Against Stanford, RouSean Cromwell looked like the aggressive and tireless defender with quick reflexes who made an impact at USC as a freshman. He had just two points, three rebounds and two blocks in 19 minutes, but Cromwell’s defense on the 7-foot-tall Lopez twins was key in the Trojans’ 69-65 victory.
The 6-foot-11 sophomore forward finally is getting back to the way he was playing before two serious injuries set him back. Cromwell fractured his foot in the middle of last season and had to miss 15 games when he stepped on a loose ball during warm-ups. He came back for the final five games, but then needed to have offseason knee surgery to clean out debris.
“Sitting out as long as I did, I was a little reluctant to move that hard,” Cromwell said. “Compare the Stanford game to the beginning of the season, I’m putting a lot more pressure on my legs and my movements are a lot quicker.”
Cromwell still has a screw in his right foot that sometimes hurts during cold temperatures.
“I would love to go back in time and not had these injuries but they are a part of me now,” Cromwell said. “So instead of seeing this as a barrier in front of me, I can go out there and work just as hard as anyone else and not cry for my feet or my knees.”