Richard Morrow will get the second start of his FAU career on Saturday at Louisiana-Monroe. (OwlAccess.com file photo)
Richard Morrow has taken advantage of the playing time afforded by the suspensions of Stefan Moody and Cavon Baker. Those two return on Saturday against ULM, but they won't knock Morrow out of the line-up.
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Walk-on Richard Morrow has impressed FAU coach Mike Jarvis enough over the past three games that he will continue to start even though guards Stefan Moody and Cavon Baker come off their three-game suspensions on Saturday at Louisiana-Monroe.
"Rich has taken advantage of an opportunity. He is going to continue to play and play a lot," Jarvis said on Friday.
A fixture at the end of the Owls' bench at the start of the season, Morrow played less than five minutes in the Owls' first 10 games this season.
The suspensions of Moody and Baker forced Morrow into action. He scored six points against Stetson in his first extended minutes of the season. Morrow showed toughness - both mental and physical - while scoring eight points in 25 minutes against No. 6 Indiana.
That performance, combined with the struggles of point guard Jackson Trapp, prompted Jarvis to give Morrow the first start of his FAU career in Thursday's victory at Troy. The 6-foot-2 guard delivered four assists and seven rebounds, including two big ones down the stretch.
"I always felt he had the physical tools but he lacked the discipline," Jarvis said. "You don't have to be fancy or showy. Just play ball. Be a winner."
Moody, the Owls' second leading scorer, averaged 15 points per game prior to the suspension. Getting him back should add fuel to what had been a stagnant offense over the past three games, taking some of the scoring pressure off Greg Gantt.
In recent games Jarvis has been playing Gantt at the point. That tactic doesn't figure to change immediately.
"I love the idea of having Stef come off the bench," Jarvis said. "It just makes it that much tougher [on our opponents]."
While it didn't seem likely two weeks ago, the suspensions of Moody and Baker may ultimately be a positive for the Owls.
"If out of all this stuff we end up with another player that can help us in the name of Rich Marrow, then you know what? It was worth it," Jarvis said.
Need to Knows: FAU @ ULM
FAU (6-7, 2-1 Sun Belt)
at ULM (1-7, 0-2 Sun Belt)
About the Owls: Greg Gantt has upped his scoring average to 22.1 - sixth best in the nation. ...Kelvin Penn's average of 2.31 blocks per game is 98th best in the nation. ...The Owls are 5-1 vs. the Warhawks, winning the last three meetings.
About the WarHawks: ULM last played nine days ago in a loss to UAB. ...The Warhawks lone win of the season came in overtime against Southeastern Louisiana. ...Forward Jayon James has recorded double-digit rebounds in his last four games. ...Leading scorer Amos Olatayo has not played since Dec. 10 because of a leg injury but expects to be back against FAU.