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  1. French has a nice hook shot that has been effect to about 6-8 feet. I've wondered if his FT% might go up if he used his hook shot from there... only half kidding. Ford signed these 2, 6'10"ish guys to play the 5. French then draws a smaller defender, and we have another inside option when he gets doubled. Our 2 bigs only have to separate enough for the defending big to commit. I think it's really a question of how fast the new bigs take to be effective.
  2. I think Ford is looking to build a team that is not just competitive in the A10, but dominates it and can win games in the NCAA tournament. French is undersized at the 5 and occasionally struggled against taller players. To the point where Ford considered playing Hankton at the 5. French is a mismatch against most 4s and that should significantly improve his ppg, which we desperately need this season. We have a too many new and inexperienced players to expect much early, but hopefully by Christmas they catch up to the game and come together by tournament season.
  3. Missing out on Mack might be a good thing. He is a small forward and we have Perkins and four star Hargrove who are probably best suited for that position. Mack is a streaky 3 point shooter and poor FT shooter. We probably have more guys who can play the 3 than any other position. Our greatest deficits as a team are lack of experience at 4-5, after French. And no proven guards who can shoot and put points on the board.
  4. Recruiting Lok Wor is interesting. It means another freshman and one less open scholarship for 2020. Thats a crazy big freshman class. It also means this class would have 3 players taller than French. I still think Ford really wants to play French at the 4.
  5. It's great to see the new guys on campus. The earlier they hit the weight room and start working out with their new team mates, the better their chances of contributing as freshman.
  6. I thought the Billikens had a reasonable shot at doing well this coming season if they landed a grad trasfer forward and guard with a proven history of scoring 12+ ppg. Lewis fit the bill. Now however a lot of things have to go right to have a chance at being a tournament quality team by A10 tournament time. French has to have a big season and for that to happen he has to be playing the 4. He is a mismatch on both ends of the floor for the majority of 4s. For that to happen one or both of the freshman bigs have to play reasonably well at the 5. That probably means more zone defense to keep the fouls down and the freshman on the floor. A 6 10/11 player guarding the post in our zone would be tough. We need 2 shooters on the floor who can nail an open 3 and help open the lanes. Perkins is most likely to do that early at the 3, and Gibson could emerge if he can defend in the other end. At the 2 we need Thatch to be much more productive and consistent with his scoring and outside shot. OR Jacobs or Yuri need to catch fire. Goodwin will be most effective driving to the basket if we have can have a couple of shooters keep the defense honest. Hargrove is our highest rated freshman. He can play the 3 or 4, though, probably not the shooter that Perkins is. He could easily share time with French at the 4. We will probably have a rough start in non conference ad conference play, but if we are lucky, start coming together by the conference tournament. By then a couple of these new players will be up to speed. So for us to have a chance, one of our freshman bigs and 2 shooters must emerge.
  7. It's easy to forget that players are practicing every day with the team, both active and trasfer players. They can figure out the pecking order. They see the quality of incoming recruits at thier position and do the math.
  8. The loss of Lewis hurts the player and the team. He doesn't graduate with a degree, or play for the team he always wanted to play for. He would likely have been among our leaders in minutes and points. Now, we either need a big step up in scoring from Thatch or Jacobs, Or something big from one of the freshman Or get lucky and land a productive grad transfer that fits well with the team.
  9. Since reports say Coach Ford is not actively pursuing anyone with the last scholarship, our 2019-20 team appears to be set, unless someone falls in our lap. It appears that Ford wants 2 open scholarships for 2020. I have listed the players below to aid in discussions about projections about who will play, potential lineups, minutes etc. I have listed by class, with height, weight and the position numbers, in the order that I think the players are most likely to play (debatable). With so many new players lacking division one experience, Ford has his work cut out for him. But that said, there appears to be a lot of talent and potential with this group. I will follow with a post about my thoughts in regard to the coming season. Seniors Michael Lewis 6’1” 175 2 Juniors Jordan Goodwin 6’4” 220 1-2-3 Hasahn French 6’7” 230 4-5 Javonte Perkins 6’7” 185 3-4 Sophomores Fred Thatch 6’3” 195 2 KC Hankton 6’8” 185 4-3 Demarius Jacobs 6’2” 165 1-2 Freshman Yuri Collins 5’10” 175 1 Gibson Jimerson 6’6” 210 3-2 Terrence Hargrove 6’7” 185 4-3 Madani Diarra 6’11” 245 5 Jimmy Bell 6’ 10” 290 5
  10. We need 2 big guys with the 2 remaining scholarships. We don't need a 6'6" small forward at this time.
  11. CBS Sports preseason top 25 has VCU at 20, and Davidson at 26.
  12. Ford has said he prefers to play French at the 4. In other words have some one bigger on the floor with French. Bell clearly fits the bill, but its unknown how many minutes he can play. It would be ideal to land a GT Bigger than French to alternate with Bell. It would also help in regard to injuries and early foul trouble for Bell or French.
  13. He is more than just a spot up 3 point shooter. He kind of reminds me of a Scott Highmark..... on steroids.
  14. They were talking about the half year he played last year and the lost second semester. He was saying that he wouldn't contest that year, but would be happy to have a full Sr year. He didn't specifically address what he will do if the NCAA does not give him a waiver. My money would be on him playing this year, waver or no waver. The good news in the interview is that he will be in St. Louis in May. We need all of the newbies working with the team as early as possible.
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