I like shot blocks by a center in the paint, because one or two early ones can change an entire game, and make the offense change what they want to do. You must have seen the Cal – South Florida game in the NCAA last year. South Florida had two early shot blocks in the paint, one of which was by their big center Augustus Gilchrist. All year long Cal’s guards had their way with opposing bigs in the paint, taking it strong to the basket. Once USF made those blocks, Cal’s guards got hesitant about driving, and when they did drive, they had to alter their shots in the paint, probably fearing the shot block, and they missed shot after shot.
I also like shot blocks, because if you can control the ball, and get the fast break started, you are a step ahead of the opponent. Bill Russell made a living with the block, and the ensuing fast break. This is a luxury in college ball, and should not be attempted by a team or a player, until they have mastered sound defensive fundamentals. The primary reason for a shot block is to put some fear into guards driving into the paint, or if you are playing a big who is a scorer, block one, and make him think about you next time.
Whether or not we ask a player to block shots depends on the player’s defensive skills. I don’t consider Solomon as weak on defense as Devon Hardin, but many here do consider him a weak defender. If that is true, then he should be doing as you say, concentrate on his man defense first, before attempting shot blocks. He is averaging a block every other game. I don’t think it is a big stretch to double his output to one a game. I would like to see him try for a couple early ones, to make an impression, like Gilchrist did on us, and even if he didn’t get any, then settle down and play a tight man-to-man defense the rest of the game, with few or no attempts at blocks.
Unique and original theory, as usual, but untrue. In our man defense last year, Kravish guarded the opponent’s center, the 5, and Kamp guarded the Power Forward, or 4, in every game I can remember. The center, or the 5, was often the “main post threat”, and Kravish guarded him. Kravish is longer, an inch taller, and has much longer arms than Kamp. It makes absolutely no sense whatever to have your shorter big play the opponent’s longer big, and have your longer big play defense against the opponent’s shorter big, unless, for example, your longer big, is a stiff on defense, and the opponent’s center is their main post threat. Kravish is no stiff on defense. In fact, I would argue that he was a better defender than Kamp in some of last year’s games.
A few games that stick out in my mind from 2011-2012:
Stanford: In three games with Stanford, Kravish guarded Josh Owens, Stanford’s center and biggest threat in the post, and held him down. In games 2 and 3, Kamp guarded Zimmerman, who torched Kamp for the two best games of his career.
Utah: Kravish guarded Jason Washburn, the Utah center, who was their main and only post threat.
Oregon: Kravish primarily guarded Tony Woods, the Oregon center, and Kamp primarily took the shorter Singler, but Kravish sometimes switched out onto Singler.
UCLA: Kravish guarded the much bigger Josh Smith, UCLA’s main post threat, and cleaned his clock in two games. Kamp took David Wear.
South Florida: Kravish took Augustus Gilchrist, the USF center, and Kamp took the shorter Victor Rudd, and they did not do a good job on either one of them.
I could go on. There is some game video on the web, where you can see some of this.
I know you don’t like facts and stats, because that is evident from your posts, and I can see where they are tiresome for you. However, you make some of the wildest statements, based on what you think you saw in a game, or your overwhelming affection for a player, making you blind to his faults, or your contempt for a coach or player, making you blind to his virtues. My memory is not always so good these days, and it takes me hours to research the facts to make sure I feel I am correct before I respond to you. That is tiresome for me.
You are a good Cal fan, but in the spirit of Christmas, I think we should agree to end this relationship. I will give you the last word on this and any other post. I will not read or respond to any more of your posts. It is not worth my time, and our discussion must be boring everyone else to tears. To them, I apologize, and to you and everyone on the BI, may you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, filled with Cal Bear victories.
Agree 100%. Most shot blocks come from secondary defenders or on drives. Soloman is generally in foul trouble and much of that is from leaving his feet or reaching. His lack of strength is hurting him against true post players as he has difficulty holding his ground, but he is better off defending strong rather than leaving his feet to try and swat every shot.
It is difficult to defensive rebound when you leave your feet so often. He needs to hold his ground, seal his man and go get the ball. Richard needs to play 25+ minutes a night and too often he sits with foul trouble. Cal is not deep enough to afford him sitting that much, so he needs to avoid the silly fouls that come from leaving your feet needlessly or reaching.
I do agree that Richard needs first to stay out of foul trouble and to hold defensive position.
I see you left out Zona, CU, WSU, and Washington, the teams that actually HAD post threats.