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Will Quentin Goodin be the first Musketeer to lead the team in assists for four straight years?

Veteran lead guards are worth their weight in gold in winning time, and few in the nation have been through the fire the way Quentin Goodin has.

NCAA Basketball: Big East Tournament-Villanova vs Xavier
Our little guy will punch on your big guys and not care.
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

As a freshman, Quentin Goodin had 131 assists (3.7 per game), 21 more than any Musketeer, despite starting fewer than half of the team’s games. As a sophomore, he had 171 (4.9 per game); no other Muskie cracked 100. Last year, he had 149 (4.8 pre game), battling injuries and adjusting to a roster less rich in scorers than he had enjoyed his first two years to lead the team in dimes by 32.

If he leads the team in assists this year, he will be - as far as I can tell - the first Musketeer to earn the team’s assist title four years running.

Q is an excellent point guard. He has been in the top 10 of the Big East in assist rate all three years and in the top 200 of the 4,100+ D1 players who appear in a given season. He also has seen his turnover rate drop every season since his freshman year. For having been thrown into the fire midway through what should have been an season of serving as Ed Sumner’s understudy, he has learned on the fly in an admirable way.

Goodin’s consistent excellence in distribution has occasionally left Xavier fans (including occasionally the ones who write for this website) to focus on his peripheral skills, which aren’t without flaw. His ORtg last year was a subpar 96.0, dragged down by a 43.8% EFG%. Despite his physical gifts, he was not a lockdown defender last season.

Various injuries held Q back last year, as he missed the first game with a shoulder issue that hampered him all year, and he got more than 5 minutes of rest exactly once in a game from the beginning of February on. The roster issues Xavier had left a load to be carried, and Goodin did his best to carry it.

This is all context to the idea that what we saw from Q last year was a diversion from the development we’re expecting from him, not it’s end. The number Xavier fans should be keeping an eye on is Goodin’s shots percentage, which is the percentage of the team’s shots he takes when he’s on the floor. His first two years, that number was about 15%. Last year it was 20.6%.

Assuming he stays reasonably healthy, it’s fait accompli that Goodin will lead the team in assists again this year. If he has the help - and the patience - to let his shots come to him and the health to finish in the lane using his bounce and otherworldly strength, his senior season will be one to remember, and the Muskies will follow their sometimes underappreciated leader deep into the tournament.