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Madani Diarra committed

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20 minutes ago, moytoy12 said:

Plus 10 fouls to give.

Yes that is true and important.  Bang on Langevine, guys.  I should have added, "and play adequate defense".  Foreman was playing decent defense at the end of the year. 

And I didn't include Bell+Diarra with fewer TO's than DJ, but you can't ask for everything.  Experience in a college player cannot be overlooked.  DJ had five years of coaching.  These fine two young men will be very raw coming into next season.  It would be reasonable to expect one of them to rise faster than the other.  Let the fight for minutes begin!

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45 minutes ago, HoosierPal said:

My hope is that by season end, Bell + Diarra more or less = Foreman:  which was 21 minutes, 6 points, 4 rebounds

Also, hopefully Hankton will be healthy and more productive this year, so we can get some production from a stretch 4 type player.  And there is still time to throw a grad transfer or JUCO big into the mix.

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Love getting 4's and 5's that are already physically ready. 

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25 minutes ago, wgstl said:

Love getting 4's and 5's that are already physically ready. 

IF Bell keeps getting in shape and IF Diarra stays healthy, I really like our front court.

 Does anyone have any concerns pairing a traditional big like Bell and Diarra with a French? It seems French played better without CAG

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Bell and Diarra are not your typical FR bigs in that, from a physical standpoint at least, they both look like they could bang with Shaq. How quickly they pick up the skill set for a D1 center is where the focus needs to be. Yes, they will need time in the training room but they are big bodied kids. That's at least 30% of what the position requires. The other 70% is made up of skills and mental development. I'd think Bonner could be a huge help in those areas. 

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4 minutes ago, RiseAndGrind said:

IF Bell keeps getting in shape and IF Diarra stays healthy, I really like our front court.

 Does anyone have any concerns pairing a traditional big like Bell and Diarra with a French? It seems French played better without CAG

Ford has said he prefers French at the 4.  With CAG, he was still pretty much playing the 5.   thing about having a a strong 7 footer, other teams will have to put their biggest on him, and not many will have a 4 who can physically battle with french. 

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2 hours ago, slu72 said:

Didn't Drejaj go to St. Benedicts? 

Seton Hall Prep.

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44 minutes ago, ACE said:

Also, hopefully Hankton will be healthy and more productive this year, so we can get some production from a stretch 4 type player.  And there is still time to throw a grad transfer or JUCO big into the mix.

He's always the forgotten man in these discussions. A little surprising since he had his moments last year, and he could be the stretch big we're looking for. Gonna be tough for him though with Hargrove and Perkins after his minutes. 

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32 minutes ago, RiseAndGrind said:

IF Bell keeps getting in shape and IF Diarra stays healthy, I really like our front court.

 Does anyone have any concerns pairing a traditional big like Bell and Diarra with a French? It seems French played better without CAG

in hindsight that is likely more on headcase gordon. 

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7 minutes ago, slu72 said:

He's always the forgotten man in these discussions. A little surprising since he had his moments last year, and he could be the stretch big we're looking for. Gonna be tough for him though with Hargrove and Perkins after his minutes. 

im not holding my breath.  while he indeed had a couple of nice moments making a key 3, he ended up at 28% from the three and 29% overall.   i would hope we will shoot better than that in the future.  

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3 minutes ago, billiken_roy said:

in hindsight that is likely more on headcase gordon. 

French had no problems playing w/ Foreman. 

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26 minutes ago, billiken_roy said:

 he ended up at 28% from the three and 29% overall.   i would hope we will shoot better than that in the future.  

28% doesnt sound impressive nor is it, but around 30% for a 6'7 frosh is probably where I'd expect.  Ellis shot 30% his first year,  Roby 32%, Loe 33%.  Not to mention Hankton played through some injuries.  Hankton also only played more than 10 minutes in just 5 games, in those 5 games we shot 38%.       

 

In an ideal world I would agree that having KC playing the stretch 4 for roughly 6-10 minutes while shooting 36%+ would be great

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2 hours ago, moytoy12 said:

Plus 10 fouls to give.

This is absolutely huge. The source of most of our headaches this past season was French getting into foul trouble because of a sheer lack of bigs who could eat minutes and take fouls for him. This will be a huge positive going forward. Even if they are simply on the court to play defense because their offensive game will take time, this will give French the space to do his thing offensively. 

T Ford is a wizard. 

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-welcome to The Billikens, hope you have a very successful experience at SLU both on and off the court, stay healthy and hungry

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1 hour ago, RiseAndGrind said:

IF Bell keeps getting in shape and IF Diarra stays healthy, I really like our front court.

 Does anyone have any concerns pairing a traditional big like Bell and Diarra with a French? It seems French played better without CAG

I don't expect Bell and Diarra to play a lot. I think French will benefit more from some other newcomers - having a true PG in Yuri who can get him the ball in good spots and being surrounded by better shooters - Lewis, Jimerson, Perkins and a healthy Hankton will create more space for him to do his thing.

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1 minute ago, ACE said:

I don't expect Bell and Diarra to play a lot. I think French will benefit more from some other newcomers - having a true PG in Yuri who can get him the ball in good spots and being surrounded by better shooters - Lewis, Jimerson, Perkins and a healthy Hankton will create more space for him to do his thing.

That is probably true. I don't know the answer and I think @billiken_royis probably right that French's struggles had to do more with the person than the position

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best thing french can do is learn to make free throws and continue to develop an in the lane shot.   it seemed to me if he couldnt dunk it he just pretty much threw short range rockets straight at the basket.   get some touch man!  just accomplishing free throws and a little touch out to five feet probably adds about 6-10 ppg.  

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18 minutes ago, RiseAndGrind said:

That is probably true. I don't know the answer and I think @billiken_royis probably right that French's struggles had to do more with the person than the position

French and Gordon also likely had a little bit of trouble meshing offensively like Goodwin and Isabell did at the beginning of the season. They needed time to figure out who was the primary option, spacing, etc.  Also, Goodwin and Isabell’s troubles directly impacted French and his effectiveness. 

As mentioned above, more defined roles at the 1-3 will help French a lot. 

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20 minutes ago, billiken_roy said:

best thing french can do is learn to make free throws and continue to develop an in the lane shot.   it seemed to me if he couldnt dunk it he just pretty much threw short range rockets straight at the basket.   get some touch man!  just accomplishing free throws and a little touch out to five feet probably adds about 6-10 ppg.  

Touch is what Mandani seems to have. How many highlight videos do we see of HS bigs that are either 80% dunks and 20% shooting a 3. Mandani doesn't seem to need to dunk to finish and he looks to be able to shoot the midrange jumper a bit. Defensively and rebounding he depends solely on his size and strength. Watching him now tells me he'll commit a lot of fouls chasing boards and defending out of position and with poor technique. The good thing is these are technique things that can and I bet will be learned. He probably hasn't had a lot of coaching in these areas as he was already dominating most players with just his size and strength. 

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38 minutes ago, billiken_roy said:

best thing french can do is learn to make free throws and continue to develop an in the lane shot.   it seemed to me if he couldnt dunk it he just pretty much threw short range rockets straight at the basket.   get some touch man!  just accomplishing free throws and a little touch out to five feet probably adds about 6-10 ppg.  

I disagree with the touch around the rim thing. Some games he would have a rough go of it. But I always thought he's been a great player (Esp. this last conference season) with his back to the basket and room to work

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My take on the post injury video is that he has soft hands & can finish after contact. Any contact seemed to throw off DJ.  He has 6 mos to get that knee in better shape - l love the signing 

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Jimmy Bell: 7'0

Madani Diarra: 6'10

 

We are going to be huge. Not saying that they are going to have enormous impacts their freshmen year, but you can't say they won't at least significantly influence the way other teams have to game plan for us offensively. Twin towers are gonna be swatting plenty of shots for the next 4 years. 

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1 hour ago, Spoon-Balls said:

How far we've come since the days of Austin Gillman and Brett Jolly...

Jolly was in excellent shape.  He just had no discernible talent for the game of basketball.  

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14 minutes ago, Billiken Rich said:

Jolly was in excellent shape.  He just had no discernible talent for the game of basketball.  

excellent shape and strong/physical are two separate tings. 

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