"You gotta be ready for whatever comes," Stone said. "Someone gets in foul trouble, someone's gotta step up and do their part."
Immediately after Matt Lopez became eligible, Stone was all but glued to the bench for seven games. But gradually, the centers' roles have switched as Stone has shown himself to be a reliable presence on the defensive end.
He doesn't quite rebound or score with the best of them, but Stone is physical and isn't afraid to body up on his man. On Tuesday night, BYU found it hard to drive on him as he manned the middle and racked up half of the Aggies' rejections.
The most surprising part of his performance? Only one foul and no turnovers in a game filled with both. It suggests Stone is getting used to playing a bigger role off the bench.
"Any time you get more minutes, you get more comfortable," he said. "Kind of the flow the game gets with you. It definitely helps."
Still, he had his not-so-sterling moments, including a 5-for-9 night at the free-throw line. And even though Stone threw down one of his best nights on Tuesday, he would've rather won.
"It's always been a big game, it's a big rivalry, you want to win," he said. "But nothing much you can do now. Just wait for the next game, play hard the next one."
Illinois State at Utah State
P Saturday, 7 p.m.
Stone taking on larger role
Past 8 games • 4.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 10-for-16 shooting, 6 blocks
Previous 8 games • 0.4 ppg, 1 rpg, 1-for-5 shooting, 1 block