Thanks to the legendary exploits of former Pacer and current Hall of Famer Reggie Miller, the three-point shot will always have a special place in the hearts of Indiana hoops fans.
Prior to having his number 31 jersey hung from the rafters in the Fieldhouse, the trash-talking Knicks killer made it his business to do damage from way downtown. During his tenure, he racked up 2,560 three-pointers and trailed Ray Allen for the all-time lead beyond the arc.
A few months prior to being selected by the Pacers with the 11th pick of the 1987 draft, California born Miller dropped a dying seconds game-winning 24-footer on Indiana’s own Notre Dame. He was playing for UCLA at the time. The last seconds winning shot gave Hoosiers a taste of what he had in store. Miller would go on to entertain a generation of fans.
Evolution of the Three-Point Basket
Indiana’s relationship with the 3-pointer began many years before Reggie arrived with a man named Herman Sayger. Sayger was born in Arkansas in 1895. After the death of his parents, he moved to Indiana at the age of six to live with his aunt. It was in Culver, Indiana, that Sayger discovered the then-young sport of basketball.
In 1913, Sayger set Indiana’s single-game point record during his junior year. Playing for Culver High School, he scored 113 points against Winamac. Sayger continued his high-scoring streak during his senior year. He scored three 50+ point games, a 29.5 ppg, and a berth on the all-state team. These feats were made more impressive by the fact that they occurred prior to the adoption of the three-point line.