As expected, two-thirds of Clemson’s starting backcourt from this year’s Sweet 16 run will return. On Wednesday, both Marcquise Reed and Shelton withdrew from the draft, and announced their plans to return for their senior seasons.
Shelton Mitchell and Marcquise Reed will both return to Clemson next season, per a source. Both entered 2018 NBA Draft without an agent.
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) May 30, 2018
The two transfers — Reed from Robert Morris, Mitchell from Vanderbilt — will be fifth-year seniors in 2018-19.
Last season, Marcquise Reed became one of the ACC’s top perimeter offensive players: 15.8 points, 56 percent true shooting, 67 three-pointers. Reed, who led the Tigers in usage rate (24.5 percent), is an excellent pick-and-roll scorer; according to Synergy Sports, Reed shot 44 percent shooting (50 eFG%) and scored 0.88 points out of the action.
In his first season of eligibility (2016-17) at Clemson (after sitting out), Mitchell was a super efficient scorer for Clemson — 10.8 points, 57.4 percent true shooting. As a redshirt junior, though, Mitchell never quite found his shot, although he was still pretty darn good, too.
Mitchell, who dealt with a concussion during the season, connected on 36.8 percent of his three-pointers while his true shooting rate dipped to under 55 percent.
Next season in Tiger Town
Regardless, the return of Reed and Mitchell is a huge, and expected, boon for Clemson. The Tigers are coming off the program’s first regional semifinal appearance in over 20 years. Low post brute Elijah Thomas is back to anchor the frontline. After coming on following the unfortunate injury of Donte Grantham, forward Aamir Simms looks like promising player, too.
The three-point marksmanship of Gabe DeVoe will be sorely missed; however, with Reed and Mitchell, backcourt scoring shouldn’t be an issue for Brad Brownell.