There is no doubt that St. Joseph’s basketball coach Phil Martelli is showing his leading scorer Carl Jones some tough love.
On a night the junior guard scored his 1,000 career point in Wednesday’s 75-68 win over Boston University at Hagan Arena, Martelli wasn’t exactly throwing bouquets in his direction.
If one can read between the lines, Martelli hasn’t seemed pleased with Jones play recently and in all fairness it has been erratic.
Jones scored 13 points and now has 1,007 for his career but he shot just 5 for 13 from the field.
“Tonight he didn’t have a complete game,” Martelli said. “He wasn’t very good defensively. He is like our team, he is a work in progress.”
Martelli understands that Jones is a talented player, with the ability to take most defenders off the dribble. So Martelli is harder on him because he is looking to bring the best out of the player, who goes by the nickname Tay.
“He leads the Atlantic 10 in turnovers and Halil (Kanacevic) is fourth and that doesn’t make any sense,” Martelli said. “My wife said Tay is concerned because I don’t give him any loving. I don’t know what the hell that means.”
Jones understands that his coach is trying to get the best out of him.
“He wants me humbled, not get too big a head and go out there and produce,” Jones said.
As for the miscues, Jones had five assists and just one turnover against Boston U. He entered the game with 22 assists and 29 turnovers.
Martelli made sure that he also had some positive things to say about Jones.
“The one thing I do know is he wants to win and you can do a lot with guys who want to win.”
Martelli has sent a message. He doesn’t want his leading scorer to be complacent.
Jones has now had four straight games that are below what he is capable of producing. He is such a big part of the team and capable of better production and his coach won't settle for anything less.