Beau Levesque: The Forgotten Gael
There’s been a lot of talk this season about the Australian connection to St Mary’s College in Moraga, California, if nothing else but for the sheer amount of Australian basketball players who have played there since Adam Caporn in 2001. We have of course seen Patty Mill play, and dominate, with the Gaels, and we’re now witnessing arguably an even more impressive feat, at least from the schools standpoint, from Victorian Matthew Dellavedova. Another Aussie Daniel Kickert even holds the St Mary’s All-Time Scorer title. But at the beginning of Febuary, a month out from one of the greatest sporting tournaments in the world, March Madness, there’s another name on the tip of every set of Gael lips that isn’t one of the four hailing from Down Under.
Beau Levesque has only five starts to his name this season from twenty-two games for the Gaels, but he has no doubt solidified himself as an integral part of the Gaels rotation and one of the best sixth-man in the WCC, if not in the nation.
If you take a look at who he’s actually up against for the mantle of the premier sixth-man, you’ll see that it’s no easy task. Brigham Young’s Nate Austin and Gonzaga’s Przemek Karnowski are all there abouts in the WCC, while Indiana’s Will Sheehey and OSU’s Devon Collier are probably the nations benchmarks.
Levesque has almost appeared out of nowhere this season. In his Junior year at the Californian school, Levesque has seen his MPG jump from 9.8 to 21.9 and his PPG from 3.1 to 10.5. That’s an increase of 220% and 338% respectively.
The key to the 6’6″-listed Forward’s rise to prominence, at least in the eyes of his coach, Randy Bennett, is his versatility. In a very Miami Heat style “positionless” structure, it’s integral to have the capability to change up your role. In the twenty-two games so far this season, Levesque has seen time in just about every position except the One Spot. He’s a more than solid long-range shooter, going 40% from beyond the arc, with a very reasonable mid-range game, but he’s also tall and athletic enough to be a presence underneath the basket.
The Californian native has looked like a born playmaker this season. A creative all-over player who seems to have an uncanny knack to lift his need when needed. A little bit like the swingman in the AFL; a Jarrad Waite or Jared Brennan type.
Despite being a “sixth-man” however, Levesque averages 1.7 more minutes per game than Australian Jordan Page, who seems to be Bennett’s regular choice for first-off rotator. He has posted better numbers all around the board than Page and seems to play more time in the crunch, too. It won’t be long before this pine player becomes a full-timer.