A thread wishing for two bigs in at once (...occasionally)

duncanlamb

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Just from my morning research, I'd say no.

Here's one thing that's been an early killer:

A-10 effective field goal percentage (minutes/A-10 game)
Vann 18.2% (25) on 15 attempts
Curry 15.4% (14.3) on 11 attempts
Williams 21.9% (18) on 11 attempts

Also Marcus Evans' A-10 true shooting percentage is at 49.1% right now, down from 60.3% last season.

That's a lot of dead minutes on the offensive end with the three wings. Vann's % is down from 51.4%, Vince was a 52.5% EFG% in A-10 play last year while Curry barely played really. Basically we've just got a group of important players to this year's team in a VERY legit offensive slump early and all at the same time. They combined to go 0-13 against Rhody and 3-13 at Dayton for a team-killing 11.5% group shooting performance. You just can't beat good teams that way. That group also went 3-9 at Wichita State (missed all their threes) and 4-15 against Tennessee (only 1 was a three) and combined for 6 points against Purdue. According to kenpom Vince has played 44% of our available minutes at the 4 spot the last five games, Issac 57% of the small forward minutes and Key 32% of available minutes backing up De'Ri at the 2. That's a good chunk of minutes slumping on offense.
The slump over the last 2 games has more to do with defense than the offense.

Dayton's 22-0 run and the URI's previous have to with physical and mental fatigue from over reliance on the press to get steals. Instead, we need to rely more on our half court defense to get stops.

In this way, we have save our energy to execute at the offensive end, finish strong at the rim, and the legs to hit jump shots and prevent unforced mental errors af both ends of the floor (lazy passes, travelling with no defenders around, not getting back to protect the rim etc.).
 
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Natty

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The slump over the last 2 games has more to do with defense than the offense.

Dayton's 22-0 run and the URI's previous have to with physical and mental fatigue from over reliance on the press to get steals. Instead, we need to rely more on our half court defense to get stops.

In this way, we have save our energy to execute at the offensive end, finish strong at the rim, and the legs to hit jump shots and prevent unforced mental errors af both ends of the floor (lazy passes, travelling with no defenders around, not getting back to protect the rim etc.).
Minutes at Dayton
31 - Santos-Silva (he did not press)
30 - Jenkins
25 - Evans
25 - Vann
23 - Bones
22 - Simms
Everyone else 18 or less.

Dayton played Mikesell (33), Toppin (34), Crutcher (34) and Landers (35), so basically their four best players....all over 33 minutes. I find it very hard to believe us playing 10 or so fewer minutes, but pressing, is wearing our guys out more than their guys almost playing the entire game.

Here's a theory: maybe playing your best players most of the game is actually better for a team's chances at winning and gives you an advantage?

I guess the question is who are our best players really, but Dayton certainly knows who their's are and they roll with em. It's kinda like when Anthony Grant was VCU's head coach and we played "94 feet both ways" and Eric Maynor averaged at least 34 minutes per game every season under him because Maynor being on the court as much as possible helped us win. Even our Final 4 team under Shaka/Rhoades saw Bradford average 34 minutes, Joey 33 and Jamie 31. Weren't we wreaking havoc back then? Jamie averaged 34 minutes a night during our 6-game Final 4 run, playing 3 games in 5 days during one part of that stretch...and I know Jamie, he'll be the first to tell you he's not the best at running that much. Bradford averaged 37 minutes per contest during that run and he was pressing his tail off.
 

PhantomRam

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The reason rebounding is a problem is the opposing bigs do not have to slip out and guard our bigs. We don't need another big, we need a big that can slip and occasionally hit something outside of 3 feet. Until we have that or our wings and guards can hit consistently, defenses will lag, especially on the offensive boards. Big, or lack thereof, is not our problem. Shooting is the main problem.
I believe it's another reason Curry, IV and ME to some extent are struggling.....the lane is simply not open for business.
Also our bigs are not very mobile, you have to guard Toppin every inch of the floor. You don't have to do that with MSS or Corey.
 
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PhantomRam

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Dayton played Mikesell (33), Toppin (34), Crutcher (34) and Landers (35), so basically their four best players....all over 33 minutes. I find it very hard to believe us playing 10 or so fewer minutes, but pressing, is wearing our guys out more than their guys almost playing the entire game.

Here's a theory: maybe playing your best players most of the game is actually better for a team's chances at winning and gives you an advantage?
Look up that latest interview of Eric Musselman concening playing time and elevating the chemistry of his team.....hint, looks more like Dayton than VCU.......
 

rammad90

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The reason rebounding is a problem is the opposing bigs do not have to slip out and guard our bigs. We don't need another big, we need a big that can slip and occasionally hit something outside of 3 feet. Until we have that or our wings and guards can hit consistently, defenses will lag, especially on the offensive boards. Big, or lack thereof, is not our problem. Shooting is the main problem.
I believe it's another reason Curry, IV and ME to some extent are struggling.....the lane is simply not open for business.
Also our bigs are not very mobile, you have to guard Toppin every inch of the floor. You don't have to do that with MSS or Corey.
The reason rebounding is a problem is we essentially have 4 wings and a PF on the floor. We play small ball. Small ball requires outside shooting and a fast moving efficient offense.

I hope Mike can figure it out.
 
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PhantomRam

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The reason rebounding is a problem is we essentially have 4 wings and a PF on the floor. We play small ball. Small ball requires outside shooting and a fast moving efficient offense.

I hope Mike can figure it out.
We had that with Shaka as well.... but we had Skeen and others who could pop out and hit something outside of a layup.
 
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The reason rebounding is a problem is we essentially have 4 wings and a PF on the floor. We play small ball. Small ball requires outside shooting and a fast moving efficient offense.

I hope Mike can figure it out.
This x 10000000000
 

mrgeode

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Look up that latest interview of Eric Musselman concening playing time and elevating the chemistry of his team.....hint, looks more like Dayton than VCU.......
I would personally not take a lot of coaching tips from Eric Musselman
 

rammad90

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We had that with Shaka as well.... but we had Skeen and others who could pop out and hit something outside of a layup.
Yeah but we also had shooters, a pg who was a pass first guy. Juvonte Reddic and DJ to provide some bulk inside when needed. Burgess, Rozzell, Nixon, J-Rod, and Troy could all shoot and did all shoot well. Plus Theus, was a pure point guard as well.

Our offense was efficient and fast moving. And as much as I love the work MSS does, he is no Jamie Skeen. Skeen couldn't compete with Toppin's athleticism but Jamie would have worked Toppin's butt over with post moves , movement within the set O, and deep shooting.
 
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duncanlamb

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Minutes at Dayton
31 - Santos-Silva (he did not press)
30 - Jenkins
25 - Evans
25 - Vann
23 - Bones
22 - Simms
Everyone else 18 or less.

Dayton played Mikesell (33), Toppin (34), Crutcher (34) and Landers (35), so basically their four best players....all over 33 minutes. I find it very hard to believe us playing 10 or so fewer minutes, but pressing, is wearing our guys out more than their guys almost playing the entire game.

Here's a theory: maybe playing your best players most of the game is actually better for a team's chances at winning and gives you an advantage?

I guess the question is who are our best players really, but Dayton certainly knows who their's are and they roll with em. It's kinda like when Anthony Grant was VCU's head coach and we played "94 feet both ways" and Eric Maynor averaged at least 34 minutes per game every season under him because Maynor being on the court as much as possible helped us win. Even our Final 4 team under Shaka/Rhoades saw Bradford average 34 minutes, Joey 33 and Jamie 31. Weren't we wreaking havoc back then? Jamie averaged 34 minutes a night during our 6-game Final 4 run, playing 3 games in 5 days during one part of that stretch...and I know Jamie, he'll be the first to tell you he's not the best at running that much. Bradford averaged 37 minutes per contest during that run and he was pressing his tail off.
Comparing the final four team to the current one is appies and oranges.

First of all, the final four team had enough depth and versatility to play in different ways and did so. The beats teams going small and big. They also did it by playing much.more half court defense.


You want to deploy 2 bigs. The final four team did because they could rotated 4-6
serviceable bigs(Skeen, Reddic, Toby, Haley, Houston and Hinton) in any game, this team has 2(Silva and Douglas) and Ward is a project.

No, we cant play our best 5 or 6 30+ minutes a game and press full court because they aren't use to it.

Our success last year was predicated on solid half.court defense and judicious pressing. We something like 43rd in turnover percentage but 2nd in 2pt percentage defense. This year we are 1st in steals but 207th 2nd percentage defense.

Go back and watch the Dayton's 22-0 run and the uri sports. We are even with the opponent then all of sudden we committed a rash of lazy passes, travels, cough up the ball with no defenders around, tripping while dribbling the ball and no defenders around, . That doesnt just happen..that's fatigue..

We need to get back to last years defensive philosophy.

Playing more half court doesnt mean you have to shorten your rotation either. See Witchita st, they play 9 with grinding HC defense and judicious pressing.
 
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A comparable team to look at is WV. I know Huggins likes to press and pressure on defense. In the past they have had good three point shooters, this year they don't. Their two leading scorers are forwards 6'9 250 and 6'10 250 both almost averaging double doubles. Looks like Huggins figured out they couldn't shoot and adjusted. It probably too late to completely change the game plan but like you said, can't we do it occasionally.
 
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The reason rebounding is a problem is we essentially have 4 wings and a PF on the floor. We play small ball. Small ball requires outside shooting and a fast moving efficient offense.

I hope Mike can figure it out.
This pretty much sums up VCU basketball for at least the past 10 years. Half joking but if we want to get away from small ball, we need to hire a coach that didn't play as a guard and played big boy ball.
 

PRock

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[QUOTE="Natty, post: 940385, memberHere's a theory: maybe playing your best players most of the game is actually better for a team's chances at winning and gives you an advantage?

[/QUOTE]

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