Thursday, February 24, 2011

Blocks - by comparison

Georgia State has a player with 45 blocks this season and another with 32. Our leading blocker has 15. Of course, that may reflect to some extent the defensive philosophy of the coach, but it is an amazing difference.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Grinderball epitomized

Drexel is 18-9, so they are a pretty good team. However, their shooting is AWFUL - 41.7% overall and 30.9 from the arc.

The good news? Their defense is stifling - allowing just 39.8% overall and 27.7% from the 3-point arc. And, their rebounding is dominant. They have a +9.5 margin as a team.

We might have a rarity

It is not the norm that SBC big men are a force in themselves (especially offensively). There have been some exceptions, but not a great number of them. Usually they are competent role players who make the team better by playing their parts well. However, we may have found one (Neighbour) who will be an offensive force in himself. If he is, he will attract big time attention from opponents who are not accustomed to having that problem, in league play, at least.

I hate the Bubble

What does it matter? It is a discussion (for the most part) of mediocre Big Six teams who certainly do not deserve to be rewarded with post season.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Interior defense

The last time we had a player who blocked as many as 35 shots was Ryan Moss in 98-99. It was 04-05 since we even had someone with 30.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

NCAA tourney

I have said it before, and I will say it again. I really wish they would make the NCAA tournament include all D1 teams. The significance of "making the tournament" has been blown all out of proportion in importance. Fix it where all the teams make the tournament, and then making the tournament becomes meaningless, which would make the regular season become an entity on its own, and thus make it more important. Some will answer that some teams don't deserve to be in the tournament. I would answer that most of the teams there now have no realistic chance whatsoever of winning the tournament, so do they deserve to be there? Further, I would argue that several teams each year are there because they won 3 or 4 games in the league tournament, and winning four games qualifies them to be in the national championship tournament?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

On the other hand

Yes, this is an amazing 3-point shooting team. On the other hand, since we are only 14-12, there must be several other things that we do very badly.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Don't get used to it

I would not get used to seeing a team shoot like this one has this year. I really do not expect to see it again - in my life. Pretty amazing. If the season were over, we would have four players in the top 13 all-time single season 3PT% list. Our game strategy will be drastically altered next season, no doubt, and that probably is a good thing. I am happy to ride this horse while we have it, but it can be a bucking bronco at times.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Of course the Big East is "the deepest conference in the country." When you have 16 (going on 17) teams in a non-southern part of the country where basketball is more important, you ought to be deep. The point is that they are not only deep, but good. The top half of the Beast is really high quality.

But look for the Big 12 (or whatever they will call it next year) to be much improved. They are losing Colorado and Nebraska, who are perpetual bottom feeders in basketball, and that has to help their average quality a bunch.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Need more dimensions

It is hard for a one-dimensional team to win big, even if they are superlatively good in one thing. We have proven that this year. It would be hard to find many teams that shoot the 3 better than we do this year, but we still are barely over .500. I hope next year we find some more bullets for our gun.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Up with Monroe

I would love to see the Monroe program get going. The SBC needs it, to start with. Also, they could develop into a very good rivalry for Little Rock, given their proximity.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Why I am optimistic about Gus Leeper

1. Joe Kleine said he will be good, and Joe ought to know if anyone should.

2. He moves well on the court, and he has already muscled up some.

3. All reports are that he has a very positive attitude and work ethic.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

the value of fouls

Fouls can totally change a game, of course. The difference between not shooting FTs and shooting the double bonus is huge. And when a coach has to take out a key player because of foul trouble it can change the course of the game. Every game strategy has its points, but the Princeton offense (or similar perimeter-oriented strageties) does not draw fouls nearly as frequently as some others. There is a good reason why post players and slashers shoot the most free throws.

Shields next year

Some have said that this season has been one of Steve Shields' best coaching jobs since he has been at Little Rock, and I agree. He has taken a difficult situation and has built a team that is at least competitive in the Sun Belt. It looks like help is on the way size-wise next season, but Steve will have another challenge at adaptable coaching next year, because next year's roster may again be different than anything he has had. For a change, he may have a team with enough height. However, some of the height is not going to be typical of the type big men he has had. We'll see how he molds his strategy.

Great win vs. Denver

My bunch had a great time at the Denver game at the Jack. It was just a lot of fun all the way around. Exciting overtime win. Small crowd, but a good one - very vocal and into the game. Well played game by both teams. Denver is a pleasure to watch. They just play good, fundamental basketball.