Power ratings: In praise of Robert Franks, the Pac-12’s best one-man team since … (we looked it up)

That’s what Robert Franks came back for.

Not the loss to Montana State, not the two losses to New Mexico State, not the games missed due to injury, not the five-game losing streak or the, um, six-game losing streak.

Nope, the senior forward came back to Washington State for the 2018-19 season to play and feel like he played and felt on a February weekend in the Arizona desert:

65 points, 21 rebounds, 66.7 percent shooting from 3-point range, two wins and the Cougars’ first road sweep in a decade.

Franks’ remarkable back-to-back in Tempe and Tucson was a good reminder of his role as the closest thing to a one-man team in the Pac-12.

He’s averaging 22.6 points, which is No. 1 in the conference and No. 15 in the country and roughly 30 percent of the team total.

All of which got the Hotline wondering:

Where does Franks rank on the list of one-man shows in recent conference history?

The first name that came to mind was Markelle Fultz, the Washington point guard in 2017 who averaged 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game on the way to becoming the top pick in the NBA Draft.

Fultz played for a team that went 2-16, but the Huskies were hardly lacking in talent with David Crisp, Noah Dickerson, and Matisse Thybulle. They were gifted but young, and Fultz, because of his position, dominated the ball — I’m not sure the comparison to Franks works.

Other one-man shows that surfaced during the Hotline’s research included WSU’s Brock Motum in ’13 and Arizona State’s Trent Lockett in ’11.

But the closest thing we’ve seen to Franks (in production, position, style of play and impact on the conference) might be Ike Diogu, the former ASU big man.

Diogu was the Pac-10 Player of the Year as a junior in 2005, on …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports


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