Thursday, July 25, 2013

Top 20 Departing #6: Damon Heuir

I am counting down the top 20 players that are departing the Big Sky via graduation, transfer, or any other way.

It could be easily argued that no player had a bigger role in his team's offensive gameplan than Damon Heuir did for Southern Utah last season. His 29.7% of possessions used was second in the Big Sky (behind Troy Huff). Unlike Huff, he was the Thunderbirds PG, meaning he had the ball in his hands all the time, bringing it up the court. His 24.8 Assist Rate was eighth in the conference, and none of the guys in front of him shot the ball as much as Heuir did.

All of this shooting led to some gaudy numbers - 15.5 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 3.2 APG. However, the fact that he had the ball in his hands so much might have been a little bit of a function of the fact that SUU didn't have a lot of offensive playmakers. Outside of Heuir and Jackson Stevenett (who we will hear more about later in this series), they didn't really have anyone consistently capable of creating good opportunities for themselves.

The biggest flaw in his game was that when he took twos, he shot 40% on them. And he took a lot, over six per game. That level of inefficiency crushed his ORtg, which was a solid but average 95.2. He shot 33% on three-pointers, which won't rank anywhere near the top of the conference but is not a bad rate. As mentioned, his assist rate was good, but he coupled it with a fairly high TO rate of 20.9, which is more than you would like to see your PG turning it over.

Another benefit to his offensive game was that he was solid at drawing fouls, and took about five free throws per game. Since he was a 77% FT shooter, this was big for the TBirds. Also, for a 6'2'' guard, Heuir rebounded well, posting a 10.4 DR%.

If you look at Heuir's efficiency numbers, there are some other guys that you could argue should be ahead of him on these rankings. However, because of the breadth of things he had to do for Southern Utah last year, and the fact that he was able to contribute in so many ways, he will be a difficult guy for Nick Robinson to replace.

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