Welcome to A10 Talk’s Top 25 Player Countdown. Each day, we publish a new article counting down the 25 best players in the Atlantic 10 this past season. Today, we continue our countdown with #2 Jack Gibbs.
Jack Gibbs may have been the best Davidson player to step foot in Belk Arena since that guy who wore #30. Seriously. The similarities between the two are striking; their final season three point shooting percentages were similar, and though Steph’s 28.6 PPG are almost impossible to beat, Gibbs’ 22.1 weren’t too shabby either. It’s hard to imagine a Davidson basketball team without Jack Gibbs. Few players have had that kind of green light; Bob McKillop trusts Jack to shoot the ball from anywhere, and when his shot goes up, you know it’s going in. Davidson didn’t have the season it hoped to have, but Jack Gibbs didn’t go down without a fight. The Wildcats caught fire in the A-10 Tournament and had a chance to win it all in Pittsburgh. Credit Jack Gibbs for that.
Jack Gibbs had a lot of stellar performances throughout his tenure at Davidson, but few will top the senior’s dismantling of Dayton in the A-10 quarterfinals. Jack Gibbs went off. Keeping the Wildcats’ season alive, he dropped 34 points and sent the Flyers packing. Not to mention, he hit this shot, possibly the biggest of his career.
OH MY GOD THIS KID pic.twitter.com/oMTmONqCqQ
— A10Talk.com (@A10Talk) March 10, 2017
Jack Gibbs displayed his talent on numerous occasions during the 2016-17 season. He scored 29 points and hit 5 clutch threes in a close overtime loss to Rhode Island in Kingston. Gibbs scored 32 points on the road to beat Massachusetts, a game in which he hit 6 threes, pulled down 6 boards, and dished out 6 assists. Jack also went for 30 points at home against VCU, one of the Wildcats’ biggest wins of the season.
It’s tough to pinpoint specific performances when Jack Gibbs played at such a high-level every time he stepped foot on the court. Gibbs scored in double figures 30 of 31 times this season. In 15 of those contests, he scored at least 25 points; that’s insane. And it’s not like Jack was a one-man show this season. He had Peyton Aldridge by his side who nearly scored as much as Gibbs himself. Jack Gibbs was efficient, effective, and damn fun to watch.
Jack Gibbs drastically improved his three point shooting from last year, firing at 39.2% from long range compared to 33.6% his junior season. In addition, he was the most utilized player in the Atlantic 10 in terms of percentage of shots and percentage of involved possessions. Gibbs had the 8th best assist rate in the league and the 13th best turnover rate as well. He greatly improved in the latter, committing 0.6 fewer turnovers per game this season.
Jack Gibbs didn’t necessarily put up the same kind of numbers he did last year, but you have to keep in mind that Davidson got a lot deeper and had a lot more talent outside of its point guard. Gibbs attempted two fewer field goals per game this year. It was great for the Wildcats to get other guys involved on the offensive end, but whenever Davidson needed a big bucket, there was no doubt that the ball would be in Gibbs’ hands.
The senior had more than his fair share of spotlight moments throughout his career. From playing in the NCAA Tournament in 2015, to scoring 40+ points 3 times in 2015-16, to hitting a clutch And-1 three pointer to beat Dayton in the A-10 Tournament, Jack Gibbs has made on hell of an impact on this program. Expect Peyton Aldridge to emerge as a star next year, but it’s going to be hard for Davidson to move on from Jack Gibbs. Like Steph Curry, Jack Gibbs has had ice in his veins throughout his Davidson career, and this program won’t forget him.
Previously: #3 Jaylen Adams