Ben Howland emphasized that, while he is still tinkering with lineups, Larry Drew II is the team’s starting point guard. The UCLA head coach pointed out Drew’s assist-to-turnover ratio — which is currently an exemplary 6.29.
The team’s lone senior is also leading the Pac-12 with 7.2 assists per game, and dished out nine without a single giveaway in the Cal Poly loss.
“Even though, we are playing more of an up-tempo style game, it definitely is a slower pace than I was playing at North Carolina,” Drew said. “Even back in high school, my game in general was never really a 100-mile-per-hour guy, up and down the court.
“Every possession, I like to slow down at times and see the floor. Read things and use my speed and change of direction. I’m just more comfortable within this offense.”
Howland added that Drew’s assist-to-turnover ratio is one of the best he’s seen through what his now his 10th season in Westwood. Given that Drew’s career average there is exactly 2.00, it won’t be surprising if he dips from his current pace.
The one criterion is also not the greatest indicator of point guard prowess. Jerime Anderson’s assist-to-turnover ratio last season was 2.33. Darren Collison’s in 2008-09 was 1.91. A year before that, Russell Westbrook’s was 1.74.
Howland did remark that Drew’s personality doesn’t have him harping on his teammates as much as he should — something the player is working to improve.
“I tell the coaches all the time. Whatever they want me to do, to just make sure that they stay on me about it,” Drew said. “If it’s something on the court, off the court, being a leader, being more vocal. I want to do whatever it’s going to take for us to grow as a team.”
Drew, the team’s lone senior, is also one of the team’s three captains, with David and Travis Wear being the two others. All three are UNC transfers. Take that as you will.