Mississippi State Bulldogs: Top Shooters of the 2000s
Here is a retrospective of the top five shooters for the Bulldogs in the 2000s.
No. 5: Ben Hansbrough (2006-2008)
Despite never living up to lofty expectations in his two seasons in Starkville, Hansbrough still emerged as a reliable scorer off the bench for Rick Stansbury. A decent three-point shooter, Hansbrough shot 38.5 percent from beyond the arc his first two seasons.
Like his brother, Hansbrough was never the most athletic player on the floor, instead relying on steady diet of pull-up jumpers and spot-up three pointers.
While his shooting percentage dropped in second season, from 42.9 to 41.5 percent, Hansbrough always had the Ricky Davis-mentality on the court. His scoring average did jump from 7.3 to 10.5 points per game as a sophomore.
He has since transferred to Notre Dame.
No. 4: Timmy Bowers (2001-2005)
Currently playing professionally overseas, Bowers started every game for the Bulldogs his final two seasons. He teamed with Lawrence Roberts to lead Mississippi State to a second seed in the 2004 NCAA Tournament. That season he scored nearly 20 percent of his team's field goals.
Bowers' late-game heroics in the Bulldogs' win over Alabama in the regular season finale, where he hit a buzzer-beating jumper to send the game into overtime, helped Mississippi State clinch its first outright SEC title since 1962.
Bowers was among the top 15 three-point shooters in the SEC in every year of his Bulldog career, peaking in 2002-2003 when he shot 41.2 percent from long range, good for sixth in the conference.
He had career averages of 11.2 points per game, while shooting 42.8 percent from the floor and 36.9 percent from beyond the arc.
No. 3: Reginald Delk (2005-2007)
Bowers and Delk are virtually interchangeable on this list, but the latter gets the nod here for one simple reason: he was primarily a jump shooter, whereas Bowers' game was multifaceted.
Delk (pictured here with his new school), averaged 9.2 points per game on 44.6 percent shooting from the floor. Always a solid long-range shooter, he was sixth in the conference in three-point shooting his freshman season, at 41 percent.
Much like Hansbrough, Delk played on teams that featured Jamont Gordon and Charles Rhodes, and was never asked to do more than be a jump shooter. He wasn't exceptionally good at anything outside of shooting.
Still, when he was on, Delk was an explosive scorer. He dropped 18 points on Santa Clara as a freshman, connecting on 5-of-9 three-pointers.
Interestingly, Delk's free throw shooting was downright Rodman-esque. He shot 45.3 percent from the charity stripe in his two seasons in Starkville.
No. 2: Shane Power (2003-2005)
After transferring from Iowa State, the Crown Point, Indiana native made an immediate impact on the aforementioned 2004 tournament team, tallying 9.7 points per game while generally deferring to Bowers and Roberts.
On the court Power was systematic, a sharpshooter with more precision than an atomic clock, while making the most of his playing time alongside his high-flying teammates. In his first year at Mississippi State, he shot 49.5 percent from the field and an absurd 48.1 percent from three-point range.
While his numbers dropped his senior season, he still shot 42.5 percent from the field, while averaging 11.1 points per game. He was the beneficiary of many kick-outs from Bowers.
Jamont Gordon, Barry Stewart, Winsome Frazier, and Sleepy Slater all earn a honorable mention nod, but the best shooter of the decade is...
No. 1: Ravern Johnson (2007-present)
The only player on this list (aside from Bowers) who can consistently create his own shot, is also the best shooter of the decade. The enigmatic junior is only now beginning to reign in his vast abilities. He leads the Bulldogs with 14.8 points per game, on a robust 53.6 percent shooting from the field and 48.7 from three-point range.
At six-foot-seven, Johnson gets so much elevation on his jumper that he can get his shot off over most defenders. His game resembles that of former Memphis forward (and current Philadelphia 76er) Rodney Carney: a freakish athlete with three-point range, who can also put the ball on the floor.
While, it remains to be seen if his game can translate to the next level (DraftExpress has him listed as only a marginal prospect), Johnson is thriving against collegiate competition and he's only going to get better.
Earlier this season, he sank five three-pointers in a win against UCLA, finishing with a career-high 29 points, on a methodical 12-for-15 shooting from the floor.
In games this decade, Johnson is shooting 46 percent from the field, while connecting on 41 percent of his three-pointers.