December 5, 2012 10:00:23 AM
Matthew Stevens - firstname.lastname@example.org
STARKVILLE -- The Mississippi State University men's basketball coaches have stressed to Colin Borchert there are ways he can contribute without scoring.
On Tuesday in a 53-42 victory against the University of Texas at San Antonio, the transfer from East Mississippi Community College heeded that encouragement with a career-high 10 rebounds.
"Really pleased with Colin's effort tonight to play defense and rebound on the defensive end even though he wasn't getting his shot to fall offensively," MSU coach Rick Ray said.
In 26 minutes off the bench, Borchert moved his feet on defense and didn't reach to pick up unneeded fouls.
"Playing a team that sets a lot of ball screens you tend to foul," Ray said. "For them to shot only nine free throws made me really pleased."
Borchert had just four points (2-for-5 shooting) and one assist at power forward position, but he also had a career-high two blocked shots.
"You have to go back on the defensive end and guard and rebound, even if you come down to the offensive end and don't experience success," Ray said. "To keep that mentality and that grind, we have talked about it until we are blue in the face with our guys. They went out and they did it tonight. It was good for our team."
Borchert re-joined the team nearly two weeks ago after being suspended for what the school called a violation of team rules. He didn't accompany the team to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. The Phoenix, Ariz., native, a junior college All-America transfer from EMCC, started the first two games for the Bulldogs this season and is averaging 5.2 points and 4.2 rebounds in 23.2 minutes.
Former Bulldog Varnado named NBA Development League performer of the week
Former MSU standout Jarvis Varnado apparently is handling his first season in the NBA Development League, or its minor league system, just fine.
Varnado, the Sioux Falls Skyforce's new center, was named Tuesday the league's performer of the week for games played Nov. 23 - Dec. 2.
The 6-foot-9, 210-pound front-court player, who had been in training camp with the NBA's Miami Heat, led Sioux Falls to a 3-0 record for the week and averaged 15.7 points, 9.3 rebounds and a league-high 5.7 blocked shots.
Varnado was named a starter on MSU's All-Century team after he set an NCAA record with 564 blocked shots and became the first player in college basketball history to score 1,000 points, to collect 1,000 rebounds, and to block 500 shots. Varnado was a three-time Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year, and led the Bulldogs to the Western Division crown as a freshman, sophomore, and senior. He helped the team win the SEC tournament as a junior.
Varnado had 17 blocks in the first three games of the NBDL season. In the season opener against Iowa, he had 11 points and 14 rebounds. On Nov. 30, in a 118-111 victory at Springfield, he had 21 points and eight blocks.
"All I need to do is show what I can do, and that's block shots and rebound," Varnado said when asked how he expects to get back to an NBA roster.