In a season filled with injuries and disappointment, Temple Gibbs is proving why he is the future of Notre Dame Basketball
In Notre Dame basketball coach Mike Brey’s system, it’s only a matter of time before stars find their place. For Temple Gibbs, that time has come a little sooner than planned. Gibbs was expected to make a jump in his sophomore campaign. Now the underclassman might have more weight on his shoulders than expected.
Injuries have been the story of this unfortunate 2017-2018 season. First, it was Bonzie Colson, then Matt Farrell and most recently D.J. Harvey. Of course, Colson won’t be back until the last week of the regular season, if he even does come back. Farrell, fortunately, is now back and expected to be back to 100 percent by this Saturday. And the freshman Harvey will be out for at least three more weeks.
Next man up: Temple Gibbs
Stepping up in their absence has been Gibbs. What we are seeing this season from the sophomore has to have Irish fans excited about the future. It will be a smooth transition from Farrell, as he graduates, to Gibbs.
The last few games have been strange. Some games it looks like Gibbs is in control while others he looks somewhat shakey. That’s what you should expect from someone who is trying to find a new role that works best as the team faces adversity.
Gibbs finds ways to still produce even in those shaky games. His lowest scoring game out of the last five was 11-points at Georgia Tech. Still, the guard came out with seven assists. He looks comfortable working through this new/ever-changing role.
This will only lead to good habits in his future at Notre Dame. How dangerous will Gibbs be next year if he can adjust to many different playing styles? He’s being built into a leader. When Colson and Farrell were both down, it was Gibbs who put this team on his back.
If there is one area for improvement right now, it would be his shot selection. Yes, he is a great shooter and, especially in this situation, probably has the green light from anywhere. Where he is also lethal is on his drives. This is a guard who has a seamless transition to the basket. There are times when he seems to settle for jump shots now that he’s been asked to be one of the main scorers.
Gibbs is going from 15 minutes per game to 37. Starting only one game last season to now starting in every single contest. It’s been a huge jump and while he will continue to grow as a player, he will develop into one of the most dangerous in the ACC next season.