World-Herald staff writer Steven Pivovar shares his observations from Monday’s Creighton men’s basketball practice at the Vinardi Center.
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Seen: The Bluejays returned to practice after scrimmaging Iowa State on Sunday. Guards Avery Dingman and Grant Gibbs sat out the practice, as Dingman sustained a calf muscle bruise in the scrimmage. Gibbs was on the sidelines after receiving a cortisone shot that had been previously scheduled. Gibbs has been bothered by tendinitis in his knee in the past, and the shot is a preventive measure to keep discomfort at a minimum.
Seen: Walt Perrin, vice president of player personnel for the Utah Jazz, observing practice. A number of other NBA scouts have been practice visitors since the Bluejays started workouts on Sept. 28.
Seen: Creighton forward Doug McDermott running post-practice sprints with the guards rather than the big men. McDermott was among the leaders.
Heard: “I think I’m in that kind of shape now, and I’m trying to push myself. I feel like those are good guys to catch up with. If you can outrun guards, you can outrun bigs.” — McDermott
Seen: A nice sequence in which McDermott snared a loose ball on the defensive end, led a fast break, passed the ball to point guard Austin Chatman and then scored after a quick post-up inside.
Seen: Some dead-eye shooting by freshman guard Darian Harris. He might have had one of his best shooting days from the perimeter since the start of practice.
Seen: Solid work from center Geoffrey Groselle that allowed him to switch from running with the backups to playing with the regular rotation midway through practice. The 7-foot Groselle was particularly active on the boards and also had several nice moves on the offensive end.
Heard: “He was pretty sore a few days ago, but I think his feet have been feeling better the last few days. That’s been reflected in his play. He’s moving around better.” — Creighton coach Greg McDermott on Groselle, who has been bothered by Achilles problems in both legs.
Seen: Guard Devin Brooks showcasing his quickness. He stepped in front of a pass on the defensive end, then won a coast-to-coast foot race that resulted in a layup.
Seen: Guard Jahenns Manigat’s improvement in driving the ball to the basket. He’s had difficulty in finishing drives at times during his career, but he’s displaying greater consistency in preseason workouts. He showed a nice fake on a dribble-drive move that ended in a layup.
On tap: The Bluejays get a day off Tuesday, then will have two days to get tuned up for Friday’s exhibition game against Northern State at the CenturyLink Center.