Earlier this week we paid homage to Collins and the walkons in part one of our Senior Week series.
Part two covers the remaining three seniors, each of whom has had a tremendous impact on this program.
Jalen Jones (6'7" forward)
Jalen started his collegiate career with a stellar freshman year at SMU (averaging 14 points and nearly 8 rebounds on 50% shooting), before packing his bags and heading south to College Station. I'm not saying this was delayed retribution for the loss of Eric Dickerson to SMU during the Pony Express days, but if it was.... I'll take it.
Jones has been excellent during his two years on campus, deploying an extremely versatile offensive skill set that really puts our opposition in a defensive bind. He also tends to go "Steph Curry" from deep about 3-4 times a year, most notably against Kentucky.
Here are some of the more notable performances from Jalen's time on campus:
- 24 points, 8 rebounds (79-77 OT victory over #14 Kentucky)
- 27 points, 7 rebounds (92-88 miracle comeback at Tennessee)
- 13 points, 14 rebounds (72-62 victory over #15 Iowa State)
- 26 points, 6 rebounds (71-68 victory over Florida)
- 18 points, 9 rebounds (67-64 victory at LSU - last year)
The game logs over the past two years tell a pretty simple story - if A&M had a big win, Jalen Jones was involved. Here's a junior year highlight package, along with a few of our favorite moments from this year.
And he's ready for tomorrow.
One more— Jalen Jones (@JalenJones_21) March 2, 2016
Danuel House (6'7" guard)
House was another key transfer - this time from Houston. The five star shooting guard grew wary of life among Cougars and headed up 290 after two seasons at UH. Like Jones, his move to campus had an instant impact.
House led the team in scoring last year, and is second only to Jones this year. He's had some off nights during our recent conference run, but he has notably adjusted his game to help the team in other ways during some of our biggest victories.
He's also capable of dominating any four minute stretch, at any time, as his late heroics against Iowa State and Mississippi State showed. While Jalen gets his points through an indomitable force of will, Danuel's are more... graceful. "Pretty" basketball, if you will. He has a silky smooth jumper and an explosive finish that could suit him well at the next level. Here's a nice junior reel we found from last year.
And now, because the internet is an unstoppable force of ready-baked memes, we have a "Damn Danuel" montage that nobody wants but will receive all the same.
Finally, above all else, he's a proud poppa.
Good win but the best thing about it tonight was they showed my little angel in the screen. Daddy's girl ❤️ 2️⃣3️⃣ pic.twitter.com/MuTBHAho7x— DanuelHou23 (@Danuel23House) January 20, 2016
Alex Caruso (6'5" guard)
Caruso, a College Station native, notoriously got his start as a ball boy.
"I was here for all the big games. I was here when they played Blake Griffin, Acie Law's shot against Texas, I rushed the floor and got in trouble for that from my dad. I mean all the big games I was there, under the basket cheering them on."
And while other schools (namely ASU, Tech, and Nebraska) bid for his services, there was really only one option.
He was an Aggie all the way.
Offensively, his vision is fantastic. He's always searching for the killer pass, and some of our biggest moments this season have come courtesy of his playmaking ability.
Defensively, he's a free safety without the pads. He's constantly roaming, good for 2-3 steals in every game that lead to easy buckets, and a complete nuisance during on-ball defending.
So, we've established his two strengths: assists and steals... but that doesn't tell the whole story. He's not just good at those things. He's the best the program has ever seen:
- 1st all-time in career assists w/ 613 (11th all-time in SEC history)
- 1st all-time in career steals w/ 263 (T-5th all-time in SEC history)
He plays at a hundred miles an hour, he makes hustle plays with alarming regularity, and he's a great Aggie.
All six of these guys deserve a fantastic send off this weekend. Get to Reed at 11am and watch the Aggies go for their first conference title since 1986.