We now have a fairly complete roster for this next season.

14,210 Views | 106 Replies | Last: 2 yr ago by puget sound cal fan
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OaktownBear said:

SFCityBear said:

stu said:

SFCityBear said:

With all due respect to you and Stu, I think wishing or hoping that our new 7-footers, Stockman and Vanover, be able can shoot threes at a high percentage, and that would be a good thing for Cal, is a just a dream.

My greatest hope is that Vanover and Stockman focus on rebounding and defense, play the middle well enough not to be a detriment to the team, catch balls and not drop them, if they are open, put the short shots in the basket, not throw passes away, and protect the rim and the paint decently. That would be terrific, in my mind, and give the skilled players a chance to perform and maybe make the team a threat.

Rebounding and defense are also what I want most from our centers. But they have to do something on offense. Based on nothing more than a bit of reading I'm guessing neither has the strength or skill to be effective offensively around the basket but might be able to contribute something from the high post. That could be setting screens, passing decently, and hitting enough open 15-foot shots they can't be ignored by the defense. Yes, I'm wishing and hoping, but maybe they can do that rather than stand around in the paint clogging the middle, getting their shots blocked, and turning the ball over.

I'm not expecting or predicting any particular statistics, just mentioning they might help the team in different ways than Lee and Okoroh did.
Stu - Thanks for setting me straight. I didn't read your post carefully enough to see that you had written about our centers doing some outside shooting, and not necessarily 3-point shooting, as calumnus was writing about. I'm all in favor of what you wrote. There is a big difference between shooting from 15 feet and shooting from 25 feet. The reward is more for 25 footers, but the chance of making them is much lower, and for big players, I would guess there are many more of them in high school or college who can make a 12-15 footer than those who can make 25 footers on a consistent basis.

As for three pointers, the most important thing is not in the statistics. It is when does the player make threes? Does he make his threes when his team is up or down by 15 points, or does he make them in the clutch, in the final minutes when his team is up by a point or down by 5 points, when it really counts? Grant Anticevich made a great three in the clutch against Stanford last season, which led to a win. I thought that should have warranted giving him a chance to play in key situations on future games, but Wyking Jones gave him no such chances that I recall.

I'd also add that I'm really in favor of a coach utilizing and stressing the talents that his players possess. So if it is true that say, Connor Vanover is a good three point shot, then let him take a few three point attempts in games. If he proves to be very good at it, then go ahead and feature that in Cal's offense. What I don't like is forcing players to do things they are not skilled at, like Cuonzo Martin making all his players "take it to the rim" most of the time. It was painful to watch Jordan Mathews, a very good three point shooter, try to drive to the basket. He'd lose the ball or get caught up in the air with nowhere to go, putting up some wild off-balance shot. He did improve his drive a little over 3 years but nearly all the time it was a wasted possession, a Cal turnover. Okoroh and Rooks were both extremely limited in shooting ability, so they should not be featured offensively. If a rebound comes to them and they have confidence they can put it back in, then do that, but otherwise, pass the ball back out. If Cal's big men this season can shoot threes well, then by all means, use that talent to advantage.

1. As I pointed out when he transferred JM was terrible at two point shots - pretty much last among anyone who took more than a minimal amount of them. So I agree with you on your analysis of Mathews.

2. In fairness to Cuonzo, there was quite a lot of good info indicating that one of the reasons Jordan and Phil were so mad at Cuonzo was the coaches told Jordan to stop driving since he sucked at it. I thought it was funny that the team he left for then severely clamped down in his two point shooting.
Well, if you have inside info, I can't dispute it. It doesn't seem like the Cal coaches had much success with Jordan, or he wasn't willing to listen much, because he only shot one less two point attempt in a game, in Cuonzo's second year. But again we don't know from the stats whether that two pointer was a mid range jumper or a drive to the basket. I never considered that Mathews really wanted to drive to the basket. He seemed to pass up open lanes. He never seemed to want to drive much, unlike Brown or Wallace, who tried to drive every chance they got, or so it seemed to me. Of course, they couldn't shoot threes anywhere near as good as Mathews, so that might explain why they were more interested in the drive than Jordan seemed to be.
Just my memory. I can't prove any of it.

puget sound cal fan
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If that was true, the Bears should hope that Davis shows-up on the court this season.
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