In recent years, college basketball has passed legislation to increase scoring, and if this season is any indication, those rule changes have been a success.
“When I played in ’99, I didn’t have much problem scoring, but there was a trend where scoring was really dipping,” CBS college basketball analyst Wally Szczerbiak said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “It was down to the lowest in 40 or 50 years at 66 points a game. Now with the rule changes, it’s up six to seven points a game, shooting percentage is higher – both field-goal and three-point percentage. Me being an offensive player, it’s nice to see the ball go through the basket and actually score points and not be playing games in the 40s and 50s. I think the rule changes have totally changed the game, not only for the players and coaches, but also for the fans. I think it’s in a really good place this year. I hope the tournament continues it and fans can really see it and appreciate it.”
The 30-second shot clock, which was introduced in the 2015-16 season, has been well-received, not to mention effective.
“I knowing having played the game, the more possessions you have and the more shots you get at the basket, the more chance you have to get into rhythm as a shooter,” Szczerbiak said. “As a result, we’re seeing more shot attempts just because there’s more possessions. We’re seeing teams run and get easier baskets, and the defense isn’t as controlling of the game. You can’t hold, you can’t grab – both on ball and off ball – and I think it’s really helped the offensive players out a lot.”
So has the influence of one Steph Curry.
“Watching a guy like Steph Curry, who’s become an anomaly with the way he can shoot the ball, I think a lot of these kids are working on their jump shots more, and as a result, they’re becoming better shooters,” Szczerbiak said. “There’s no question. Five years ago, guys weren’t making shots at a high rate and a high percentage. This year, you can definitely tell guys are shooting the ball a lot better. I think that’s because they’re working on it a lot more in the offseason and it’s part of their practice regimen and they’re trying to copy guys like Steph Curry – because if you want to make it to the NBA, if you want to be an elite player, you better be able to shoot the ball.”