Early season thoughts?

BradRamFan

Top Member
May 1, 2009
11,749
14,904
I share your optimism. Lots of teams have big guys that sometimes look awkward. It's probably more pronounced on our team b/c we have so many truly athletic wings and guards. But Stockard and Medley-Bacon have the one thing you cant teach or learn -size. We need there big bodies. They will get better. I think there will be more than once they step up and help us in a big way this season.
Regarding Bacon....he transferred in from Coppin so it make take him some time to adjust to A10 level of play.....and certainly Bad Boy Mower level of play. If this had not been a Covid year, he may have sat out this season to work on his game with the team in practice. Now he gets an extra year and gets to actually learn - on the job - as in real games this year.
As for Stockard, I think he is still trying to get used to our speed and style of play. He certainly has skills and once he gets used to our speed and style, he will contribute even more.
Meanwhile both Ward and Corey are doing a great job for us under the basket. Throw in Brown-Jones, Levi, and Bacon as they build their way into our game........Our front court is looking great. Hopefully we stay injury free.
 

tuttlecr

Top Member
Jul 6, 2012
426
850
Big picture. We look way better than advertised & have some quality depth. Stockard & Medley-Bacon need some time to adjust to our style of play. They both played under different coaching last year... I'm optimistic that they will be very solid contributors by mid-season.
 
  • Like
Reactions: SpiderRAM

N Mollen

Top Member
Insider
Jun 5, 2012
20,582
62,132
Regarding Bacon....he transferred in from Coppin so it make take him some time to adjust to A10 level of play.....and certainly Bad Boy Mower level of play. If this had not been a Covid year, he may have sat out this season to work on his game with the team in practice. Now he gets an extra year and gets to actually learn - on the job - as in real games this year.
As for Stockard, I think he is still trying to get used to our speed and style of play. He certainly has skills and once he gets used to our speed and style, he will contribute even more.
Meanwhile both Ward and Corey are doing a great job for us under the basket. Throw in Brown-Jones, Levi, and Bacon as they build their way into our game........Our front court is looking great. Hopefully we stay injury free.
What BRF said. I am not at all discouraged about BMB. Remember, the plan was to shirt him this year, let him work on his body and get used to higher level basketball. He was the best thing about a low level, low achieving team last year and is still climbing a steep learning curve. Throw him in there against soon-to-be-NBA level players on the front line, and SURPRISE he gets pushed around. He may never develop -- things happen -- but it is silly to draw conclusions at this point.

My main takeaways from the last 3 days:

1. We hit on ALL FOUR freshmen. Watching Ace in his first 3 games as a college freshmen, going vs NCAAT teams, with his 3:1 assist/turnover ratio has me giddy and seeing visions of a young Ed Sherod. And Jamir, Josh, and MBJ all showed to be big enough for the moment right out of the box. Which brings me to . . .

2. This team is 100% dog. There were times in games 1 and 2 when a more fragile team (like some very recent VCU teams) would have just retreated. Down 10 or up 10, this team had the same game face. No pouting, no resignation, just dog. It is so refreshing, and really so shocking, to see a team with NINE underclassmen be so tenacious regardless of score.

3. Regarding the front line, aside from BMB mentioned above. You do realize that after a poor rebounding performance vs the NBA-bound bigs from WVa that we out-rebounded Memphis, don't you? Corey and Hasan were outstanding, especially given the level of competition. Cisse was the #10 recruit in the country last year, has a 7'4" wingspan and was thoroughly outplayed by Hasan. Look at the stat sheet; it is all there.

4. I cannot wait for Wednesday. I watch every game cognizant of the fact that it may be the last game of the season, and I take it on its own terms. If there is a completed season, I like our chances to be playing meaningful games when it ends. If there isn't, I know that the nucleus of this team is going to be with us for years, growing together. I CANNOT WAIT!
 

BradRamFan

Top Member
May 1, 2009
11,749
14,904
Thoughts:
1. This is the first year with an all MR recruiting class. He recruited these guys for his strategic style of play.
2. Early in the season a lot of teams play a lot of players and as time goes on player time on the court gets whittled down to 7 or 8 players. I am hoping for the opposite. I think we have a full and complete line that can actually go out there and be starters or be very good contributors. As the season progresses, I hope starter minutes decrease slightly so that we can play like a real army where we can send in wave after wave of player ready players. I think this whole team can play. I don't know if I have ever seen that from a VCU team. (Ok it is still very early in the season and I am probably a bit too overjoyed. But I am pretty happy with the skill level of every single player on this team)
 

N Mollen

Top Member
Insider
Jun 5, 2012
20,582
62,132
Thoughts:
1. This is the first year with an all MR recruiting class. He recruited these guys for his strategic style of play.
2. Early in the season a lot of teams play a lot of players and as time goes on player time on the court gets whittled down to 7 or 8 players. I am hoping for the opposite. I think we have a full and complete line that can actually go out there and be starters or be very good contributors. As the season progresses, I hope starter minutes decrease slightly so that we can play like a real army where we can send in wave after wave of player ready players. I think this whole team can play. I don't know if I have ever seen that from a VCU team. (Ok it is still very early in the season and I am probably a bit too overjoyed. But I am pretty happy with the skill level of every single player on this team)
Yeah, when all is said and done, this may be the deepest team we have ever had. Maybe not the best team (we'll see i the years that come) but the deepest. By the end of this season, we are going to run some folks.
 

MobileMunchies

Top Member
Nov 2, 2013
14,907
42,894
I am impressed with how good we did against a ranked team on Thursday. That schedule of a late game Wednesday and quick turnaround to earlier game Thursday was a real challenge for a young team so early in it's season, which had SO little time to scout/prepare. It really was more like an NCAA tourney, with much less time to do what teams do to win games. The other teams participating had much longer to prepare for the teams in that field than we did entering it added on the fly- it was initiated/announced on Oct 14. We found out 36 hours beforehand.
Even Huggins said of WVa, "''We would have done a much better job if we would have time to prepare,'' https://www.cbssports.com/college-basketball/gametracker/recap/NCAAB_20201126_WVU@VCU/
 

BigE

Top Member
Feb 10, 2009
10,658
11,570


A10 Talk
@A10Talk

·

Pretty small sample size, but Kenpom has the A-10 ranked 8th in conference standings, notably ahead of the WCC and MWC. A Saint Louis win over LSU would really help today.
En7tq8yXIAAd_BZ
 

Wolfpack Ram

Top Member
Apr 21, 2009
12,532
21,634
Regarding Bacon....he transferred in from Coppin so it make take him some time to adjust to A10 level of play.....and certainly Bad Boy Mower level of play. If this had not been a Covid year, he may have sat out this season to work on his game with the team in practice. Now he gets an extra year and gets to actually learn - on the job - as in real games this year.
As for Stockard, I think he is still trying to get used to our speed and style of play. He certainly has skills and once he gets used to our speed and style, he will contribute even more.
Meanwhile both Ward and Corey are doing a great job for us under the basket. Throw in Brown-Jones, Levi, and Bacon as they build their way into our game........Our front court is looking great. Hopefully we stay injury free.
Medley-Bacon is basically getting free minutes his redshirt year. It's a win/win situation for both VCU and Medley-Bacon. Any minutes he gives us this year are gravy and should be treated that way by the fan base.
 

BigE

Top Member
Feb 10, 2009
10,658
11,570
1. Freshman class is really good. Unbelievable how good Ace is right away. Jamir showed major potential and will be one of our go to guys by year end. Banks and Brown-Jones are going to be good too.
2. Vince and Curry have gotten a lot better.
3. We are still a little light down low, but I think we will be ok. West Virginia was just an extremely bad match up for us. Ward had me worried the first two games but was really good yesterday. I think Stockard is more of a depth guy and BMB is better served working on his game for a year. But we played some really good bigs that we wont see in the A10 this year except for Tre Mitchel.
4. Tre Clark - wow. We have great point guard play with Ace/Tre/Bones and they complement each other really well. Tre deserves major minutes.
5. Not a rebuilding year - we can compete at the top of the A10.
let's pump the brakes a little; freshmen will be freshmen and this STILL November.
 

Wolfpack Ram

Top Member
Apr 21, 2009
12,532
21,634
My early season thoughts.

Someone has to step up and help out Bones on three point shooting. Another outside shooter will also take some of the pressure off of Bones. It will also open up the inside game more. Outside of Bones and Williams, this team is 8-35 from the three point line.
 

SteveMM

Top Member
Feb 1, 2016
320
693
I posted these "10 thoughts" about the weekend on the Facebooks, but figured I'd copy it here as well. I probably should have posted it here in the first place.

--------

1. When the “predictors” guessed that VCU would be #9 in the conference, they were doing so with very little information about the team. I think they would change that prediction by quite a bit if they did it now. This team would demolish what we had in the last 10-15 games last year.

2. Ace Baldwin is the real deal. He’s a natural passer, and when he gets more comfortable shooting ... watch out.

3. The original plan with Medley-Bacon was for him to sit for a year. I suspect the team changed its mind when they learned he wouldn’t lose a year of eligibility by playing this year. He needs that year of coaching and seasoning because he’s no better than our third best big man right now.

4. Speaking of big men ... based on this weekend alone, Levi Stockard is a waste of a roster spot.

5. Given the above, it’s fortunate that Hassan Ward has taken a big step forward.

6. ...so has Corey Douglas, and I suspect it’s mostly due to health.

7. I took too long to get to this thought: Bones is a fantastic player, and has added a touch of inside play to his repertoire. He needs to keep his head, though. Those technical fouls were completely unnecessary.

8. Vince Williams is becoming the player we all thought he would be after his freshman year. He’s essentially a Treveon Graham type — big enough to fight under the basket, but with a nice outside shot. This could be a big year for him.

9. If Keyshawn Currey can become just a touch more consistent in everything he does, he’ll be a fantastic weapon.

10. All of the freshmen who aren’t named Ace Baldwin need a bit more time, and that’s completely understandable as they were thrown into the fire against three pretty good teams this weekend with no exhibitions or buy games to use for experience. But, there’s a lot of promise there.