LSU living high on 3-pointers

How can someone explain what the LSU Tigers achieved last week?<br><br>It is almost comedic to think about what coach John Brady's team did in two games last week. One could only chuckle to himself as the Tigers went on a shooting spree comparable to an old Clint Eastwood movie.

However, not even Bonnie and Clyde had a week as prosperous as LSU did last week. The Tigers shot their way right back into the SEC Western Division picture and mounted themselves firmly atop the NCAA Tournament bubble.

In an uncanny chain of events, the same LSU basketball that struggled to generate any semblance of offense a few weeks ago went bonkers last week - setting and re-setting school records for three-point field goals made in a single game.

Auburn was the first victim.

Auburn head coach Cliff Ellis could only sit aside and watch his team being dismantled as LSU piled on 16 three-pointers, then a new school, single game record.

"I don't know if I have ever seen a better display of shooting than they put on tonight," Ellis said. "We hit a buzz saw. Sometimes that happens. They were hitting on all cylinders. Their threes were daggers. They just nailed them."

The Tigers 16-of-25 effort from beyond the arch was a fluke right?

Not quite.

Tennessee head coach Buzz Peterson looked on in much the same disbelief as Ellis when LSU came into Knoxville and blistered the Volunteers for 17 three-pointers, a new LSU and Thompson-Boling Arena record.

"Give LSU credit for shooting the ball like they did," Peterson said. "They really knocked down the 3-pointers. I don't think any of us were ready for any of that."

The amazing thing about LSU's three-point barrage last week, it was not limited to a single player. Or even a couple of players. Once the shots started falling, they went down for everyone. Whether it was Torris Bright, Ronald Dupree, Collis Temple III or Antonio Hudson, it didn't matter.

Darrel Mitchell found his rhythm from outside, even Xavier Whipple and Charlie Thompson got in on the action.

"I've never seen a team shoot like this over two games," Temple said. "Everybody's hitting. I was telling Ronald (Dupree), it's like we're doing everything right. It's pretty unbelievable when you play like this."

Taking a look at some three-point stats in the LSU history book, LSU's 16-three-pointer effort surpassed the old mark of 13  that occurred five times, most recently against Northwestern State in 2001.

In regards to three-point attempts in a game, the Tigers put up 40 shots from behind the arch in a 1990 game against South Carolina, 20 of which came off the hands of Chris Jackson. He made 10 of them.

Darrel Mitchell shot perfectly in the Auburn win, hitting all five of his three-point attempts. The St. Martinville freshman joins teammates Collis Temple III, who was 5-for-5 against Nicholls in 2000, and Torris Bright, who knocked down five treys in as many attempts against Arizona in 2000.

A footnote to Temple's six three-point effort at Tennessee Saturday, he matched his best performance from his freshman season when he nailed six three-pointers in an SEC Tournament win over Vanderbilt.

Mitchell is flirting with another record if he can continue his hot-handed antics from outside. Jamie Brandon owns the most prolific three-point shooting season in LSU history hitting 50.9-percent in 1992-93. He converted 27-of-53 attempts.

Mitchell is nipping at Brandon's heels having hit 35-of-81 shots, good enough for 44.4-percent on the year.

Mitchell's comments in the wake of the Auburn win spelled out just how miserable basketball can be if the ball is not going in the basket.

"The game is almost fun when you are shooting the ball well and playing together," Mitchell said.

Almost fun?

Keep shooting like that and before long the game will be loads of fun.

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