October 24, 2012 at 9:48 pm #7211
On the HC board they are having an interesting thread going about the value that Bryson Johnson brings to Bucknell. He is small (<6’0), an average defender at best, almost completely one dimensional and yet he is one of the most dangerous players in the Patriot League. I would go as far as to say that beyond CJ or Muscala, he is the player most likely to single-handedly win a game for his team in the PL.
This got me thinking about Stefan Cvrkalj’s role on this year’s team as I would absolutely love it if he could play that role for Lehigh. He got minimal time last year, because he seems to be a pretty poor defender. However, unlike Bryson Johnson he has good size for a wing which should help somewhat rebounding and defensively. There will be some minutes at the 3 available with the loss of Jordan Hamilton, and Holden will play a lot at the 4, but Stefan will have to fight off BJ, Devon, and D’Orazio for minutes. Not the easiest thing to do.
What do you all see as his role/contribution this year? I would be ecstatic if he got 15-20 minutes a game and was able to throw up 3-5 threesmaking them at a clip around 38-40%. If he gets enough time, it would be great to see him get hot a couple of times and really swing the momentum in a way that only a 3 point barrage can. That would be a HUGE weapon for this team that hasn’t had a player like that in years (closest thing might be CJ’s freshman year, but that wouldn’t be fair to the rest of his game that season). It would open up so much more space for CJ, Gabe, Holden, and Mackey.October 25, 2012 at 3:59 pm #7219
I personally don’t see much of a role change for Stefan this year. We return everyone ahead of him plus added Carter. Granted, he made 37.8% of his 3s last year but the team as a whole shot a very credible 35%. If CJ returns to his freshman year #s, that gap narrows even more. I’m not sure that a lack of defense makes up 2-3 more 3s per 100. If Stefan has improved the other parts of his game, then maybe he assumes a bigger role.October 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm #7220
I agree to an extent except that Hamilton and Adams combined last year were 63-180 from 3. That’s a full quarter of the team’s attempts and makes. Obviously, Bailey, Carter, Schaeffer, D’Orazio will get some of those attempts, but I wouldn’t mind seeing quite a few of them come from Stefan.October 25, 2012 at 4:48 pm #7221
Two comments about Bryson Johnson:
1. He has INCREDIBLE range – frequently shooting from 5-7 feet behind the line. That is the only reason he can get off many attempts because defenses focus on him constantly and usually switch whenever he comes around a pick. He wouldn’t be nearly as dangerous if he was a run-of-the-mill 3-point specialist who can only hit 38%+ if he’s within three feet of the arc.
2. He’s not quite as short as you think – listed at 6-2, which is fairly accurate. He is also the strongest player on the team – based on the bench press and similar metrics.October 25, 2012 at 6:41 pm #7222
Agree with TMH, not sure he is going to get enough minutes to feel comfortable enough to get hot. I like SC, more than I like AD, as I think he is a better pure shooter (both aren’t really slashers to the hoop), but BB is miles ahead of both of them on the defensive end. And, DC could potentially be ahead of all 3 of them. Unless AD and SC learn to defend on the perimeter they look to be 10 minute maximum guys. But, both could have a bigger role next season, when the team is going to be looking for scoring.
Personally, and I have said this on here before, I don’t like Bryson Johnson’s game at all. I think part of his problem is that he is taking shots 5-7 feet beyond the perimeter. He can as easily shoot you out of a game, as into a game. And, he has zero game off the bounce. When he runs cold, he is ice cold, and since he doesn’t get to the line much, it can be harder to find a rhythm when the shot is not there. Average defender, I think, is generous. When we play Bison, I prefer him to shoot it, rather than Muscala, Ayers or Willman for sure. He has potential to rain in a bunch of 3s, but I would take my chances.
Isn’t one of the Bucknell freshmen (Haas?) supposed to be a big time perimeter scoring threat? I think he scored a ton in high school. Maybe he gets some of Johnson’s minutes if he can transfer his skills to college?October 25, 2012 at 7:45 pm #7223
Agree to disagree ’90. The guy made 40% last year, so no matter where he is shooting it from he is making it at a higher percentage more consistently than anyone on our team, whether they are toeing the line or not. Also, if he is 5 ft behind the line then his defender is too, which only opens up more room for his teammates. There is no way a defender can get down to the block to dig on Muscala and then get out to 24 ft to cover Bryson. That is dangerous.
And if he makes 40% he makes 40%, he is no more or less likely to shoot you out of a game than any other 40% 3 pt shooter (which is higher than anyone with a good number of attempts on LU) except that he shoots a lot of them.October 25, 2012 at 8:11 pm #7224
BTo frame the debate, Johnson’s actual 3-pt pct against PL teams the past two years – including the many shots from 5-7 feet behind the line – is 43%. In PL tournament games, he is 43.5%. If he has any problem, it is not the shots from 5-7 feet behind the arc, which he makes at a good clip, but rather the occasional shot taken coming around a screen where he isn’t square to the basket.
Agree 100% with the point made above as to how Johnson’s great shooting range helps open up the court for Muscala, Willman, and Ayers.October 26, 2012 at 1:13 am #7225
Not much to cover that everyone hasn’t already discussed, but my quick 2 cents on this if needed is as follows. First, let’s just put in blood that we’re rolling with 3 guard line-ups almost exclusively this year with 4 scholy bigs. Second, those 3 spots = 120 minutes. Going into the year you have CJ who you can pencil in for 33-34 minutes per game and I’d expect MM to get up to the 30 minute barrier. So if you add those two up and net it out from 120, you’re left with 57 minutes to split between CS, SC, AD, BB, and DC. Third, of those 5 guards, BB, I think most agree has the inside track at starting this year as the third guard based on where he finished last year and the fact that he had a full healthy offseason to work on his game. Obviously he brings defensive versatility to the team, but to the original topic as to if SC can fill in 3 point role, what about BB filling it? BB hit 48% from 3 last year, he looked smooth and fearless from 3, he could be the spot up 3 guy while playing solid D. Granted, this was in limited action, limited attempts and he was not known as a “shooter” during his prep ranks, but assuming normal regression after an increase in attempts…is it realistic to think with the amount of open shots he will get on this team that he could hit 38-40% from 3, I think that is realistic to ask/seek from him this year. I think BB could be anywhere from 18-25 minutes a game depending on how he progressed over the summer and how ready DC is. I think DC’s game fits what Reed is looking for this year more then the other 3 backup guards, but we’ll see how ready he is coming soon. I like SC, love his 3 point ability, and you got to remember his solid 3pt % was in many attempts where he came off bench having not touched the ball in long stretches of time, coming in to the game at end of half and game situations cold, he is pure from 3….love his stroke, but if his D didn’t improve he’ll be no more then 10 minute a game guy. He’s listed at 6’5 now, and his upside is big, if he has improved he could get a bigger role, and I think he is ahead of AD and in line to fill the 2 or 3 spot where as CS is purely a back-up 1 right now. I think SC in perfect world for him if he has improved the D could get to 15 minutes – if you have BB at 22, DC and SC at 15, and 5 for CS/AD….that is your 57 right there.October 26, 2012 at 3:07 am #7226
Sorry LUHoops00, I’m not buying the 3 guard system for the entire game. I think CB and JG may be too good especially in the roles they will be asked to fill to only have them spell GK andHG for a few minutes/game. This team is not shooter deficient although it may be rebounding deficient and possibly weak defensively in the paint in a 3 guard system exclusively. I envision a primarily 8 man rotation with CJM, GK, HG, MM, CB, BB, JG and DC. CS will get some minutes resting MM. AO and SCwill get role playing minutes. Of course this may all change depending on the learning curves over the summer. This is just my opinion though.October 26, 2012 at 10:37 am #7228
Sure, perhaps I was to literal, I didn’t intend for that to read like we’re 3 guard all day all night, for every single minute of every game, clearly there will be times we go “big” with HG or CB at the 3, but I’m pretty confident that in end of game situations where your best 5 are on the floor that 9 out of 10 times we’ll have 3 guards on the floor, and that was the thought when splicing out minutes. At end of games, I envision GK at the 5, and one of the other bigs on the floor dependind on the situation, with 3 guards at end of game time. Remember CJ and BB rebound a lot bigger then they are listed at, and DC I think is going to fit more in that camp as well. We have good rebounding guards, which helps the frontcourt out on defensive end in particular.
Say we have a “big” lineup for 10-15 minutes a game, who knows what that number ends up being, believe me, plenty of time for CB and JG, plenty of time…You got 90 minutes for 4 players….
It will be interesting, we’ll start knowing more in about 14 days boys, love this time of year.October 26, 2012 at 11:01 am #7229
Like ya 8 man rotation, agree wth that now that JC out.
One other factor not mentioned that could impact SC minutes is for the 10 minutes that MM on the pine each night, if CJ gets a chunk of that ten minutes at the one, SC should be in line for more minutes. also, yes, even with MM on floor CJ will run offense a bunch including end of game and half situations, with MM in scoring role.October 26, 2012 at 2:18 pm #7230
Another factor may be how much Doc has CJ at PG. he Carter,Bailey,Greiner and Knutson for example.October 26, 2012 at 2:43 pm #7231
I agree that Reed may go with CJ at point guard at times, mostly because CJ came back for his sr year in part to show scouts he could be a point guard. That said, I do not think that any lineup without Mackey is our best line-up, so I hope that CJ playing the point with Mackey on the bench is relatively infrequent. If Bailey or Carter is playing at an All-PL level that would change things, but Mackey is likely the best pg in the Patriot League, so that’s where he should be.October 26, 2012 at 4:10 pm #7233
Bryson Johnson against Lehigh last season (arguably the 3 biggest games of the year)
0-8 from 3 @ Lehigh (he singlehandedly kept Lehigh in that game)
1-5 from 3 @ Bucknell
3-7 from 3 @ Bucknell PL Final
So, that is 4-20 from 3, or a 20% clip. I say, let him fire away. I will take my chances that he beats me.
I don’t care if he shoots the lights out against Morehead St and West Alabama and Army and Navy in the PL. When the lights got big last season, he couldn’t throw it in the ocean.October 26, 2012 at 5:38 pm #7235
90, I pray that he doesn’t come back to make you eat your words this year. I understand your point that he shot poorly against LU last year, and I hope it continues.
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