Jump to content

Recruiting: Learning from Spoon Era


ACE
 Share

Recommended Posts

One disappointment from the Spoonball era was that I felt like Charlie really failed to capitalize on the success of back-to-back trips to the Big Dance. He was able to land a few decent, but unspectacular players like Walker, Frazier and Cobbin, but he failed to land any stars to replace Scott, Erwin and H. Spoon also had a lot of big misses around that time: Barentine, Cranford, the kid from West Virginia, Eric Jones, that fat kid from New York... and some really mediocre players: Simmons, Robertson, Luchtefeld, Diener. It wasn't really until he landed Hughes that the recruiting started picking up a bit.

I bring this up because we are again coming off of back-to-back trips to the Big Dance. We have to be able to sell this recent success to quality recruits. Too many recruiting screw-ups like Spoon had could really set this program back. Spoon must have had some poor recruiters on staff at the time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd offer that Spoon's ONLY recruit was Hughes. And that was a combination of hiring his high school coach Derek Thomas and Larry's little brother's situation. Spoon never got anybody after his two glory years. If you count Clagg and Hmark as Grawere recruits, and you give Dobbs, Waldman and Robinson to Spoon, that's about it.

Who was the fat kid from New York? Wasn't Adkins the kid from WVa? Also, Cranford was from New York, are you confusing two players into one?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd offer that Spoon's ONLY recruit was Hughes. And that was a combination of hiring his high school coach Derek Thomas and Larry's little brother's situation. Spoon never got anybody after his two glory years. If you count Clagg and Hmark as Grawere recruits, and you give Dobbs, Waldman and Robinson to Spoon, that's about it.

Who was the fat kid from New York? Wasn't Adkins the kid from WVa? Also, Cranford was from New York, are you confusing two players into one?

I think that fat kid was named Hardin. In fairness, after Larry, Spoon landed Love, Jeffers and Marque. He should have been able to get players of that caliber on the heels of the back-to-back trips to the Tourney.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that fat kid was named Hardin. In fairness, after Larry, Spoon landed Love, Jeffers and Marque. He should have been able to get players of that caliber on the heels of the back-to-back trips to the Tourney.

greg hardin was indeed the fat kid. i thought spoon's biggest joke recruit though was ricky cranford. my gosh, the fanfare and expectations were incredible. and i will never forget his first appearance. what a sham.

ace is correct on love, jeffers, marque.

hughes leaving was huge. the rumor was had hughes stuck around even for another year, there was a 2-3 big names that would have came to play with larry legend but switched off the day hughes announced to the nba draft. one i believe went to cincy, one to georgia tech, and i am drawing a blank on the third.

spoon used the juco route to slu to an excess imo. while he garnered some good role players via juco, it prevented us from ever building any sustained team imo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

greg hardin was indeed the fat kid. i thought spoon's biggest joke recruit though was ricky cranford. my gosh, the fanfare and expectations were incredible. and i will never forget his first appearance. what a sham.

ace is correct on love, jeffers, marque.

hughes leaving was huge. the rumor was had hughes stuck around even for another year, there was a 2-3 big names that would have came to play with larry legend but switched off the day hughes announced to the nba draft. one i believe went to cincy, one to georgia tech, and i am drawing a blank on the third.

spoon used the juco route to slu to an excess imo. while he garnered some good role players via juco, it prevented us from ever building any sustained team imo.

Agree with your point about Spoon relying on JUCO's too much.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I saw Matt Baniak on a couple top 100 lists. And I thought Justin Tatum was a pretty good recruit.

I thought his last 3 classes were good, following a couple very poor ones. His problem was he tried to recruit too many jucos when he first got here and they could never get in. Alexander originally from Hazelwood and the 6-7 wing that ended up at SIU.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd offer that Spoon's ONLY recruit was Hughes. And that was a combination of hiring his high school coach Derek Thomas and Larry's little brother's situation. Spoon never got anybody after his two glory years. If you count Clagg and Hmark as Grawere recruits, and you give Dobbs, Waldman and Robinson to Spoon, that's about it.

Who was the fat kid from New York? Wasn't Adkins the kid from WVa? Also, Cranford was from New York, are you confusing two players into one?

Love

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When Spoon got here he was recruiting to a crappy arena and the worst on campus practice facility in the country. It is testament to Spoon, Romar, and Grawer that they were able to land any decent players. I think people tend to underestimate how bad West Pine was and the impact it had on the program for decades.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd offer that Spoon's ONLY recruit was Hughes. And that was a combination of hiring his high school coach Derek Thomas and Larry's little brother's situation. Spoon never got anybody after his two glory years. If you count Clagg and Hmark as Grawere recruits, and you give Dobbs, Waldman and Robinson to Spoon, that's about it.

Who was the fat kid from New York? Wasn't Adkins the kid from WVa? Also, Cranford was from New York, are you confusing two players into one?

I remember Adkins well--in the blue/white game before the season he scored about 20 points and looked like a star--then he never did anything! I got to know Spoon pretty well and knew his assistants even better and learned through the process that Spoon really hated recruiting high school kids with all of the butt kissing and related nonsense that goes into all of that. As gregarious as he was in public, he was a private guy who liked sitting telling stories with old friends and he just did not like all the the bs involved in recruiting high school kids who thought they were special, etc. Recruiting jucos was more to his liking because he identified with those kids as a rough and tumble coach who came up the hard way and he could recruit them through their coaches who generally loved Spoon and his stories and jokes. But he captured the imagination of the media and for a few years we had great success and great fan support. When Larry announced he was leaving Spoon was devastated because he really thought a combination of Love and Hughes with the other players would give him a real chance to make a big statement on the national stage. But Larry left and Love got hurt and things were never the same.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My bad ----- Love, Jeffers and Perry were all good to better recruits than OUR norm.

Baniak, Tatum and Heinrich all peaked with Hughes and were never the same after that first year. Of course, Tatum never really played w/Hughes what with his admission issues. Hughes made those guys all better. I guess I remember Spoon more for his letdowns (Cranford, Adkins, etc.) than his gets. And Hughes casts a huge shadow over real results ---- Larry was THAT good.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Spoon has to scratch and claw for players. You guys are forgetting some names. Jeff Harris was a helluva player. Dobbs of course was an incredible recruit. Corey Frazier was sidelined with injuries which hurt his career. He should have been big time. Cobbin was an above average player. Dave Fergerson was a nice role player. The Spoon teams that weren't successful just needed one more guy to get them over the hump. Outside of Hughes & Love he just couldn't recruit or develop an all conference talent. Add in to the fact that we played in an extremely competitive league and we finish .500.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Charles "Don't Call Me Ricky" Cranford ended up putting some nice seasons together for Northeastern.

http://statsheet.com/mcb/players/player/northeastern/charles-cranford

What I remember about him, the little we saw ... was that he was a walk machine. Probably got the Jordan step in NYC but his NYC rep really didn't impress the college officials

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Spoon was very burned out by the time we got him; he sure could recruit short junk yard dogs with heart, though.

Was double D the tallest center that Spoon played? It sure seemed like he he played four guards and a rebounder. Those were exciting years when we had jump shooters.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Spoon was very burned out by the time we got him; he sure could recruit short junk yard dogs with heart, though.

Was double D the tallest center that Spoon played? It sure seemed like he he played four guards and a rebounder. Those were exciting years when we had jump shooters.

Donnie Dobbs was about 6-2 or 6-3. You should never use "tallest" in the same sentence with him. In 1992-93, Brian Smith was still around. Was Bickel still with the Bills then? And then there was also Evan Pederson, I believe. The next year Pederson was definitely there and Donnie Campbell and David Robinson were there. Still not a tall team by any means, but Dobbs was never the tallest.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Donnie Dobbs was about 6-2 or 6-3. You should never use "tallest" in the same sentence with him. In 1992-93, Brian Smith was still around. Was Bickel still with the Bills then? And then there was also Evan Pederson, I believe. The next year Pederson was definitely there and Donnie Campbell and David Robinson were there. Still not a tall team by any means, but Dobbs was never the tallest.

I'm pretty sure Bickel was at SLU for my freshman year - 93-94. I think he left after that season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What was the kid's name from Houston that We couldn't get in academically? Having him in the mix with Bonner could have done a lot for the program. Maybe he and Bonner could have handled Tyrone Hill and Xavier's other big.

That was Craig Upchurch and he was eligible, but the administration wouldn't let him in school. They said he first had to pass a bridge program over the summer. He passed it and they still wouldn't accept him. He was good enough to get us to the next level. That destroyed Grawer's recruiting base. He was a St. Louis kid and ended up at Houston where he graduated with a degree in psychology.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Robinson and Pederson were both forwards that after tip off stopped being centers.

That's the equivalent of saying Izzak Ohannon was our center

All great contributors Heinrich, IV, even skinny Willie were centers in my opinion. RM was being honest calling most of his bigs forwards.

Manning could be a center I sure hope he steps ups and beefs up

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...