There are impact transfers all over the country this season, each paying dividends for their respective institutions.
Over the past seven days, following Christmas and entering the New Year, the case could be made for DeAndre Harris as one of the best players in the entire country.
Heading into the Christmas break, Harris had been finding his stride for the Nicholls Colonels, and out of the break, he continued right where he left off.
Yes, three of the Colonels’ last five games were against non-Division I opponents, but that doesn’t take away from what Harris was able to accomplish on the hardwood.
Colonels’ fans knew they had something special in Harris, and he wasted little time in making an impact with his new team. Against the Boston College Eagles in their season opener, Harris recorded 28 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals in the Colonels’ 79-73 upset victory on the road.
Since then, he’s been the team’s top scorer on the year. This past week, Harris set a career-high on Wednesday, and reset his career high on Saturday to close out 2016 in style.
Over the two wins for the Colonels this past week, one of which was their Southland Conference opener, Harris averaged a blistering 38.5 points per contest.
For his efforts, graduate transfer DeAndre Harris has been named the College Court Report Player of the Week for the week of December 26 – January 1!
Before coming to the Colonels, Harris played two seasons in the Conference USA with the North Texas Mean Green. In the 2014-15 season, he averaged 6.9 points and 2.3 rebounds per contest.
This season with the Colonels, the play of Harris has been a pleasant surprise. While he is streaky at times with his scoring and overall production, he is a threat to go off at any given time, and he proved that twice over the past week.
Up first, the Colonels welcomed the Spring Hill Badgers to town to close out the non-conference portion of their schedule. After a 14-point performance in his last outing, Harris came out looking to carry his team to victory on Wednesday night.
The Colonels held down home court with an 88-64 victory, using a big first half to put separation between themselves and the Badgers. Harris was the star of the show, recording a career-high 35 points to go along with 4 rebounds and 4 steals in just 29 minutes of action.
He also shot 11-of-20 from the field, and 10-of-15 from the free throw line.
Three days later, the Colonels opened up conference play with a game on New Year’s Eve against the Incarnate Word Cardinals. Still riding the high of his career performance on Wednesday, Harris made sure that he ended 2016 with a bang.
Not only would Harris lead the Colonels to the 94-84 win over the Cardinals to end 2016, he one-upped himself from the game prior.
Before picking up his fifth foul of the game, Harris played 36 minutes on Saturday, and set a new career-high with 42 points in the Colonels’ win. He shot an even 50.0% (12-of-24) from the field, and added 6 rebounds and 3 assists for his second-straight sound performance on both ends of the floor.
For the second straight game, he had double-digit attempts from the free throw line, finishing 15-of-21 from the charity stripe against Incarnate Word.
Over the two games, Harris put the team on his back and helped carry them to two big wins, extending their winning streak to three games in the process.
He averaged a cool 38.5 points per contest last week to close out 2016 with a statement. Harris also added 5.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 3.0 steals to go along with his bounty of points.
Harris shot a combined 23-of-44 (52.3%) from the field, 6-of-16 (37.5%) from three point range, and 25-of-36 (69.4%) from the free throw line.
For the year, the 6’3” senior from Milwaukee, WI is averaging a team-best 18.0 points per contest, while also chipping in 3.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists in just over 20 minutes of court time per game.
Harris now has nine games with double-digit points this season.
At times in 2016-17, he has been a streaky scorer. Following his 28-point debut against Boston College, he was held to just 5 points, on 2-of-11 shooting, in the Colonels’ loss to the UCF Knights. He has followed up some impressive showings with less-than-memorable ones.
Over his past five games, however, Harris has recorded four games with at least 14 points. If he can keep this recent upward trend going, he will be seeing plenty more minutes as Southland play moves along.
After averaging 38.5 points over two wins for the Nicholls Colonels to end the 2016 calendar year, senior guard DeAndre Harris has been named the College Court Report Player of the Week for the week of December 26 – January 1!
– T. Bennett
Dec. 19 – 25, 2016: DeWayne Russell, Grand Canyon Antelopes
Dec. 12 – 18, 2016: Ian Baker, New Mexico State Aggies
Nov. 28 – Dec, 4, 2016: Jaylen Adams, St. Bonaventure Bonnies
Nov. 21 – 27, 2016: Marquise Moore, George Mason Patriots
Nov. 14 – 20, 2016: Eric Mika, BYU Cougars
Nov. 11 – 13, 2016: Jairus Lyles, UMBC Retrievers
**College Court Report Player of the Week recipients are selected from teams in the following conferences:
America East, Atlantic Sun, Atlantic 10, Big Sky, Big South, Big West, Colonial, Conference USA, Horizon League, Ivy League, MAAC, MAC, MEAC, Missouri Valley, Northeast, Ohio Valley, Patriot League, Southern, Southland, Summit League, SWAC, Sun Belt, West Coast, and WAC