Virginia Tech Basketball: The Rise of Malik Muller

By: Tim Thomas | @TimThomas1996 | Feb 17, 2015
Entering ACC play, Malik Muller seemed like the Hokies' fourth or fifth best guard behind Justin Bibbs, Adam Smith, Ahmed Hill, and possibly Jalen Hudson. However, Muller has proven to be one of the Hokies' three best guards, and has been their player over the last few weeks. The thing that has defined the play of Muller is his toughness as he has guarded guards, and big men that are 7 to 9 inches taller than him. Muller has proven to be a great example of the toughness that Buzz Williams wants in his players, and his strong performance is proof of how his toughness has paid off. Muller is a very, strong physical player that can use his strength to his advantage against many guards. Most guards do not have the strength to really back down like a big man against Muller while the redshirt freshman guard can also not be pushed around by many big men. Malik Muller has been one of the Hokies' best defensive players throughout the season, but Muller has really taken his offensive game to the next level. After only once scoring in double figures in the first 19 games, Muller has stepped his game up as he has scored at least 17 points in three of his last four game with another output of 10 points for four games in double figures. Muller is averaging 13.5 points per game in his last six games which is a stretch that includes both of the Hokies' ACC victories. Muller has shot 45.3% in his last six games which is a huge improvement from how well he shot the basketball in the first 19 games. Muller has been a dangerous scorer in a couple of different ways from aggressively attack the rim to get an easy layup to finding space on the outside and making some threes. With Justin Bibbs struggling, Malik Muller has become one of the Hokies' two primary scorers along with Adam Smith. The rise of Muller has helped the Hokies get their first two ACC wins of this season, and he should be able to continue to help the Hokies win a couple more ACC games before the ACC Tournament. Malik Muller has now emerged as not only a tough, defensive player, but also a fairly reliable offensive player who can take it to the rim or make the three.