Oklahoma State basketball: Le'Bryan Nash has flipped the effort switch in Puerto Rico

by John Helsley Published: November 17, 2012
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photo - COLLEGE BASKETBALL: OSU men's basketball player Le'Bryan Nash (2) poses for a portrait at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla., Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011.  Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman
COLLEGE BASKETBALL: OSU men's basketball player Le'Bryan Nash (2) poses for a portrait at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla., Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman

Le'Bryan Nash seemed to almost be at odds with himself in the preseason, talking about satisfaction with his freshman season, yet also acknowledging how much better it could have been.

The most common critique from the outside: a lack of consistent effort.

So far this season, and especially at the Puerto Rico Tip-Off, Nash has flipped the switch, a big reason Oklahoma State has advanced to Sunday's championship game. With two wins behind them in Puerto Rico, the Cowboys face No. 6 North Carolina State at 5:30 p.m.

In tournament wins over Akron and Tennessee, Nash totaled 37 points and also engaged on the defensive end, where he's even been asked to play the low post, due to injury and foul issues.

“He's playing at a high intensity level,” said Cowboys coach Travis Ford.

And the Cowboys couldn't need it any more, heading into a clash with one of the nation's top teams, owning an opportunity to put a signature moment on a solid start, while securing a resume-building caliber win.

OSU keeps taking personnel hits, with Jéan-Paul Olukemi and Marek Soucek suffering injuries on this trip, joining starters Brian Williams and Michael Cobbins as unavailable.

Continue reading this story on the...

by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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OKLAHOMA STATE VS. NO. 6 NORTH CAROLINA ST.

* When: 5:30 p.m. Sunday

* Where: Coliseo Ruben Rodriquez, Bayamon, Puerto Rico

* Radio: KXXY-FM 96.1

* TV: ESPNU (Cox 253)

THREE THINGS TO KNOW

* Steve French, the normal play-by-play man for the Akron Zips, will fill in for Dave Hunziker, who returned to Stillwater for OSU's football game against Texas Tech.

* Some have pegged N.C. State – above North Carolina and Duke – as the ACC favorite.

* The game features a major clash of freshmen guards, with OSU's Marcus Smart likely matched with Rodney Purvis.

PROJECTED STARTERS

Oklahoma State (3-0)

Pos. — Player — Ht. — Cl. — Pts. — Reb.

F — Le'Bryan Nash — 6-7 — So. — 17.7 — 6.3

F — Kamari Murphy — 6-8 — Fr. — 4.0 — 6.3

C — Philip Jurick — 6-11 — Sr. — 2.7 — 4.3

G — Markel Brown — 6-3 — Jr. — 14.7 — 4.7

G — Marcus Smart — 6-4 — Fr. — 13.0 — 8.3

N.C. State (3-0)

Pos. — Player — Ht. — Cl. — Pts. — Reb.

F — Richard Howell — 6-8 — Sr. — 14.7 — 8.0

F — Scott Wood — 6-6 — Sr. — 11.0 — 3.3

C — C.J. Leslie — 6-9 — Jr. — 12.7 — 6.7

G — Rodney Purvis — 6-2 — Fr. — 12.0 — 2.3

G — Lorenzo Brown — 6-5 — Jr. — 11.0 — 7.0*

* assists

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