BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — SDSU guard Zeke Mayo averaged nine points per game last year, as the Jackrabbits completed an undefeated conference season. This year, the Lawrence, Kansas native has doubled his numbers and emerged as one of the best in the Summit League.
Zeke Mayo was the fourth leading scorer for SDSU last year, behind Baylor Scheierman and Douglas Wilson. However both of them left Brookings last season, opening the door for an expanded role for Mayo.
“His role last year was more of a complimentary player. He was able to make plays, but more times than not, it was off of somebody else, initially creating some advantages,” SDSU head coach Eric Henderson said.
“I struggled early on, but it kind of slowed down for me a little bit and the take over instinct just kind of came along after that Eastern Washington game a little bit,” SDSU guard Zeke Mayo said.
The Jackrabbits sought to lean on Mayo this season as their leading scorer, though there was a learning curve that came with the adjustment.
“We kept at it and we kept learning. You can learn a lot of different ways, but learning on the job was the way Zeke needed it to happen,” Henderson said.
Mayo learned plenty from former SDSU teammate and current Creighton standout, Baylor Scheierman.
“Just watching him get to his spots and play at his own pace, that just kin of helped me and guided me to where I needed to be this year,” Mayo said.
The sophomore guard is now scoring 18.5 points per game this year, which is third best in the Summit League.
“He’s certainly scoring the ball at a high level, but he’s also our leading defensive rebounder and he’s leading us in assists,” Henderson said. “The impact that he’s having is also not including the attention that he’s gaining from the actions that we’re putting him in.”
Mayo has approached each game the same, with a mentality to attack.
“I want to be able to make a play. It’s not just about me going to score, it’s about me making a play,” Mayo said. “I think that I’ve done a great job of that throughout this year at practices and games. I think that’s why they want the ball in my hands is because I can go make a play, whether it’s for me or for my teammates.”
Mayo posted a career high 41 points in a win over NDSU this season. He and the Jacks return to action Thursday against Kansas City.