OSU Basketball: Takeaways From First Three Games
STILLWATER - Oklahoma State is 3-0 and averaging 107 points per game but tougher tests await the Cowboys, beginning with UConn in Hawaii on Monday.
Here are some takeaways from the first three “tune ups” leading up to the Maui Invitational.
Jawun Evans is smooth. The sophomore point guard can score at will but he’s done a good job of letting the game come to him and getting teammates involved. Wednesday against the Privateers, Evans got Leyton Hammonds involved early and had three assists in the first four minutes. He’s averaging 23.3 points and 6.3 assists per game.
Lindy Waters has a very high basketball IQ for a freshman. He plays under control and is a pass-first forward; so-much-so that Brad Underwood had to yell at him to score rather than look for a trailing teammate after one fast break against New Orleans. Waters snuck into the starting lineup against New Orleans and he meshed well with the starters.
Jeffrey Carroll is significantly stronger this year. He’s primarily been a spot up shooter in years past but he’s living in the paint lately. Plus, he’s the Cowboys’ leading rebounder. He’s listed 10 pounds heavier than a year ago and it’s a nice improvement for an OSU team that lacks big bodies.
Phil Forte looks healthy again. After playing in just three games last year and a long recovery process, Forte is flying around like Cowboy fans are accustomed to.
Lucas N’Guessan is learning quickly. The seven-foot Dutchman has improved each time he’s stepped on the court. He leads the team in blocks and shot 5-for-6 from the stripe on Wednesday. N’Guessan may become a regular contributor off the bench if this keeps up.
The Cowboys are going to chuck a lot of threes. Nine players have made a trey through three games including Tyler Underwood who made one on what looked like a lob attempt. So far, Evans(3-for-4) and freshman Thomas Dziagwa (4-for-8) have been the sharpest shooters.
They’re also going to commit a ton of fouls. OSU’s interior players Leyton Hammonds, Mitch Solomon, Cameron McGriff and N’Guessan have combined for 45 fouls in three games, an average of 3.75 fouls per game by each player. The Cowboys can ill afford their bigs getting in foul trouble because of lack of depth.