Friday had a little bit of everything in the college basketball world.
From semi-finals of the Gildan Charleston Classic and the Tire Pros Invitational, to the Michigan Wolverines routing the SMU Mustangs to win the 2K Classic at Madison Square Garden, there was plenty of high-quality basketball on display all day long.
In terms of individual performances, Friday was all about the juniors, as several carried their teams to victory.
A pair of juniors and a senior put together stat lines and performances that earned them a spot on the College Court Report Three Stars for November 18th, 2016.
First Star: Deandre Burnett – Ole Miss Rebels
Stat Line: 41 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists
Deandre Burnett is in his first year of action with the Ole Miss Rebels after transferring from the Miami (FL) Hurricanes after just one season, and he’s already making a name for himself with his new team.
Over his first two games, he averaged 17.5 points per contest while going a combined 16-of-16 from the free throw line, helping guide the Rebels to a 2-0 record to open the 2016-17 season.
On Friday, he continued his hot start to the year.
Against the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles, Burnett recorded a game-high 41 points, and added 4 rebounds and 4 assists. The Rebels needed overtime, but came away with the 95-88 win.
Burnett played 41 minutes on the day, and finished the game going 12-of-19 from the floor, and a sparkling 9-of-12 from three point range. To top things off, he kept his perfect free throw shooting mark intact, going 8-of-8 from the line in the win.
Second Star: Sean O’Brien – Southern Illinois Salukis
Stat Line: 22 points, 9 rebounds, 9 assists
Friday night marked a new career-high for Sean O’Brien, the star of the Southern Illinois Salukis.
Over his first three seasons with the Salukis, O’Brien has been a steady, reliable force inside. He’s averaged at least 4.9 rebounds and 1.2 assists per contest. He hasn’t been known to be a high scorer, but he’s done his part through three games in 2016-17, averaging 13.0 points per contest before Friday’s game.
Against the SIU-Edwardsville Cougars, O’Brien flirted with a triple-double. In the Salukis’ 101-83 victory, he recorded a season-high 22 points, 9 rebounds, and a career-high 9 assists to lead the team.
O’Brien finished the game going 9-of-11 from the field, which is the third time this season he has finished a game with a shooting percentage above 50%.
Third Star: Josh Robinson – Austin Peay Governors
Stat Line: 31 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists
Last season, Austin Peay was the talk of the town come NCAA Tournament time, advancing to the Big Dance after winning the Ohio Valley Conference tournament as an 8-seed.
A big reason for their post-season success last season was guard Josh Robinson. With forward Chris Horton out of the picture this season, the Governors are now led by the junior guard from St. Louis.
Entering Friday’s action, Robinson has recorded games of 26 points and 17 points this season, an average of 21.5 points per game. Against the Northern Kentucky Norse, he continued his strong play to start the season.
Robinson scored a game-high 31 points against the Norse, leading Austin Peay to the 77-69 victory. He played all 40 minutes on the night, and finished the game shooting 11-of-16 (68.8%) from the field.
Add in his 5 rebounds and 3 assists, and it was an all-round strong performance from Robinson.
– T. Bennett