One locked-in shooter can win a game all by himself in today's college basketball game. With teams slowing the pace down more than ever and offensive production in a drought, all it takes is a handful of quick threes to drastically alter the outcome of a game.
Heading into the 2013-14 season, there are quite a few sharpshooters from high- or mid-major programs set to take the national stage. Let's take a look at the best returning three-point shooters in college hoops.
Doug McDermott, senior, Creighton
McDermott has seemingly been in college forever, probably because he's torched opponents on the offensive end nearly every night. While McDermott's offensive game is well-rounded, he shot nearly 50 percent from behind the arc last season, making 74 of his 149 attempts. He was also one of the nation's leading scorers at 23.1 points per game.
We should expect more of the same from the senior-to-be. McDermott reportedly shined at the Team USA camp, and he will be more determined than ever to make one final run in March. He's arguably the top returning offensive player in the country.
Nik Stauskas, sophomore, Michigan
Stauskas was great from behind the arc all year long with the Wolverines, making 71-of-158 shots from deep. That's nearly 45 percent in a conference that's always placed an emphasis on sound defensive play. He burst onto the national scene in the Elite 8, hitting all six of his three-pointers against Florida as Michigan moved onto the Final Four.
With Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. headed to the NBA, Michigan coach John Beilein will ask Stauskas to take on a larger role. He averaged 11 points per game as a true freshman, and if the video below is any indication, there's a good chance that number increases substantially in 2014.
Joe Jackson, senior, Memphis
Jackson has seen a lot of ups and downs during his tenure at Memphis, but the senior-to-be has continually improved his jump shot over the years. He's not a chucker from behind the arc, shooting just 79 threes last season, but with a 45 percent conversion rate, he's as dangerous as any shooter in the country if given space to operate.
It was a bit of a surprise when Jackson decided to forgo declaring for the NBA to return for his senior season. Now, coach Josh Pastner will look for him to lead a young group of Tigers that most analysts have in their preseason top-20 rankings.
Myles Mack, junior, Rutgers
Mack may be undersized at 5'9 and 165 pounds, but he will be one of the top returning guards in college hoops next season. Despite playing on a team that won just five Big East games last year, Mack averaged 13.6 points while hitting 46.2 percent of his three-pointers.
Defenses will really focus on Mack next season, and the coaching staff will likely ask him to be more of a ball distributor as a result. That being said, look for him to put up another big season from behind the arc in the newly minted American Athletic Conference.
Michael Frazier II, sophomore, Florida
Frazier didn't play a ton of minutes as a true freshman due to the Gators' depth, but that didn't stop him from contributing. He shot 48.5 percent from deep, making 50 of his 103 attempts. Head coach Billy Donovan selected Frazier for the Team USA U19 team this past summer, winning a gold medal alongside some of the top high school recruits in the nation.
As Florida loses its two best guards and top-three scorers overall, Frazier will see an even bigger role next season. That could mean big things for the Tampa native. Do not be surprised if this 6'6 guard ends the year as the most feared shooter in the SEC.