OSU basketball: Kalib Boone shows improvement against West Virginia big men
STILLWATER — Nearly 7 minutes had passed in the second half when Oklahoma State coach Mike Boynton called for a young freshman in a physical game.
Kalib Boone had yet to shine against bigger, physical post players this season. Yet, Boynton wanted a spark against West Virginia’s monsters of the paint.
Boone, a 6-foot-9, 205-pound Tulsa Memorial product, boosted a 9-2 run by the Cowboys.
“I wanted to show Coach Boynton you can trust me in a big, physical game like that,” Boone said. “Obviously, West Virginia’s like the biggest team probably in the country. It felt great because it felt like he can trust me.”
Boone held his own against Derek Culver, even when both exchanged words, and Oscar Tshiebwe. Both weigh at least 50 pounds more than Boone.
Boone finished with four points, two rebounds and a block. His lone field goal miss was on an alley-oop dunk attempt.
But for the Cowboys, it’s a good sign Boone is earning trust. He’s still adjusting to not being the biggest player on the floor. He’s had up-and-down practices, leading to limited minutes at times.
“Physically, I don’t know that he’ll ever become like those guys are built,” Boynton said. “He’s just gotta understand to use his quickness, maybe move around those guys. He’s got pretty good offensive instincts still. He’s a pretty good finisher around the basket.
“But there’s no doubt he’s gotta get stronger. He’s got to put more weight on. We need to get him up in the 225-230 range sometime in the next year or so.”