Last season former Oklahoma point guard Trae Young became the first player to lead the country in points and assists per game, showing there are still records than can be broken despite 80 years of history in the sport.
Here are Division I men’s college basketball records that could potentially be broken this season.
Record holder: Lionel Simmons, La Salle – 115 games
Record-breaking candidate: Chris Clemons, Campbell
You may not have heard of Clemons or seen him play but the 5-9 dynamo for Campbell was fourth nationally in scoring last season at 24.9 points per game and among active players, he’s one of the most accomplished career scorers.
Clemons has scored in double figures in 82 consecutive games, dating back to January 9, 2016. The guard has scored in double figures in 96 of his 97 career games with the only blemish coming against Gardner-Webb on January 6, 2016, when he scored nine points.
In order to break Lionel Simmons’ 28-year-old record, Clemons will have to score in double figures in Campbell’s first 34 games. The biggest issue for Clemons’ pursuit of the record books might be the number of games his team plays this season rather than his ability to crack the 10-point mark game after game. He’s done the latter for the entirety of the last two seasons but Campbell has played at least 34 games just twice in program history.
Record holder: Gary Buchanan, Villanova – 73 free throws
Record-breaking candidate: Markus Howard, Marquette
Another one of the most prolific scorers in the country, Marquette’s Markus Howard ranked in the top 40 in points per game as a sophomore, in part because of his efficiency at the free throw line. His 93.8 percent free throw percentage was the second-best mark nationally.
He was 105-for-112 from the charity stripe last season and he didn’t miss a free throw from March 5, 2017 to January 23, 2018 – a stretch that included 66 consecutive makes – so he has already been within striking distance of the record.
There’s reason to believe Howard will get to the line even more as a junior after the graduation of guard Andrew Rowsey, who played a team-best 32.7 minutes per game last season and used a team-high 30.1 percent of Marquette’s possessions when he was on the floor. Without his former running mate in the Golden Eagles’ backcourt, Howard will likely shoulder an even heavier percentage of the team’s offensive load, giving him more chances to get to the free throw line, where he rarely misses.
Record holder: Steph Curry, Davidson – 162 three-pointers
Record-breaking candidate: Fletcher Magee, Wofford
It’s obviously rarified air to be mentioned in the same breath as Steph Curry, especially when it comes to three-point shooting. We’re not saying Wofford’s Fletcher Magee will have the same career path as the three-time NBA champion and two-time MVP Curry, but it’s not unrealistic to think he could make a run at Curry’s record for treys in a season.
Magee made 148 three-pointers as a junior, which was 14 more than any other player in the country. He attempted nearly 10 a game and made nearly 4.5, on average, which was good for a 43.9 percent three-point percentage.
If the reigning Southern Conference Player of the Year can increase his outside shooting percentage to where it was his freshman season (47.9 percent) while maintaining his number of attempts from last season, Magee could challenge Curry’s record if Wofford plays roughly 35 games this season.
Record holder: Travis Bader, Oakland – 504 three-point field goals
Record-breaking candidate: Fletcher Magee, Wofford
If Magee were to repeat his three-point total from last season (148 threes) during his senior campaign, he’d finish his college career with 499 three-pointers – just five shy of Bader’s record. So let’s say at least one of the following happens: Magee’s three-point percentage increases, Magee attempts more three-pointers per game or Wofford plays more games next season than last season.
If one, let alone multiple, of those happen, it isn’t hard to create a hypothetical – but reasonable – scenario where he finishes his senior season with at least 154 three-pointers.
Record holder: Devontae Cacok, UNC-Wilmington – 80.0%
Record-breaking candidate: Udoka Azubuike, Kansas
Of course, we’ll have to at least mention Cacok as a candidate to break his own record since the UNC-Wilmington forward still has one year of eligibility. But his field-goal percentage took a significant dip last season (58.5%) after his record-setting sophomore season as he attempted more than five more shots per game.
However, we’ve identified Kansas big man Udoka Azubuike as a candidate to potentially break Cacok’s record. Azubuike shot 77 percent from the field as a sophomore and with the influx of talent in Lawrence from now-eligible transfers and talented freshmen, he’ll be one of many dangerous scoring options on a team that could debut at No. 1 in the preseason AP Top 25 poll.
Record holders: UCLA, Duke – 134 weeks
Record-breaking candidate: Duke
Duke entered last season second all-time in most weeks ranked No. 1, trailing UCLA by five weeks. Well, the Blue Devils started the 2017-18 season by being ranked No. 1 in the first five polls.
With one of the most heralded freshman classes in the country, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine Duke is ranked No. 1 in the AP Top 25 poll at least one week this season to take the all-time lead from UCLA.
While the Bruins have frequently ranked in the AP Top 25 poll, they haven’t been ranked No. 1 since the first week of 2007.