One would think that after enjoying one of the finest individual seasons in the history of Creighton basketball, sophomore forward Doug McDermott would feel content with where he is at among the all-time CU greats, but you would be wrong.
“I obviously had a good season this year, but I’m definitely looking to improve going into next year,” McDermott said.
McDermott has already put up numbers that no Creighton player has before him, with his 23.2 points per game average ranking third in the nation and his 765 total points this season being a school record. McDermott is also incredibly efficient, shooting 61 percent from the field and 49.5 percent from 3-point range. With these kinds of stats, one would think that improving on his game would be impossible, but individual statistics are not necessarily what the sophomore star is looking to improve on.
“I want to get more of the team stuff done,” McDermott said. “I want to win the Missouri Valley regular season title as well as the tournament again, and to become a better leader. I just really want to be consistent and not really worry about my numbers but making an impact on program as a whole.”
These are wise words from a player who just last season was on the verge of redshirting. It is a good thing his father, Creighton head coach Greg McDermott, decided against it. After averaging 14.9 points and 7.2 rebounds per game last season as a freshman, Doug McDermott burst onto the national stage this year with his consistent play, and high scoring and rebounding numbers.
Doug McDermott has been recognized for his jaw-dropping statistics and the awards continue to roll in. After earning first team All-Missouri Valley and Missouri Valley Player of the Year honors, Doug McDermott was named a first team All-American Monday by the United States Basketball Writers Association. He was joined on the first team by Anthony Davis of the University of Kentucky, Draymond Green of Michigan State University, Thomas Robinson of Kansas University and Jared Sullinger of Ohio State University. McDermott was also named a first team All-American by ESPN’s Jason King and a second team All-American by “The Sporting News” and CBSsports.com.
Improving on this stellar season may seem impossible considering all the fortunes the team has had this year. But the Bluejays have at least one more game as they face Alabama in an NCAA tournament second round game on Friday. Many tournament experts are already looking past the first game, instead focusing on the possible third round matchup with North Carolina and McDermott’s former high school teammate, Harrison Barnes. McDermott is not one of those people.
“It would be cool if I could meet up with Harrison in the third round,” McDermott said. “I doubt it’s happened a lot. But we have a tough matchup with a good Alabama team first.”
That kind of attitude is part of what makes McDermott a special player. It is hard to believe a kid that was not even recruited by his own father out of high school is doing such special things for his dad and the team now, and Greg McDermott couldn’t be prouder.
“To see all of his hard work culminate with this type of an honor is really hard to put into words how proud that Theresa, his mother, and I are of him,” Greg McDermott said.
For a player that has stood up to all the challenges that he has faced during his basketball career, Friday is just another stepping stone on the path to greatness, and Doug McDermott is up for the task.