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College Basketball: The 10 Best Long Range Bombers You Don't Know About

Liz YoungbloodContributor IIIFebruary 13, 2012

College Basketball: The 10 Best Long Range Bombers You Don't Know About

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    A three-point shot can completely change the momentum of college basketball games.

    A deadly shooter from deep can turn games in a team’s favor in mere seconds.

    Yet despite their importance, many of the best three-point shooters in college basketball fly under the radar.

    Players like Doron Lamb, Doug McDermott and Kim English have made a name for themselves by becoming three-point specialists.

    But none of those three players are in the top five nationally in three-point percentage.

    The players who really excel play for teams outside of the major conferences.

    Because their colleges are relatively unknown in the national landscape, many of the most prolific three-point shooters are still unfamiliar.

    Not for long.

    One of the keys to lower-ranked teams upsetting powerhouses in March is three-point shooting.

    If a player can stroke the ball from deep, his team has a great chance to pull off an upset.

    Here is a list of the best three-point shooters in the country, all of whom toil in obscurity until March.

Kris Davis

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    The Southern Illinois-Edwardsville Cougars have done nothing remarkable this season. The team has a 7-19 record and are a mere ninth in the Ohio Valley Conference.

    But the Cougars do have one thing going for them: Kris Davis' jump shot.

    Davis is shooting an absolutely absurd 60.5 percent from three-point range this season, easily first in the country.

    Davis attempts just three shots from deep per game on average, connecting on over two of them. 

    Davis is SIU-Edwardsville's third-leading scorer, averaging 12 points per game. Thanks to his stroke from three, however, he is always a threat to go off for 20-plus points. 

    In the Cougars' most recent game against Southeast Missouri State, Davis shot 4-of-6 from deep and 50 percent overall, finishing with 20 points.

Jordan Burgason

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    As recently as Feb. 9, Jordan Burgason was the second-best three-point shooter in the country for the Lipscomb Bisons. 

    Now?

    He's just another non-basketball playing average Joe.

    Burgason was kicked off of Lipscomb's basketball team for a violation of team rules. Burgason was the Bisons' leading scorer, averaging 16.4 points per game. He also gave the team an added threat, shooting 52.6 percent from three-point range.

    Burgason made nine three-pointers in a game twice this season, against Iowa State and the East Tennessee State.

    Despite his untimely departure, Burgason holds Lipscomb's school record for three-pointers, making 282 in his career. 

    There is no doubt Burgason's shooting will be missed as the Bisons face a tough schedule to finish out the season.

Tyler Murray

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    The Wagner Seahawks are making a name for themselves this season. The team is 21-4 overall and boasts an impressive win over Pittsburgh. 

    A big part of the Seahawks' success has been the sharp shooting of Tyler Murray.

    Murray, a senior guard, is shooting 51.3 percent from three-point range this season.

    Despite scoring fewer points this year than in his junior campaign, Murray has improved his shooting drastically from last season, when he shot just 41 percent from deep.

    Against LIU-Brooklyn, Wagner's biggest rival in the Northeast Conference, Murray hit 5-of-7 three-pointers and scored 19 points to go along with nine rebounds. 

    In a game against Sacred Heart, Murray one-upped himself, connecting on 7-of-8 shots from deep and scoring 21 points. 

    Wagner is lucky to have such a powerful weapon from deep.

    When Murray is on, no one can stop him.

T.J. McConnell

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    T.J. McConnell lights it up for Duquesne nightly. The sophomore guard is shooting 50.8 percent from deep and scores 12 points per game. 

    Undoubtedly, his team wishes McConnell would shoot more. He is taking just three three-pointers per game, but making them count regardless.

    McConnell has a habit of disappearing in games and not getting his shots. When he does find the basket, though, his team benefits.

    In a near-upset of Saint Joseph's Hawks, McConnell scored 28 points, hitting 5-of-6 three pointers and 10-of-16 shots overall. 

    The Dukes would surely appreciate it if McConnell would take closer to five shots from deep per night to keep defenses honest and open up the lane for the rest of the team.

Nick Barbour

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    By far the most prolific shooter on this list, High Point's Nick Barbour has taken 184 three-point shots this season. 

    Fortunately for him and his team, Barbour has made 49 percent of them. He averages 19.7 points per game, including shooting seven shots from deep per game.

    Barbour has scored in double figures in all but two games this season and has hit seven three-pointers in three games.

    Despite High Point’s 10-16 record, the team has threatened in a number of games, thanks in a large part to Barbour’s prowess from deep.

    In a narrow loss to Wake Forest, Barbour hit 7-of-11 threes and scored 35 points to go along with five rebounds.

    Fortunately for the Panthers, Barbour does not shy away from shooting.

    Unlike many of the other players on this list, he shoots often and connects too. 

    It is impressive, to say the least, that Barbour has been able to keep up his scorching performance for the entire season.

Brian Sullivan

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    Miami (Ohio) is a much better team than the Redhawks' 8-15 record suggests. Next season could be a turning point for the team, based on freshman Brian Sullivan’s play.

    Sullivan ranks in the top 15 nationally in three-point shooting percentage, converting shots at a blistering 48.4 percent.

    Sullivan shoots about five three-point shots per game and averages 10.3 points, second on the Redhawks team. 

    As the season has worn on, Sullivan has only gotten better. He recently had a streak of three games in which he scored in double figures.

    In a four-point loss to Vanderbilt, Sullivan scored 24 points on 8-of-10 three-point shooting. He shot 0-for-1 from inside the arc. 

    If Sullivan can continue or, better yet, improve his play for his sophomore campaign, Miami (OH) could make some noise in the Mid-American Conference.

Drew Hanlen

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    Belmont opened the season by almost knocking off sixth-ranked Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium. 

    In that game, Bruins guard Drew Hanlen went 4-of-5 from three-point range and scored 12 points. I

    t was simply a preview of things to come.

    On the season, Hanlen is shooting 47.8 percent from deep and is one of four (six if you round up) Belmont players averaging double-figures.

    It seems that the more three-pointers Hanlen shoots, the better he plays. He has scored more and more points as the season goes on. 

    In the past three games, Hanlen has shot nine, seven and seven threes and scored 21, 13 and 14 points, respectively. 

    The senior guard also contributes 3.3 rebounds and four assists per game, leading the Bruins to second place in the Atlantic Sun Conference.

Ceola Clark III

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    Yes, the Leathernecks is actually a team name.

    Western Illinois, to be exact.

    And while the name "Western Illinois Leathernecks" does not necessarily strike fear into the hearts of their opponents, senior guard Ceola Clark III should.

    Clark has a name that goes along well with his school’s mascot.

    And he has the game to back it up.

    Clark is shooting 47.5 percent from three-point range this season and scoring 14.5 points per game, leading his team. To top it off, Clark is second on his team with 4.2 rebounds per game and first with five assists.

    It is Clark’s three-point shooting that sets him apart, though.

    He is actually shooting slightly better from deep than overall.

    Clark has hit five threes in a game three times this season and turned in a 6-of-7 performance and 18 points against Eastern Illinois.

    Clark does a bit of everything for the Leathernecks and when he is hitting shots from deep, he is almost impossible to guard.

Dominique Morrison

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    Dominique Morrison has spent four years honing his game for Oral Roberts. He has improved his shooting percentage and points per game each season.

    His senior campaign, therefore, is his best yet.

    Morrison is shooting 47.3 percent from three-point range and 50 percent from the floor.

    Despite the fact that he is averaging almost one more three-point attempt per game than last season, his shooting percentage is much higher.

    Morrison is also leading the team in scoring, averaging 20.5 points per game. Oral Roberts has a 23-5 overall record this season and is comfortably in first place in the Summit League.

    In the Golden Eagles’ upset of then ninth-ranked Xavier, Morrison scored 19 points on 5-of-8 shooting from deep.

    He had a ridiculous game against Oral Roberts’ biggest challenger in the Summit League, South Dakota State. Morrison again shot 5-of-8 from three and 11-of-15 overall, scoring 38 points.

Ramon Galloway

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    Ramon Galloway does a bit of everything for La Salle. He leads the team by scoring 14.7 points per game and is second with 4.7 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game.

    One of Galloway’s biggest contributions to his team is through his three-point shooting.

    Galloway is shooting 47.2 percent from three and has attempted 123 shots from deep on the year despite missing three games early in the season. 

    Last season, Galloway shot just 33 percent from three and 35 percent overall. He has improved his stats across the board and now plays a much more important role in La Salle’s offense. 

    In a game against the George Washington Colonials, Galloway scored 28 points. He missed just one shot all night, shooting 6-of-7 from deep and 11-of-12 overall. 

    Galloway has shot 50 percent or better from three in 12 games so far this season. He is fully capable of providing a much needed boost and even carrying his team simply with his shooting.

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