Marcus Sasser was the catalyst for Houston to have one of the best seasons in program history. After a toe injury derailed his junior season and limited him to just 12 games, the guard played in 36 games and averaged 16.8 points and 3.1 assists per game as the Cougars locked up a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and spent much of the season ranked atop the Top 25.
He was the first Cougar to be named a Consensus First-Team All-American since Hakeem Olajuwon in 1984. The 6-foot-2-inch guard shot 38% from 3-point land on seven attempts per game. His playmaking was also on display as he ranked fifth in the American with a 1.95 assist-to-turnover ratio.
The 22-year-old senior carried Houston’s defensive attack. He is a ferocious perimeter defender and collected 1.6 steals per game. One cannot undervalue the experience he has over other players in the Draft as he played 107 games over his four-year career.
Height: 6 feet, 2 inches
Weight: 195 pounds
Wingspan: 6 feet, 7 inches
3-point shooting, defense
Sasser is a gifted 3-point shooter. He can catch and shoot and knock down shots off the dribble. In his shortened junior campaign, he converted on 44% from deep on 8.6 attempts per game. While those numbers dipped a bit as a senior, he still shot 40% over his final two years. On top of his shooting ability, he takes care of the basketball and posted a 1.95 assist-to-turnover ratio last season.
The Dallas native is a pesky perimeter defender that gives opponents fits. His effort and discipline that lead to this success. He posted 1.6 steals per game this past season. He was a big reason why Houston finished the season as a top-five team in KenPom adjusted defense efficiency.
Areas to improve
Size, finishing at rim
At 6-feet, 2-inches, Sasser is undersized for the NBA. He will be matching up with players who are bigger and stronger. He will have to get his shot off quickly before athletic closeouts. Defensively, he will make up for his small stature with his discipline.
Tied to his small frame, he will have difficulty finishing at the rim. He won’t rely on that aspect of his game. Staying on the perimeter and relying on his defense are the way to increase his playing time.
Projected draft range: late first, early second round
Sasser sets up to be a perfect combo guard in the NBA. While his game resembles that of a shooting guard more, he is undersized for that position. His defensive ability and shooting touch will carry him into the lineup.