March 18, 2009

Douglas paves way for Seminoles

MADISON, Wis. - Anyone that follows Wisconsin men's basketball knows how important the point guard position is.

A season ago, Trevon Hughes sat out the majority of the second half against Davidson in UW's sweet sixteen match-up. During that time, the Badgers, who were deadlocked at 36 with the Wildcats at halftime, were outscored 37 to 20 in the final 20 minutes before suffering defeat.

Without Hughes, the Badgers had to revert to Michael Flowers and Jason Bohannon, two guards more suited for the two spot, to bring the ball up. Meanwhile, Jason Richards, Davidson's stellar point guard, and Stephen Curry picked apart the UW defense.

Low and behold, albeit a different year and with a healthy Hughes, the Badgers are once again meeting up with a point guard with star caliber.

Florida State's Toney Douglas averages an impressive 21.3 points, 3.9 rebound and 2.9 assists per game. His scoring is by far tops of the team as no other Seminole averages more than 8.5 points per contest.

Douglas can defend a little bit, too. He was recently named Atlantic Coast Conference defensive player of the year to go with his scoring crown of conference only games.

"He's kind of like Kalin Lucas, but just a little taller," Hughes said. "Height does play a role. He's definitely built and you can see the strength on his frame and he can shoot it. He's a combination mixed with Demetri McCamey and then Lucas.

"But not as thick as McCamey."

During FSU's recent run to the ACC championship game in Atlanta, Douglas scored 80 total points (26.6 ppg) in three games pushing his season scoring total to 725. As a frame of reference, UW's season leader in scoring was Marcus Landry with 390 points.

Needless to say, Douglas is a scorer that will need plenty, but not all of, the attention.

"The problem is that there are a bunch around eight (points per game)," UW head coach Bo Ryan said. "Having coached some teams that had a bunch of guys who averaged around that along with a pretty good scorer, those guys are still going to get 10 to 15 a lot of nights."

The Badgers are no stranger to point production from players that were not necessarily tabbed the star. A season ago at Indiana, Jason Bohannon hit six three pointers off the bench en route to his game high 18-point performance that helped UW sneak away with a 68-66 win.

This season, Joe Krabbenhoft, a player more known for his all around game than his scoring ability, logged games of 16 (twice), 18 and 19 as the team's fifth leading scorer.

So even with a superstar such as Douglas, there are four other players on the court at any given time that are just as capable of scoring for the Seminoles. And if UW is to advance to see another game, it will need to slow everyone on the court down in some respect.

"If you think that I'm thinking we're going into a game guarding one guy basically because he's a prolific scorer," Ryan said. "That's not right. When you're looking at tapes like we have, there are guys that are real good if they get this look, guys real good if they get that look. Still, you have to guard the other people."

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