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CSU men’s basketball puts on passing clinic en route to record-breaking win

Collegian | Avery Coates
Isaiah Stevens (4) and Nique Clifford (10) take the ball down court Nov. 10. Stevens broke a Colorado State University assist record for the fourth time with 14 assists in the game.

You didn’t have a good night if you were a record book, or if you were the Wright State defense, because Isaiah Stevens was breaking both on Friday night. 

Stevens’ previous record of 13 assists fell 14 minutes into the second half, when he found Joel Scott on a turn-around jumper. It was the fourth time that Stevens broke the assist record. 


“No it’s definitely still special,” Stevens said. “I’m just extremely blessed to be in the position that I am with this team, with these coaches that trust me enough to put the ball in my hands a lot throughout the duration of a game. I’m just thankful that I’ve got guys around me that allow me to go out and get records like that, because if they don’t make the shot’s I don’t get credit for it.”

Not only did Stevens’ have perfect 20/20 vision, but he also had a near-perfect shot, where he hit 9-of-10 shots from the field. Stevens’ 22 points along with his 14 assists boosted Colorado State past Wright State 105-77.

Falling tonight was also the single-game record for assists by a CSU men’s basketball team. The Rams had 37 assists on just 66 shots. 

“One I think it starts in practice,” Stevens said. “We have a great open line of communication amongst all of us from top to bottom. We understand what it means to play Ram basketball here, we share it, we allow multiple guys to play aggressive without restrictions. Sometimes you just kind of get the ball rolling and it can be really hard to stop.”

37 assists for the Rams meant that five players scored in double figures. Nique Clifford, Joe Palmer, Patrick Cartier, Scott and Stevens were those players for the Rams. 

Clifford and Scott are new to the team, but both have scored in double figures for the Rams in their two games to start off the season. 

A big reason for their great start has been buying into coach Niko Medved’s philosophy.

“(The ball movement) is as good as I’ve been around,” Medved said. “That’s how we want to play. I think that when the ball has energy and guys are sharing it, it’s fun, it’s contagious and obviously shot’s need to go in too.” 

While the Rams’ impressive second half will overshadow the slow start they had, it was the second game in a row where they found their footing late. 


While that hasn’t mattered so far this season, Medved said the goal is to start fast, but also continue to finish as strong as they have. 

“We need to start better, there’s no question about that,” Medved said. “We’ve got to start better on the defensive end in particular and slow down some of these guys.”

While Wright State hovered around 70% shooting for the first part of the game, one of the adjustments that Medved made was putting Clifford on Trey Calvin

Calvin finished the game with 33 points on 12-of-21 shooting, but only 13 of those points came in the second half. 

This is only Cliffords second game as a Ram in Moby, but the Colorado transfer is already feeling the love from Rams faithful. 

“It’s really good,” Clifford said. “Great energy from the fans, that’s something that we feed off of is that energy. And so to see everybody come out and support us is a lot of love. Definitely felt good being more comfortable (the) second game in, but like (Stevens) said, we’ve got to be better (in the) first half.”

Colorado State (2-0) will have just four days to work out any issues that they have before going on the road for the first time this season against Northern Colorado (2-0). Tip off is slated to start at 6 p.m Nov 14 in Greeley, Colorado.

Reach Damon Cook at or on Twitter @dwcook2001.

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About the Contributor
Damon Cook, Sports Editor
Damon Cook is the 2023-24 sports editor for the The Collegian and has been at the paper since August 2022. He started doing coverage on volleyball and club sports before moving onto the women's basketball beat. He is in his third year and is completing his degree with a major in journalism and media communication and a minor in sports management. As The Collegian's sports editor, Cook reports on CSU sports and helps manage the sports desk and content throughout the week. After having a year to learn and improve, Cook will now get to be part of a new age under the sports desk. The desk moved on from all but one other person and will now enter into a new era. Damon started school as a construction management major looking to go in a completely different direction than journalism. After taking the year off during the COVID-19 pandemic, he quickly realized that construction wasn't for him. With sports and writing as passions, he finally decided to chase his dreams, with The Collegian helping him achieve that. He is most excited to bring the best and most in-depth sports coverage that The Collegian can provide.

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