▪ Wichita State won’t face a busier player this season than Indiana State guard Brenton Scott.
He uses 30.8 percent of Sycamores possession, which is the MVC’s highest and ranks No. 42 nationally for possessions that end with a shot or free throw. He is No. 13 nationally by taking 35.3 percent of his team’s shots, according to kenpom.com.
Indiana State has won games in which Scott didn’t score big and lost games in which he did. Matt Van Scyoc is capable of breaking out. So is Everett Clemons.
What’s clear is that Scott isn’t going to stop shooting. He is shooting 34.1 percent from three-point range and 64.5 percent from the foul line.
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Scott went 3 of 14 from three-point range in a loss to Northern Illinois and 0 for 7 in a loss to Western Kentucky. Locking up Scott isn’t a sure path to victory, but it can go a long way. No other Sycamore averages in double figures.
Scott has no fear of taking bad shots, some of which aren’t really bad for him. He will let go from many spots other players won’t consider. That’s part of the challenge of guarding him — he is fearless and unpredictable.
“He can shoot it from a distance, he can drive it, gets to the foul line,” WSU coach Gregg Marshall said. “You can’t lose discipline defensively against him, or it’s going to be two or three points. You’ve got to stay locked in and force him to take a lot of bad shots. He’s going to score, he’ll get his points. You can’t get discouraged and let something on the offensive end affect your defensive intensity on him.”
▪ WSU is an excellent defensive team and it’s had mixed success limiting the damage from high-scoring guards. It has several defenders — Zach Brown, Markis McDuffie, Landry Shamet — it can use on Scott.
Oklahoma State’s Jawun Evans, who is more of a point guard than Scott, scorched WSU for 22 points on 9-of-16 shooting. OSU’s Phil Forte went 1 of 6 from three-point range.
Oklahoma’s Jordan Woodard scored 28 points on 7-of-17 shooting (solid defense by WSU) and 10 foul shots (can’t happen with Scott).
Louisville’s Donovan Mitchell scored 14 points on 5-of-13 shooting. LSU’s Antonio Blakeney made 5 of 14 shots to score 12 points.
Long Beach State’s Evan Payne missed 9 of 10 shots and scored four points.
The Shockers are capable of defending Scott into a tough night. The degree that they do so will determine how Wednesday’s game goes.
Last season, Scott made 4 of 5 threes and scored 24 points in an 82-62 loss to WSU at Koch Arena. In Hulman Center, he scored 14 points and made 3 of 8 threes in an 84-51 defeat. He also totaled one assist and six turnovers.
▪ The Shockers dominated time of possession in the two wins last season. They totaled nine turnovers in the two games, compared to 30 for ISU. The Sycamores are better ball-handling team this season, cutting their turnover-percentage from 18.6 last season to 17.5, according to kenpom.com.
▪ With Emondre Rickman, Brandon Murphy, T.J. Bell and Neils Bunschoten, Indiana State had big-man depth that ranked near the top of the MVC.
Bell left the team earlier this month, which robs it of depth. Bell started five games and averaged 6.1 points and 3.5 rebounds.
The Shockers won’t play Shaq Morris due to a thigh injury.
▪ I don’t know how much of an opening MVC teams sense now that the Baker-VanVleet era is over. It can’t hurt Wichita State’s aura if it plays well on Wednesday and gives rivals a sense that not much changed.
WSU started MVC play 9-0 the past three seasons. Before that, it went 8-1 twice. In most of those years, the Shockers forced the rest of the MVC to chase them from the start.
▪ Watching: Cox 22, 2022, Time Warner Sports Channel (Kansas City), ESPN3.com (blackouts apply), Fox Sports Midwest, Indiana, Comcast SportsNet Chicago (blackouts apply)
▪ Listening: KEYN, 103.7-FM, goshockers.com
Wichita State at Indiana State
- When: 6 p.m. Wednesday
- Where: Hulman Center, Terre Haute, Ind.
- Records: WSU 10-3, 0-0 MVC; ISU 6-6, 0-0
- Radio: KEYN, 103.7-FM
- TV: Cox 22, 2022
- Video: ESPN3.com (blackouts apply)
Wichita State at Indiana State
Matt Van Scyoc
Wichita State (10-3): Brown is 19 of his last 21 from the foul line, 14 straight, after starting the season 11 of 22. He has made 11 of his past 24 three-pointers. … The Shockers lead the series 58-29, including 17 of the last 19 They have won eight straight at Hulman Center, the program’s best streak. … WSU averages 81.8 points, its most in non-conference play since the 1981-82 team averaged 84.1 points. Its margin of victory (19.2 points) is the most in non-conference play since the 1980-81 team posted a 23.6 margin. … WSU’s five-game road win streak ranks third in NCAA Division I. The Shockers are one of 14 teams 2-0 or better in road games.
Indiana State (6-6): The Sycamores, outside of Scott and Van Scyoc, don’t shoot well from long distance. They are shooting 32.8 percent as a team from three-point range and their effective field-goal percentage (which adjust for three-pointers) is 47.6, which ranks No. 263 nationally, according to kenpom.com. … Indiana State holds opponents to 41.9-percent shooting inside the arc, No. 23 nationally, according to kenpom.com. … The Sycamores are coming off an 88-85 double-overtime win over Eastern Illinois last week. Scott, a preseason All-MVC pick, scored 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds in 42 minutes. … Indiana State played eight games concluded by a final possession or in overtime.
RPI rank as of Tuesday: WSU No. 76, ISU No. 127