February 24, 2010

Lewis learning on the go

In a perfect situation Wendell Lewis would have been able to come in and redshirt his first season at Mississippi State and adjust to life in the Southeastern Conference.

But due to injuries, suspensions and ineligibility not only has the 6-foot-8 freshman been forced into action but he has also been playing out of position.

"At first I wanted to be redshirted," Lewis said. "But when everybody started playing I decided why not go ahead and get some experience while I can. It is kind of hard playing out of position but I've just got to learn it and go with the mix."

Lewis, a former three-star recruit, has appeared in 22 games for the Bulldogs this season scoring 1.5 points and grabbing 1.5 rebounds while averaging six minutes a game. Lewis scored a career-high seven points against St. Bonaventure on Dec. 5.

However, Lewis has seen his playing time decrease since MSU entered Southeastern Conference play. Lewis is averaging 1.9 minutes in the seven games he has played in and has yet to score taking only four shots in SEC action.

But Lewis understands this season is all about learning and has been taking mental notes even while on the bench for the Bulldogs.

"I learn as I sit there and watch," Lewis said. "At times I do want to be in there but when I'm watching I'm learning too."

Lewis received many of the reps in preseason practice and through the first nine games while John Riek sat out serving a suspension mandated by the NCAA. During that time, Lewis served as Jarvis Varnado's one and only backup at center.

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