Freshman steps up for Troy
Published 3:00 am Friday, November 27, 2015
Troy freshman forward Jordan Varnado hasn’t been putting the Trojan uniform on for very long, but the young freshman has quickly started to turn some heads on campus.
Albeit still very early in the 2015-16 season, Varnado has averaged nearly 18 points per game and has completely owned the inside of the paint.
“I am just doing the things my team needs me to do,” Varnado said. “I am rebounding the basketball and I need to be able to score when I get the ball inside the paint. I am just trying to make the game look simple and easy.”
Going into the fourth game of the season, Varnado led all freshmen in points per game and he has definitely made the game look easy.
Varnado has the ability to drive to the basket with any one, but he is also able to pull up from outside and drain an important jump shot. Varnado has made 55 percent of his shots from the floor.
“I can do a little bit of everything,” Varnado said. “I can post up defenders. I can take big guys outside the paint and take them to the hole. “
Being able to shoot is an added asset for Varnado and the Trojans. Typically Varnado will split times between the three and the four position and really be able to stretch the floor against the defense.
“I am probably a three or a four,” Varnado said. “I can do a little bit of everything for my teammates. I can pass the ball and I try to make right decisions and not turn over the ball.”
Varnado’s biggest game of the season happened in the season’s second game where he put up 26 points and hauled in 10 rebounds. That followed is debut with the Trojans, where the young freshman totaled 21 points and 11 rebounds. The back-to-back double doubles for Varnado was enough to give him the Sun Belt Conference Player of the Week.
Even with all the success early in the season, Varnado is still a freshman and with that comes inconsistency. In a game on Tuesday against Idaho, Varnado went scoreless, missing on all four of his shots. Inconsistency is something that head coach Phil Cunningham has been working on with the young freshman.
“They are working on me becoming more consistent,” Varnado said. “They are trying to make me more consistent both on and off the court, and they are trying to keep me out of foul trouble.”
The overall speed of the game and the adjustment needed to stay out of foul trouble has been the biggest adjustments in the first handful of games.
Varnado spends most of the time on the court with reigning conference freshman of the year, Wesley Person. The two of them have been a powerful duo while on the court. The two of them have led the way in scoring so far this season.
“He keeps telling me that I need to keep it up,” Varnado said. “He tells me that the team needs you everyday and to score when you can.”
When asked what type of duo Varnado and Person could be, Varnado named a lofty comparison.
“We can be maybe a Steph (Curry) and a Draymond Green,” Varnado said.
With the two players still very young the future certainly looks bright for the Trojans.