University of Northern Iowa senior guard Ben Jacobson is the Missouri Valley Player of the week. Jacobson averaged 21 points in a pair of road wins last week against Wichita State and Missouri State. Panther coach Greg McDermott says Jacobson has matured from the scrawny high school kid that first stepped on campus. McDermott says at that point in the program they were looking for someone to take the big shot. McDermott says Jacobson missed some big shots early in his career, but has matured and wants the ball when the game is on the line.
McDermott says Jacobsen’s play is part of a team effort that saw them persevere during a tough road stretch. He says his team is really have a good time with the “us against the world” mentality on the road. McDermott says he hopes his team can use some of the same good execution this week at home against Creighton.
McDermott says the two wins are big as they seek to win the M-V-C. He says he didn’t think it was possible to get double digit victories in both places as they both had big crowds and he says both have good teams. U-N-I has thrived on hitting the three pointer in the past, but were able to win without it as much in the recent stretch.
McDermott says the team is intelligent and understand they have to find a way to win when the three’s aren’t going in. He says their defense and rebounding have improved and that’s helped.
It was the first time U-N-I got victories in both games on the road in six other back-to-back games in Wichita and Springfield. U-N-I is now 14-2 overall and 4-1 in the conference.