Sherman Douglas became the NCAA’s all-time assist leader as well as Syracuse University’s most prolific scorer as the sixth-ranked Orangemen defeated Connecticut, 88-72, in a Big East game Tuesday night.
Douglas had 11 assists, giving him 897 for his career and passing Northeastern’s Andre LaFleur, who finished his career two years ago with 894 assists.
Douglas, a 6-foot senior from Washington, D.C., also scored 22 points, eclipsing former NBA great Dave Bing as the top scorer in Syracuse history with 1,889 points in four seasons. Bing had 1,883 in his three-year career.
Syracuse, which also got 21 points from junior forward Derrick Coleman, is 24-5 overall and 9-5 in the Big East. Connecticut is 15-10 and 6-9.
Douglas broke the scoring record with 11:57 to play on an emphatic breakaway dunk--not his typical style of scoring. Less than three minutes later, Douglas lobbed a soft pass to freshman Billy Owens, who slam-dunked it.
Play was stopped on both occasions and Douglas received minute-long standing ovations. When the assist record fell, Syracuse fans showered the court with vinyl phonograph records.
Connecticut was ahead, 14-10, with 6:02 gone when Syracuse reeled off 11 straight points, seven by Douglas and four by Coleman. The Orangemen never relinquished the lead.
Syracuse led 40-27 at halftime and took its biggest lead, 64-44, on Owens’ basket with 9:13 remaining that gave Douglas the assist record.