Even though the Texas A&M Basketball program isn’t in the best state right now, the Aggies have a handful of talented players at the NBA level, one of whom is having an elite year in the NBA Playoffs. That player is Khris Middleton.
Middleton isn’t thought of as the star of his team, constantly playing in Giannis Antetokounmpo’s shadow. That said, he has taken a huge step forward as a player this season.
But before we get to his performance in the NBA, let’s look back at what he did during his time in Aggieland.
Middleton was a 3-year player at Texas A&M, playing somewhat sparingly as a freshman and exploding onto the scene in his next two seasons. In his sophomore campaign, he averaged 14.3 points, shooting the ball well and contributing on both ends of the floor with 1.2 blocks and 5.2 rebounds.
Unfortunately, he regressed slightly in his junior year, which likely led to his draft stock dropping. This eventually led him to the 39th overall pick, where he was drafted by the Detroit Pistons, who would never play him. He’d play in the G-League for a year before the Milwaukee Bucks swooped him up and turned him into a really strong NBA player.
Former Texas A&M Basketball player Khris Middleton has taken the step toward NBA stardom in this year’s playoffs
Prior to this year’s NBA Playoffs, Khris Middleton was thought of as a strong second or third option for an NBA team. Due to the fact that he has constantly been overlooked, nobody really thought of him as a star.
His 20.4 point, 5.4 assist, 6.0 rebound average in 2020-21 will attest to that. Middleton, however, had other plans this year.
On Sunday, the former Aggie forward exploded for 38 points, leading his team to a win in the Eastern Conference Finals. He made 57% of his shots, knocking down 6-12 3-point attempts on the night, striking fear into the Atlanta Hawks’ eyes.
The scariest part? This wasn’t even his first 38-point game of this year’s NBA Playoffs. He did the same thing in the Bucks’ previous series against the Brooklyn Nets in game 6. Two games prior to that, he scored 35 points.
Middleton is beginning to show up as an NBA player who knows how to show up when the spotlight is on him. In all likelihood, this isn’t the last scoring outburst that we’ll see from Middleton, who has emerged as the alpha on a team that has a former MVP on the roster.
Hopefully, his performances will inspire Buzz Williams and the Texas A&M Basketball team to have a better season than they did in 2020-21.