NCAA Tournament: Marcus Smart’s tulmultous extra year comes to early end


Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart (33) shoots between Texas Tech forward Dejan Kravic (11) and guard Toddrick Gotcher (20) during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014. Oklahoma State won 84-62. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

When Marcus Smart opted to forego a high NBA draft slot and the millions that would’ve come with it to stay at Oklahoma State for his sophomore season, he likely pictured a season very different than the one that materialized this year.

He likely expected to up his freshman production significantly (which he did), maybe thought he’d repeat as Big 12 player of the year (which he didn’t).  He probably didn’t expect a shoving match with a Texas Tech fan in Lubbock, Tex., to define his season, and he definitely didn’t picture sliding unceremoniously into the offseason with an 85-77 first-round loss to Gonzaga on Friday.

Smart told ESPN in February that he doesn’t regret his decision to stay with the Cowboys, though he’ll have a hard time convincing draft experts who wanted to see a big NCAA tournament from the 6-foot-4 guard. Smart filled the stat sheet with 23 points, seven assists, and six steals before getting into foul trouble.

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Chelsea Janes covers high school sports for The Washington Post.
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