May 16, 2014

Other Basketball Things

Filed under: Basketball,Coaches,Dixon,Money — Chas @ 7:42 am

So, the ACC is going to experiment with a 30 second shot clock in exhibition games this year.

“Our coaches and ADs both felt it would be an enhancement to the game in today’s world,” Swofford said. “It adds more possessions and potentially would speed up the game.”

NCAA men’s teams have used a 35-second shot clock since the 1993-94 season.

Swofford said league coaches submitted the proposal to the athletic directors during the spring meetings, and the athletic directors embraced the idea. The ACC would give its feedback on the use of the 30-second shot clock to the men’s basketball rules committee.

“That’s where the game is headed,” Pitt coach Jamie Dixon told ESPN’s Andy Katz at the NBA draft combine in Chicago. “We want to be ahead of the game. We want to provide data and see what it’s like.”

Presumably, Coach Dixon is at the NBA draft combine to support Lamar Patterson.

Definitely mixed feelings on the 30 second shot clock experiment. I think it isn’t a bad thing when you talk about helping for a more standardized game. The pros, FIBA and Euro leagues all use a 24 second clock, so moving it closer to that seems like a good step.

On the other hand, it isn’t going to make a change to scoring. If anything, scoring will go down in college. It is not going to encourage teams to run more.

However, NCAA women and international youth teams don’t have the tremendous problem with freedom-of-moment issues that college men do. How does “bumping the cutter” translate into French or Russian or Serbian? I’m betting they have no comparable phrase.

The problem with the 30-second cycle is that it makes it much easier for teams to play sound defense. The greatest issue with any defense, in any possession sport, is sustaining cohesive effort against a prolonged attack. It’s why football teams want pass-rushers; give a great quarterback enough time, eventually he will find an open receiver.

If a basketball team exercises crisp player and ball movement long enough, even the best defense is likely to spring a leak and allow a quality shot attempt. But if that time is limited, the offensive team loses an advantage. And if the defense is allowed to bump players off their proscribed cuts, or to jump in front of penetrating ballhandlers to draw charges, the defense gains another edge.

The assumption is that shortening the shot-clock cycle will make college basketball a faster, more attractive game. It’s not necessarily true. The last time the colleges cut the shot clock, from 45 to 35 in 1993-94, shot attempts only increased by four per game, and shooting percentages fell by nearly a full percentage point, from 45.2 percent to 44.3.

Within four years, as defensive-oriented coaches realized how the shorter clock empowered defenses by requiring players to guard for shorter bursts, scoring had dropped by nearly 10 points per game.

Imagine a Rick Pitino defense fueled by a 30-second shot clock. He puts on a nuisance press to drain seven or eight seconds off a possession before the ball crosses halfcourt, maybe 10 before the point guard can make his initial pass. Now Louisville’s opponent has 15 seconds to get off a quality attempt before the specter of a clock violation forces rushed action at the end of the cycle. And consider that as all this transpires, nobody’s getting a free pass to make a move through the lane or along the baseline, and any drives at the goal will be discouraged by help defenders ducking in to draw charges.

The issue, once again, is freedom of movement. The college game has remained a physical game that favors defense. The attempts this past year by officials had the predictable result. Lots of calls earlier in the year that tapered off steadily into the conference play and NCAA Tournament. And now there is already an attempt to go backwards by going back to the older block/charge rule which further rewards defense.

Anyone who followed the NBA of the mid-90s remembers the low-scoring physical games that saw defense rule first. Shot clock made no difference if players couldn’t get to the basket cleanly. I have no problem with giving it a try, but a shorter shot clock won’t speed tempo or improve the game without cleaning up the other stuff. Whether concurrently or before a real switch on the shot clock.

The other item was USA Today listed the top money makers in coaches from the past NCAA Tournament.

Coach Jamie Dixon was 15th on the list. About where you would expect. The real takeaway after you get past the top-paid and deserving money for coaches like Krzyzewski, Izzo, Donovan, Calipari, Self and Pitino is how job interest from others or just leaving for another job makes the difference. Seeing Steve Alford making over $3.4 million from UCLA. Josh Pastner leverages regular interest to make sure Memphis pays him well. As does Jay Wright at Villanova. Just as Jamie Dixon does. The only other way to get a boost is to take the money from desperate schools — Travis Ford, OK State; Scott Drew, Baylor; Mike Gottfried, NC State all jump out on the list.

The Twins with Killebrew & Oliva were also an AL power, but only got to one WS in mid 60’s and lost to Koufax and the Dodgers. After that the Twins could never get by Oriole pitching which was phenomenal. The Yanks sucked after ’64 or so.

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 12:36 pm

Late 60’s the Indians got Ken the Hawk Harrelson from the Red Sox.

I remember the Tribe always being in it ’til the All Star break. Aparicio, Colavito,Francona, and Wagner would be a great offensive team in todays game but there were only 8 teams in the AL and thay all could hit. Cleveland also had good starting pitching that would dominate now a days. Then though they were just another good staff. Baltimore had four 20 game winners on the same staff and the Yankees had Marris , Mantle, Ellie Howard, 3 time MVP Berra, Bobby Richardson a career .309 hitting 2nd baseman, Tom Tresh, Tony Kubek, Clete Boyer. There were All Stars at every position. Guys like Harmon Killebrew, Boog Powell,and Yasztremski were often also rans.

Comment by spiritofsection22 05.19.14 @ 12:49 pm

Yea I had the Hawks baseball card.

Wasn’t he a Washington Senator as well ?

Still have a lot of baseball cards, but the market is down.

Here’s an interesting pic from 1909.

link to

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 12:54 pm

The Hawk always caught the ball one handed which was considered risky in his days as a left fielder. His big year he batted .275 and had 100 ribbys for the Red Sox. Once he got away from the green monster his pull hitting style suffered.

The Washington Senators and the Kansas City Athletics were the cellar dwellers with the White Sox slightly better. Cleveland, Detroit, Boston and Baltimore fought it out behind the Yankees for second. When the Yankees reign finally ended The Orioles, Red Sox, Tigers all had some big years but the Indians weren’t really a factor.

Comment by spiritofsection22 05.19.14 @ 1:17 pm

Yep the Yanks were terrible from 1965 to middle, late 70’s when they stole Catfish Hunter and Reggie Jackson from the A’s. In that time period the Orioles and the A’s were dominant.

Baseball hasn’t been the same since.

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 2:31 pm

Roberto Clemente’s basket catch was a thing of beauty.

Made playing RF look easy. .357 in ’67 with 110 rbi’s.

.352 in ’70
.341 in ’71

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 2:36 pm

Back to Pitt hoops:

One of our 2014 offers decided Pitt wasn’t it 🙁

5/18/2014 – 2014 SG Elijah Stewart (6-5, 180,4-star) | Overall Rank: 64 | Position Rank: 12 committed to USC. – Per Link

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 2:44 pm

The next business day after USC transfer Byron Wesley decided not to visit PITT.

So looks like we lost 2 potential players for next year there.

Comment by Emel 05.19.14 @ 2:46 pm

Wesley committed to Gonzaga–not unexpected.

Comment by pitt1972 05.19.14 @ 5:49 pm

Listen, almost everyone here wants to see Conner at full time RB, but none of us is the decision maker.

It is HCPC who brought it up in an interview and played him at DE during a spring practice, and it was Conner himself who tweeted a couple of weeks ago that it was awesome that he was going to play both ways.

Speaking of both ways … who was the Philly LB who was the last player to both offense and defense fulltime?

Comment by wbb 05.19.14 @ 6:40 pm

jus remembered — Chuck Bednarik

Comment by wbb 05.19.14 @ 6:42 pm

Read where Steve Adams was likely to get more minutes in the NBA playoffs. I remember a year ago when some posting here said he wasn’t ready for the NBA, others said he would have to spend a year at a developmental level . He looks to be catching on real quick and when he matures he might be one of the best picks in his draft class.

I wonder if Lamar and Talib will get a shot to make an NBA roster.

Comment by spiritofsection22 05.19.14 @ 7:30 pm

ESPN has a preseason football power index. Pitt ranks 41, third in the Coastal behind Miami and North Carolina. Penn State trails at 46 – for what its worth.

link to

Comment by TonyinHouston 05.19.14 @ 7:30 pm

Pitt will have 3,000 more seats at Heinz Field to not fill starting in 2015. The Steelers & the Sports & Exhibition Authority have reached an agreement to add 3,000 seats to the south(open) endzone. No taxpayer money will be used. There will be a $1 surcharge added to Steeler tickets, don’t know if Pitt fans will have to contribute.

Comment by Nick 05.19.14 @ 9:40 pm

In 2015, we get Miami, Notre Dame, and North Carolina at home so that should help. You’re right, Nick, going to be a lot of empty seats for the FCS teams Pederson brings there. Ever attend a Temple game at the old Vet?

Comment by TonyinHouston 05.20.14 @ 12:01 am

Notre Dame will come to Heinz every six years and Penn State is coming twice but we don’t know if there will be any more games. We refuse to play West Virginia.

So we’ll have to depend on competing for the ACC playoff game to fill Heinz. It would be great to have a nine game conference schedule with the possibility of getting Florida State and Clemson at Heinz more often.

Just a thought: We old timers on here probably won’t see it, but the plans to build an on campus stadium will eventually come to fruition after Pederson is out of the way.

A 68,000 seat stadium only half full isn’t going to be a healthy indicator of Pitt football’s strength.

Comment by TonyinHouston 05.20.14 @ 12:23 am

Maybe this Panther Steeler partnership is falling apart. I have read rumors that Steeler sare considering building their own practice facility in the outskirts of town (forgot where)

Meanwhile, the stadium is becoming too large to be practical for Pitt.

Again, while I would love to see Pitt have its own 47,211 seat bowl stadium, I will argue with anyone that Oakand is not feasible nor practical … limited space and hard to get to. But there are surrounding sites that may be.

Comment by wbb 05.20.14 @ 11:43 am

Why are we refusing to play WVU?

Comment by spiritofsection22 05.20.14 @ 11:43 am

I guess they made a decision to stop playing community colleges.

Comment by Emel 05.20.14 @ 3:09 pm

Lord forbid we try that in hoops.

Comment by spiritofsection22 05.20.14 @ 5:48 pm

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