Like a lot of Junior College transfers, Titus Rubles came to Cincinnati with a lot of hype. Many scouting services ranked him in the top 10 of all JC players. So it was only natural for Bearcat fans to expect greatness from day one. Unfortunately, these things don't always work out like we expect, and Rubles struggled to adjust to Division I basketball. He didn't then - nor does he now - have a great looking jump shot. He's not the "scoring machine" we were sold. But that doesn't mean Titus Rubles has been a bust. In fact, aside from Jaquon Parker from two years ago, you could say Titus is the best "glue guy" UC has had under Mick Cronin.
Again, not blessed with a sweet looking jumper or ferocious offensive game, he has still managed to average 6.4 points per game in his nearly two years by getting to the free throw line or putbacks. But Titus has managed to find his own little niche in the program by doing just about everything else and gets nearly no thanks for it. He has been a willing rebounder since the start. This year he's bumped his average up from last year's 5.9 to 6.6 and that includes hitting the glass extremely hard against Louisville (14) and Connecticut (13). Titus also is a willing passer and has led the team several times in that category.
Perhaps the quality that stands out most is that all he wants to do is win. If it requires guarding the other team's best offensive player - no matter the size - Titus will do it. We've seen him guard the opposing point guard several times in crunch time to get a key stop. He's the ultimate team guy who just does what's needed of him and doesn't try to do too much.
What more positive attitude do you need than what he tweeted just yesterday...
This our yr— T-Rub (@bearcatbound) March 3, 2014
Despite the offensive struggles of just about everyone, he's still confident in his teammates.
Sure we've had our "no, Titus, NO!!!!!" moments - most of those when he was shooting a three-pointer or anything outside the lane - but he's hardly been a waste of a scholarship. Besides, who can forget this huge putback to win the Pittsburgh game and launch UC to their 15-game winning streak? (ok fast forward to the end)
Favorite Titus Rubles Moments:
- Obviously the game-winner to beat Pitt in the Jimmy V Classic in MSG on national TV. Was a huge boost for a team that had lost two very tough games in a row.
- Going 12 (points) and 10 (rebounds) in a must-win game last year against Marquette when Cashmere Wright was out with an injury. Titus was 10-12 from the foul line in that game and UC won in the waning seconds on Sean Kilpatrick's driving layup.
- Taking over the final minutes in a big win over Oregon on the Las Vegas Shootout to seal the championship for the Bearcats. Titus scored several buckets down the stretch and tallied 13 points for the game
- A thunderous follow slam (tried to find on YouTube with no luck, but take my word for it) against X last year when UC was on their way to dominating the second half and rolling to victory.