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concordtom concordtom is offline
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Posts need better Free Throw shooting, or else - 12-22-2012, 09:30 AM

Taking a gander at how the women are doing... I had become quite excited about them in recent years do to tremendous recruiting by Boyd and Gottleib. But we didn't do as well as we thought (granted, they were young, and went thru a coaching change) so I backed off this year and have not yet watched. Forgive my uneducated view, therefore, but it seems to me that that this team has pretty much all the components except interior free throw shooting. And this is how we will get bounced from the NCAA's.

We have size, depth and talent to murder people down low, certainly enough to compete with anyone. But the craziest stat ever: Caldwell shooting 69% from the floor but just 34% from the line. Wow! At 69%, we should be going to her on the block every time and either converting or drawing fouls. But since she shoots such a low percentage and teams can play hack-a-Talia, we appear to not go to her often.

And the stats further bear that out as Boyd, Clarendon, and Brandon take the most shots. Brandon appears to be at 53% from the floor and 60% from the line, so I'm guessing she is getting more set plays into her, and Caldwell cleanup the scrap put backs, it would seem. But imagine if we had 2 posts we could dump it into! And make them pay! If our pivots could crush from the line, it would be murderer's row! Reshanda Gray is a great player, too, but she isn't converting at a high rate from the line either (Edit: 59% from the floor and 69% from the line, but gets fewer minutes than Brandon or Caldwell, no doubt because it's her 2nd year vs. 4th).

Something tells me that we will get matched up against a strong team where we'd have the advantage inside, but won't go to it bc the FT shooting takes it away, from ourselves. Instead, we'll allow ourselves to rely on the magic of Boyd and Clarendon, but this will be a mistake because there will be defensive talents out there solely focused on taking that away, and they will be able to.

Instead, if our pivots could hit from the line, you have to double team instead of single and foul. If you draw the double, then you have kick out options which can succeed.

Okay, okay.... I'm just looking at stats and haven't watched a single game this year, yet! Surely you'll tell me we already consistently draw the double down low. And yeah, she's not a good free throw shooter, but the team is 9-1 and it hasn't seemed to hurt us so far. I'm just saying, that's a crazy stat line, and a clear Achilles heal!

Don't be surprised if that's how it crashes down on us us in the end if a remedy isn't discovered in practice now. Tough to imagine it will change for a senior. It most likely is what it is.

(Edit: As a result of this, could we see Brandon and Gray getting more minutes than Caldwell when it comes to crunch time at the end of the season? Whenever I do the All-Time NBA Fantasy team, I find myself shying away from Shaq and Wilt. I just can't have poor free throw shooters on the floor. It gives the other team an out. Good luck to Talia and the Bears!!! I'll be watching as things progress!

Last edited by concordtom; 12-22-2012 at 09:48 AM.
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Shocky1 Shocky1 is offline
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12-22-2012, 10:09 AM

tom, agreed about the fts, they were only 12 out of 24 last night...kansas was 87.5% for comparison purposes

if the bears intend to become an elite 8 and better team, then they will need to improve their ft shooting...keep in mind that it is not just the 12 missed ft points last night, some were duriing the 1-1 bonus phase so additional points are lost too...in close games against teams with elite athletes, these ft points will be critical

what are you doing next friday night?...why not take your family to the george washington game?

haas is only a short drive from concord plus you probably don't have to work early saturday morning anyways...one of the viewing pluses of wbb is that most games are not televised which means the game time is shorter than the men's game

you can get great seats and the cal band/cheerleaders are there

tickets are really cheap and your kids can go with you to blondies or top dog before the game

oh yeah, you can also watch the #8 ranked team in the country play too (and you can root for the bigs in person to knock down the fts, gen actually has great rotation with a nice soft and high trajectory)...if you have any girls, the bears are great role models

tom, are you in?

Last edited by Shocky1; 12-22-2012 at 10:16 AM.
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wvitbear wvitbear is online now
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For the season, Gary and Boyd have been our best free throw shooters - 12-22-2012, 10:23 AM

Caldwell has always had trouble. Last year she shot over 50 % and we were delighted. This year she and Pierre regressed. Brandon and Gray are decent free throw shooters. Clarendon doesn't shoot as high as you would think but she hits in the clutch. Afure is a decent free throw shooter. All the bigs get plays runfor them and they all offensive rebound and get a lot of free throws there.

Thje men are more perplexing when Crabbe and others are not shooting well. Think of Caldwell as our Richard Solomon.
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stu stu is offline
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12-22-2012, 10:31 AM

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Originally Posted by wvitbear View Post
Think of Caldwell as our Richard Solomon.
I disagree - Talia is the epitome of great attitude, nobody pushes her around, and her game is within a few feet of the basket. I think Richard has the potential to be the men's Gennifer Brandon, but he has a long way to go.
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OBear073akaSMFan OBear073akaSMFan is offline
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12-22-2012, 10:43 AM

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Originally Posted by Shocky1 View Post
if the bears intend to become an elite 8 and better team,
Shocky1..Your second reference to elite team or better. I, like everyone hope so but lets not build up our hopes until the middle of the Pac-12 season. Yesterday game was great! This team have the capability to play like yesterday but to do it night after night before we bring up elite. I guess I am a "half-empty" person!
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OBear073akaSMFan OBear073akaSMFan is offline
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12-22-2012, 10:48 AM

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Originally Posted by wvitbear View Post
Caldwell has always had trouble. Last year she shot over 50 % and we were delighted. This year she and Pierre regressed.
Talia actually started off 5-5 at the charity stripe in the vanguard (exhibition) game. Though she has regress after that, her moves to the hoop is getting better and better. She can spin left or right and has shown quickness for her size.
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concordtom concordtom is offline
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12-22-2012, 11:00 AM

Shocky:

Couple of issues with that, which are indeed distressing to me from the standpoint that I can no longer "hang at Haas".
Most importantly, I am no longer in Concord.
Secondly, 5 kids means I have other responsibilities and can't get out as in years past.

I have been to a number of the women's games. I used to take the kids to the packed house Stanford games for the group rate of $1 tickets. We'd take soccer teams, girl scouts troops, etc. I was at the NIT champ game, too. Which was fun.

CGB used to post a link to a Haas camera feed that made additional viewing easy. Not sure if that happens, but I'd love to get back on that.

Next Friday - hmmm.... will be in town! Will have to see what's up - could be a perfect outing. Thanks!

I'm still very much rooting for the team - they are in many ways much more refreshing than the men's. I do, still, have high hopes for this group. Elite 8? Sure, I got no problem putting that out there!!! Just gotta hit some more FT's to ensure we advance. It's REALLY key strategically. Heck, Final Four, baby. We've got what it takes from a personnel standpoint.

Last edited by concordtom; 12-22-2012 at 11:03 AM.
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GOCAL73 GOCAL73 is offline
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For FT Shooting She Is - 12-22-2012, 11:03 AM

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Originally Posted by stu View Post
I disagree - Talia is the epitome of great attitude, nobody pushes her around, and her game is within a few feet of the basket. I think Richard has the potential to be the men's Gennifer Brandon, but he has a long way to go.
I think wvitbear was talking just about FT shooting - at least, I hope he was.

For every other aspect of her game, Talia is far superior to Richard.
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norcalnick norcalnick is offline
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12-22-2012, 11:42 AM

Quote:
At 69%, we should be going to her on the block every time and either converting or drawing fouls.
I would posit that Talia is shooting 69% from the field precisely because Cal doesn't go to her on every possession. Lots of her made baskets come off of offensive rebounds, and when she gets the ball she doesn't force up bad shots. If Cal went to her more often, her FG% would almost certainly go down.

As for free throws . . . it is what it is. This team has many strengths, but free throw shooting isn't one of them. They're not perfect, and we shouldn't expect them to be perfect. Hopefully it doesn't hurt us in a game that matters. If it does, then oh well.
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wvitbear wvitbear is online now
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Hey Stu - 12-22-2012, 03:15 PM

was referring to free throws only.

By the way, going to last night's game we were not last in the Pac 10 in FT shooting. I believe we were 8th at 65%. After last night, we will have dropped.
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stu stu is offline
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12-22-2012, 04:08 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by wvitbear View Post
was referring to free throws only.
Sorry, I didn't get that. Ironically Solomon made 4 of 4 from the line this afternoon. Perhaps the gorgeous rainbow I saw was an omen ...
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wvitbear wvitbear is online now
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Of course Talia does that occasionally too - 12-22-2012, 04:14 PM

I have never liked the fact she starts her free throws behind her head. I personally like to see my release point to make adjustments. Solomon can knock the banking board down too.
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annarborbear annarborbear is offline
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12-22-2012, 06:03 PM

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Originally Posted by wvitbear View Post
I have never liked the fact she starts her free throws behind her head. I personally like to see my release point to make adjustments. Solomon can knock the banking board down too.
She's been doing that for all four years. Amazing that the coaches haven't at least tried to get her to do something different during all of that time.
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OdontoBear66 OdontoBear66 is offline
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Same thread every year - 12-23-2012, 06:50 AM

I do not understand. FT shooting is teachable. If, between the head and assistant coaches, we have noone who can teach FT shooting, can we not bring in an outsider "consultant". There are so many great HS, club, AAU coaches as well as ex-BB players that could teach this discipline. Would a player shooting 50% become a 90% FT shooter? Probably not, but I would take 70-75% with that player.
Every year with Cal WBB this same thread emerges, making me not understand why. What can be done? If every player just improved a little over what they are shooting, the team would go from 12/24 to say 16 or 17/24, which even though not great, would take us deeper into the rounds of the tourney. With so many good bigs, we will get fouled against good teams, and we will miss, which will cost us. Suggestions?
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oldblue83 oldblue83 is offline
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12-23-2012, 09:37 AM

The problem is not just the free throw shooting, it's the outside shooting generally. The defense constantly shifted to the ball-side and left the wing open, but neither Pierre or Jemerigbe could hit open shots. They can't have Clarendon be the only outside shooter and beat the best teams.

I hope they can find answers to these 2 issues, because they have a lot of heart and talent. Boyd, Brandon, Clarendon, they have stretches of brilliant play, and can really take over the game.
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