Canyon Barry's mind is in midseason form, it's his body that just can't seem to catch up.
Drexel at College of Charleston
When: 7 p.m.
Where: TD Arena
Records: CofC 12-13, 4-6 in CAA; Drexel 13-10, 5-5
TV/Radio: NBCSN/WTMZ 910-AM
Notes: The Cougars are coming off a 68-61 overtime loss to Towson this past Saturday. . It was the fourth loss in the last five games for the Cougars. . Freshman Canyon Barry led the Cougars with 14 points, while Willis Hall added 13 points and eight rebounds. . The Cougars are 2-0 against Drexel. CofC beat the Dragons, 75-65, on Dec. 28, 1996, in Charleston. . The Cougars have the top defensive team in CAA playing, giving up just a league-low 64.3 points in conference games. . The Cougars have the second-best 3-point shooting team at 40.4 percent and have the second-best field goal shooting defense at 42.1 percent. . The Dragons are led by guards Freddie Wilson (21.1 ppg in CAA play) and Frantz Massenat (21.7 ppg in CAA games). . The Dragons defeated James Madison (78-60) in their last game and have won two straight and three of their last four.
The College of Charleston freshman guard missed the entire month of January with a broken finger on his shooting hand.
Barry missed a total of eight games and countless hours in the gym, honing his game.
When he finally returned to the floor, on Feb. 1 against Hofstra, Barry found he was still mentally sharp, but it was the rest of his body that couldn't keep up.
Barry and the Cougars will take on Drexel, which made the 12-hour bus trip from Philadelphia before the snow and freezing rain hit, Thursday beginning at 7 p.m. at TD Arena.
"I tried to make this one move against Hofstra, I was just trying to get by this guy and I dribbled the ball off my foot and fell down," Barry said with a chuckle. "I'd done that move a million times, but it looked like I'd never played the game before in my life."
Barry played just 10 minutes against Hofstra and only eight against Delaware in his first two games back from the injury.
"Anytime you're coming back from an injury, it's going to take a couple of games to get your rhythm and timing back," said College of Charleston coach Doug Wojcik. "I wanted to ease Canyon back into the rotation. I didn't want to put any more pressure on him."
Barry broke the pinky finger on his shooting hand during the opening minutes of the Cougars' win over Davidson on New Year's Day. During practices while he was out of the lineup, Barry would ride a stationary bicycle, do agility drills and work on his leg strength by hopping up and down the stairs at TD Arena.
What he couldn't do was dribble or shoot a basketball.
"I still don't have my full range of motion with my hand," Barry said. "It's still a little hard to get a good grip on the ball and handle it.
"It's getting better every day and hopefully I'll be able to play without the tape on my fingers pretty soon."
Barry had his best game since his return when he scored 14 points in the Cougars' overtime loss to Towson this past Saturday.
"I thought Canyon played really well against Towson," Wojcik said. "He shot the ball well. His conditioning was good. He was in the weight room during that month out and I think he's added some weight and he's playing stronger now. He's been a better defender. I think the time away might have been a good thing for him."
Drexel is coming off double-digit wins over UNC Wilmington (61-50) and James Madison (78-60).
"They've gotten healthy again and are playing at a high level right now," Wojcik said.
The College of Charleston's Canyon Barry led the scoring with 26 points against UNC-Charlotte on the way to a 83-82 win in the Cougars' home opener at TD Arena on Tuesday November 12, 2013. Wade Spees/Staff×
CofC's Canyon Barry dunks against the defense of Kent State's Derek Jackson. The Kent State Golden Flashes defeated College of Charleston 58-54 in a game that featured 16 lead changes, 10 ties and 48 fouls -- and 21 turnovers for the Cougars. Wade Spees/Staff Saturday, December 21, 2013×
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