The Iowa State men’s basketball team has gotten more than 25 points off its bench in nine of 10 games this season. More than 40% of its scoring has come from players who didn’t start. The team’s second- and third-leading scorers don’t start often.Coach Fred Hoiberg is sharing the minutes. No player on the roster is averaging more than 30 minutes per game and nine men are logging at least 11. In Sunday’s game vs. Omaha, Hoiberg tweaked his starting lineup. Percy Gibson and Georges Niang started in place of Anthony Booker and Melvin Ejim. “I wanted to change things around a little bit,” Hoiberg said. “It was just switching things up after a disappointing loss. I thought the lineup change worked well and now we’ve got a week to evaluate it.” Gibson (10 points, 6 rebounds), Niang (15, 6), Booker (11, 6) and Ejim (13 rebounds) all performed well vs. the Mavericks. Hoiberg has substituted liberally all year. Who starts isn’t really important. Take, for example, Tyrus McGee. He averaged 11.5 points in two starts. McGee is scoring 14.3 points per game off the bench. In McGee’s case, time is all that matters. He’s productive as a starter or bench sparkplug and Hoiberg expects that from everyone. Hoiberg said he will evaluate his options during the week. It probably doesn’t matter a great deal who begins the game on the floor. As has been the case with his nine-man rotation all year, it’s the production that matters the most.
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