3-point line out farther in ’19-20
YOUNGSTOWN — Three-point shooting.
It changed in college basketball prior to the 2008-09 season, the distance increasing a foot out to 20 feet, 9 inches.
This upcoming season, NCAA Division I players will have to shoot from the current international line of 22 feet, 1.75 inches, a move made by college basketball’s governing body earlier this month.
NCAA.org said when the line was moved from 19-9 to 20-9 more than 10 years ago, the percentage of 3s around the country dropped from 35.2 to 34.4 percent. The shooting percentage from long range didn’t recover until the 2017-18 season, when it crept back to 35.2 percent.
What’s going to happen this time around when it is a more sizable move?
Youngstown State University men’s basketball coach Jerrod Calhoun said it’ll help the game, providing more space for players.
“I think the guys that are shooting long-range shots it won’t affect,” he said. “Some of these guys that are borderline shooters, I think you’ll see some different numbers this year in college basketball.
“I think it spaces the floor. It gives players more room to operate.”
YSU’s leading scorer last season, soon-to-be sophomore Darius Quisenberry, said the move helps players aspiring to play at the next level.
“I think it’s kind of good if you get used to it, if you go play overseas or go play professionally,” he said. “I think it’s good for college basketball.”
Do players adjust? Does this bring back more mid-range jumpers to the game?
“I’ve had a lot of kids over the years take a lot of mid-range shots,” Calhoun said. “Devin Morgan took a lot for us last year. You see in the NBA Kawhi Leonard. He makes a killing on mid-range shots.”
Quisenberry said most players are going to try to get inside that 3-point line. The possibility is there will be more pull-ups, more two-point shots than previously.
“Getting to the paint is going to be a big part, it’s always a big part of basketball, to get into the paint to make plays for other players,” he said. “The 3-point line, it’s not too far back, but it makes a difference for some players.”
YSU shot 35.4 percent from 3 a year ago and held teams to 35 percent. The Penguins had a Horizon League-best 475 attempts, making 168 of those shots. YSU held teams to 139 of 397 last season from 3.
The new line gives more space for players like Quisenberry, Jelani Simmons and Morgan.
“We took a lot of 3s last year, live by the 3, die by the 3,” Calhoun said. “Sometimes we died a lot because we were so young. We’ve got to get to the free-throw line more, put pressure on the rim. Hopefully with that line being bigger, that allows these guys to drive the ball, the Jelanis, the Devins, the Dariusus.
“Hopefully with the space now, we can get more free-throw attempts.”