LOS ANGELES — December obtained off to a rocky begin for USC’s Boogie Ellis.
The senior guard has missed 25 of 39 photographs by the primary three video games of the month. He went 4-for-20 from 3-point vary in that stretch. All three have been USC wins, so Ellis had no regrets in regards to the performances. However because the Trojans ready to face No. 19 Auburn, he knew he wanted to make a fast repair.
As he examined every body of the interval within the movie, Ellis recognized the wrongdoer.
“Lots of my misses can occur if I am off stability,” Ellis stated. “The three video games the place I shot poorly, I watched my movie and I used to be off stability in most of them.”
Ellis made the mandatory corrections that resulted season-high 28 factors in win over Auburn and began a scorching streak for the guard that ought to carry USC into Thursday evening’s rivalry sport towards No. 10 UCLA at Paulley Pavilion (6:30 p.m., ESPN).
Steadiness has lengthy been one thing Ellis has centered on as a part of his craft, a key element of profitable shooters. At residence, he has a mat the place he stands on one leg, leaping to vary legs or catch tennis balls to problem himself. And he usually works on his core energy to assist with stability.
That is what he’ll discover on the courtroom, the place he sticks to a routine and tries to hit as many sport photographs as doable to arrange for when the second counts.
Generally the outcomes go his method, generally they do not. Such is the lifetime of a scorer.
“I had these three video games the place I performed fairly unhealthy shooting-wise, however I will stay with that,” Ellis stated. “I’m within the health club virtually daily. I am not going to hold my head over missed photographs.”
Along with Ellis refocusing on his stability, head coach Andy Enfield has observed that Ellis is doing a greater job of moving into the paint and in search of mid-range alternatives to create higher photographs.
“When Boogie performs properly, he is a great matchup along with his exterior capturing capacity,” Enfield stated. “When he struggles, that is when he turns into a perimeter-oriented participant, and that is it. It is onerous to shoot at a excessive degree each sport with solely perimeter photographs. And so when he is at his finest, he mixes it up.”
Ellis had an aggressive mindset towards Auburn, hitting the Trojans’ first shot and scoring 14 of USC’s first 28 factors. The Tigers’ protection needed to respect Ellis, which opened up loads of alternatives for different USC gamers to attain and pull off the upset win.
USC (11-4, 3-1 in Pac-12) may have a equally aggressive Ellis to knock off the Bruins (13-2, 4-0) in Westwood.
“I undoubtedly really feel that method,” Ellis stated. “However on the similar time, I really feel like I can not pressure issues. The video games the place I performed very well, I simply let the sport come to me. Simply take what the protection offers me and get as many good photographs as doable.”
“We want our greatest gamers to show up tomorrow,” Enfield added.
Ellis is certainly one of a choose few Trojans to actually expertise the cross-town rivalry that tore the groups aside within the common season final 12 months earlier than UCLA defeated USC within the Pac-12 event. Most of the younger gamers on the roster might be dealing with this degree of depth for the primary time, so Ellis, a USC senior, will look to mentor them in the course of the sport.
“Simply keep calm. Once we’re up, after we’re down, simply keep calm,” Ellis stated. “It should be a canine struggle.”
USC (11-4, 3-1) at No. 10 UCLA (13-2, 4-0)
The place? Paul’s sales space
When? Thursday, 6:30 p.m
Tv/Radio. ESPN/1150 AM