A question one of my friends recently asked me about Northwestern’s basketball team really got me thinking. “Can everyone on Northwestern dunk?” he asked. After lengthy deliberation, I came to the conclusion that no, not all of Northwestern's players can dunk. Before writing this post, I also came to the conclusion I wouldn’t reveal the player (s) name (s) that led me to that conclusion. All of Northwestern’s players probably should be able to dunk, but if they can’t, well, a dunk only counts for two points, anyway. There are other ways to score, though if you watch only Northwestern basketball and nothing else you might not realize they exist, because the Wildcats have mostly failed to utilize them this season.
Never fear, there is good news on the Northwestern dunking front. First, Sippin’ on Purple tweeted out a video of former Wildcat and current FIATC Joventut forward John Shurna competing in a 2008 dunk contest, which is even more enjoyable to watch than it sounds (and somehow has nearly 11,000 Youtube views).
The more relevant dunking tidbit comes thanks to Northwestern’s newest verbal commit, 2014, three-star point guard Johnnie Vassar. Vassar revealed last week to Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune that he first dunked in seventh grade, when he was 5-foot-6. Vassar’s highlight video, which includes a between-the-legs jam, offered a glimpse of his dunking prowess. What we learned Sunday, thanks to an Instagram video Vassar Tweeted out, is that he’s still dunking. And dunking well.
The video you see above captures two of the dunks Vassar hammered home to win the 2013 Max Preps Holiday Classic dunk contest. Vassar is only 6’0’’. If Chris Collins recruits more prospects like him, I suspect people will soon stop asking me whether Northwestern’s players can dunk.