January 6, 2013 at 5:04 pm #8757
And from the other side courtesy of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, coach Smart;
On what changed once C.J. McCollum went out of the game:
“Not much. We emphasized for the last few days that Lehigh has a terrific team. They had four … guys who would play major minutes or even start for us. C.J. went out, and they still had three of those guys in the game. It shows a lot about their team that they kept battling and kept fighting and kept making plays without C.J. in the game. You’re talking about one of the best players in the country. Obviously they’re better with him. Hopefully he’ll be back soon.”January 6, 2013 at 6:39 pm #8759
Have to agree with 65 on AD, after watching on TV, he looked lost a lot. Disappointed in CB also, really though he would come into his own this year. Just an outstanding game from Greiner, he was the star of the game in my opinion. How about CS, really solid game from him.January 6, 2013 at 6:43 pm #8760
Without CJ for awhile or rest of season, I have a few thoughts. First, I would not start BB. He has looked invisible since he came back. Zero intensity at either end. And, he hasn’t shown an ability to be a defensive stopper. The logical choice would be SC for his scoring punch, but I don’t like AD and SC on the floor together. So, my new starter would be CS in a 3 guard rotation with MM and AD. CS gives you more ball handling and solid 3 point shooting. I like the ball in his hands better than MM’s hands. I would like to see some MM at the 2. As far as record, I think they go better than .500 in the conference, probably 10-4 or 9-5. The league is pretty soft outside of Bucknell, but a lot of away games come into play now. At HC, Army, Navy, American could be losses, and possible to trip up at Gate and Lafayette. Bucknell road loss is a given.
But, all not lost. If CJ can be back, this could be good for team long term.January 6, 2013 at 6:48 pm #8761
I actually thought AD was decent. We did a lot of switching and pickup matching on D, so that all of our guards rotated to a lot of men on the perimeter. They ran Daniels and #21 off a ton of screens to get them looks. I thought AD worked around the screens pretty well. His D is vastly improved from his first 2 seasons. He can get caught watching ball, but he is pretty athletic out there. And, he has a little game off the dribble.January 6, 2013 at 8:28 pm #8764
While I wasn’t impressed with AD’s defense (his 2 or 3 glaring missteps – getting toasted as OO said – probably stood out in my mind than the otherwise fine all-around play which included 5 boards), he is a logical start going forward. He certainly plays taller than his 6’2″ height and has to be acknowledged for this recent scoring punch (7 out of 13 FGs in his last three) and steady advancement in rebounding (15 in the last 4 games).
I’m all-in on Corey Schaefer as a starter.
BJB. Three games back. 1 for 8 in 59 minutes. Three points. Is he not getting open looks or are we not getting him the ball? Back to the video tapes. No boards yesterday but 5 in each of the preceding games. Remains a questionable starter when otherwise would have thought to be an automatic choice with CJ down.January 6, 2013 at 10:14 pm #8770
Not ready to give up on this team
Life Without CJ
UNT: Shot 32 for 66 (48.5%)
Gave up 75
VCU: (final 25 min. 36 sec.)
Shot 12 of 28 (.429%)
Gave up 34
Shot 44 for 94 (.468%)
Gave up 109January 7, 2013 at 12:22 am #8774
Good post, 65, and I agree that we should still be optimistic. A lot of times, teams really play well over a span without their superstar. I remember Ralph Sampson’s career at Virginia, where he dominated, but the team underperformed in his 4 years (3 NCAA trips, 1 NIT championship and 1 Final Four). He graduated, and everybody thought UVa would really struggle. Then the next year, they went to the Final Four without Ralph. Sometimes, people underestimate the other 4 guys on the floor. Lehigh is pretty solid outside of CJ.January 7, 2013 at 1:23 am #8776
I think we just need to give BB some time, he has been out for a couple of months, I’m confident he’ll round into shape and be ready to contribute in another week or two. We at least know he has a track record of being able to get it together when it counts, as he did last year, so I’m hopeful that he’ll get back to being a 20 minue guy in short order.
Importantly, as in beginning with our scrimmage this week, we insert CS into the lineup and slide MM over. That is a pretty easy lever to pull.
However, to me, this offense has to run through Gabe, for the rest of the year. GK has to touch it every possession. With CJ out, you’re taking about 19 field goal attempts that have to get allocated, and GK needs to go from his roughly 10 a game up to the 16-18 a game level. He needs to pick up a chunk of this scoring that CJ leaves behind, and he definitely can. MM will obviously now get more of a green light, you can question if that is good or bad for sure, but he’ll have it in more of a scoring guard role now. Bottom line, if we need to give the ball to someone to get to the tin and draw a defense it is MM right now…MM can get to the tin, and he’ll need to be more aggressive and make things happen late in shot clocks. HG obviously will have to step up and shoulder more of the load on offense and pick up some more FG attempts.
I think we get to 8 or 9 wins, I’m pretty confident in that, 10 would be high end but really seems do-able. It isn’t like PL is lighting it up outside of BU or us. Rest of league ranks 200+ in KenPom, so if you say you drop 2 BU games and can 9-3 in other 12, that gets you to 9-5, which is realistic….Tell you what, it certainly will be interesting, CS salivating at the opportunity, and hopefully BB can be some x factor down the stretch again…we need his athletic ability and defense to get to where we need to get.January 7, 2013 at 2:06 am #8777
Agree, we need to run everything through GK on the low block. That is our first option on every trip. He needs to stay out of foul trouble. On perimeter, I like everything running through HG. He has game to break man down off dribble and get to rim, and ability to hit the 3 ball. MM worries me. I like him moving to the 2, but he needs to really step up. He is nowhere near his late season form last year. He was a monster down the stretch last year on the offensive end, and need to see more of that. I don’t like what I see from BB at all. Everything looks bad, hustle, body language, on ball defense, focus, shooting, you name it. He would be my 3rd choice behind CS and SC. He’s going to get minutes, but he needs to start stuffing the stat sheet. He was invisible yesterday and has been since return. He looks like a freshman who has never seen the court.
If you asked me preseason, I would have said DC slides in to pick up the slack from the wing/slash spot. Guess he is not at the top of coach’s list, huh? Talk about a guy going through the motions, he doesn’t even run in the warmups. Slow walk through every drill, rarely ever finds the energy to rebound a ball in warmups and actually take a shot. It is ridiculous. At this point, I can’t tell if he would have a game off the dribble as I have never seen him run. And, that left handed shot, yikes, ugly. The other option, and you know, I cringe saying this, is putting CB in at the 4, moving HG to the more natural 3, with AD and MM in backcourt. Would potentially help on defensive end and rebounding. But, my first choice is CS. If I have to watch another bounce pass ricochet off those stone hands, I may have a heart attack. If he could catch, he would get 2-3 bunnies a night.January 7, 2013 at 8:18 am #8780
I have confidence that they can hang tough, will surprise some people. This team has scorers and this is also a chance for those who did not have a shot to play. Go LU!January 7, 2013 at 11:38 am #8781
90 – You must have almost had a heart attack posting CB as potential starter, and you almost gave me one in the process cause no way that happens.
CB has been very underwhelming to say the least, with nothing but opportunity to carve out minutes, he still hasn’t shown me much, you have to think the staff is disapointed in him so far. If the staff handed out grades now that we’re done with non-conference schedule, I don’t count scrimmage this week…what does CB Get? A c or c minus, not sure it is any higher, pretty disapointing soph campaign so far.
Whitfield surgery today, here is hopeful for a quick recovery, atleast a broken fibula not sure if ligament damage ever got confirmed.January 7, 2013 at 2:30 pm #8783
Agree Hoops, just throwing it out there. I think coaching would have liked to see his length at the 4 preseason, but that ship has sailed. If he was a great rebounder, maybe you could live with him, but he is not that long and not a great rebounder. I think his grade is D at best. He and DC biggest disappointments. I actually prefer JG at this point, bigger and softer hands.January 7, 2013 at 4:27 pm #8786
I agree with the sentiment that based upon play so far, Corey S has earned a shot at the 5 spot. I’ve already made it clear I am not a fan of AD at this level. He is a jump shooter (at best) whose size and wingspan made him a serious vulnerability on the perimeter. Sad to say too, BJ’s problems seem be bigger than concussions. He simply seems to lack the mental focus to achive his full potential. Perhaps Coach Reed can again conjur up the old BJ Bailey, but I’m beginning to wonder. To me, Steffan C seems to have the biggest upside of this group of players – size, downcourt speed, and gorgeous stroke – but he has not yet been afforded the opportunity to prove he can perform on both ends of the court.
But, Corey S has shown – several times over now – he handles the ball extremely well, he can shoot, and he has an uncany ability to dribble penetrate and create his own opportunites in the lane. He doesn’t look like a Div 1 ball player but he has more heart than anyone on the team other than Mackey M.
In CJ’s absence, I would start BJ – with a very short leash – and CS. I would bring in SC as the 6th.
HG needs to play every game like he seems to against the bigs. And Gabe needs to just relax and be more patient. Sometimes wait for a second touch before he begins to break down his defender …
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