Whatever it was about the performance against Gonzaga, sophomore David Crisp has turned that disappointment, even embarrassment, into arguably the best multiple-game stretch of his University of Washington basketball career.
Crisp, a Tacoma product and former Clover Park High School standout, has averaged 18.3 points per game over his past four outings — Nevada (21 points), Western Michigan (15), Cal Poly (21) and Seattle University (16).
During that span, he has been hot with his 3-point shooting, making 15 of 27 attempts, including a career-high five 3-pointers against Seattle University.
The Huskies host Washington State University on Sunday to open Pac-12 play.
“David has probably simplified the game. David is maturing,” UW men’s coach Lorenzo Romar said. “He picks his spots a little better. ... He knows where there are opportunities to make plays, and he’s not trying to force the situation when it isn’t there. Less has become more for him.”
In that 98-71 loss at Gonzaga on Dec. 7, Crisp missed all seven shots from the floor, finishing with two points in 27 minutes.
“I said I would never perform like that again,” Crisp said. “So I came back and got in the gym, talked to the people I needed to, prayed about it and ... ultimately it was up to me. I am not going to let somebody go out there and stop me or anything. It is all up to me. I am going to leave everything out there on the court.”
Even in high school, Crisp was always a streaky scorer.
And right now, his shooting stroke feels as good as it ever has.
“My confidence is really high right now,” Crisp said. “My teammates and coaches believe in me, so I will keep knocking them down.”
FIRST UP: FOOTBALL GAME
The Huskies will hold a morning practice Saturday, then meet in the team lounge area to watch the UW football team take on No. 1 Alabama in the national semifinals in the Peach Bowl.
One guy who knows the Crimson Tide well is Noah Dickerson. He grew up in Atlanta. And he went to high school in Florida.
“I am pulling for the Huskies,” Dickerson said with a wide smile. “I’ve grown up watching Alabama because I am from down South. I know the type of football they play. We will see.”
Naturally, Crisp picked a UW victory, saying the Crimson Tide doesn’t “know what’s coming.”
Like every winter holiday, Romar gave the team time off before Christmas. The Huskies have been back for a week, practicing in preparation for their conference opener. ... Romar said he sat with former UW point guard Curtis Allen, now a WSU assistant, on Wednesday night at the Les Schwab Invitational in Portland. Allen suffered a heart attack last month at a tournament in the U.S. Virgin Islands. “Man, thank God, he is doing OK,” Romar said. “He is a good man.”