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Butler: Taking a look at Kellen Dunham

Butler’s leading scorer from last year will look to replicate his performance this season.

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Michael Hickey

There were a lot of changes for Butler from 2012 to 2013. The biggest was the departure of head coach Brad Stevens to the Boston Celtics. Butler also lost their three leading scorers from the 2012-2013 season, Rotnei Clarke and Andrew Smith graduated while Roosevelt Jones injured his wrist last August and was sidelined the whole season. And, to top it all off, they moved from the Atlantic 10 to the Big East Conference.

This left a lot of ground for the Bulldogs to make up offensively. One player that helped out in a big way was sophomore guard Kellen Dunham.

As is typical of a Brad Stevens recruited player, Kellen Dunham is a native of the Indianapolis area. Pendleton, to be exact. His senior year in high school saw him lead the state of Indiana in scoring (29.5 points per game) and free throw percentage (92.1 percent). He seemed to have his mind set on Butler all along, for he committed in July of 2010 even though he did not graduate high school until 2012.

Dunham's first season as a Bulldog saw some of that scoring prowess carry over. He was second on the team in 3-point field goals (57), and fifth on the team in scoring (9.5 points per game).   The biggest game of the 2012-13 season for Dunham was his 17-point showing in the Bulldogs' upset of North Carolina in the 2012 Maui Invitational.

As mentioned above, the Bulldogs were without their three best scoring options from 2012 going into last season. It was Kellen Dunham though that picked up right where he left off at the end of that season. Dunham led Butler in scoring (16.4 points per game), 3-point field goals (78), and minutes played (36.1 per game). He also tied Butler's record for three-pointers made in a game with an impressive display in which he drained his first seven 3-pointers against Seton Hall on March 8. There is a natural tendency to compare Kellen Dunham to Doug McDermott, but as he told the Indianapolis Star's Zak Keefer, "I'm not trying to be Doug here".

Dunham is staying busy this offseason by playing for Athletes In Action, a Christian group which uses sports as a platform for spiritual growth. The past two weeks saw Kellen and the rest of the AIA athletes venture to the Philippines to play some of the best teams in the country.

With Roosevelt Jones scheduled to return, and Kellen Dunham continuing to grow as a player, Butler's offensive woes from this past year likely will not be hanging around for the 2014-2015 season.