FYI - Royce White was the first player in Des Moines YMCA Capital City League history to average a triple double. Royce averaged 24 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists per game during the season.
Royce White: The Definition of Versatility
Iowa State is not known for its basketball program. The 2011-2012 season marked the fourteenth time that the Cyclones were selected for the NCAA Tournament. Iowa State made the Final Four once in 1944 but their most famous appearance in the tourney was when they were upset by 15 seeded Hampton, only the fourth time such an upset had occurred.
After the Cyclones’ 23-11 season and fourth place finish in the Big 12, behind three top 10 teams in Missouri, Kansas, and Baylor, the selection committee chose Iowa State as the 8 seed in the South region. Much of their success can be credited to redshirt sophomore Royce White. The 6’8″, 270 lb. power forward spent the first eighteen years of his life in Minnesota, first as a two-time state champion in high school and then he committed to the University of Minnesota to play for Tubby Smith. After multiple run-ins with the law in his freshman year as a Golden Gopher, including charges for theft, disorderly conduct, and trespassing, White transferred to Iowa State. John Calipari had contacted the talented forward to play for Kentucky but he decided on Iowa State instead. Since his transfer was before the end of his freshman year, Royce White could not play for a scholarship in the following season and was forced to redshirt in the 2010-2011 season.
In his first full season of playing college basketball, White hit the ground running and quickly became the Cyclones’ go-to player. In the opening game of the year, Royce White scored 25 points and pulled in 11 rebounds as Iowa State defeated Lehigh 86-77. The Minnesota-native recorded a double-double in the next game with 21 and 14 as he was began a season-long routine of putting up big numbers on a nightly basis. Iowa State reached the national spotlight when the Cyclones defeated #5 Kansas, giving the Jayhawks their first conference loss of the season. White and Iowa State tallied their second victory over a top 25 team in their last regular season game of the season against #10 Baylor. Despite heading into the Big 12 tournament on a high note, Iowa State lost to Texas in its opening game.
Iowa State was matched up against the Connecticut Huskies in the Round of 64 of the NCAA Tournament and defeated the reigning national champions 77-64 after a hot-shooting performance. The Cyclones were 6-16 from behind the three-point line and were nearly perfect from the charity stripe, missing only one of their twenty free throw attempts. White played very well against Jim Calhoun’s squad, scoring fifteen points, securing fourteen rebounds, and racking up two assists.
As the Iowa State Cyclones advanced to the Round of 32, the media took a closer look at the Big 12 team and found that it was the Minnesota transfer, who was named to the All-Big 12 First Team and Big 12 Rookie of the Year that was making the Cyclones go. Royce White boasts himself on being the only player in the country who leads his team in every major statistical category. Despite playing power forward, a position which is traditionally known for scoring points in the paint and grabbing rebounds, White shines in every aspect of his game. Royce White has the ability to put up 25 points every game but focuses on the team’s success over his personal glory. He averaged 13.1 points, 9.2 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.2 steals, and 0.94 blocks per game in the 2011-2012 season.
White faced a difficult test Saturday night when he was matched up against the front-runner for Player of the Year Anthony Davis of Kentucky. Even though Iowa State was defeated 87-71, White was one of the few bright spots for the Cyclones, finishing with 23 points, 9 rebounds, and 4 assists. For the Cyclones’ opening possessions, it was Royce White who took the ball down the court and played point guard. Although, for most of the game, White was playing well in the paint, getting open for easy baskets and scoring crucial points whenever Kentucky started to pull away. His best play of the game was when he stripped Davis on defense and went coast to coast for the dunk. Despite his large stature, Royce White has exceptional ball control and court vision.
Royce White the definition of Versatility - K@libug@n2012-04-15 19:53:34 (292 views)