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Wichita State prepares to run with Detroit

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Friday, Feb. 22, 2013, at 5:48 p.m.
  • Updated Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at 7:32 a.m.


at Wichita State

When: 3 p.m. Saturday

Where: Koch Arena

Records: UD 18-9, WSU 23-5

Radio: KNSS, 1330-AM

TV: ESPN2, Ch. 33

Detroit at Wichita State

F Juwan Howard Jr.6-6So.9.03.6
FDoug Anderson6-6Sr.11.64.6
FNick Minnerath6-9Sr.14.86.0
GRay McCallum6-3Jr.18.7x-4.7
G Jason Calliste6-2Jr.14.43.1

Detroit (18-9): Minnerath averaged 27.5 points in the two previous games, making 22 of 38 shots. In the past 14 games (all conference play), he averages 17.2 points by making 48.7 percent of his shots and 37.1 percent of his threes. “However you want to score the basketball, he can score it,” WSU coach Gregg Marshall said. “He is a face-the-basket tough guard.”… The Titans will play man-to-man defense most of the time, mixing in some matchup zone.… Opponents make 36 percent of their three-pointers and 45.8 percent of their shots against Detroit.… Detroit defeated Drake 85-79 in November in Des Moines with Anderson scoring 26 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.… F Evan Bruisma averages 5.7 points off the bench. No other Titan averages more than 1.7.… Detroit works with one assistant coach (Jay Smith) after two assistants left the program in October.… Howard is the son of former NBA player Juwan Howard.

PWichita St.HtYrPtsReb

Carl Hall6-8Sr.12.27.2
CEhimen Orukpe7-0Sr.3.14.7
GDemetric Williams6-3Sr.8.5x-2.4
GTekele Cotton6-3So.5.83.8
GMalcolm Armstead6-0Sr.9.8x-4.0


Wichita State (23-5): WSU’s rebound margin (plus-8.2) impresses Detroit coach Ray McCallum. “That’s dominance in today’s game,” he said.… F Cleanthony Early, after scoring 19 points in Tuesday’s win at Indiana State, averages 15.8 points and is shooting 48.2 percent from three-point range and 40 percent from behind the arc in MVC games.… WSU leads the series 12-7, winning the last meeting 73-61 during the 1982-83 season.… Orukpe has 46 blocks, ranking No. 8 on WSU’s season’s list. That total is the most since Antoine Carr blocked 50 in 1982-83. Orukpe’s career total of 84 ranks No. 10 at WSU, four behind Jamar Howard.

RPI as of Friday: UD 63, WSU 33

Farewell to BracketBusters

The BracketBusters series bows out after 11 seasons and mixed reviews. Top teams usually liked the good matchups and ESPN coverage. The rest complained about the odd opponents and disruption of the conference season. WSU, which did not participate in the first season, is 3-6 in BracketBusters games. The mandatory return games work out better — WSU is 8-0.

2004 — WSU 62, Austin Peay 47 (at WSU)

2005 — Miami (Ohio) 65, WSU 58 (at Miami)

2006 — George Mason 70, WSU 67 (at WSU)

2007 — Appalachian State 60, WSU 58 (at WSU)

2008 — Northern Arizona 85, WSU 75 (at NAU)

2009 — WSU 70, Cleveland State 59 (at WSU)

2010 — Utah State 68, WSU 58 (at Utah State)

2011 — VCU 68, WSU 67 (at WSU)

2012 — WSU 91, Davidson 74 (at Davidson)

Three meaningful moments

1. George Mason guard Tony Skinn made a three-pointer with 10 seconds to play to give the Patriots a 70-67 win and start a run to the 2006 Final Four. After two ho-hum games, WSU’s experience in the BracketBusters turned dramatic. A rematch in the Sweet 16 added to the drama.

2. VCU guard Joey Rodriguez sank two free throws with 0.8 seconds to play for a 68-67 win. Joe Ragland fouled him on a drive to the basket, a call Shocker coaches and fans still dispute. VCU became the second Colonial Athletic Association team to use a win at Koch Arena as a springboard to the 2011 Final Four. WSU went to the NIT.

3. Ragland scored 30 points, making 11 of 14 shots, in last season’s 91-74 win at Davidson. The Shockers won their sixth straight game and coach Gregg Marshall said the victory made him feel confident about their NCAA Tournament resume.

BracketBusters games are a change of pace from the conference race. That will certainly be true for Wichita State in Saturday’s game against Detroit.

After almost two months playing a lot of half-court basketball, the Shockers face a team that won’t mind running.

“We like to get up and down the floor,” Detroit coach Ray McCallum said.

The Titans (18-9) lead the Horizon League in scoring (79 points) and steals (8.4), and are tied for first in causing turnovers (16.5). They rank second in three-pointers made (7.4) and attempted (21.3).

While discussion of most Missouri Valley Conference teams starts with defense, the Titans are a score-first bunch. They play defense to cause turnovers and score.

“They play really hard on both ends,” WSU coach Gregg Marshall said. “There’s talent at every spot, and I’m talking about talent, athleticism, skill, basketball ability. They’ve got playmakers.”

Guard Ray McCallum (son of the coach) played in the 2010 McDonald’s All-American game and pondered offers from Arizona, UCLA and Florida before playing for his father. A junior, he is projected as a second-round NBA draft pick in 2013 or 2014.

“He’s (Indiana State’s) Jake Odum, but probably stronger and maybe a little better shooter,” Marshall said. “He could play at a lot of places and do well.”

Both teams are involved in conference races. WSU can clinch at least a share of the MVC title with a win over Evansville on Wednesday. Detroit is one game behind Horizon League leader Valparaiso with two games remaining.

The Titans are winners in six of their past seven games, scoring 80 or more points in five of those wins. A week ago, they won at Valparaiso 84-74 by ending the game on a 36-11 run. Coach Ray McCallum said losses to St. John’s, Syracuse, Miami (Fla.) and Pittsburgh toughened his team for moments like that.

“Our non-conference really, really tested us,” he said. “In all those contests, we were in position, a play here or there. Down 15 at Valpo, we’d been there before. We found a way to win.”

The break from conference play can be seen as a positive or negative. WSU, with a solid NCAA Tournament at-large resume, has more to lose. Detroit, which knows it must win the automatic bid, has nothing to lose. Marshall looks at the game as an opportunity to add to that NCAA resume.

“Their RPI is good, so if we can win it will be a quality win,” Marshall said.

In past seasons, BracketBusters has served WSU as a preview of tournament quality. George Mason (2006), Cleveland State (2009) Utah State (2010), VCU (2011) and Davidson (2012) played in the NCAAs after meeting the Shockers in late February.

“It’s always good to play somebody different,” WSU guard Malcolm Armstead said. “It gets us ready for post-season play.”

The Titans depend heavily on their starters, all of whom average nine or more points and 25 or more minutes. Point guard Ray McCallum averages 18.7 points and 5.1 rebounds. Guard Jason Calliste and forward Nick Minnerath both scored 21 points in the win at Valparaiso.

“Our balanced attack is our strength,” coach Ray McCallum said.

Check Paul Suellentrop’s Shocker blog at blogs.kansas.com/shockwaves. Reach him at 316-269-6760 or psuellentrop@wichitaeagle.com.

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