Where are all the good jump shooters? Why does today's form often resemble someone loading the back of a truck, just throwing stuff up there?
Many high school coaches claim the mid-range jumper has gone the way of the pyramids, replaced by the always crowd-pleasing slam dunk and 3-point shot. But that's not how basketball was meant to be played.
Where are all the Rick Mounts today?
What a deadly marksman. Mount was Robin Hood with a Wilson ball.
In four varsity seasons at Lebanon High School, the 6-foot-3 guard averaged 20.4, 23.6, 33.1 and 33.1 ppg.
At Purdue, he was near unstoppable at 28.4, 33.3, 35.4 and 32.3 ppg.
His range was a legitimate 30 feet, but the 3-point shot had not yet been introduced.
Mount never played in the NBA, opting instead to sign early with the ABA's Indiana Pacers. He later bounced around between the Kentucky Colonels, Memphis Pros and Utah Stars until the ABA-NBA merger in 1976.
The 1966 Mr. Basketball still lives in Lebanon, still runs his popular shooting camps in four different states, and still shoots the rock every chance he gets.
"Saturday, I scraped the ice off my driveway and shot a couple hundred jumpers. At age 63!" he boasted.
Mount still follows the top players, amateur and professional. He watched Sunday's NBA All-Star Game and was impressed with the shooting form of Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups and LeBron James. Collegiately, he's a big fan of Purdue's Region connection -- Valparaiso's Robbie Hummel and E.C. Central's E'Twaun Moore.
"Hummel came in shooting those free throws like Virgil Sweet taught. But you don't want to use that (form) to shoot the jump shot," Mount said. "That was a problem with Virgil Sweet. They could really shoot free throws but didn't have a lot of great shooters because they kinda 'paused' there on their jump shot.
"Give Hummel credit, though. He's changed his jump shot around to where he's got a pretty decent shot. It's all in one rhythm. He's got the ball up. It's not a shove, not a push shot like when he first came to Purdue."
Mount says anyone can become a good shooter but it takes constant practice, maybe even a cold Saturday out on the driveway. Problem is, today's coaches are allowing players to shoot 3-pointers in middle school and junior high.
"These coaches don't know what they're doing. The kids are too young. They're not strong enough. They're just shoving it and throwing it, their form goes, and they get a bunch of bad habits," Mount said. "Then when they get up on the varsity level, they wonder why they can't shoot over the defense.
"I want them to shoot it from 15 feet on in and work on their form."
College fans still wonder how untouchable Mount's records would have been with the 3-point shot.
Think LeBron when he's on fire.
"The night I got 61 against Iowa at Mackey my senior year, coaches went back and charted that game on tape to see how many 3s I would've had," Mount said. "I would've had 13. I would've had 74 points instead of 61.
"My range was unlimited."
This column solely represents the writer's opinion. Reach him at email@example.com.