When the Cougars lost DaVonte Lacy with a rib injury freshman Que Johnson stepped up and took on the responsibility of Washington State's go-to scorer. He scored in double figures in eight of nine games and routinely led the team in scoring.
But in the six games since Lacy returned against Washington, Johnson has reached double figures only once and is averaging just 6.0 points per game. After starting 14 straight games, including every Pac-12 game, Johnson came off the bench last week at Oregon State and Oregon.
More after the jump.
WSU coach Ken Bone said that Lacy's return is partially responsible for the drop in Johnson's numbers. Lacy and Johnson both play the off guard position, both are outside shooters, and Lacy was particularly prolific in his return, scoring 34 points at Colorado and 39 against California.
Because WSU does not have much scoring depth, Bone relies on a few players to take the bulk of the shots.
"Well someone had to take a step backwards because DaVonte’s … going to take away some scoring punch from somewhere," Bone said. "And we have some guys on the team that have just not been scorers at all, so he’s going to take away from somebody who’s scoring a little bit."
But both guards stayed in the starting lineup when Lacy returned and Bone said that Johnson's offensive struggles are not the issue.
"Que has lost time this trip because of defense, not offense," Bone said last week.