Frankamp could be turning it on just in time

Nick Beach

The crowd in Charles Koch Arena regularly gasps as the ball separates from the right-hand of sophomore guard Conner Frankamp. Monday things were no different.

With the game clock winding down in the first half of Monday’s non-conference game with New Mexico State, Frankamp arched up a long-range three-pointer to beat the buzzer — Koch Arena exhaled in delight.

It was reminiscent of the many shots the sophomore guard has taken in his life, even though it wasn’t.

The former Wichita North High School guard holds the elusive record of being the Wichita City League’s career leading scorer.

The homegrown product seems to be facing his biggest challenges of his career in Koch Arena — living up to the hype of the name on the back of his jersey in front of a crowd who has long followed his name.

Ever since his debut in front of the home crowd Dec. 9 against UNLV, he has had a dismal shooting percentage. A proven shooter, he’s been anything but. He’s shooting 22 percent from three-point range in home games; away from Koch Arena those numbers are over 40 percent.

The Wichita native has had had no issues scoring in bunches. He’s scored double-figures four times, all road games.

His most identifiable problem has been playing in front of a crowd who knows him. Though Frankamp might finally put his home struggles behind him.

He’s averaging more than nine points per game on the road. After going scoreless through back-to-back home games, he scored nine points Monday, a career high in Koch Arena.

Frankamp no longer looks concerned with the crowd. He is playing with confidence, and most importantly, he is seeking his shot.

His numbers show how natural the game is for him. He is a solid defender and he has been an even better ball-handler, posting a 15-1 assist-to-turnover ratio in Valley play.

The Shockers take on Missouri State on Thursday with a chance for Frankamp to boast an even bigger performance for the home-crowd which has known him from his early days.

Frankamp had big contributions in the first match with Missouri State in early January, in which he tallied a career-high 14 points and four made three-pointers.

The crowd may never stop gasping when he lines up for a three, that’s just how the story goes. It’s just Conner Frankamp.