Dunks, three pointers getting more attention on the court

File basketball hoop
(WISH Photo, file/Nick Nebesny)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – College basketball is evolving, and TV highlight shows may have something to do with it.

There’s much more dunking and three point shooting than the old school two point jumper these days, and coaches have seen this coming for a while now.

“When you go out and are physically able to dunk a basketball,” says Purdue’s Matt Painter. “You dunk a basketball, you just do, and everybody is just married to that arc growing up, it’s three pointers getting more attention, so I think it’s just the culture of basketball.”

Butler’s first year coach Chris Holtmann agrees.

“We see a lot of offense now in college that are built to wither score deep two point field goals or shoot volume threes, I get it. The numbers would suggest that that’s an effective way to have an efficient attack,” said Holtmann.

Teams are increasingly passing up mid-range jumpers, looking for space and uncontested shots, which these days are found closer to the rim or beyond the three-point line. Shot tracking site hoopmath.com says 27 division one teams, including IU and Notre Dame have taken two-point jumpers on less than 20 percent of their attempts. That’s up from five teams falling into that category a few years ago.

Purdue’s Rapheal Davis says his high school coach wanted to model his team that way.

“I’m kind of an old-school guy, I work on my mid-range game, my pull up and things like that. I think it’s an essential part of the game, you gotta have a middle game, not always depend on the three or getting to the basket. I think it’d a part of the game that needs to come back,” said Davis.

Davis and others say the glory and the attention come from dunks and threes, so don’t expect things to change any time soon.

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