Late games are tricky, especially on Fridays. Either you give up and set the TiVo (like that’s an option), stay in and keep yourself busy until tip-off, or you’re like me and you’ll still go out, have a few drinks, and come home, ready to yell at the television. And as we all know, there are fewer things more infuriating in college basketball than a really good three-point shooter (when he’s on the other team).
Take a long look at Jared Stohl, Portland’s senior guard. He looks like a normal, scrappy young buck, right? Probably has a decent jump shot and always hits his free throws? Well, if you define “decent” as “jaw-dropping,” then yes. Stohl led the nation in 3-point accuracy last year, hitting a whopping 47.8%. He’s well on pace to beating that number this season, with 12/21 from behind the arc through three games.
Coach Calipari gushed over Stohl during his radio show this week, claiming he was “scared to death” of the sharpshooter, who he called “the best three-point shooter in the country.” Now, we all know that Cal is prone to hyperbole (it’s also rumored that Stohl poops fro-yo), but how worried should we really be?
The better question is how will Stohl fare against Kentucky-sized talent? Last year, Portland’s highest-ranked opponent was West Virginia; in the 84-66 loss to Huggy Bear, Stohl had 11 points and was 2-7 from the three-point range. Kentucky will have to defend Stohl closely to keep him from getting a hot hand, which can be a tall task for a very young team. You’ve gotta think the honor of guarding Stohl will go to Liggins, the Cats’ most physical defender thus far.
You guys will love this…guess who Stohl’s favorite player is? None other than J.J. Redick(ulously gay).