Ben Braun article in the Daily Cal

roqmoq
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http://www.dailycal.org/2018/08/09/brains-brawn-coach-ben-braun-left-mark-college-basketball/

Gives good coverage of his time before Eastern Michigan. He's content now spending time with his two children in Berkeley.

His career .587 winning percentage at Cal puts him behind only Nibs Price, Pete Newell, Mike Montgomery, and Cuonzo in the modern era (1924-present).
oskigobears
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excellent article. Sounds like Coach Braun lives in Berkeley now.
bluehenbear
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Good article, but it also left out any discussion of his time at Rice?
KoreAmBear
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bluehenbear said:

Good article, but it also left out any discussion of his time at Rice?
I would want to erase that from memory if I was him too. I wouldn't be surprised if Ben controlled this and said he would agree to being interviewed but his time at Rice was off limits. We all know he is a control freak.

Ben is more of an educator than great basketball mind, although he had his moments (and they were wonderfully great compared to what's going on now) especially in 96-97.

He also recruited fairly well (Shipp, Wethers, Amit, Lampley, Christopher, Anderson, Theo, Gates, Randle, etc.), but he was never able to design a good enough offense to get us to another Sweet 16 or win a conference title.

In any case, I like Ben, and he's done a good job on the Pac-12 Network broadcasts.

bearister
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roqmoq said:

http://www.dailycal.org/2018/08/09/brains-brawn-coach-ben-braun-left-mark-college-basketball/

Gives good coverage of his time before Eastern Michigan. He's content now spending time with his two children in Berkeley.

His career .587 winning percentage at Cal puts him behind only Nibs Price, Pete Newell, Mike Montgomery, and Cuonzo in the modern era (1924-present).

Thanks roqmoq! Too bad Cuonzo didn't stay for a couple of more seasons then Ben would not only move ahead of him on the winning coach list but Cuonzo would be at the top of a different list.
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helltopay1
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Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
KoreAmBear
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helltopay1 said:

Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
A+ foodie.
bearister
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I bumped into him in the lobby of the Marriott (I think) in Marina Del Rey one summer in the early 2000s. Unknown to me when I checked in with my wife and young kids there were high school kids and college coaches staying there that were attending a basketball combine. He saw me staring at him so he came up to me and I introduced myself as a season ticket holder that worked with the Ricksen twins whom he knew well. He acted like I was a friend. He could not have been a nicer person and great ambassador for Cal basketball. I formed a high opinion of him that day as a person.*I'm glad he clipped Old Prune Face in the NCAA Tourney. I did not know that before reading the article.

*Which was later confirmed when a credible source told me Ben made a personal donation of $200,000+ to the University.
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Yogi Bear
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helltopay1 said:

Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
B- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
KoreAmBear
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Yogi Bear said:

helltopay1 said:

Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
B- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
I'll take how he built the team over our current recruiting arc lol.
SFCityBear
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Yogi Bear said:

helltopay1 said:

Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
B- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
Big C
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Just chiming in here...

Braun recruited pretty well during the second half of his tenure here, but during the first half, he kept missing on most of his top targets.

Cuonzo Martin was overrated as a recruiter. Okay, he brought in Rabb and Brown, which was cool, but he needed to also be getting them a supporting cast. He didn't bring in enough "pretty good" players and some of the ones he went after weren't good fits. Did he sign ANYBODY from SoCal? That should be one of our top areas. Then, when he bailed, the cupboard was bare.
bearister
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Cuonzo was not overrated as a bottled water chugger, however. At that humiliating NIT game I was foolish enough to by a ticket for, I lost count after he slammed two cases.
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OaktownBear
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Big C said:

Just chiming in here...

Braun recruited pretty well during the second half of his tenure here, but during the first half, he kept missing on most of his top targets.

Cuonzo Martin was overrated as a recruiter. Okay, he brought in Rabb and Brown, which was cool, but he needed to also be getting them a supporting cast. He didn't bring in enough "pretty good" players and some of the ones he went after weren't good fits. Did he sign ANYBODY from SoCal? That should be one of our top areas. Then, when he bailed, the cupboard was bare.


Braun was at best an average coach, but I don't think most Cal fans appreciate the job he did on that first recruiting class. Yes, Bozeman left him a good team to make a run his first year, but almost all of them graduated. (Always wondered what Bozeman was going to do if he stayed eta because he had nothing left. Something I was confounded by before he got fired). The roster Braun was left for year two was maybe a little better than what Wyking got. Braun put together a team of transfers like Gill, Kilgore, and Carlisle, and signed Lampley who only had an offer from western Kentucky. While under sanctions, and with what was left, Cal easily could have cratered as badly as this year and sunk the program. Instead those guys went on to win a National Championship!
BeachedBear
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Big C said:

Just chiming in here...

Braun recruited pretty well during the second half of his tenure here, but during the first half, he kept missing on most of his top targets.

Cuonzo Martin was overrated as a recruiter. Okay, he brought in Rabb and Brown, which was cool, but he needed to also be getting them a supporting cast. He didn't bring in enough "pretty good" players and some of the ones he went after weren't good fits. Did he sign ANYBODY from SoCal? That should be one of our top areas. Then, when he bailed, the cupboard was bare.
I got the opportunity to get to know Braun a bit and coach with him during camps, etc. My personal perspective is that as a coach, Ben was better defensively, than offensively. In particular, his offensive schemes seemed to reflect his earlier tenure against less athletic competition. In other words, the X's and O's were not bad, but more for low to mid major competition. However, I thought his practices, player development and how he taught the game was pretty good (and I learned a lot from him).

However, about mid way through his tenure, he moved from coach to program manager. More of his time was spent being the face of his program and less time on the court with the players. Towards the end most of that practice work was done by Pasternak and other assistants. Reynaud was also on the road more and not running practices as much (he was also pretty good with player development). At that time in everyone's development, I thought the assistants were quite a step down from what I saw from Brown and Reynaud earlier (but recruiting seemed to pick up). IMO, that was the reason for the decline in team performance at the end.

Finally, I was not a big fan of some of his game-time bench decisions. While I appreciated the nobility of how he recruited PWOs and treated them, I also felt he lost balance a few times and overplayed that hand, sometimes to the detriment of the overall result. Substitution patterns - don't get me started. Interactions with Refs - started well, then ended up relying too much on the whiny-face.

As others have said, he was an 'A' person and really had a tremendous love for Cal and the Bay Area. He was gracious and supportive of youth sports in the East Bay and did a great job encouraging his players to also be active participants in the community. My son is still friends with Richard Midgley and Boom Tho!
SFCityBear
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SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:

helltopay1 said:

Ben Braun: B- coach. B plus recruiter.
B- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+. My mistake. We still haven't heard back from him. Ben Braun began his career at Cal when there was far less detailed information on available high school recruits publicly than there is today, and he brought a lot of very good recruits to Cal, including highly rated ones, and some very good classes. I thought he was a darn good recruiter, locally, state-wide, nation-wide, and even some overseas talent. B+ recruiter in my book.
Yogi Bear
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SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison
bearister
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As I recall Eric V made his first 4 treys taken at Cal and in one game.
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StrawberryCanyon
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bearister said:

As I recall Eric V made his first 4 treys taken at Cal and in one game.
I remember. It was not a sign of things to come. He had a few good games as a senior.

Jordi Geli scored in a game once. I remember it well.
OaktownBear
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Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


I don't believe Circus was a Braun recruit
Civil Bear
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OaktownBear said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


I don't believe Circus was a Braun recruit
And to be fair, Hughes, Bond, Geli, and Harrison all had leg/ankle injuries that they never recovered from.
rkt88edmo
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Given how well Solomon developed his jr and especially snr yer, I thought Gabe was a good get, but it seemed like it was attitude and ethic that did him in, not injuries.
calumnus
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Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


He had a lot of recruiting wiffs. He seemed like a good recruiter because he ALMOST landed Dirk Nowitski and LeBron James. End of the day, it is the guys you get. The guys you listed would not be so bad as bench players, but starting Vierneisal and Knezevich on a team that has Ryan Anderson, Devon Hardin, Jamal Boykin, Patrick Christopher and Jerome Randle did not make sense. He was a worse coach than a recruiter, whatever grade you give him.
OaktownBear
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calumnus said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


He had a lot of recruiting wiffs. He seemed like a good recruiter because he ALMOST landed Dirk Nowitski and LeBron James. End of the day, it is the guys you get. The guys you listed would not be so bad as bench players, but starting Vierneisal and Knezevich on a team that has Ryan Anderson, Devon Hardin, Jamal Boykin, Patrick Christopher and Jerome Randle did not make sense. He was a worse coach than a recruiter, whatever grade you give him.


He did not almost get Lebron James. James once on a show with Leon Powe said maybe he'd go to school with him as a joke and to give props to Powe. He was never ever ever coming here.

Listing misses isn't really the point. It's the lineup you put out that counts. I thought he was an average recruiter. He was pretty good at identifying talent. Not so good at landing it.
south bender
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Agreed.

And his last two years, both 6-12, were simply bad.

Thank goodness Monty replaced him.
south bender
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That is, 6-12 in conference games.
OaktownBear
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south bender said:

That is, 6-12 in conference games.


2nd to last year was one thing - they were young. Don't understand how we went 6-12 the last year with the personnel. That was probably the best team he recruited, as Monty demonstrated even while losing Anderson to the NBA.
boredom
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OaktownBear said:

south bender said:

That is, 6-12 in conference games.


2nd to last year was one thing - they were young. Don't understand how we went 6-12 the last year with the personnel. That was probably the best team he recruited, as Monty demonstrated even while losing Anderson to the NBA.
The conference was stacked that year. 3 of the top 5 picks in the NBA draft were from the PAC10. 3 more were taken in the first half of the first round. Anderson went 21st and was the 7th player from the conference drafted. There were 5 more guys taken in the 2nd round. Just a stacked conference. We put 6/10 teams into the tournament that year, seeded 1, 3, 4, 6, 9 10.

Compare that with a couple years later when we won the conference. Pondexter was drafted 26th and Fields went in the 2nd round. That was.... not a stacked conference.

Braun should've won more games, sure. But it was just a brutally tough conference and Randle wasn't very good yet.

SFCityBear
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calumnus said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


He had a lot of recruiting wiffs. He seemed like a good recruiter because he ALMOST landed Dirk Nowitski and LeBron James. End of the day, it is the guys you get. The guys you listed would not be so bad as bench players, but starting Vierneisal and Knezevich on a team that has Ryan Anderson, Devon Hardin, Jamal Boykin, Patrick Christopher and Jerome Randle did not make sense. He was a worse coach than a recruiter, whatever grade you give him.
With all due respect, Braun's 2008 team had some good talent but it was a badly flawed team. It was very strong up front with Hardin, Anderson, Boykin, Kamp, and Jordan Wilkes. But the team had only two fairly good guards in Christopher and Randle, and Randle was very mistake-prone during his first two seasons. He did not come into his own until Montgomery arrived and gave him ways to play that enabled him to become a great player for Cal. The 2008 team had no small forward, because the player who would have started at small forward, Theo Robertson, was hurt and missed the entire 2008 season. So Braun had only one option, to play Patrick Christopher at the small forward, and that forced Braun to have to start a lesser player at Christopher's guard spot. The team played 33 games, and Verneisel started 19 games, and Knesevic started 16 games. The team was thin at small forward, with only Theo, and thin at guard with only Randle and Christopher as players good enough to start. This team would have been much better if Theo had not gotten hurt, but it was not Braun's best team ever assembled, due to he had not been able to land better players to back up the small forward and both guard positions. It was a combination of Theo's injury and the lopsided recruiting leaning toward bigs and likely missing on guards and small forwards that sunk the 2008 team.

If you didn't like starting Verneisel or Knesevic, who would you have started at guard, Nican Robinson? David Liss? Eddie Miller? Patrick Armstrong? Those were Braun's choices when Theo got hurt. Braun's mistake was in not planning for injury to his guards and small forwards, or failing to recruit good backups at those positions.





OaktownBear
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SFCityBear said:

calumnus said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


He had a lot of recruiting wiffs. He seemed like a good recruiter because he ALMOST landed Dirk Nowitski and LeBron James. End of the day, it is the guys you get. The guys you listed would not be so bad as bench players, but starting Vierneisal and Knezevich on a team that has Ryan Anderson, Devon Hardin, Jamal Boykin, Patrick Christopher and Jerome Randle did not make sense. He was a worse coach than a recruiter, whatever grade you give him.
With all due respect, Braun's 2008 team had some good talent but it was a badly flawed team. It was very strong up front with Hardin, Anderson, Boykin, Kamp, and Jordan Wilkes. But the team had only two fairly good guards in Christopher and Randle, and Randle was very mistake-prone during his first two seasons. He did not come into his own until Montgomery arrived and gave him ways to play that enabled him to become a great player for Cal. The 2008 team had no small forward, because the player who would have started at small forward, Theo Robertson, was hurt and missed the entire 2008 season. So Braun had only one option, to play Patrick Christopher at the small forward, and that forced Braun to have to start a lesser player at Christopher's guard spot. The team played 33 games, and Verneisel started 19 games, and Knesevic started 16 games. The team was thin at small forward, with only Theo, and thin at guard with only Randle and Christopher as players good enough to start. This team would have been much better if Theo had not gotten hurt, but it was not Braun's best team ever assembled, due to he had not been able to land better players to back up the small forward and both guard positions. It was a combination of Theo's injury and the lopsided recruiting leaning toward bigs and likely missing on guards and small forwards that sunk the 2008 team.

If you didn't like starting Verneisel or Knesevic, who would you have started at guard, Nican Robinson? David Liss? Eddie Miller? Patrick Armstrong? Those were Braun's choices when Theo got hurt. Braun's mistake was in not planning for injury to his guards and small forwards, or failing to recruit good backups at those positions.








1. Randle's issues could have been (and were the next season) fixed by a little bit of the right coaching.

2. Agree that they would have been much better with Theo, but you have to put your best 5 on the floor. Seriously, Vierniesel and Knezevic should never have taken 1 minute away from Hardin, Kamp, Boykin, Anderson. Along with Randle and Christopher, those are 6 guys that are PAC-10 quality STARTERS. Wilkes gives you a PAC-10 quality sub. Those are your 7. Knezevic plays 5 minutes to give Randle a rest. Vierniesel plays 5 minutes to give PC a rest. Anderson plays the 3 on offense. Maybe Boykin plays it on defense, but I'd keep Anderson there. You rebound like hell. You have 3 good outside shooters. You have a problem with defending quick guys at the 3, so you scheme around it as much as you can. Cuz guess what? With PC at the 3, you have a problem guarding size, and vierniesel is probably less agile than Anderson anyway. A lineup of Randle, PC, Anderson, Boykin, Hardin will beat Randle, Vierniesel, PC, Anderson, Hardin every time.

No way a team with those 6 guys should only win 6 conference games.
bearister
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I wish Theo was our coach because I can guarantee you he would be better than both of his predecessors.

Below is the most recent info I can find on Theo after a quick search. His gig with Wyking has understandably been excised from his bio:

https://www.usab.com/basketball/staff/r/robertson-theo.aspx
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calumnus
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OaktownBear said:

SFCityBear said:

calumnus said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison


He had a lot of recruiting wiffs. He seemed like a good recruiter because he ALMOST landed Dirk Nowitski and LeBron James. End of the day, it is the guys you get. The guys you listed would not be so bad as bench players, but starting Vierneisal and Knezevich on a team that has Ryan Anderson, Devon Hardin, Jamal Boykin, Patrick Christopher and Jerome Randle did not make sense. He was a worse coach than a recruiter, whatever grade you give him.
With all due respect, Braun's 2008 team had some good talent but it was a badly flawed team. It was very strong up front with Hardin, Anderson, Boykin, Kamp, and Jordan Wilkes. But the team had only two fairly good guards in Christopher and Randle, and Randle was very mistake-prone during his first two seasons. He did not come into his own until Montgomery arrived and gave him ways to play that enabled him to become a great player for Cal. The 2008 team had no small forward, because the player who would have started at small forward, Theo Robertson, was hurt and missed the entire 2008 season. So Braun had only one option, to play Patrick Christopher at the small forward, and that forced Braun to have to start a lesser player at Christopher's guard spot. The team played 33 games, and Verneisel started 19 games, and Knesevic started 16 games. The team was thin at small forward, with only Theo, and thin at guard with only Randle and Christopher as players good enough to start. This team would have been much better if Theo had not gotten hurt, but it was not Braun's best team ever assembled, due to he had not been able to land better players to back up the small forward and both guard positions. It was a combination of Theo's injury and the lopsided recruiting leaning toward bigs and likely missing on guards and small forwards that sunk the 2008 team.

If you didn't like starting Verneisel or Knesevic, who would you have started at guard, Nican Robinson? David Liss? Eddie Miller? Patrick Armstrong? Those were Braun's choices when Theo got hurt. Braun's mistake was in not planning for injury to his guards and small forwards, or failing to recruit good backups at those positions.








1. Randle's issues could have been (and were the next season) fixed by a little bit of the right coaching.

2. Agree that they would have been much better with Theo, but you have to put your best 5 on the floor. Seriously, Vierniesel and Knezevic should never have taken 1 minute away from Hardin, Kamp, Boykin, Anderson. Along with Randle and Christopher, those are 6 guys that are PAC-10 quality STARTERS. Wilkes gives you a PAC-10 quality sub. Those are your 7. Knezevic plays 5 minutes to give Randle a rest. Vierniesel plays 5 minutes to give PC a rest. Anderson plays the 3 on offense. Maybe Boykin plays it on defense, but I'd keep Anderson there. You rebound like hell. You have 3 good outside shooters. You have a problem with defending quick guys at the 3, so you scheme around it as much as you can. Cuz guess what? With PC at the 3, you have a problem guarding size, and vierniesel is probably less agile than Anderson anyway. A lineup of Randle, PC, Anderson, Boykin, Hardin will beat Randle, Vierniesel, PC, Anderson, Hardin every time.

No way a team with those 6 guys should only win 6 conference games.


Exactly! Braun was worried about trying to match up, instead go big play your best players and let other coaches have nightmares trying to match up with YOU.

And one other point to SFCity, Braun had been at Cal for a decade, he recruited that roster.
SFCityBear
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Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison
Um

Circus King was Todd Bozeman's last recruit, a transfer from San Diego State, came to Cal, sat out the 1997 season, and began playing for Ben Braun in the following season.

Nick Vanderlaan averaged 9 points and 7 rebounds at a freshman at Cal. That is a lot better than freshmen Kingsley Okoroh (2 pts, 2 rebs), Kam Rooks (1 pt, 2 rebs), Richard Solomon (6 pts, 4 rebs), or Solomon Hughes (3 pts, 2 rebs). Then there was Darrall Imhoff (ineligible as a freshman) who averaged 1 point and 1 rebound as a sophomore, and we all know what he became at Cal. Wyking Jones would probably love to have a center as good as Nick Vanderlaan show up as a Cal recruit.

David Paris may have been a miss, but he was a top 100 recruit, and turned down offers from Ohio State and Michigan to come to Cal.

Jordi Geli a Wyking level recruit? What is this, you aren't satisfied with bashing Ben Braun, but now you want to bash Wyking as well in the same thread. You didn't like 4* Darius McNeill? Or 4*Justice Sueing? WJ had bad misses on Winston and McCullogh, but the jury is still out on Anticevich. It was one helluva a better first time ever recruiting class for a Cal coach than say the all-star recruiter Cuonzo Martin had in his first season at Cal. Okoroh and Chauca? Give me a break. And you don't like 4* Jacobi Gordon, or 4* Matt Bradley, and 3* Andre Kelly and 3* Conor Vanover? Did you just get up on the wrong side of the bed? Go ahead, tell us what Cal coach was a good recruiter for you, or if you don't have one, tell us who is your dream recruiter who you want for Cal coach? Yanni Hufnagel? Since there is a vast difference between McNeill and Sueing vs Winston and McCullogh, I'd like to hear what your definition is of a "Wyking level recruit." I can hardly wait.

Taylor Harrison was ranked #89 in the country, and was a tough hard-nosed player, until his career was cut short by injury. Wyking and many of us would love to have someone like him at Cal right now.

And if you are going to use players like King who Braun never recruited and and injured players like Harrison to accuse Braun of being a B- recruiter, then you ought to add Braun's recruit, Sam Rayburn, #2 ranked player in Oregon in 2004, to the list as well. He got injured and his career ended before he could play one minute for Cal.

He are some recruiting positives for Braun:

Leon Powe, ranked #9 in the nation, injured, missed a year at Cal, 5 year NBA career
Jamal Sampson, #23 in the nation, 5 year NBA career
Ayinde Ubaka, #35, nice career at Cal
Patrick Christopher, #38, nice career at Cal, a PAC10 title, short time in the NBA
Brian Wethers, #50, nice career at Cal, G-League
Omar Wilkes, #55, good career at Cal
Jamal Boykin, #60, good Cal career, one PAC10 title
Jerome Randle, #85, excellent player for Cal, a PAC10 title, 3 year G-League career, still playing
Devon Hardin, #86, decent Cal career, injured much of one season
Marquise Kately, #89, decent Cal career
Taylor Harrison, #89, averaged 7 minutes as a frosh, injury ended his career.
Dennis Gates, #92
Richard Midgley, #93, had a fine career at Cal
Joe Shipp, #7 Small Forward, fine career at Cal
Ryan Anderson, unranked, fine player for Cal, 10 year NBA career
Dominic McGuire, unranked, decent player for Cal, 6 year NBA career
Francisco Elson, unranked, decent Cal player, 9 year NBA career
Amit Tamir, foreign recruit, unranked, had fine career at Cal
Rod Benson, #3 ranked center recruit on West Coast, good Cal career, D-league All-Star, still playing
Sean Lampley, #15 small forward in nation, great Cal career, 2 year NBA career
Geno Carlisle, unranked, decent career at Cal, one year in NBA
Ryan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, good career at Cal, 2 year G-league, still playing
Theo Robertson, unranked, good Cal career, a PAC10 title. Led nation in 3pt% for much of one season.
Harper Kamp, unranked, missed a year with injury, but good last 2 years at Cal,
Omondi Amoke, 3* recruit, decent player at Cal, kicked off team, one PAC10 title
Thomas Kilgore, unranked, decent player for Cal
Mike Gill, unranked, good player for Cal
Carl Boyd, unranked, decent player for Cal
Solomon Hughes, unranked, decent player for Cal
Shantay Legans, unranked, decent player for Cal
Martin Smith, unranked, decent player for Cal
Tashaan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, not very good at Cal, but transferred to Pepperdine, where he averaged 16 points per game

The hits far outweigh the misses, IMO.

I think Braun may have had a hand in the early recruiting of Max Zhang and DJ Seely. Seely was a flop, and Max was not very good but he did get crowds somewhat excited. Another player who was not so good, but entertained us was A.J. Diggs, who could steal a ball from just about anyone, any time he wanted to, or so it seemed.

Finally, I think credit should be given to Ben Braun: He was hired to take over a program at its lowest point, a program that was in the toilet, going on probation over bribes made by Todd Bozeman, clean the program up, make it squeaky clean, and bring us back to respectability. He did that. As for recruiting, can you imagine trying to recruit when your team has just been banned from the NCAA tournament for a year, and the NCAA took 2 scholarships away from your team for each of the following two years? So three tough recruiting years to start with for Ben Braun, and he did well to land the players he did, IMO.









calumnus
How long do you want to ignore this user?
SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison
Um

Circus King was Todd Bozeman's last recruit, a transfer from San Diego State, came to Cal, sat out the 1997 season, and began playing for Ben Braun in the following season.

Nick Vanderlaan averaged 9 points and 7 rebounds at a freshman at Cal. That is a lot better than freshmen Kingsley Okoroh (2 pts, 2 rebs), Kam Rooks (1 pt, 2 rebs), Richard Solomon (6 pts, 4 rebs), or Solomon Hughes (3 pts, 2 rebs). Then there was Darrall Imhoff (ineligible as a freshman) who averaged 1 point and 1 rebound as a sophomore, and we all know what he became at Cal. Wyking Jones would probably love to have a center as good as Nick Vanderlaan show up as a Cal recruit.

David Paris may have been a miss, but he was a top 100 recruit, and turned down offers from Ohio State and Michigan to come to Cal.

Jordi Geli a Wyking level recruit? What is this, you aren't satisfied with bashing Ben Braun, but now you want to bash Wyking as well in the same thread. You didn't like 4* Darius McNeill? Or 4*Justice Sueing? WJ had bad misses on Winston and McCullogh, but the jury is still out on Anticevich. It was one helluva a better first time ever recruiting class for a Cal coach than say the all-star recruiter Cuonzo Martin had in his first season at Cal. Okoroh and Chauca? Give me a break. And you don't like 4* Jacobi Gordon, or 4* Matt Bradley, and 3* Andre Kelly and 3* Conor Vanover? Did you just get up on the wrong side of the bed? Go ahead, tell us what Cal coach was a good recruiter for you, or if you don't have one, tell us who is your dream recruiter who you want for Cal coach? Yanni Hufnagel? Since there is a vast difference between McNeill and Sueing vs Winston and McCullogh, I'd like to hear what your definition is of a "Wyking level recruit." I can hardly wait.

Taylor Harrison was ranked #89 in the country, and was a tough hard-nosed player, until his career was cut short by injury. Wyking and many of us would love to have someone like him at Cal right now.

And if you are going to use players like King who Braun never recruited and and injured players like Harrison to accuse Braun of being a B- recruiter, then you ought to add Braun's recruit, Sam Rayburn, #2 ranked player in Oregon in 2004, to the list as well. He got injured and his career ended before he could play one minute for Cal.

He are some recruiting positives for Braun:

Leon Powe, ranked #9 in the nation, injured, missed a year at Cal, 5 year NBA career
Jamal Sampson, #23 in the nation, 5 year NBA career
Ayinde Ubaka, #35, nice career at Cal
Patrick Christopher, #38, nice career at Cal, a PAC10 title, short time in the NBA
Brian Wethers, #50, nice career at Cal, G-League
Omar Wilkes, #55, good career at Cal
Jamal Boykin, #60, good Cal career, one PAC10 title
Jerome Randle, #85, excellent player for Cal, a PAC10 title, 3 year G-League career, still playing
Devon Hardin, #86, decent Cal career, injured much of one season
Marquise Kately, #89, decent Cal career
Taylor Harrison, #89, averaged 7 minutes as a frosh, injury ended his career.
Dennis Gates, #92
Richard Midgley, #93, had a fine career at Cal
Joe Shipp, #7 Small Forward, fine career at Cal
Ryan Anderson, unranked, fine player for Cal, 10 year NBA career
Dominic McGuire, unranked, decent player for Cal, 6 year NBA career
Francisco Elson, unranked, decent Cal player, 9 year NBA career
Amit Tamir, foreign recruit, unranked, had fine career at Cal
Rod Benson, #3 ranked center recruit on West Coast, good Cal career, D-league All-Star, still playing
Sean Lampley, #15 small forward in nation, great Cal career, 2 year NBA career
Geno Carlisle, unranked, decent career at Cal, one year in NBA
Ryan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, good career at Cal, 2 year G-league, still playing
Theo Robertson, unranked, good Cal career, a PAC10 title. Led nation in 3pt% for much of one season.
Harper Kamp, unranked, missed a year with injury, but good last 2 years at Cal,
Omondi Amoke, 3* recruit, decent player at Cal, kicked off team, one PAC10 title
Thomas Kilgore, unranked, decent player for Cal
Mike Gill, unranked, good player for Cal
Carl Boyd, unranked, decent player for Cal
Solomon Hughes, unranked, decent player for Cal
Shantay Legans, unranked, decent player for Cal
Martin Smith, unranked, decent player for Cal
Tashaan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, not very good at Cal, but transferred to Pepperdine, where he averaged 16 points per game

The hits far outweigh the misses, IMO.

I think Braun may have had a hand in the early recruiting of Max Zhang and DJ Seely. Seely was a flop, and Max was not very good but he did get crowds somewhat excited. Another player who was not so good, but entertained us was A.J. Diggs, who could steal a ball from just about anyone, any time he wanted to, or so it seemed.

Finally, I think credit should be given to Ben Braun: He was hired to take over a program at its lowest point, a program that was in the toilet, going on probation over bribes made by Todd Bozeman, clean the program up, make it squeaky clean, and bring us back to respectability. He did that. As for recruiting, can you imagine trying to recruit when your team has just been banned from the NCAA tournament for a year, and the NCAA took 2 scholarships away from your team for each of the following two years? So three tough recruiting years to start with for Ben Braun, and he did well to land the players he did, IMO.












I think Braun was a very good scout, especially for overlooked talent. I liked the players he brought to Cal.

And a correction, it was not Bozeman who "bribed" players, it was an agent (Jelani Gardner's uncle). The same one Bozeman turned in for illegal benefits (loaned Tremaine Folwkes a car or money for a car).
OaktownBear
How long do you want to ignore this user?
calumnus said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:

SFCityBear said:

SFCityBear said:

Yogi Bear said:


BB- everything. Recruiting vastly overrated.

Not bad on TV though.
Just curious: Why do you say B+ recruiter? How would you rate Cuonzo Martin's recruiting?
I meant to ask YogiBear why he felt Ben Braun was a B- recruiter, not B+

Circus King
Donte Smith (Section 7 BELIEVES in you)
Nick Vanderlaan
Gabe Hughes
Salius Kuzminskas
Erik Bond
David Paris
Jordi Geli (worst on this list - a Wyking level recruit)
Eric Vierneisel
Kevin Langford
Nikola Knezevic
Jordan Wilkes
Taylor Harrison
Um

Circus King was Todd Bozeman's last recruit, a transfer from San Diego State, came to Cal, sat out the 1997 season, and began playing for Ben Braun in the following season.

Nick Vanderlaan averaged 9 points and 7 rebounds at a freshman at Cal. That is a lot better than freshmen Kingsley Okoroh (2 pts, 2 rebs), Kam Rooks (1 pt, 2 rebs), Richard Solomon (6 pts, 4 rebs), or Solomon Hughes (3 pts, 2 rebs). Then there was Darrall Imhoff (ineligible as a freshman) who averaged 1 point and 1 rebound as a sophomore, and we all know what he became at Cal. Wyking Jones would probably love to have a center as good as Nick Vanderlaan show up as a Cal recruit.

David Paris may have been a miss, but he was a top 100 recruit, and turned down offers from Ohio State and Michigan to come to Cal.

Jordi Geli a Wyking level recruit? What is this, you aren't satisfied with bashing Ben Braun, but now you want to bash Wyking as well in the same thread. You didn't like 4* Darius McNeill? Or 4*Justice Sueing? WJ had bad misses on Winston and McCullogh, but the jury is still out on Anticevich. It was one helluva a better first time ever recruiting class for a Cal coach than say the all-star recruiter Cuonzo Martin had in his first season at Cal. Okoroh and Chauca? Give me a break. And you don't like 4* Jacobi Gordon, or 4* Matt Bradley, and 3* Andre Kelly and 3* Conor Vanover? Did you just get up on the wrong side of the bed? Go ahead, tell us what Cal coach was a good recruiter for you, or if you don't have one, tell us who is your dream recruiter who you want for Cal coach? Yanni Hufnagel? Since there is a vast difference between McNeill and Sueing vs Winston and McCullogh, I'd like to hear what your definition is of a "Wyking level recruit." I can hardly wait.

Taylor Harrison was ranked #89 in the country, and was a tough hard-nosed player, until his career was cut short by injury. Wyking and many of us would love to have someone like him at Cal right now.

And if you are going to use players like King who Braun never recruited and and injured players like Harrison to accuse Braun of being a B- recruiter, then you ought to add Braun's recruit, Sam Rayburn, #2 ranked player in Oregon in 2004, to the list as well. He got injured and his career ended before he could play one minute for Cal.

He are some recruiting positives for Braun:

Leon Powe, ranked #9 in the nation, injured, missed a year at Cal, 5 year NBA career
Jamal Sampson, #23 in the nation, 5 year NBA career
Ayinde Ubaka, #35, nice career at Cal
Patrick Christopher, #38, nice career at Cal, a PAC10 title, short time in the NBA
Brian Wethers, #50, nice career at Cal, G-League
Omar Wilkes, #55, good career at Cal
Jamal Boykin, #60, good Cal career, one PAC10 title
Jerome Randle, #85, excellent player for Cal, a PAC10 title, 3 year G-League career, still playing
Devon Hardin, #86, decent Cal career, injured much of one season
Marquise Kately, #89, decent Cal career
Taylor Harrison, #89, averaged 7 minutes as a frosh, injury ended his career.
Dennis Gates, #92
Richard Midgley, #93, had a fine career at Cal
Joe Shipp, #7 Small Forward, fine career at Cal
Ryan Anderson, unranked, fine player for Cal, 10 year NBA career
Dominic McGuire, unranked, decent player for Cal, 6 year NBA career
Francisco Elson, unranked, decent Cal player, 9 year NBA career
Amit Tamir, foreign recruit, unranked, had fine career at Cal
Rod Benson, #3 ranked center recruit on West Coast, good Cal career, D-league All-Star, still playing
Sean Lampley, #15 small forward in nation, great Cal career, 2 year NBA career
Geno Carlisle, unranked, decent career at Cal, one year in NBA
Ryan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, good career at Cal, 2 year G-league, still playing
Theo Robertson, unranked, good Cal career, a PAC10 title. Led nation in 3pt% for much of one season.
Harper Kamp, unranked, missed a year with injury, but good last 2 years at Cal,
Omondi Amoke, 3* recruit, decent player at Cal, kicked off team, one PAC10 title
Thomas Kilgore, unranked, decent player for Cal
Mike Gill, unranked, good player for Cal
Carl Boyd, unranked, decent player for Cal
Solomon Hughes, unranked, decent player for Cal
Shantay Legans, unranked, decent player for Cal
Martin Smith, unranked, decent player for Cal
Tashaan Forehan-Kelly, unranked, not very good at Cal, but transferred to Pepperdine, where he averaged 16 points per game

The hits far outweigh the misses, IMO.

I think Braun may have had a hand in the early recruiting of Max Zhang and DJ Seely. Seely was a flop, and Max was not very good but he did get crowds somewhat excited. Another player who was not so good, but entertained us was A.J. Diggs, who could steal a ball from just about anyone, any time he wanted to, or so it seemed.

Finally, I think credit should be given to Ben Braun: He was hired to take over a program at its lowest point, a program that was in the toilet, going on probation over bribes made by Todd Bozeman, clean the program up, make it squeaky clean, and bring us back to respectability. He did that. As for recruiting, can you imagine trying to recruit when your team has just been banned from the NCAA tournament for a year, and the NCAA took 2 scholarships away from your team for each of the following two years? So three tough recruiting years to start with for Ben Braun, and he did well to land the players he did, IMO.












I think Braun was a very good scout, especially for overlooked talent. I liked the players he brought to Cal.

And a correction, it was not Bozeman who "bribed" players, it was an agent (Jelani Gardner's uncle). The same one Bozeman turned in for illegal benefits (loaned Tremaine Folwkes a car or money for a car).
No. It was Bozeman who made the payments to the Gardners. He admitted to doing so. His name on the fed ex.
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