Shockwaves

Pregame update: Illinois State at No. 16 Wichita State

▪  Call this the reverse Allen Iverson.

Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall likes the way his team practices. The challenge, like with many teams, is getting that same execution against a team scheming to stop. What’s unusual, Marshall said, is that players who play aggressively in practice pull back a bit when the arena opens for business.

Most of the players in that group are newcomers, but not all.

“We’ve got some guys that compete harder in practices than they do in games,” he said. “It is very odd. I can’t understand it. I’m not going to name names, but you can go back and look at the video of the Drake game and who did what and who got what accomplished. Then watch them in practice and say ‘How did you just get that accomplished against Drake.’”

I’ll let you go through the box score and decide which player(s) Marshall is speaking about. Certainly, it’s not an epidemic for a team that’s 11-2. It is, however, an observation rarely heard from coaches who are more used to wringing effort from their players in practices.

▪  Big centers are an issue for WSU, proven when Drake’s Jacob Enevold grabbed 15 rebounds and scored 12 points. WSU, especially if Shaq Morris isn’t playing, lacks a bruiser in the lane who can take up space and push people around. Illinois State center Reggie Lynch (6-10, 257 pounds) averages 8.1 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.0 blocks.

A bad back, however, has limited his time in recent games. He hasn’t played more than 14 minutes in the past three games. If he isn’t 100 percent, WSU’s job in the is easier.

The Wichita Eagle: Shockers voted top story of 2014 by readers.

The Wichita Eagle: Good practices aren’t always translating to games.

The Pantagraph: Redbirds newcomers ready for first MVC road game.

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