Marial Shayok says he found positives in the loss against Texas Tech
Randy Peterson, email@example.com
Three-point offense and defense. Points in the paint. Rebounding. Coaching …
I don’t know why I’m even attempting to overthink the obvious about Thursday’s 11:30 a.m. Iowa State-Baylor game in the quarterfinal round of the Big 12 Conference tournament at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.
A toe could decide the outcome.
Cyclone star Marial Shayok has a sprained left baby toe. Bears star Makai Mason has a bruised big toe. Both could play. One could play. Neither could play.
If you’ve ever had a sore toe, you know what they’re going through. It’s nothing to be laughed about if you’ve stubbed one, hooked one on an obnoxious living room coffee table or, heaven forbid, broken a toe.
The fact that they’re athletes — who strive for head-to-toe health — complicates the recovery process.
Shayok’s prognosis is the easiest — he’s likely playing against a team that has beaten Iowa State twice this season. Mason’s isn’t quite as clear.
“He’s been questionable since his injury,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said Monday on the Big 12 coaches’ teleconference. “A lot depends on how his foot is feeling. We’ll know a lot more when we get close to game time.”
Mason didn’t play in the season finale against Kansas, resting a toe that has been sore for awhile. With the Bears squarely in the NCAA Tournament, it would not be surprising if he spent the Big 12 tourney resting for more significant games next week.
“As far as the NCAA goes — that’s something where if Mason has any opportunity to help us, he’ll definitely want to be on the court and want to partake in that,” Drew said. “We’ll definitely want to weigh all that in the equation. As a coach, I’ll wait to hear from my trainer to see if he plays.
“If he says Makai’s a go, we’ll play him. I know that, in the NCAA Tournament, I don’t think there’s any way to keep him from playing.”
Shayok missed last Wednesday’s West Virginia game, and played 31 somewhat painful minutes last Saturday against Texas Tech. He said after the game that he planned to use the next four days for rest and toe rehab.
“By Thursday, I think he should be good to go,” Iowa State coach Steve Prohm said. “Whether he practices this week — I don’t know that yet.”
Neither player needs much fine-tuning. Both lead their respective teams in scoring. Both average the most minutes. Shayok was an all-Big 12 coaches’ first-team selection, while Mason was on the second team.
Both totaled 39 points in Iowa State-Baylor games this season, and now both have the same injury …
A bum toe.
Iowa State columnist Randy Peterson has been with the Register for parts of five decades. Randy writes opinion and analysis of Iowa State football and basketball. You can reach Randy at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @RandyPete.
Source: Des Moines Register