Hoiberg’s lineup versatility is reminiscent of the “Who’s on first?” skit from the 1940s

On_first

In the 1940s, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello became famous for performing their “Who’s on first? What’s on second? And I don’t know who’s on third” baseball skit.

Eight Iowa State men’s basketball players have started games this winter and nine are averaging double figure minutes per appearance. Where they show up on the floor, however, is anyone’s guess.

Will Clyburn, the team’s leading scorer is the 3 (or small forward)… except for when he’s playing the 1 (point guard) or 2 (shooting guard) or 4 (power forward).

Melvin Ejim, the Big 12’s leading rebounder, is the 4… except for when he’s playing the 5 or 3.

Chris Babb, who relentlessly guards the foe’s best scorer no matter the size, is the 2 (at least on offense)… except for when he’s playing the 3.

Georges Niang, the 6-7 freshman, has started throughout the league season as the 5 (center) and been incredibly productive at using his overall game to frustrate larger foes guarding him. True to Cyclone form, Niang can also play the 4.

Korey Lucious is the 1, almost all of the time. But, the return of Bubu Palo in the second semester paved the way for a Lucious / Palo backcourt and Lucious seems to play the role of shooter as a 2.

“We’re a versatile group,” Coach Fred Hoiberg said. “All of our guys can handle the ball and make plays.”

It’s probably safe to assume that Hoiberg doesn’t spend much time deciding what positional label to put on his guys. If he did, it could be quite the routine.

[If you’ve never seen the Abbott and Costello skit, it’s worth a look. Click here.]

Reader feedback is welcome at 2minutetimeout@iastate.edu. You can also follow me on Twitter at twitter.com/SteveMalchow

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