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November 17, 2011

Sorting Through the Mess

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 1:03 pm

Where to start, where to start, where to start.

How about with Coach Dixon.

“We knew when we scheduled Long Beach State that they were very good and we wanted to play an experienced team.  We knew how good they were.  I anticipated us being a much better team at this time and obviously we are not where I would like us to be.  I want to give them credit for how well they played because they played very well.  They played like seniors and like an experienced team.  They played hard, they played aggressive and they moved the ball very well.  On our part, we have a lot of work to do.  I think we knew that, we have been talking about that, and we have to get better.  This was disappointing, but we recognized going in that we have to be a better team and we’ve got to get better defensively.  We usually get better as the year goes on (defensively) and we have to do that here and now moving forward.

[Emphasis added.]

Obvious disappointment and a bit of frustration from Coach Dixon. As much as the outside expectations are high on Pitt, the expectations from within aren’t being met as well. The team has five days before their next game against LaSalle. LaSalle, by the way, took Villanova to OT before losing this past week.

Working on the defense might be a priority.

“Our transition defense is not good enough, it hasn’t been good enough, and so that was the key.  Turnovers, bad shots led to that.  Guys who are supposed to be back on the shot aren’t doing that when they are supposed to be, but the same guys aren’t doing it in practice either.  It’s a new thing for a couple of guys.  We got beat every which way and when you get beat like we did it is execution or could be construed as effort.  The fact remains that they shot 59 percent so we are not getting our assignments.  We are indecisive on what to do defensively and that is slowing us down.  That is the bottom line.”

That was apparent. Pitt is not as slow and unathletic as they they appeared during the game. But they definitely looked very lost for significant parts of the game. A lot of that came from being unsure where they should be. There was more standing around on both ends. Questioning looks to each other — but no one doing a good job of directing things. That much is on the upperclassmen. Especially the guards. Communication has to be better. Directing, instructing. Not just waiting until after they get burned on offense or only passing the ball around on offense to the guys who are in the right place. Long Beach State scored 1.32 points per possession. That goes down as Pitt’s worst defensive performance under Coach Dixon — ever.

The other interesting thing in the quote sheets were the comments about the practices not being good. Coach Dixon noted that the guys not practicing well weren’t playing well. And both Ashton Gibbs and Nasir Robinson suggested something similar.

Nas:

“Yes. With us being the seniors and being the leaders, we have to do a better job during practice in leading, so our freshmen, sophomores, and juniors can follow us.”

Gibbs:

“We didn’t necessarily feel it before the game. It starts in shoot-around and practice so we have to play harder in practice and can’t be playing around in shoot-around. We just have to focus and that’s what it really comes down to. We have to play every game like it’s our last and from now on that’s what we are going to do. Us as seniors, we have to step up and be better leaders. We have to take this as a learning experience. We can’t take this as a negative but as a positive almost and capitalize on it.”

Have a feeling a lot of players are going to be sore after the practices that take place for the rest of the week.

Perhaps some of the communication problems came from not having Travon Woodall out as much as usual. Woodall continues to be shooting very well. He went for 17 points on 5-6 shooting (3-4 on 3s and 4-5 on FTs), but played only 26 minutes. Woodall had foul issues, fouling out in the game trying to defend against Casper Ware. He also struggled as point guard — 4 assists and 5 turnovers. Woodall, though, is still the better option to run the offense than Ashton Gibbs.

Gibbs didn’t have his best night shooting. It wasn’t abysmal, but it wasn’t efficient. Some of that comes when he is holding the ball for much of the offensive sets. He is so much better when he just receives the ball and is looking for his shot or drive. It isn’t just draft status issues. Gibbs has to help run the offense this year — not just have the offense run through him. But that means he has to make faster decisions on helping to move the ball around better. Too much of the time — even in this early season — he will hold the ball out there. As if trying to decide whether to shoot, drive or move the ball. I saw him pick up his dribble a lot more as he became indecisive on offense.

Cameron Wright and J.J. Moore are the early big disappointments for me. Moore said all the right things going into the season about how he has to and will play defense. Instead, he has shown little inclination to put forth the effort at that end — resulting in his very brief time on the court. The only good thing I can say, is that at least he didn’t hoist a shot right away on the court. Reading body language is such a subjective thing at times, but it is hard not see petulance riddling his. I don’t know if he’s still stewing at Lamar Patterson getting the starts — and minutes — but he is not doing anything to make a case otherwise.

Wright is surprisingly disappointing because he was supposed to be a defense-first guard. He has better size at 6-4, but plays small. He looks completely lost out there. Despite Woodall’s foul issues, his minutes dipped even further because he was essentially inept. He could not keep his man in front of him, and got easily confused on offense. As a redshirt freshman, there can be some growing pains when you actually start playing, but he is on the verge of being passed by freshman John Johnson as the guy brought in off the bench.

Johnson has been a pleasant surprise among the guards and freshmen. He was the biggest question mark from the signing class. Questions about qualifying were there. There were some questions about how well he’d play defense. Even though he looked great in the Greentree Summer League, that doesn’t always means much (see, Moore, J.J.). But I’ve been impressed with his tenacity on the defensive side.

Then there’s the frontcourt. Ugh. Remember when there were questions about whether Nasir Robinson would be recovered from his minor knee surgery to start the season? Plenty of people were looking at the silver lining of maybe getting the Birch in early. Along with more PT for Talib Zanna and Malcolm Gilbert. Suggesting a possible Wally Pipp scenario with Nas being the energy guy off the bench. Yeah. Safe to say, that view is now consigned to the dustbin.

Nas is the only one who is doing work inside. He is the only one continually getting free for the passes and easy buckets inside. He gets a fair share. As always he is inside mucking and playing defense.

Dante Taylor had foul problems last night. Some of it was ticky-tack calls, but even the weak calls came from being late to get out on defense. He’s really the only option at center right now, but he still has well-documented issues with position and footwork inside. He’s improved on offensive positioning, but it isn’t yet consistent for the guards to trust him with the pass inside.

Zanna continues to be — at best — a work in progress. He doesn’t have the best hands. He really hasn’t figured out where to be on the court. Honestly — and I may be being charitable — I think his cluelessness out there creates such indecisiveness that he simply doesn’t move. Making him appear more disinterested than he is. Assuming Birch starts to figure more things out, Zanna is going to have his minutes drop further into the season.

As for Birch, he is learning the hard way about how hard it is to play defense when you can’t simply swat every shot. You can’t block what isn’t in front of you, and he has been of position often on defense to keep from being much of a factor to this point.

Long Beach State flat out played a better game on both sides of the ball than Pitt.

Pitt did not hold a lead in the game after the 13-minute mark of the first half. Long Beach State had the lead for the final 25 minutes after a rally at the end of the first half that netted a 45-36 halftime lead.

It was the second consecutive game an opponent scored 45 points in a half against the Panthers. Long Beach State shot 69 percent (18 for 26) from the field in the first half.

“We didn’t execute,” Gibbs said of the Panthers defense. “There were certain spots where we were supposed to be at certain times, and we weren’t there. They played harder than us. They executed better, and it looked like it.”

Credit does have to go to LBS. Were it not for the fact that they were doing that to Pitt, it would have been a joy to watch them play. They played team ball, even as they were led by an excellent point guard who scored from everywhere.

Truthfully it was about all of them, about how they played together collectively, about how they’re a tight unit right now. About how they’re what Pitt isn’t right now (it’s early), a team in the truest sense of the word.

A team led by Casper Ware, who seemed to understand exactly what to do in order to give his team the best chance to win on just about every possession. That’s Casper Ware’s job.

It’s what he, and his teammates, expect him to do, to help them win. And tonight, they became only the second non-conference team to accomplish that in the history of the Petersen Events Center.

While for much of the game it seemed that they never missed, what it was, was that they just didn’t miss opportunities and never seemed to wilt when Pitt was on the verge of getting back into the game in the second half. For all the talk of how they wanted it more than Pitt. That they had more energy than Pitt. LBS simply put, played better than Pitt.





Thats exactly what I saw.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.11 @ 1:16 pm

Excellent stuff Chas. A few points to add:
-Lamar Patterson looks fit, poised, and is demonstrating why he deserves to play over JJ Moore. I said it in the liveblog last night- he is going to be a Jaron Brown type of glue guy when all is said and done. Jack of all trades. Master of none. And just think, people wanted him to transfer for ditching a bill at diner last year…
-On Birch, I don’t think it’s so much as him thinking he can just swat the ball. He’s weak. Now he’s playing against guys who lift weights. Who are strong and aggressive and are playing against a ranked team. So he’s inheriting a lot of built in baggage and needs to step up his tenacity.
-Gibbs at point guard and the inefficient back court meant that LBS could put extra pressure on the ball. This was especially the case when Zanna and Wright were in there. They didn’t know what to do and LBS just applied more aggressive pressure and forced us into some bad choices. It’s a scenario that can likely happen again and again. This spotlights Woodall’s importance even more.

Honestly, our starting five is plenty good enough to beat that team. Foul trouble on Taylor and Woodall, along with lineup experimentation compromised our ability to win last night.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.17.11 @ 1:24 pm

I want to see how this team responds against a La Salle team that lost 3 starters from a year ago. I personally don’t think Nova will be good this season, but who knows.

Comment by Greg 11.17.11 @ 1:24 pm

“It was real disappointing. Like he (Gibbs) said, they wanted it more than us. They worked harder, ran harder, got back to loose balls, executed better than us, and outsmarted us. They just wanted it more.”

Take it from Nas someone who played, we didn’t care during this game and it showed

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 1:45 pm

So LBS wanted it more=Pitt didn’t care?

Comment by Chas 11.17.11 @ 1:47 pm

“We came in more hungry,” Ennis said. “They were ranked so they thought they had it.”

It sure means that Pitt didn’t care nearly as much as LBS

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 1:50 pm

That wasn’t in dispute.

Saying Pitt had no heart and that Pitt didn’t care is something far different.

Comment by Chas 11.17.11 @ 1:55 pm

Gibbs is not a point guard, wasn’t a PG last year (taking the ball up court means nothing), and will be a PG in the pros.

Nas, Patterson and Johnson are aggressive .. Woodall is too aggressive and Gibbs forced too many shots … and the rest of the team is too passive (simple analysis)

Taylor should be given a chance to show some offensive skills, which are better than his 2 predecessors. If nothing else, if he misses or has the ball stolen, there should be guards in position for the transition defense.

I also believe that an inside-out offense may help to free some shots for Gibbs and woodall than they just dribbling or passing on the perimeter

Comment by wbb 11.17.11 @ 1:55 pm

Good stuff, Chas. Good adds, SilverPanther.

Agree on Patterson. As I said last night, Moore has ability. Patterson has game.

I really hope one of the young PG options develop to spell Woodall. I don’t like Gibbs at the point as things stall and there’s no Wanny-like player to bail him out this year – yet. He’s also trying a little too hard to prove he can play off the dribble. His strength is spot-up shooting and I’d prefer he works to get in position for those. He’ll get plenty of opportunities to show he’s improved his shot creation within the normal flow of the game. He doesn’t need to force it, and I think that’s creating some of the indecisiveness of others on offense.

On the defensive side, one or two guys are making everyone look bad. In Pitt’s man D, if one guy is out of position, you end up with others out of position trying to help. The zone covers that up a little better so we may see it a lot until everyone gets on the right page.

Our first five can get the job done, but we’ll need the bench to start stepping up or it will be a year full of more growing pains than expected.

Comment by TampaT 11.17.11 @ 1:55 pm

correction to 1st sentence above .. and will NOT be a PG in the pros

Comment by wbb 11.17.11 @ 1:56 pm

Incisive, Chas. Incisive.

Comment by steve 11.17.11 @ 1:57 pm

You are right. We had much less heart than we needed to win. Standing there watching the other team get five consecutive offensive rebounds at least demonstrates a questionable effort

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 1:58 pm

The issue last night wasn’t rebounding, which was statistically almost even. The issue was executing sharply to avoid or force turnovers in the half-court and hustling in transition.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.17.11 @ 2:05 pm

I dont expect that this will happen again. No way we let these teams continue to come in to our building and completely dominate us mentally and physically. We have enough pride to respond

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 2:08 pm

Well I at least didn’t have any stomach to watch the second half and went to bed.

Comment by TX Panther 11.17.11 @ 2:09 pm

I think some lessons from football apply here. I think that LSBU players were more aggressive and decisive because they have been playing in the system and with each other for 3 and 4 years now.

Meanwhile, our younger players were indecisive .. last night was the worst defensive effort I have seen in a long time .. both the transition defense as well as the half-court help defense

Comment by wbb 11.17.11 @ 2:11 pm

Having LB outrebound us isnt the issue but its still an issue. That should never even be even. We missed way too many blockouts and loose balls

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 2:12 pm

Tx Panther, you went to bed at 9? You could have watched the President Cup on the Golf Channel.

Comment by wbb 11.17.11 @ 2:13 pm

Take what players say about “wanting it more” with a grain of salt. To most of them, it’s that simple, they can’t imagine they have flaws beyond that. Perhaps effort was an important factor, but there are deeper issues.

Comment by JW 11.17.11 @ 2:19 pm

Saying Pitt had no heart and that Pitt didn’t care is something far different

There was a lot to swallow last night, but on top of everything there was a decided lack of fire. Yeah, there were some loose balls on the floor and a few hustle plays, but overall they played flat footed and looked indifferent for large stretches. They got outplayed, but they also got out worked, which really bugged me watching that game.

I think it’s too generous to give them a pass on being confused or indecisive. Desire weighs heavily on rebounding and defense, which is why for years we’ve managed to win with less heralded “talent.” There’s no reason that more heavily recruited “talent” can’t show more desire.

And how did a Pitt hoops team get so scrawny? This team needs to get stronger.

Comment by Ghost of Hornman 11.17.11 @ 2:34 pm

Anybody who thought Moore looked great in Greentree didn’t watch the same games I did. It took about 5 minutes to see that he was a nice athlete who doesn’t have his head screwed on straight enough to play the kind of team basketball Dixon is looking for.

On the other side of the coin, it also didn’t take long in Greentree to notice that J.Johnson had arrived a good two years ahead, in terms of readiness for Big East basketball, of where Woodall was his true freshman year.

Comment by hugh green 11.17.11 @ 3:00 pm

Great post Chas. My assessment of the last 2 games has been a.) there is some combination of this team being lost and/or dispassionate and b.) we really need something out of our center. We have four legit guys contributing as starters, but we need to get some consistency out of the five position.

I hope that this is just a bump in the road. But in all honesty, even the best programs have down seasons. Dixon hasn’t really had one. His worst seasons were still 20+ wins, 10+ Big East wins and a trip to the big dance. Even if this was a season where we didn’t finish ranked and were a bubble team, that wouldn’t be the end of the world. But with how bad football has made us feel, we have all been hoping that basketball would make us feel better.

Understand, I am not saying that we are destined for a bad season. I am just saying that even if we have one, it happens to all programs and we have no reason to fear for the future.

Comment by kanyon40 11.17.11 @ 3:07 pm

Well said kanyon

Comment by TX Panther 11.17.11 @ 3:09 pm

PI

TT

PI

TT

PI

TT

Comment by Yup 11.17.11 @ 3:37 pm

Not concerned at all. LBS is a good team. Jamie makes all of us chicken littles look like fools by the end of the year. He will use this as a teaching tool. We will be better at the end of the year. The bigs and defense will get better as the year goes on and that will free up Woodall, Patterson and Ashton.

Pleasantly surprised by Lamar to date. Swallowing the pill that Dante is simply not the guy. Hoping Gilbert, Zana and Birch develop.

This is a 4ish seed in the tourney–maybe a 9-11 win BE team. Let’s see how they develop before we get too crazy. Most Pitt BB fans know better than to write off the season…

Comment by Pauly P 11.17.11 @ 4:19 pm

Comment by Franco Harris 11.17.11 @ 4:24 pm

Someone needed to step up, wake up the team, and take over last night. Nas and Ash said they will from now on after the game so I expect a much more inspiring effort next game. We didn’t do it after Rider so maybe a loss will get our attn

Comment by Tony C 11.17.11 @ 4:34 pm

Question for you guys, it’s a well known fact that Jamie Dixon has very little tolerance for in-game mistakes and play in practice affects actual playing time. Do you think, knowing the fact that the hook and possibly bench time for the rest of the game, keeps some of the younger players from going all out, hesitant?

I’m all for paying dues and learning the system, but sometimes you have to let guys play and fail and teach them as they go under fire.

With 10 freshman and sophomores on this squad, we don’t have the luxury of waiting for them to blossom as juniors, which has been Dixon’s MO.

Comment by Chris 11.17.11 @ 6:19 pm

If it makes anybody feel better about last night, ESPN rated Pitt’s incoming hoop recruits the best in the Big East, for whatever that’s worth. It’s behind the Insider pay wall, so I won’t link to it, but Pitt and Providence(?!?!?!) were #1 and 2.

Comment by Jeff 11.17.11 @ 7:27 pm

Chris, maybe Jamie is employing a different strategy this year: De-emphasizing the need to win each and every season game and instead preparing for a deep tourney run.

If so, fine with me.

Comment by steve 11.17.11 @ 7:43 pm

I don’t think these players need to be hitting the weights. i think they need to work on their basketball skills.

Comment by Ron 11.17.11 @ 8:25 pm

Chas et al…great post and agree with most everything…but, I have had teams look just like Pitt because they were completely outclassed as Pitt was last night. We could have lost by 25 easily so I saw some terrific effort to stay close in the second half. Agree with the comment that at least 2 players seemed lost on offense and defense and it made others try to compensate.
We all know how that turned out. It will get fixed. On a positive note, our foul shooting form was night and day better than I have ever seen it at Pitt under Jamie. Someone has worked with the players. Nas has completely changed his and looks balanced and confident at the line. Patterson is a future star. It’s going to be rough for a while but that’s why we have Jamie…one of the best coaches in the USA…he will earn his pay this year…

Comment by Dan 72 11.17.11 @ 8:36 pm

PITT football let me down now BB lets me down we dont lose BB games this is not right what a bad year this is so far
I need to get drunk this sucks.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.17.11 @ 8:46 pm

I’m equally concerned with reports of poor practice sessions. Pitt’s MO has been a team that practices consistently hard and forces players to earn gametime in practice.

I support the quick hook for mental mistakes – blown assignments, playing loose with the ball, lack of effort or focus, bitching at refs, taking pointless fouls

Comment by Ghost of Hornman 11.17.11 @ 9:37 pm

All I can say is that this team really misses McGhee and Wanamaker.

Comment by maguro 11.17.11 @ 9:39 pm

Franco, there is nothing new in the SI article.It is a compliation of stories printed over the last week. NYT yesterday plughed some new ground with a story on the McQuery inital interview with authorities.

Here are some cartoons from the Harrisburg Patriot News on the Scandal.
link to photos.pennlive.com

Comment by TigerPaul 11.17.11 @ 10:05 pm

Long Beach played very well. They were talented, athletic, and a step ahead of the Panthers all night. It’s not the end of the world, we will lose some more games along the way. The game exposed a few things that they need to improve on. If I know anything from what I’ve seen over the last few years, they will learn from the loss and work to get better. Jamie Dixon is an outstanding coach and he will do a good job getting the most out of his team.

Comment by Justinian 11.17.11 @ 10:44 pm

I think one of the problems with our bigs seemingly contributing nothing to the offense and not getting any positioning has to do somewhat with the guards. There is not a player on the team I have seen outside of Woodall who can put the ball on the floor and get to the hole. Pitt relies tremendously right now on their bigs to set screens to free Gibbs, Patterson, Woodall etc. because they are mostly not capable of creating for themselves. Not saying our bigs don’t have issues, they do, but it’s hard for them to get positioning and be an offensive threat when they are running around screening 90% of the time. How is it that even every mid-major team we play has that SG or SF that can drive that I wish Pitt had.

One other huge problem I have. The ball should never be in Ashton’s hands near the end of the shot clock. He is a great player, but cannot create for himself and free up teammates in that situation. He should be off the ball with it in Woodall’s hands and if Gibbs man helps at all you dish it to him for a J. I’ve seen him waste too many shotclocks down to see a bad shot because he can’t free himself.

Comment by OntarioLett'sGoPitt 11.17.11 @ 10:58 pm

Agree with a lot that’s been said already, no doubt the next few days of practice will be no picnic for the players. I believe Nas is the real key as far as leadership goes. It seems to be more natural for him than Gibbs. The competition for minutes may turn out to be very important to the improvement of the team. When guys start seeing the bench shorten, the intensity will get amped up almost by default. This team will get better and almost assuredly be in good position come tourney time.

Comment by Pitt Rob 11.18.11 @ 1:24 am

I’ll start by saying this — that game didn’t bother me that much. Decent opponent, team is still figuring out how to play together etc. etc.

And I agree on many of the comments, namely 1) Gibbs shouldn’t try to create so much. He’s a really good, but very limited, player. 2) Nobody even considers throwing the ball into the post most of the time, 3) Jamie better get them working on that zone, because he’s going to have to use it much more than he wants to.

What worries me:

* Nobody on this squad is going to be able to get to the line late in games like Wanamaker did.
* Agree with Pauly P that Taylor just isn’t going to turn into anything. He plays some of the worst post defense I’ve ever seen.
* Dixon seems confused by what he’s got. At one point in the first half against LBS, he had Gibbs, Birch, Zanna, Moore and Wright in the game. That team couldn’t win a Big East game and of course, LBS jumped on them and quickly got up 7 pts.
* How clueless does Moore have to be to shove Ware right in front of the ref? Gave him no choice but to call a foul. And Dixon left him in after that; I’d have sent him packing.
* Why can’t Woodall get in the lane? The only way Taylor, Birch and Zanna will contribute offensively is if Woodall gets in there and creates some opportunities.
* Wright is not ready to play at this level. Bench him.

What I liked:

* Robinson (the Mullah) was really agressive. Loved it.
* I actually thought the zone was OK. Decent shifts and it certainly improved when J.Johnson was in the game.
* On the plus side for Woodall, he did try to distribute and he didn’t take too many shots. I would just like to see the distribution come off penetration……
* Patterson’s shot looks more reliable.

Even after all the concerns above, this team will get a lot better once they find their rhythm and patterns. Woodall (and Gibbs, to a lesser degree) have to create for that front line and Patterson has to be the glue guy. They’ll be OK; we just have to re-align our expectations a bit.

Comment by hugh green 11.18.11 @ 7:51 am

It’s ironic that on a night where Pitt shoots something like 97% from the FT line, they LOSE! We’ve won tough games in the past shooting 50%!

Comment by Lou 11.18.11 @ 8:09 am

Syracuse assistant B-Ball coach Bernie Fine accused of molesting ball boys.

Comment by alcofan 11.18.11 @ 8:22 am

Taylor still has a way to go, but I’m not giving up on him. They need to get him the ball in the post and give him some chances to do something positive offensively and get in the flow of the game. McGhee simply never had any tools down on the block, but Sleepy has shown that he has some decent post moves – he just needs some opportunities to put them on display.

Comment by Carmen 11.18.11 @ 8:29 am

Hugh I agree with you on Cam Wright. It blew my mind when Dixon praised him all summer saying he’d play a ton of minutes and we’d all wonder why he didn’t play last year. I remember watching him in the summer league both years and thinking that he didn’t have the skills for this level. I thought maybe Dixon knew something we didn’t and maybe he made some great improvement. But in games thus far he has looked exactly as expected brings absolutely nothing on offense, is playing slow and small on D, and looks like he is afraid to be in there. I don’t think he has the talent for this level really, but maybe he proves me wrong in the future.

Comment by OntarioLett'sGoPitt 11.18.11 @ 9:35 am

@Carmen McGhee was an above average defender (Kemba Walker, Hansorough switches not withstanding) in the post and is leaps and bounds better than anyone we have, right now, on the team.

@Dan72 & Lou Agreed. Our FT% and our shooter’s form (especially Nas) is a marked improvement. I have always said that our FT% as a team has been a silent killer for us in March. i.e. Brown makes his second FT…and Butler is done.

@ Chris & @hugh Agreed that Wright struggled. I thought that JD was very leniant on Wright. He had a pretty long leash from what I remember. If you recall, the game got away from us when Wright came in and gave up several TOs.

@Ontario Right on about passes to the post. I mentioned this a lot last year. Everyone’s favorite (Wanny) and Gibbs/Woodall HARDLY EVER looked to pass to the post…and even if our bigs worked for position (which, I felt, McGhee did a lot last year)…our guys could not make an effective entry pass. Woodall better learn this before Steve gets here. Makes me long for the days of Brandin and LeVance.

@all Butler lost to Youngstown State last year in Non Con. How’d they end up?

Comment by PaulyP 11.18.11 @ 9:51 am

Taylor isn’t a Center. Plain & simple.

Square peg……round hole.

Just because he’s 6’9″ doesn’t mean he HAS to play center.

I don’t care who they play at center, as long as they can block out and rebound and stop a few of these easy layups against the like of Rider & LBSU.

You can have a 6’5 center, if the guy knows how to box out, use body for position and rebound.

Comment by EMel 11.18.11 @ 12:39 pm

Off topic– I saw Cameron play in high school. He has serious hops, but he is a project for the offensive side. Matta originally recruited him to OSU then backed off. Not sure why. At Benedictine, he was the guy that could overpower high school talent with his leaping ability and athleticism. Jamie sees something in him– maybe as a lock down defensive guy. Not sure.

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Comment by HTC Sync 11.29.11 @ 6:43 pm

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