 4 minutes and 4 points
Calvert at Weber State 10 minutes and 9 points
Kaufusi vs. Loyola Marymount 2 minutes and 2 points
Kaufusi vs. San Francisco 5 points and 5 minutes
Have questions you'd like to see answered? Include your name and hometown with a question and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. The mailbag will run weekly with a Monday night deadline for questions and will be published on Wednesdays.