The Michigan directional schools are making a serious play for my affection. First Eastern Michigan and the legendary Earl Boykins, and now the Chippewas of Central Michigan, who've doubled down on diminutive dribblers. (Yeah, that's right.)
Marcus Keene leads the nation in scoring with 30.2 per game, and he's deservedly received a great deal of run in the national media. Sports Illustrated just profiled the 5'9" guard, and he got an ESPN highlight package of his very own just two nights ago. He dropped 50 in a 101-92 win over Miami (OH), and a cool 36 when William & Mary came to Mount Pleasant.
Keene also gets 5.1 assists and a ridiculous 4.5 boards per game. A good percentage of those dimes come on passes to fellow 5'9" guard Braylon Rayson, who averages 20.3 points of his own in coach Keno Davis' freewheeling system.
Davis encourages his team to let fly - Central Michigan is 4th in the NCAA in points per game, 3rd in the country in 3-point attempts, and 2nd in 3-pointers made per game. And judging by some of Keene's highlights, he's cool with his players, um, expressing themselves. Check out what Keene does at the 5:40 mark of this highlight package against Wisconsin Green Bay:
Six point game, a couple of minutes to go, your starting point guard pulls of a gratuitous reverse spin and steps into a deep three, that he drains? Cool, cool.
So in Central Michigan we've got not one, but a pair of Tiny Archibaldalikes in one starting backcourt? Pinch me, I think I've found the Lollipop Guild. The Chips are 15-8, 5-5 in the MAC, so they're gonna need some luck to play on a bigger stage.
Perhaps we can arrange some leprechauns.