By now, you should be more than familiar with our series of regularly updating leaderboards for various Marquette Golden Eagles sports accomplishments. Keep checking back to that link in the previous sentence for our charts as the seasons continue to churn through history and MU’s various teams continue to create new memories and accomplishments.
Today, we’re going to talk about Marquette’s single season assists record and top 10. We’re bringing it up because over the next six weeks, it’s going to be changing a lot.
The conversation starts in the mid-1990s and very clearly starts with Tony Miller. The Marquette legend holds the all-time single season record for assists with 274. He is the only player to ever clear 250 assists in a season, setting the record as a junior. Miller is also the only player to post 220 assists in a season, and he did that first as a freshman when he beat out Sam Worthen’s then-record of 209 assists from the 1978-79 season. Miller then passed Worthen again as a sophomore before setting what is now the record as a junior and then threw up an extra 248 helpers as a senior.
The wild part about the entire thing is that the very next year, 1995-96, Aaron Hutchins passed Worthen as well and surpassed Miller’s sophomore campaign too, breaking up the stranglehold on the top four spots. Since then, no one has cleared 200 assists in a season.
Travis Diener came the closest, putting up 184 as a sophomore partially thanks to the Final Four run and then passing that with 187 in his junior year. Junior Cadougan was the most recent entrant to the top 10, tying Lloyd Walton’s mark of 183 as the Canadian helped guide the Golden Eagles to the Sweet 16 in 2012 and got to benefit from throwing the ball to Jae Crowder and Darius Johnson-Odom.
That brings us to this season, where Tyler Kolek has 122 assists through 19 games. That has him averaging 6.4 assists per game. Marquette has at least 12 games left to play this season, 11 scheduled on the board in the regular season and one guaranteed Big East tournament game. Merely scooting along at his average would give Kolek another 77 assists, landing him at 199 for the year. That would be good enough for seventh best in Marquette history.
If the St. John’s road trip gets rescheduled, which looks less likely every single day, or if Marquette makes the NCAA tournament which is looking more and more likely every single day? 205 assists, the first 200+ assist season since Hutchins did it in 1995-96, although still not enough to pass Worthen for sixth.
If Marquette plays a couple of games in the Big East tournament or in the NCAA tournament, or if Kolek and the Marquette shooters catch fire down the stretch of the season? Top five is within sight.
This is of course the overall single season chart we’re talking about here. I’m not 100% sure where to slot Kolek on the individual class charts. He clearly played a year at George Mason before coming to Marquette and was named Atlantic 10 Freshman of the Year in 2020-21, but the Golden Eagles are calling him a redshirt freshman anyway. If you call Kolek a freshman, Miller’s 221 assists are the record and Dominic James is second at 167. If you say he’s a sophomore, then you’re looking at 215 for Hutchins, 213 for Miller, and 184 for Diener as the top three spots. We’ll circle back to this at the end of the year and see what the athletic department officially does with this.
Here’s the chart as it stands at the end of the 2021-22 season.
Marquette Men’s Basketball Single Season Assists