October 22, 2013 at 1:29 pm #11811
Couldn’t resist; Hoops00′s post about scrimmage got me excited again. Found the following preview, from an Indiana site, on Minny for this year:
Also found a blog about their first intra-squad scrimmage from this past Friday:
Interestingly to me, it sounds like they feel very good about an experienced and talented back-court, with lots of concern about an inexperienced and undersized front-court. That sounds familiar! While I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect too much in game 1 vs. a Big 10 team, it certainly sounds like we could have faced far worse match-ups.
October 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm #11820
- This topic was modified 7 years ago by toddcudd.
It looks like Minnesota’s frontline, although inexperienced, is NBA super sized at 6’11′”, 6’10” and 6’8″ (3 projected starters). Has shades of Baylor written all over it. No matter how inexperienced those guys may be, they should absolutely dominate us in the paint and on the glass. Since they play D1 basketball in the Big 10, I have to think they can dunk and make layups and put backs.
Obviously, highly unlikely, that an inexperienced Lehigh could win this game, but the recipe would seem to be get hot from outside with 3 ball (no SC for us), and hope Minnesota shoots 30% from the field. If Minnesota scores 70 points, I see no way Lehigh wins. Usually these mismatches see the home team putting 90’s or 100’s on the “guaranteed” victims. You know we won’t pack it in around their bigs. The good Doctor may be able to spell ZONE, but we won’t play one.October 22, 2013 at 5:01 pm #11821
Well, I certainly didn’t dig deep enough re: frontcourt size – ha! But I did read concern in both sources about frontcourt scoring. I hear what you’re saying 90 – if there’s a huge size mismatch, that concern might not matter against us. Lob it in, make a layup, and follow-up dunk every miss.
However I will still reserve hope that the good Dr. does at least experiment with a bigger lineup – unlike the Baylor mess last year. I feel like we have the bodies to try it, and enough of them to absorb some amount of foul trouble. Optimistically, I think we have 5 bodies to play 3 spots – TK, JG, JC, CB, and SW. But I do also realize that 3 of those 5 have never seen the floor in a college game yet, much less a Big 10 matchup.October 22, 2013 at 7:11 pm #11822
I’m not sure why, but I am starting to get a very uncomfortable feeling that CB may start this game in the frontcourt. Somebody please talk me off the cliff.October 22, 2013 at 7:24 pm #11823
I too think that’s entirely possible, 90. And maybe he’s doing great in camp – pushed by more new bigs. Who knows?
I’ll add a twist for ya: maybe he’s a 3. I have no evidence, strictly conjecture. But perhaps he’s more comfortable facing the basket than pure post? Again, no reason to believe that’s happening – but I like having options…October 22, 2013 at 10:37 pm #11824
Minnesota will be very strong in the three backcourt positions, returning the two Hollins – who were their top two scorers – plus adding Mathieu, who was a very good JUCO player, plus the transfers.
While they won’t be as strong as last year upfront, I think the author of this piece underestimates them a bit. Mo Walker, who is 6-10, had offers from schools like UConn and Pitt in high school but got set back by a serious knee injury and then too much weight last year after missing 2011-12. However he supposedly has been looking very good in preseason. Another frontcourt player unmentioned by the author is Joey King, a PF who transferred from Drake after making the MVC all-rookie team.October 22, 2013 at 11:05 pm #11826
From what I read on their discussion board, they were VERY impressed with Mathieu at the scrimmage. On the other hand, the reaction was not so good on Walker. Plenty of reference to him being in far better physical condition, but the consensus seemed to be that he looked like an offensive non-factor. King was barely mentioned.
Granted, it was just an intra-squad scrimmage, but if guys can’t score in that scenario, that’s probably not encouraging.October 23, 2013 at 12:08 am #11828
Don’t know how King will work out but I doubt they expect much scoring from him. If he plays defense and gets some defensive boards, I imagine Pitino will be happy. Also I’m sure King is well behind the upperclassmen in terms of learning the offense and how he fits in. I’ve never seen him play but I figure if he can start in the MVC as a frosh, then he can’t be terrible.October 23, 2013 at 12:12 am #11829
After a bit more digging, I don’t expect to see the big lineup that 90 listed. From their board, they expect to see primarily 3-guard sets. This also appears to be consistent with last season’s box scores – when they felt better about their frontcourt.
I’m seeing likely starters as 6’11” Eliason at the 5, 6’8″ Osenieks at forward, and then 3 guards – likely the two Hollins (6’2″ and 6’4″), and either Smith at 6’2″ or the new hot kid Mathieu at 5’9″.
They could, I’m sure, decide to go big if they think that would be a problem for us. Walker and Buggs project as subs usually, at 6’9″ and 6’10”.
If anybody else feels like snoopin’, the fan board I’ve been on is here:
http://www.forums.gopherhole.com/boards/showthread.php?49318-Gopher-Scrimmage-Friday-Oct-18October 23, 2013 at 3:04 am #11831
I was projecting a frontcourt of:
Osenieks 6’8″October 23, 2013 at 3:08 am #11833
If Joey King gets some playing time, he is 6’9″, so they can throw some bigs at us for sure, if they choose.October 23, 2013 at 12:00 pm #11839
Catching up on these and 90 killed me with line of the day, reed might be able to spell zone but we won’t play one, just coughed up morning coffee!
Minny has size but I think their more proven guys are guards and we know he will want to push tempo like his dad so I can see him Atleast starting three guards versus us and two bigs, and then maybe loading up with a big lineup if we hold our own at guard spot.
CB, due to experience and fact it’s game one on road at big ten school I could see starting as well….I also hope he come out around 17 minute mark of first half and sits next to GP for rest of the half. What a game one for our young bigs to get a look at what we have!!! How does JC and that big ten body and wingspan hold up on rebounding end, I think he will be okay on boards. Has JG gotten stronger? What kind of impact will TK have? If Pitino goes big can a SW at the 3 be a mismatch for us that we can utilize his ability to take a big off the bounce. How do AP and MS do, how ready are they?
Sure glad I am going!!!October 26, 2013 at 8:35 pm #11905
A little off topic but Nate Mason, who we were recruiting quite heavily just committed to the Gophers.November 1, 2013 at 5:31 pm #11975
I certainly recognize and fully respect the fact that the 170th ranked (KenPom) Mountain Hawks fall well short in terms of player talent and experience when compared to the 35th ranked (KenPom) Golden Gophers of Minnesota. That said, I thought it would be fun to take a closer look at the top guys holding the clip-boards on Friday, Nov. 9th. Here goes my Head Coach’s Tale of the Tape.
Minnesota’s Richard Pitino
Lehigh’s Brett Reed
Pitino BA (History) / Providence College
Reed PhD (Instructional Technology with a Cognate in Sports Administration) / Wayne State
D-1 Head Coaching Experience / Record
Pitino One Year / 18-14 (.563)
Reed Six Years / 155-72 (.615)
Trips to the NCAAs (as head coach)
D-1 Conference Experience
Pitino One year in the Sun Belt (2013 KenPom Ranking 20th)
Reed Six years in the Patriot League (2013 KenPom Ranking 17th)
Last Year’s Team / National Ranking
Pitino Florida Int’l University (KenPom 2013 Ranking: 188)
Reed Lehigh University (KenPom 203 Ranking: 106)
Average Home Court Attendance (last year)
Largest Crowd Coached Before (as Head Coach)
RP 21,411 vs. Louisville followed by 5,497 vs. North Texas
BR 18,722 vs. Xavier followed by 16,523 vs. Duke and 14,797 vs. Michigan State
While our players are young and inexperienced, you can’t say the same about our leader, the Good Doctor, Brett Reed.
GO LU!November 2, 2013 at 12:30 pm #11984
Pitino’s crew wins their first Exhibition Game vs. NAIA Division II National Champions Cardinal Stritch 79-57. Watch highlights below. Gophers started: Mathieu, Hollis (Austin), Hollis (Andre) , Eliason and Osenieks. None got more than 24 minutes of playing time. They rolled to an early 46-19 lead at the half before subs took over. Interestingly, the D-II team out-rebounded the Gophers 40-34.
Gotta love one facebook comment that read: Really tells us nothing, except they don’t totally suck. Hoping for an entertaining season with improvement throughout.
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