[Sean King for Shaw Media]
What has made the difference in Borovich’s eyes, outside of Thorpe’s physical abilities, are the extra time committed to film study and a tenacious attitude brought to the floor in practice and games.
“You can tell on game day, he’s jacked up and really into the fact that if we’re going to win, we have to do the best job we can against their best perimeter player, and he’s done that. Night in and night out, he’s made their job difficult.”
Borovich had a number of reasons to compare former Huskie Aaric Armstead and Thorpe as defenders, with Armstead having made the MAC’s all-defensive team in the 2015-16 season.
“A guy that was going to get five or six rebounds a night, was going to get one or two steals a night, but more importantly, he was going to be on the best opposing offensive player, and you just felt great as a coach going into the game, that, ‘OK, we’ve got Aaric on this guy,’ it’s the same feeling we have now, “ Borovich said. “We have Dante on their best player, so we feel like we really have a chance to hold that player below his average, which gives us the best chance to win.”
Thorpe’s willingness to lock in defensively has helped him on both ends of the floor. The senior wing has picked up his scoring as of late, coming through in crucial situations and scoring 23 and 20 points in home wins over Buffalo and Ohio, respectively.