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Sheltiedave

High Point Observations and other woolgathering

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High Point was the best of times, and it was the worst of times. Like all teams this year who are realistically slotted at a few games above .500, some fans think we are a good run away from slipping into the Big Dance, and want immediate stardom for various players. Other fans see through clear glasses, and can see gaping holes that currently exist in both our offense and defense, along with poor analysis. To wit:

1) Coaching expectations...Ford has an impossible job this year, as he has to coach 7/8 players up to be starters, rotation players, and multiposition players on the fly. Collins, Jimerson, and Weaver have 80% of the schemes OK, but they still get caught out when it comes time to transition from pressing to 3 pt line responsibilities. They are the good newcomers, also, not the slower to pick up learners.(PS this has nothing to do with smarts, but rather level and intensity of good/great basketball coaching)

Learning how to properly block out near the lane, understanding the angle of misses off the rim, knowing the hip bump and chest plant for the big men, and when to jump, and for guards out at 3 pt land, understanding a short missed 3 is coming right back to your shooter, are second nature a year down the road, but mysteries freshly learned right now.

On D, it is brutal to be a freshman who was a physical stud in high school, and suddenly finding out you are the weak link in college(unless you are a Thatch, noted for superior D in HS.) Figuring out rotations, when to rotate, how to rotate, how to flash on an open driver, how to disrupt timing, where and what the passing lanes and timing are, playing deny body M2M, zones, and screens(Hargrove got badly picked twice in one play withing two seconds of one another) are all part of the learning curve.

Dont think that Ford isn't coaching, and coaching extremely well. He just has to teach almost everyone the tools they need, integrate them into their play, and integrate their individual play into team play. We wont see solid team play until some point in conference. 

2) Popping out...Jimerson and Goodwin. BAM. Jimerson popped in multiple ways. We all knew he could shoot the 3, but he had a couple very nice elbow stop and pops, one on each side. He kept his head up on rebounds, had a great 3/4 floor assist to Collins. He followed a missed shot at the rim for a putback, and he did a couple good rotations, and a great flash poke help on a dribble drive that prevented a layup.

Goodwin finally got his elbow dialed in on FTs, and it showed on his shots as well. Dial in the form, get the production.

3) Fouls...Ford was getting incensed about the stupid fouls. Jacobs had a silly reach in foul in the backcourt, fifty feet from the basket. Others picked up fouls from slow rotation, not moving their feet, and reaching.

4) A good sign of D...There were plenty of tips, ball pokes, deflections, and rebound tips that kept the ball alive, created steals, and made HP go deep into the shot clock as we got deep into the bench. While they don't always make it into the stats sheet, Ford wants to generate at least 35 a game, as these are a little thing that lead to wins.

When HP went on their 17 pt run, we had three Bell plays in a row, two silly Goodwin steals, and two Collins misplays along with very poor D. When a team is way down, you bury them with the success plays that drove the margin, not playing cute or trying to feed a stat line. 

Finally, Collins still is playing high school press break. He took an inbounds pass in the very corner(BAD!), broke that two man trap, and tried to dribble past a third defender near the basket while 85 feet from the other basket. He needed to look pass once he broke the trap, as against a good team he would have had a ten second call, rather than a bailout foul. The rest of the court was four good guys vs two defenders.

On to Belmont.

 

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I hereby will da'Couch to Sheltiedave.

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Nah ----- my old friend Harry Callahan once said "a man's got to know his limitations" and I'm all for retiring at the top.  You'll know you've made it when you've made a certain poster your b*tch such that most times you post, he gets an erection and thanks you for that with a "troll" post.  A tip of the blue kool-aid glass to you ...................

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Sheltie knows his hoops. I hope the players read his post. 

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