5 graduating seniors leave lasting impact on Ole Miss basketball

Posted on Mar 8 2018 - 5:56am by Logan Conner

After another memorable season, the men’s basketball program says goodbye to its outgoing cast of seniors. Seniors Marcanvis Hymon, Deandre Burnett, Justas Furmanavicius, Lane Below and graduate student Markel Crawford leave behind an impressive set of legacies that will not be forgotten.

Deandre Burnett

Deandre Burnett (Photo by: Cameron Brooks)

Despite spending the first two seasons of his collegiate career at Miami (Florida), Deandre Burnett transferred to Ole Miss in 2015 and has been a fan favorite since. After sitting out the required penalty season due to transfer, Burnett played in all 33 games of his junior season, averaging 16.5 points per game off 35.5 percent field-goal shooting and a 37.6 three-point percentage. Burnett scored a career high of 41 points in a 95-88 overtime win in a 2016 preseason tournament against Oral Roberts. He finished his junior year having scored in double-figures 26 times, including 10 games with 20-plus points. This season, Burnett is averaging 13.6 points and 3.9 assists per game. The guard also averaged 37.7 percent from the field and 35.4 percent behind the arc. In a 78-66 win against Alabama, Burnett scored a season-high 24 points and contributed four rebounds and three assists.

Marcanvis Hymon spins around a defender to push towards the basket in Ole Miss’ win over Auburn on Jan 27. (Photo by: Cameron Brooks)

Forward Marcanvis Hymon enrolled at Ole Miss after a record-setting senior season at Whitehaven High School in Memphis and set to work making a name for himself. After playing six games, Hymon ended his freshman season early because of injury. Hymon was able to bounce back during his sophomore year, however, playing in all 32 games and averaging 6.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per game and claiming a 52.3 field-goal percentage. Against Towson University, the then-sophomore forward would score a career-high 20 points. His junior season consisted of much of the same, leading the Rebels with 40 blocked shots throughout the campaign. As a senior, Hymon averaged 4.5 points and five rebounds per game, thanks largely to a 55.7 field-goal percentage. In this season’s opener against Louisiana-Lafayette, Hymon recorded his lone double-double of the season with 12 points and 13 assists.

Justas Furmanavicius

Justas Furmanavicius (Photo by: Cameron Brooks)

After spending two seasons at Three Rivers Community College, Lithuanian forward Justas Furmanavicius transferred to Ole Miss and instantly became a key piece of the Rebel team. After averaging 12.5 points and 9.3 rebounds as a sophomore at Three Rivers, Furmanavicius averaged 6.3 points and 5 rebounds as a junior in Oxford. The big man collected his first double-double in a win against South Carolina. During his senior season, Furmanavicius, originally from Kaunas, Lithuania, averaged 3.0 points and 3.0 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per game, averaging 41.7 percent from the field. In December, Furmanavicius tied  a career-high 15 points in a 85-63 win against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

Guard Lane Below transferred to Ole Miss in 2016 after spending two years playing for Three Rivers Community College with Furmanavicius. During his sophomore season there, Below averaged 41.4 percent from the field and 65.4 percent from the line, contributing valuable minutes as his team marched toward a 23-8 record and the Region 16 Tournament semifinals. In his two seasons in Oxford, Below has played in six games and is .500 from the field on his career.

Guard Markel Crawford (5) works around an Arkansas defender toward the basket last week. The Rebel’s overall record is 11-16. Photo by Marlee Crawford

After spending four years at Memphis, Markel Crawford transferred to Ole Miss to compete as a graduate transfer student. Averaging 12.8 points per game in Memphis last season and leading the Tigers with 42 three-pointers, Crawford carried that momentum down to Oxford, averaging 9.4 points per game off 39. 5 percent shooting from the field in the red and blue. In the Rebels’ biggest win of the season, Crawford scored 17 points in a 78-72 win against Florida.

Whether through 40-point performances or first career double-doubles, these graduating seniors have defined what Ole Miss basketball is all about: heart and dedication.