"I can pick up on things faster after being around a coach all my life," he said. "So my basketball IQ is higher than the normal player's."
However, the fact that he's playing so much in his first year has made it more challenging for him this year.
"It's also been a tough learning experience for me, trying to learn everything in one year," he said. "Most freshmen have a year of learning, but I have to learn on the fly while playing. You've got to pick up things fast. But it's been great, though. I've loved every minute of it."
Henderson is third in minutes played behind veterans Luka Drca and Carlon Brown and is second on the team in scoring at 12.1 (first in MWC play at 14.0 ppg). He has also become a more complete player as the season has progressed, making more drives to the basket, rebounding (2.6 per game) and playing solid defense.
"His ability to adjust in games to how people are playing him has improved and is a sign that he's pretty darn good," says Boylen. "That's one thing we want in our program is to push guys to become more complete players."
Henderson chose Utah over such schools as Gonzaga, Stanford, Marquette and Notre Dame. He said one of the main reasons he came to Utah was because of Boylen and his 13 years of experience as an NBA assistant. Like most good college players, Henderson would like to play professionally someday.
"Coach Boylen was an NBA coach, and that was the difference for me," said Henderson. "He knows exactly what it takes and runs an NBA system, so it's already a step forward for me. This is the 10th-winningest program (in the nation) and I want to help get the tradition back to where it has been."
He also has another wish over the next three seasons.
In practice, Henderson can make shots from the edge of block U in the middle of the floor, some 40 feet from the basket.
"I've told coach, one of these games during my time here, I'm going to shoot one from the U."
Don't be surprised if Henderson does … and he'll probably make it.
Games FG pct. 3-pt pct. FT pct. Reb. Pts.
Marshall Henderson 27 .379 .344 .806 2.6 12.1
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