A big story at the beginning of last season was figuring out what the hell had happened to Omar Calhoun. He was a starter going into the season, but lost his spot in the starting lineup by the middle of it. Can he bounce back this year?
This year, with Shabazz Napier gone, the team is looking for candidates to step up in the back court. Ryan Boatright and Rodney Purvis are firmly entrenched as starters, but behind them Calhoun, Terrence Samuel, and Sam Cassell Jr. will all have a chance to earn meaningful playing time.
So this is the question I posed to a few teammates at The UConn Blog: Will Omar Calhoun eclipse 7 points per game?
My reasoning for 7 is that given the size of the crowd vying for playing time, getting to this reasonable clip would mean that Calhoun is back to being a contributor on the team, compared to last year when he was mostly invisible. We aren't asking whether or not he'll be a star, but rather will he be a factor on this year's team?
Under: Between Ryan Boatright, Rodney Purvis, Terrance Samuel and freshman additions Sam Cassell Jr. and Daniel Hamilton, there seems to be very few minutes remaining for Omar Calhoun. Although he has the benefit of some experience, his dreadful shooting season last year appeared to cripple both his own confidence and the staff's confidence in him. With all that in mind, I wouldn't be surprised to see a number of games with just a few minutes played and even, potentially, a handful of DNP's for Calhoun. Hopefully I'm wrong, but the crowded backcourt may very well box him out of opportunities.
Over: I am probably way too optimistic when it comes to Omar Calhoun but I really think he will be able bounce back and provide quality minutes this season. With Shabazz, DeAndre, Lasan, and Neils all gone, we are going to have to look to other players to contribute when it comes to scoring and I really do believe that Omar can be one of those guys. I'm not asking for 10 points every night, it can just be 4 layups and a Free Throw and that will be plenty. With all of the positive feedback that we have heard from Ollie and Boat and other teammates, it's hard to imagine a situation where Calhoun is as bad as last year. Even if he doesn't average 7 (which he will), I do believe that he will be a key contributor to a successful season. LETS GO OMAR!
Over: I'm almost sure Omar Calhoun will score more than seven a game this season for the Huskies. Despite his abysmal sophomore season, he is just a year removed from averaging 11 ppg and being a knockdown three point shooter. Personally, I think his hip surgery last season severely hindered his development and never really allowed him to get into a rhythm. Boatright even said that Calhoun is back to normal this year, and a healthy Omar Calhoun means he has the ability to re-enter the starting lineup and fill Niels Giffey's old role as the Huskies' perimeter sharpshooter.
Under: I do think Omar will contribute this season, but given the logjam at the position I predict he falls just short of the 7ppg mark. Ryan Boatright, Rodney Purvis and Danny Hamilton are the first scoring threats on this team. After that Calhoun will be sharing time with Samuel and Cassell Jr. and I would probably take Samuel to be the leading scorer out of those three.
What do you think Husky fans? Over or Under 7ppg for Omar Calhoun?