Russ Smith Remains In Top 5 of CBS Player of the Year Race

Posted on Jan 15 2013 - 2:59pm by Brent Lepping

Photo – Boston Globe

 

The analysts over at CBSSports.com have updated their race for college basketball player of the year and Louisville’s Russ Smith is still in the hunt. Smith checks in at #4 behind Creighton’s Doug McDermott, Michigan’s Trey Burke and Duke’s Mason Plumlee. Now, I love Russ as much as the next man, but to say he’s an enigma wrapped inside of a riddle is a huge understatement. I don’t know, maybe it was last night’s game or just a firm realization that suddenly hit me, but I’m not sure how Smith – who’s not even the most valuable player on his own team – deserves to be so high on this list. The reason? Re-watch the first half of last night’s game and you’ll know why.

He was selfish, took bad shots (though, to his credit, he was making a lot of them) played just ok defense and had zero assists playing the point guard spot. With Russ running the team, the Cards were down by as many as 10 in the first half against UConn and went into the locker room down by 6. When Peyton Siva re-entered the game in the second half, the Cards were + 21 points, shot over 60% from the field as a team and played sweltering defense. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Now, all that said, I’m still incredibly happy for Russ and all the attention and accolades he’s receiving. He’s worked incredibly hard and his game has obviously improved a great deal from last year. He’s turned himself into one of the best on-ball defenders in the entire country and a lethal scorer. And maybe I’ve become jaded and expect too much from these kids. I guess I’ve seen how much he’s improved in certain areas, now I  want to see him take it to the next level. More quality passes, better shot selection, getting his teammates involved in the halfcourt offense, etc. Show me more of that, and I’ll happily buy into this whole POY race stuff. Until then, being #1 and having a bunch of great players – including Russdiculous – will have to suffice.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.5/10 (8 votes cast)
Russ Smith Remains In Top 5 of CBS Player of the Year Race, 6.5 out of 10 based on 8 ratings

Comments

comments

2 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Guest January 15, 2013 at 3:06 pm - Reply

    He is there for being a great asset to the team and scoring not based on playing the point guard which is his secondary role. He may not be the best point guard but he is a great scorer and player.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  2. John January 15, 2013 at 9:34 pm - Reply

    Yea but smith is the backup POINT Guard which means he assumes primary role of distrubution. If siva goes out with 2 fouls in the tournament I will not feel as confindent about our championship aspirations. He took 15 shots in the first half, when siva came in you start to see behanon and dieng get the shots along with others. In march smith could be shut down, so will he pass or continue to force the issue for himself. That should be our concern moving forward.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

Leave A Response