Improving point guard play a big help to Utah State
The point guard spot has been a markedly up-and-down spot for Utah State so far this year, but Saturday's game should be encouraging in that regard. Both Marcel Davis and TeNale Roland looked comfortable against Illinois State, Roland with his 3-pointers and Davis with his passing. The strength in the backcourt was key to helping the Aggies get a 80-71 win in Logan.
This much is for sure: When they both play well, the zone is no problem. Davis can penetrate and collapse it, and Roland can shoot over it. That point guard tandem has the power to be a zone-busting pair.
Morrill spoke favorably of both after the game in his radio comments, saying he was glad Roland was finally bringing his shooting from practice into games, and that Davis looked more steady as the game went on.
The two have oscillated in and out: There are times when Davis looks unsure or confused, and there are times when Roland simply seems bothered by the level of play.
Cool hands under pressure were important to the victory. They still struggled at times against the press, and frankily, Davis could get better at the free throw line. But for the most part, they made it work with ugly but effective passing and ballhandling.
Louisiana Tech and UT Arlington will test if Roland and Davis are really ready for prime time. Their struggles against those teams at home (combined 10 points, 10 turnovers, 3-23 FG shooting) hurt the Aggies' chances for victories in the Spectrum. On the road, it only gets tougher.
Kyle Goonkgoon@sltrib.comTwitter: @kylegoon