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UE sophomore Ryan Sawvell has struggled to find consistent time on the floor this season. JASON CLARK/C&P

While Ryan Sawvell continues to practice at both the power forward and center positions, the 6-foot-8 sophomore has seen little time at either over the Aces’ last three games.

Sawvell, who had scored in double figures three straight games entering Missouri Valley Conference play, has since tallied a combined four points against Creighton, Missouri State and Southern Illinois. He’s averaged five minutes in those contests and didn’t enter UE’s win over the Salukis until 2:45 showed on the clock, the Aces’ victory already well in hand.

“It’s not easy as a coach to play everybody on your roster, and you just evaluate how guys are performing in practice,” said UE coach Marty Simmons on Tuesday, before the Aces’ trip to Northern Iowa. “Again, matchups, foul trouble – there’s just a lot of things. I’ll probably give you the same answer every time you ask this about either him or somebody else that’s not playing. That’s just an evaluation process from myself and the coaching staff.”

As a freshman, Sawvell logged more than 20 minutes per game during MVC play and regularly cracked the starting lineup as the Aces’ five man. This season other options have emerged, as 6-10 freshman Egidijus Mockevicius is UE’s top center and senior Lewis Jones has scored in double figures at the four spot during the Aces’ last two games, both wins.

That’s left Sawvell riding the bench.

Streaky play — and playing time — aren’t new to Sawvell in his sophomore campaign. Before averaging 12.3 points per game against Alabama State, Oakland City and Butler, he scored an average 1.6 points in 12.5 minutes over six games.

“He’s a great young man,” Simmons said. “He’s a talented young man. He still comes to practice and works hard in every way.”

49 Responses to “Many factors affecting Sawvell’s playing time”

  1. gjensen

    Have always enjoyed watching Sawvell play ball. Hard to understand how you can be Missouri All Valley Conference as a Freshman and end up like this as a sophomore regardless of “other options” emerging. If you have talent on your team you should use it.
    The more experience a player gets the better and more helpful it turns out for the team in the long run. Sawvell got a lot of that last season so it should be expanded on this season.

    I thought I read something earlier in the season about Sawvell and confidence here also? This sure can’t be helping in that area. He’s had some great games for UE this year as well as last year, just not being given much of an opportunity to expand on that this year it seems.

    Doesn’t seem like Simmons is the one showing the confidence in his players now. Sawvell has to have picked up on this as well just by how much he is “riding the bench”.

    Hope UE doesn’t lose a talented player due to Simmons and his coaching staffs “Evaluation Process”.

  2. UEsportsfan

    I read Coach Simmons comments on Sawvell and I have to admit he sounds like he is talking out of both sides of his mouth. How can Sawvell be a talented player, and comes to practice and works hard in every way and he sits him on the bench???

    The Missouri State game is a good example of questionable moves. It should NEVER have gone into overtime especially since Missouri State is at the bottom of the pile. Is he mad at Sawvell?? What’s really going on here???

    As a fan I feel we are NOT being told the truth. I watch this kid all last year and he offered a lot to the team. Coach Simmons says he is a talented player then why isn’t he playing? Lots of answers missing….just my opinion.

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