Thousands of college basketball players dream of the leading role in this script. Only a rare talent actually gets to live it.
Creighton senior Doug McDermott, the likely Player of the Year in college basketball, left little doubt he deserves the honor Saturday night by making his final home game one of the most memorable and historic of a legendary career.
McDermott scored a career-best 45 points and became the eighth player in history to eclipse the 3,000-point mark while moving into seventh place on the NCAA career scoring list. Oh by the way, he led the Bluejays to a 88-73 triumph over Providence.
The classic performance came in front of 18,888, the largest crowd in Creighton history on a day when a local newspaper columnist for the Omaha World-Herald suggested the school should commission a statue in McDermott's honor.
"It's about as good as it gets man," McDermott said in his postgame interview with CBS on the court before senior day ceremonies began. "I couldn't dream of anything like this. Just a surreal moment with so many great fans. We've got a long ways to go though."
McDermott passed former Cincinnati star Oscar Robertson and former Bradley standout Hersey Hawkins on the career scoring list. He now has 3,009 career points in 140 games, the second most games played among the top-10 scorers on the list. He is 49 points behind former St. Peter's star Keydren Clark and 57 points away from moving into fifth place, surpassing Harry Kelly of Texas Southern.
"Doug has had a flair for the big games his entire career and I can't think of a more fitting way for him to end a really great career here at Creighton than the way he played tonight," Creighton coach and Doug's father Greg McDermott said.
Doug McDermott broke the 3,000-point mark midway through the second half with a deep 3-point shot. He said he was aware he was two points shy of 3,000 at the time because he saw his total on the scoreboard.
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