Isaiah “Zay” Roby, the junior from Illinois with amazing hair, looks to reach his full potential and claim his spot as one of the best players in not only the Big Ten, but possibly one of the best forwards in the country.
Constantly throughout games last season, whether on Big Ten Network or Fox Sports, broadcasters would comment on Roby’s potential and amazing athleticism. Other Big Ten coaches and Tim Miles would often make remarks about how scary Roby will become when he plays at his maximum level.
Roby averaged 8.7 points per game and 6.3 rebounds per game, while also making his presence felt on defense with 2.0 blocks per game. With the rare athleticism he has for being 6-foot-8, Roby has the ability to post up down low, while working around the perimeter, whether that’s on offense or defense.
Specifically games against slower centers like Mo Wagner where Roby would easily blow past them on offense. If he could stay out of foul trouble, he would typically do well on defense. However, staying out of foul trouble and making smart decisions wasn't exactly in Roby’s repertoire.
Miles hoped to work on that this summer, and for awhile he did, but unfortunately the injury bug hit Roby again when he had to leave a practice on crutches. His injury only had been a bone bruise, but still, missing a couple weeks in the summer can make a difference, especially for someone like Roby who is trying to reach their full potential.
If Roby can get or remain healthy, he will serve as Nebraska’s center when Isaac Copeland works at the “4” position. When Brady Heiman rotates in the lineup, Roby will play at his natural “4” position, where he can thrive against slower 6-foot-8 and 6-foot-9 players.
Last year Roby hadn’t originally started, instead coming off the bench to replace slower and bigger starting center, Jordy Tshimanga. That’s not Miles’s style of play however, he wants to run a long, quick, and athletic lineup, and that’s exactly what Roby represents. A long, quick, and athletic forward that can absolutely throw down. So obviously to end this Roby preview, here’s him thunder-dunking: