A few thoughts on the basketball exhibition.
It was impressive to see 48 points by newcomers. Things looked a bit awkward early as Andy Kennedy was running so many guys in and out.
The level of athleticism had something to do with the success, but consider this: Mississippi State only beat Delta State by 20. There’s not a whole lot to be read into that, but it’s an interesting note.
Jarvis Summers showed no signs of a high ankle sprain and finished with 16 points on 6-for-10 shooting. Here’s what Summers had to say after the game:
One concern to keep an eye on was the Rebels’ 10-for-20 free throw shooting. That will lose close games.
Last night was the first time I’d seen the transfers in action. They will be important parts to this team. They will not save this team. No one is about to jump up an average 20 the way Marshall Henderson did in his first season.
It was noteworthy during the week when Kennedy described M.J. Rhett as not his best rebounder in the scrimmage against Middle Tennessee State.
There’s a very small viewing sample right now, but I thought I’d see more from Rhett on the glass than three rebounds in 21 minutes.
There’s a temptation to say he’s a transfer learning his way, but he saw the big college speed of the game when he played in non-conference games for Tennessee State, and last night wasn’t big college. Maybe Rhett will find another gear.
The best rebounder last night was Sebastian Saiz with 11. No one else had more than four.
The Rebels were active on the offensive glass, getting half of their 34 rebounds then. All three of Dwight Coleby’s rebounds were on offense, and he scored with two of them.
Coleby looked like he was finishing better around the rim than I remember. He felt like he was finishing because he tried to make a move and score every time he touched the ball.
Speaking of touching the ball, the explosiveness of Stefan Moody was evident, but he had the efficiency of Marshall Henderson. Moody hit his first three-pointer then missed his next six. He looked like he had the Henderson green light. He finished 6-for-15 from the floor, 2-for-7 from 3.
Terence Smith looked like I thought he would based on early reports. He was accurate and played within himself going 4-for-5 from the floor, 2-for-3 from 3 for 10 points and three assists in 22 minutes.
Rod Lawrence was good. I had him pegged more as a slashing scorer, but he was 3-for-4 from the arc. He put the ball on the floor too.
We wrote so much about a consistent third scorer for these guys over the last two years. They may be able to find ample support for Jarvis Summers this year.
None of these new guys have a self esteem problem with the basketball.