Unlikely candidate steps into spotlight at Capital City League


By Chris Wolff [email protected]

ISU walk-on Jordan Ashton owns a 66.7 3-point shooting percentage in five Capital City League games this summer. 

Chris Wolff

It was only a summer league game, but because Georges Niang was away attending the Nike Basketball Academy, ADIO Chiropractic needed someone to step up.

That someone would end up being a somewhat unlikely hero. Jordan Ashton, an ISU freshman walk-on, led the way with 47 points on 11-of-17 shooting from 3-point range.

While the performance was undoubtedly a breakout performance, Ashton has quietly been lighting up the league for weeks now.

Through five Capital City League games, Ashton is shooting 66.7 percent from 3-point range. That means Ashton has made twice as many 3-pointers as he has missed in the past five games. Does the guy ever have an off-shooting night?

“I’ve had a lot of bad shooting nights,” Ashton said with a laugh. “I just try to stay consistent and just find my shot.”

Ashton may claim to have suffered from bad shooting nights in the past, but there have been none of those nights this summer. He has had scoring performances of 25, 19, 33, 24 and 47.

Those performances have come on 3-point shooting nights of 6-of-8, 4-of-7, 7-of-10, 2-of-3 and 11-of-17.

It is just summer league, which usually has a lack of defensive intensity causing stats to be inflated. Still, Ashton’s numbers are mind-boggling.

“It’s pretty good, but it’s not really anything too exciting or out of the norm,” Ashton said. “I feel like I can shoot it pretty well. Like I said, I just hunt my shot and let it go.”

Ashton’s Capital City League performances may be spreading his reputation as a 3-point shooter to ISU fans, but hot shooting is nothing new to Ashton.

Before coming to Iowa State, Ashton earned All-American honors at Kirkwood Community College. He scored 16.4 points per game and shot 3-pointers at a 43.6 percent clip.

Ashton has proved himself as a deep threat, but wants to shed the ideas that he is a 3-point specialist. He wants to be thought of as a good all-around player.

“I feel like after I keep working and getting better, I can be a lockdown defender,” Ashton said. “I also feel like I can get to the rim and rebound too.”

After his All-American season at Kirkwood, Ashton had offers to lower-level schools, but when an opportunity to walk on at Iowa State was presented, he couldn’t resist.

“I felt like it was a good situation for me,” Ashton said of Iowa State. “I wanted to play at the highest level I could and I have the chance to earn a scholarship, so that’s what I work for everyday.”

While currently a walk-on, Ashton still hopes to earn some court time. He hopes for more than being one of the walk-ons that sits on the end of the bench for most of the game.

Given his ability as a deep-ball threat and the Cyclones affinity for shooting 3-pointers, Ashton hopes to be able to squeeze out some playing time.

“It’s all going to come down to how much work I put in,” Ashton said. “I’m just going to try to go hard and try to get in the rotation and prove myself.”