Josh Blessing

Freshman Chris Bond is all over the court.

When he wants a rebound, he's going to get it. No matter how many players he has draped on him, his athletic ability continues to shine.

"Chris is an explosive type [of] athlete. He's very long, very agile and he's got a tenacity for the ball," coach Billy Taylor said. "Some guys stand and watch, and other guys go make things happen – Chris makes it happen."

Bond's knack for the ball gave him his first double-double of his young career Tuesday night against Toledo, posting a career-high, 18 points and pulling down 10 boards.

That tenacity, that mindset to be aggressive has made him Ball State's best finisher at the rim. Bond finished the night 8-for-12 from the field.

All eight buckets came within the lane.

Since getting his first start against Ohio less than a month ago, Bond's numbers have steadily grown. So have his minutes.

Through his first six starts this season, he's averaging 11.5 points and 5.5 boards.

Even after his recent success, Bond said the celebration will be short-lived.

"It feels good," he said. "Celebrate today, move on for tomorrow, [then] get ready for the next game."

Somehow, with less than a second remaining in the first half, Bond came down with a rebound and laid it in to give the Cardinals momentum heading into the locker room.

Those types of hustle plays are what Bond has done all year.

"He's quick off the floor, so he's able to get up and finish," Taylor said. "He does a lot of things well, but really it's his tenacity and his will to get to the rim and go finish."

Toledo's coach, Tod Kowalczyk, made a bold statement after the game about the young freshman.

"Chris Bond is going to be a good player in this league for a long time to come," he said.