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ASU F Marcus Bagley’s presence, composure already being felt

Arizona State's Marcus Bagley, center, goes up for a shot as Rhode Island's Antwan Walker, left, and Makhel Mitchell defend during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020, in Uncasville, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

When Marcus Bagley committed to Arizona State, many in the college hoops world knew what the forward could bring to the table for Bobby Hurley and the Sun Devils.

Paired with fellow freshman Josh Christopher and senior point guard Remy Martin, Bagley was given a solid base to begin his collegiate career.

And just three games in, the freshman’s impact on his team has already begun taking shape.

Through three games this season, Bagley is tied for second on the team with Martin in points per game with 15.7, second in rebounds per game (3.5) and tied for second in 3-point percentage at 50% (9-18).

But it’s way he goes about life that has Hurley pleased with Bagley’s output as a Sun Devil.

“His presence, I think his composure, how he carries himself,” Hurley said Wednesday when asked what has stood out the most with Bagley so far. “A very, very mature way about him. Didn’t get rattled. He missed some shots that he’s definitely capable of making vs. Villanova, but again, it didn’t bring his energy levels down. Still really competed hard.

“Really loved how he bounced back from a not-so-great offensive performance vs. Villanova. And then vs. Houston Baptist, to see how smooth he was out there, got us off to a really good start.”

After dropping 16 points against Rhode Island on 71.4% shooting (50% from 3-point land), and securing seven boards, Bagley couldn’t find the same success against then-No. 3 Villanova. He ended the contest with 10 points, four rebounds, two steals and picked up five personal fouls in the team’s lone loss of the season.

Luckily, as Hurley mentioned, the forward was able to quickly forget about the poor outing against Houston Baptist.

Bagley paced all scores on the floor in the 100-77 win over the Huskies with 21 points on 66.7% shooting (6-9). He was a sniper from deep, too, hitting four of his six 3s (66.7%) in the victory.

And while he continues to build rapport with his teammates on the court, Bagley has already brought the Sun Devils closer off of it.

When the forward isn’t looking to score, he can be found vlogging with his team.

From the reactions, it appears everyone’s into it. Even Hurley made an appearance on the Bagley chronicles.

“He’s having fun with this year. The guy puts in the work and I think it’s a cool thing that he’s doing,” Hurley said. “He’s involved in his teammates. … I’m glad he’s enjoying it.

“It’s been a tough year. It’s been a tough year for these kids, their senior years being disruptive and not having a true normal college experience. Anytime someone’s happy I’m all for it.”

As for a return appearance from the head coach? That’s up in the air.

“Me, I’m not going to be the most charismatic guy on his thing. I think there’s a lot more interesting people that he could bring on to his gameday story.”

Sun Devils Interviews and Podcasts