Who says little guys can’t bang in the paint?
Don’t say that to Deonte Burton.
Now, Burton isn’t exactly small, but at 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, he certainly isn’t big either. That didn’t stop the sophomore from beating up on bigger defenders in the Big East Conference to become one of Marquette's best scorers heading into the 2014-15 season.
It’s always a good thing when schools are able to win over their local, highly touted recruits. Marquette was able to do that when they were able to keep the Milwaukee, Wisconsin native in the Brew City for his collegiate years.
You would think the left-hander would make his living from the outside and use his shooting ability like most shooting guards.
However, Burton does most of his work in the paint using his strength and unique shot making ability to get his points.
The guard/forward started slow like most freshman, but by the end of the season was a large part of MU’s offense. Burton capped of the season with an impressive output of 23 points on 9-14 from the field in a loss to Xavier.
Now, with Todd Mayo no longer with the program, Burton will be looked at much more to be a scorer, as he will likely be inserted into the starting lineup.
The question will still remain, though: can he continue to score amongst the trees?
We’ve seen in college basketball before it doesn’t take a 7-footer to score in the paint or post in college. Heck, look at former Golden Eagle Davante Gardner. Davante is 6-foot-8, which is short for a forward, and could not jump a lick at almost 300 pounds. However, that didn’t stop Gardner from being almost unstoppable inside with his athleticism and quick feet to go through bigger defenders rather than over.
It’s a challenge Burton will face his entire collegiate career, but we’ve already seen positive signs, and I think big things are on the horizon.