12.10.07

New NCAA Assists Record Belongs To Someone With Very Good SAT Scores

Posted in Basketball, College Spurts at 1:20 pm by

Playing college basketball at Grinnell College seems like a pretty good deal. Yeah, you’re very far from any other school — or almost any other non-maize-based life form — but you get to play in the most absurdly hyperactive offensive scheme ever unleashed on a basketball court. Grinnell runs an offense based entirely around scoring more 3-pointers than your opponent does 2-pointers, and shifts its lineup in hockey-style five-man shifts to ensure that there are always fresh chuckers on the floor. Yes, a Grinnell education offers a good degree, some interesting classes, and (I’m sure) plenty of recreational drinking opportunities, but for basketball players it also offers an opportunity to someday tell bored co-workers about how you averaged 17 PPG in college. It’s a good idea to leave out the fact that everyone else on your team also averaged 17 PPG.

And while a Grinnell education will cost your parents something like $120,000 over four years even if you’re on the basketball team, can you really put a price on handing out an NCAA-record 34 assists? The AP’s Luke Meredith reports on a record that was set in front of somewhere between 12 and 200 people:


David N. Arseneault (above) shattered the NCAA assists record when he had 34 in Grinnell College’s 151-112 win over North Central University of Minnesota in a Division III game Saturday…

On Saturday, coach David M. Arseneault, the guard’s father, planned to take a different tack by playing two of his best offensive players, John Grotberg and Keith Chamberlain, in 10-minute shifts to see how many points they could score.

When Arseneault had 14 assists by halftime, the team shifted its focus.

Arseneault, Grinnell’s career leader in assists, broke the record with 7:33 left to play.

“I didn’t even think it was possible. That’s just so many assists that I thought there was no way,” Arseneault said. “I had fun during every minute of the game.”

Grotberg finished with 49 points, going 14-of-38 from 3-point range, and Chamberlain finished with 39 points and 14 rebounds.

Arseneault had 22 points and doubled his previous career high for assists. His father felt the total could have been higher, noting the Pioneers were just 23-of-86 from 3-point range off passes from his son.

Aresneault may not go on to play at the next level, but he has at least joined Weber State’s Harold “The Show” Arcenaux on the short list of quality college players with that last name. Kudos on that, kid. Thanks to Brendan Flynn for the link.

3 Responses to “New NCAA Assists Record Belongs To Someone With Very Good SAT Scores”

  1. As someone who actually attended that fine institution (and has the student loan bills to prove it), I can safely say a couple of things:

    1) the attendance was probably closer to 200, watching the basketball team’s home games was a fairly popular thing, especially when SI and ESPN took notice of Arsenault’s system a couple years ago.
    2) Drinking: there’s not much else to do in that town.

  2. Jason says:

    34 assists + 63 missed 3′s on Arseneault passes = at least 97 “potential assists.” Assuming time of possession was roughly proportional to the final score, he passed to a shooter 4 times a minute while Grinnell had the ball.

  3. David Roth says:

    That’s Grinnell for you. It’s a shame that they were so terrible their one time on ESPN a couple of years ago. They’re like the old Lions Silver Stretch teams of the ’90s, except better at what they do and — by dint of the lack of other available pursuits in the area — probably even better at drinking beer. Apologies to Chris Spielman if he’s in any way slighted by that last comment.

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