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 the career assists top 10 for men’s basketball.
Tony Miller’s record of 956 assists may be untouchable.
He never had fewer than 212 assists in a season. To this day, nearly 30 years later, the only people who have had assists seasons better than Miller’s are Aaron Hutchins, who had 215 helpers in 1995-96, the year after Miller’s senior campaign, and Tyler Kolek, who came just five assists short of breaking Miller’s single season record in 2022-23. That’s it. No one else since Miller’s time has even cleared 190 assists in a season, and putting up four years of 190 assists in a season would still leave you nearly 200 assists short of Miller’s career record.
For example: Dominic James was a four year starter for Marquette, and he finished 324 assists short. His senior year injury was not the thing that kept him from breaking the record is what I’m saying.
With that said, Tyler Kolek is doing some real damage to the top 10. Kolek started the 2023-24 season with 458 career assists at Marquette, which was good enough for the seventh most assists in program history. He did this in just two seasons, very much because he nearly broke Miller’s single season record in his second season. So far (today is January 5th) in 2023-24, Kolek has 88 assists on the year, and that has moved him past Tony Smith and Lloyd Walton into fifth place all time.
If Kolek goes for his average of 6.3 assists per game on Saturday against Seton Hall, he will pass Aaron Hutchins for the fourth most assists in program history. If he adds another 100 assists to his year between now and whenever Marquette’s season ends, landing at 188 assists on the year, Kolek will pass Travis Diener and Dominic James for the second most assists in program history.
He would have 646 assists in his career.
He would be 310 assists away from Tony Miller’s record.
Kolek is on pace for another 113 assists in Marquette’s remaining 17 Big East regular season games and their one guaranteed Big East tournament game. If he gets to that point, he will have 659 assists in a blue and gold uniform.... and he would still need just under 300 assists — nearly 30 more in a season than anyone has ever posted for Marquette — in a theoretical COVID bonus season of eligibility to break Miller’s record.
Here’s the top 10 chart as it stands after Marquette’s February 28th game against Providence.
Marquette Men’s Basketball Career Assists Chart