Over the past five games, redshirt freshman guard Jarron Coleman has been held to five or fewer points. Ball State Men’s Basketball’s Saturday matinee against IUPUI changed the narrative for what Coleman does on offense. Coleman would score 20 of the teams’ 102 points on the afternoon, and he did it in an efficient way.
Going 7-of-8 from the field and 3-of-4 from 3-point range allowed him to come into his own Saturday. Coleman gained more experience in a starting role Saturday, and Ball State had the right combination to get off to a fast start on both sides of the ball.
“I felt that I had more time to get comfortable by being in longer and adjust to the speed of the game,” Coleman said. “We are at our best in transition. It is the easiest way to get buckets for us.”
Coleman re-entered the starting lineup for the Cardinals after coming off the bench against Loyola Chicago and wasted no time getting into the scoring column. At the 17:22 mark, Coleman pulled up on the right side of the arc and connected. There was no looking back after that, as he would rattle off seven more points in the first half and go into halftime as the team's second-leading scorer.
Taking care of the ball was a big factor for Ball State. Coleman was responsible for two of the team's nine turnovers on the afternoon. On the defensive side, the Cardinals forced the Jaguars to commit 16 turnovers. Of those 16, Ball State was able to score 20 points off of turnovers. The ability to turn defense into offense was a point of emphasis for Ball State.
“They shot 30 percent from the field. That gave us a lot of opportunities to get out and go,” head coach James Whitford said. “We really shared the ball on offense. Guys being patient and locked in on getting great shots.”
Coleman was able to score his 20 points in just under 20 minutes of play. Making the extra pass and doing it quickly with precision allowed Ball State and Coleman to be efficient on offense. The assist-to-turnover ratio was more of what the Cardinals want to see regularly.
“I thought we played hard, and we played focused,” Whitford said. “Guys being patient and locked in on getting great shots, keeping our turnovers down and sharing the ball is a big part of us being successful.”
The ability of Coleman to settle into the offense early allowed him to find more open shots and adjust to the speed of the game. The pace of play for the Cardinals created 10 fast-break points to the Jaguars' five.