Scottie Reynolds made a career out of hitting big shots in big moments. Maybe that’s why his flaws went relatively unnoticed.
That began to change late in the season, and now after a dreadful performance in Villanova’s loss to Saint Mary’s, his storied career has come to what many feel is a premature end.
But a closer look at Reynolds’ numbers suggests that maybe college basketball fans should have seen this coming.
Reynolds finished his storied career at Villanova as the school’s second all-time leading scorer, trailing only Kerry Kittles and his $8,000 dollar parking ticket tab. He averaged 16.5 points and 3.5 assists while helping Villanova to a 99-40 record during his four years, including considerable NCAA Tournament success.
Despite all of the success throughout his career, Reynolds was prone to bad shot-selection and inconsistent perimeter shooting. His play in the NCAA Tournament was characteristic of his habit for dominating the ball, taking difficult shots, and doing little to help his team win.
Villanova ended up losing six of its final nine games this season despite having one of the deepest teams in college basketball. The Wildcats appeared to lack chemistry, as ball-movement virtually stopped and defensive rotations were slow.
Through it all, Reynolds just kept on firing. A career 36 percent shooter from 3-point range, Reynolds launched 25 3’s in the final four games of the season, connecting on just five. His 2-of-15 performance in ‘Nova’s narrow win over Robert Morris was filled with difficult runners and missed jumpers while he tried to shoot himself out of a slump.
A big part of college basketball is improvement. Unlike Steph Curry, Reynolds showed no interest in improving his play-making skills during his career despite being surrounding by a host of capable role players. His chances of making it in the NBA as a point guard just kept on getting worse.
Reynolds seems like a good dude, so the late-season struggles of himself and his team is tough to figure out. Maybe he was never as good as the numbers suggested. Maybe he just couldn’t shake his shooting guard mentality. Or maybe he was just plain selfish.
Villanova simply had way too much talent to be a one-man show. In the end, that’s why the Wildcats are going home early this year.