I pulled back from writing this post to watch both the SHU and RU games again on my computer. I think I can now provide my thoughts clearly on both.
First of all I like the way all the coaches are wearing sneakers to bring awareness to charity. Great thing to do for awareness. Some wore suits with sneakers while others wore basketball coaching shirts or warm-ups. I always wondered why coaches did not dress to coach and work the sidelines like football and baseball coaches.
SHU lost a game. They just lost! They did not stink it up, they did not play soft, they did not get thugged, they just lost to what is most likely the best team in the Big East Conference. Every player played hard and none seemed intimidated by Georgetown and its fans. Again they just lost and they will be better from the experience.
Nice to see GT drawing so well. For years, despite bball success, the average attendance seemed to always be around 6-7000.
Is it just me or does Young John Thompson seem like a nicer version of his dad? Many past GT players have said the older version really did not care about or do much for ex-players who did not make the NBA. The younger Thompson seems like a great guy and sincere with NO EGO.
SHU will be better when the big's fully develop. The kid sitting out from the A-10 is a very good player, and the recruits coming and considering attending or very good. I honestly think SHU hustles on every play on both ends. It is one thing to lose and another to be embarrassed. SHU just lost! I think that curtain will have to go up in the very near future.
Rutgers loses today as well and though they lost to a better team who could beat Georgetown next week, they attempted to compete. Even guards are entitled to off games. Inman, Griffin, and farmer competed much better but they need to still step it up.
A little about rankings for those who need to know. JR Inman, Jeron Griffin, and Antony Farmer deserved every accolade they received in HS. Its funny how folks say things like "THEY CANNOT PLAY"!!! So untrue. They have not played as well as they are capable. But as HS Players they were just what they have been described. I get upset because they do not play TOUGH physically or mentally. Especially JR Inman. Skill wise those 3 kids have it. But JR and Griffin need a sports Psychiatrist and motivation coach more than a basketball coach at this point. JR continues to pass out from the offensive paint as opposed to powering up for a put-back. People should not confuse skills with confidence and heart. Two different things.
Rutgers, if you watch closely, does not compete on every play. They do not contest every shot. It is like they are saving themselves from foul trouble. Watched Louisville players 2-3 feet ahead of RU defenders and the RU defender did not even attempt to hustle to defend. Watched RU players, especially JR, Griffin, Joynes, just jog up the court on offense. RU seems to be playing to stay in the game as opposed to playing to win the game. They never bust their rumps to the open spot for an easier shot. They also play stand straight up defense, especially off the ball. Yes the person guarding the ball seems to have his knees bent, but the other four players are all straight up and not ready to help, which is why when the on the ball defender gets beat, their is little or no help. It is the laziest defense I have ever seen.
Now I am not going to knock FHJ. but I call it as I see it. He has to take some responsibility for some of this stuff. Fundamentals such as players bending knees in preparation to reacting defensively is taught. Jogging up the court on offense and defense is a problem. And lastly I will say this.
The FIG kids are playing with zero confidence. missing free throws, scared to shoot the wide open shot, playing to stay in game. All are from a lack of confidence. I am the first to get on how JR has performed. But as I think back his play has not been the same since his benching for no real reason. Yes he has had a few games that were OK. But prior to the benching he was averaging around 16 points a game. Now he is at around 13. Plus I have never seen him miss so many free throws. Something is wrong and it is mostly mental I think.
Again I say NO BARN LEAGUE!!!!!! AND NO PHONY BOOT CAMP, even if it does sound great on TV. Those RU players need to play every possession at a quicker pace with more energy and contest every play defensively even if it means playing 15 kids because of foul trouble.
Now for those interested, here is a thought from me that could be contraversial. Is the Villanova talent that much better than Rutgers? Scotty Reynolds is very good but somewhat selfish and playing to make the NBA. Other than that? Drummond vs Hamedy? The front court? Fisher vs Couburn? Malcolm Grant vs Corey Chandler? I mean what is the huge difference to make Villanova a potential NCAA team? Maybe it is they are confident and EXPECT to do well. because the talent is not that different than RU on paper. It is why RU won beat them.
I lastly remind everyone about the Slick Rick team at Providence. They played to win and they did. No stars, but as a team THEY COMPETED!!!