If there’s any doubt Wyoming senior forward Larry Nance Jr. is recovered from ACL surgery back in March, the Cowboys’ large number of games to start the season should prove that he’s fine.
UW will play its 10th game over a 24-day period when it plays at California at 9 p.m. MT Wednesday. Nance has started every game, and leads the team in scoring (12.7 ppg), rebounding (5.4 rpg) and blocked shots (1.1 bpg).
“I’m doing well, but it’s been a little taxing combing back and playing this many games in a pretty short amount of time,” Nance said. “Let’s just say this: I’ve been in the training room quite a bit. I feel good and looking forward to this next one.”
Nance averaged 15.4 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.1 blocked shots and 1.4 steals per game last season before his injury, which earned him First Team All-Mountain West honors and a spot on the league’s All-Defensive Team.
Nance’s scoring average has dipped in the last couple of games. He was held to four points on 1 of 4 shooting in UW’s 66-53 loss at SMU last Friday, and he played only 16 minutes and had six points in a 70-35 home win over Division II Regis last Sunday.
SMU did a good job of taking Nance away last Friday, and perhaps UW should have done a better job of getting him the ball, or at least finding ways of getting him the ball. It will be interesting to see how Nance does against California, who has a big front court.
UW was outrebounded 35-16 at SMU, and California has outrebounded teams by about six this season, including nearly 41 rebounds per contest. UW averages about 30 rebounds per game, with 25.4 of those coming on the defensive end, which leads the Mountain West.
“We got crushed pretty good on glass at SMU. That’s something we’ve always had to work on and a hurdle we’ve always had to get over. This game will be no different than the others,” Nance said.