Who is Markquis Nowell breaking NCAA single-game record? NBA greats weight in on legendary display in Kansas vs Michigan March Madness
Markquis Nowell, the undersized point guard for Kansas State basketball, has been making a name for himself in the Big 12 conference.
Markquis Nowell’s NCAA Tournament run:
Rd of 64:
Rd of 32 (Kentucky):
Sweet 16 (Michigan St):
19 assists (NCAA Tourney RECORD)
Legend in the making. pic.twitter.com/piFzGqnNRK
— College Basketball Report (@CBKReport) March 24, 2023
Nowell is known for his prolific set-up skills, three-point shooting, and pesky defense, averaging over two steals per game in the past four seasons, including a career-high 2.4 per game in 2022-23.
Markquis Nowell told Isiah Thomas “WATCH THIS!” before sending Michigan State home in the Sweet Sixteen… pic.twitter.com/8OgzAWDjJM
— Detroit Sports Daily (@DetSportsDaily) March 24, 2023
In the NCAA Tournament, the 20 point scorer of sweet 16 showcased his talent, leading Kansas State to victory over No. 6-seeded Kentucky with 27 points, nine assists, and three steals. Despite being referred to as “the little kid” by Kentucky coach John Calipari, Nowell’s performance earned him national recognition and was even considered a candidate for Big 12 Player of the Year and Most Improved Player. He was also named a third-team AP All-American and made the Big 12’s All-Defensive team.
Nowell’s game is far from “little,” as he boasts no-look alley-oop passes, NBA-range three-pointers, and strong leadership on the court. His teammate even referred to him as “the best guard in the country.” While he may not be the biggest player, his skill and determination make him a force to be reckoned with in the Big 12 and on the national stage.
Markquis Nowell sets NCAA tournament record for assists
In the Sweet 16 matchup between Kansas State and Michigan State, the point guard for Kansas, made NCAA tournament history. The 23 years old led his team to a 98-93 overtime victory, scoring 20 points and recording 19 assists, a new tournament record. The previous record of 18 assists was held by former UNLV player Mark Wade, who achieved the feat in the 1987 Final Four.
Nowell was the standout player on the court, as both teams displayed impressive offensive skills. Michigan State shot 49.2% from the field, including 13-of-25 from beyond the arc and 18-of-22 from the free-throw line. Kansas needed a dominant performance from one of their players, and Nowell stepped up to the challenge. His 19 assists were instrumental in helping Kansas shoot 55.9% from the field.
The wildcats player facilitated his teammates’ scoring opportunities, resulting in six players for Kansas State scoring in double digits. With the exception of Nowell, all of his teammates shot well above 50% from the field, going a combined 31-of-50. Nowell himself had 20 points on 7-of-18 shooting.
Overall, Nowell’s performance was critical in Kansas’ victory, with his record-breaking 19 assists proving to be the decisive factor in securing the win. His impressive offensive and defensive skills, combined with his endurance, made him the standout player of the game.
Notably, Marquis played every minute of the first half, tallying five points and 10 assists. He played all but three minutes in the second half and overtime combined, demonstrating his stamina and endurance. Defensively, Nowell was also impressive, registering five steals.
NBA greats weight in on Markquis Nowell’s incredible performance
The current best PG made history in the NCAA tournament on Thursday by leading his team to a 98-93 overtime victory against Michigan State. Nowell was a standout player, scoring 20 points and recording 19 assists, breaking the tournament’s previous assist record.
Nba legend Kevin Durant appreciated Markquis Nowell and stated “That was a legendary display of controlling a basketball game Markquis. GG’s”.
The previous record for most assists was held by Mark Wade, a former UNLV player, who had 18 assists in the tournament’s Final Four stage in 1987. Nowell’s performance was exceptional, and he played a pivotal role in securing his team’s victory, solidifying his place in NCAA tournament history.
NBA great Magic Johnson also tweeted- “Congratulations to Kansas State men’s basketball team and especially point guard Markquis Nowell for becoming the NCAA Tournament record holder for assists in a game with 19 assists and 20 points.” Patrick Mahomes the NFL great congratulated Markquis Nowell on his performance.
Congratulations to Kansas State men's basketball team and especially point guard Markquis Nowell for becoming the NCAA Tournament record holder for assists in a game with 19 assists and 20 points.
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) March 24, 2023
What do you make of Markquis’s performance? Let us know in the comment section.
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