The 2018-19 college basketball season is quickly approaching, and thus, we turn our attention to previewing the upcoming Marquette Golden Eagles men’s basketball season.
As was the case last year, we’ve got a stacked up list of questions about the 2017-18 campaign, and each of the contributors to AE are going to take a crack at answering them. There will be a new question every weekday afternoon between now and the start of the season, so be sure to stop back every day to find the new one.
Onwards, then, to the question of the day:
Who will lead the team in assists this season?
For context purposes, Sam Hauser (2.9 assists per game), Markus Howard (2.8 apg), and Sacar Anim (1.6 apg) are the three leading returning passers.
Wojo went after Joseph Chartouny for him to slide into more of a true point guard role, so it’ll easily be him. I also started saying his name to the tune of “Eleanor Rigby” and I can’t get it out of my head.
Usually the starting point guard leads the team in assists unless he’s an extremely shoot-first point guard. The prevailing theory about this team is that Joseph Chartouny will run the show and let Markus Howard work more off the ball while not cutting into his shooting opportunities like Rowsey did. Ipso facto, Chartouny leads the team in assists.
There’s a logical answer and it’s already been mentioned, but I’m going to say Greg Elliott. Why am I going to say Greg Elliott? I’m going to say Greg Elliott because I’ve put a lot of stock into The Young Wings (TM), and if they don’t get markedly better this year, I’m going to lose a lot of hope, so Greg becoming a real solid point guard once his hand heals would be really good for My Brand! Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk.
Marquette went out and added a defensive, distributing point guard. There’s a ton of ball movement in this offense and a plethora of players that can make a shot, so this’ll be much closer numbers-wise than scoring or rebounding, but I’ll still give this to the guy you brought in specifically to facilitate the offense and put Markus Howard off the ball so he can be effective in that role. Therefore, my pick is Joseph Chartouny.
When we talked about who would lead this year’s squad in scoring earlier this week, I leaned away from Markus Howard because of comments made by Steve Wojciechowski over the summer. Wojo talked to Andy Katz and Jon Rothstein on their respective podcasts and indicated that Howard is going to have to do less scoring and more distributing in 2018-19. Well, I’m going to double down on my scoring pick and say that Howard will lead the team in assists this season. It will probably be a very close battle near the top of the statsheet, as I think Marquette has a lot of good passers that can lead to a lot of open shots and thus a lot of assisted made shots, but I’m going to give the advantage to Howard given his experience at knowing what Wojo wants out of the team every single time down the floor.
Feel like this is another easy question. Wojo went out and got exactly what Marquette needed in Joseph Chartouny: a guy who could handle, distribute and defend the basketball. He proved he could defend last year by leading the country in steals and i think his assist numbers will skyrocket this year.
I think this offense will have a high assist rate this season after finishing last year 84th in the country. Wojo went out and got a pure ball-handler in Chartouny. The ball is going to be moving around very quickly and a lot of players will have high assist tallies this year. Since mostly everyone’s going with the obvious answer, I’m going to go a different direction and say Sam Hauser will record the most assists. The ball is going to go through him A LOT and it will be inevitable that he will find open teammates with how fast I envision the Golden Eagles will be playing this year. It will be close between him, Chartouny and Howard, but I think he edges them out.
I can’t really think of a way that Joseph “Joey Steals” Chartouny doesn’t lead the team in assists this season. Chartouny led his Fordham team in assists with 4.6 per game last season and will have many more weapons to utilize here at Marquette. Chartouny is not like any guard we had last year as he will not beat too many people off the dribble with his quickness like Andrew Rowsey and Markus Howard could, instead Chartouny can use his 6’ 3” frame to bully defenders and bump his defender off of him in the paint. Chartouny’s ability to penetrate along with his height which allows his to see over the top of defenders should blend well with MU’s four-out style offense and result in plenty of open looks for shooters. There could be an argument made that Markus Howard will lead the team in assist after working on his ball handling and vision all offseason but even if he does improve on those things I think he is too valuable off the ball to play at point guard for more than a few minutes here and there when Chartouny is on the bench.
Who will lead Marquette in assists in 2018-19?
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