Class of 2019 C Jesse Edwards (NL/IMG) SIGNED WITH SYRACUSE

Cusesky8214

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Found this new Q&A with Jesse and thought I'd share.

 

reedny

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I’ve never been fully sold on that. Christmas developed as much as anyone we’ve had and we didn’t have a “big man coach” that played in the paint.

The guys that haven’t developed just weren’t very talented IMO. And I’m talking offensively as I assume most are when they discuss this topic.

I can’t think of one stiff we’ve had that really developed. Stiffs are gonna be stiffs no matter what position the guy coaching them played 20 years ago. You can’t get blood from a stone. You just hope they improve a bit and play smart out there and can clog the paint and get some rebounds. And the guys who I can think of that developed were not a surprise because they either showed some offensive aptitude early and were just raw or caught behind someone better, or were super athletic.(Christmas, AO, Jackson, Melo, Watkins, Etan, Hill come to mind).

Also, I think Chukwu improved a lot in his time at SU. The first time I saw him play he looked Sean Williams level. He became a solid defensive player who occasionally could be effective on offense - much moreso than he used to, at least. Improved greatly at the FT line. Had a few monster games. I think you could have him be coached by the greatest big man coach in the history of the world for 4 years, and he would maybe be very minimally better. He’s just limited in terms of physical talent, beyond being tall. Hard worker and tough kid though whose overall basketball awareness really came along.
Recent examples - Keita was one player we developed (turned him into a monster on D). Christmas is another. I also think you're right about Chukwu ... who I concede was not a well-oiled offensive machine when he left but improved A LOT at SU. There are other examples - I was going to include Lydon (forward), who went from barely top 100 to 1st round. He struggled in the NBA but he really developed well at SU even to have a shot (we didn't help him much by playing him out of position).

The flip side of it is recruiting. We lost our best center prospect in at least 10 years to Hop. No doubt, part of that was relationship, but IMO some of it was the rep' Hop has with bigs ... worked with them at the Pics and was respected for his ability to develop guys. Some of it is perception .. come here and we have a guy that will work with you. It doesn't have to be a former big, although clearly that helps in recruiting bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc..). All our assistants are former guards. I just think balance would help with player development and recruiting.
 
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OrangeDW

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Keita was one example of a player we developed IMO. Christmas is another. And I think you're right about Chukwu ... who I concede was not a well-oiled offensive machine when he left but improved A LOT after transferring.

The other side of it is recruiting. We lost our best center prospect in at least 10 years to Hop. SOme of that was relationship, some was that Hop was great with bigs ... worked with them at the Pics and was respected for his ability to develop guys. Some of it is perception .. come here and we have a guy that will work with you. It doesn't have to be a former big, although clearly that helps in recruiting bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc..).
Christmas definitely developed...but he had the capacity to do so. He was strong, athletic, and coordinated right from day 1. He had 8 points in a big NCAA tourney game when he got a chance to play as a freshman. He showed the capacity to be a scorer, he just needed experience and time and reps to become a big scorer.

Contrast that with Keita...I think he developed and maxed out what he could do as well. He was a key player. He just didn’t have the capacity to ever be a scorer. Poor hands, not real strong or smooth. Him not ever being a scorer is nobody’s fault, he just wasn’t gifted in that area.

Just how I see it.
 

pfister1

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I’ve never been fully sold on that. Christmas developed as much as anyone we’ve had and we didn’t have a “big man coach” that played in the paint.

The guys that haven’t developed just weren’t very talented IMO. And I’m talking offensively as I assume most are when they discuss this topic.

I can’t think of one stiff we’ve had that really developed. Stiffs are gonna be stiffs no matter what position the guy coaching them played 20 years ago. You can’t get blood from a stone. You just hope they improve a bit and play smart out there and can clog the paint and get some rebounds. And the guys who I can think of that developed were not a surprise because they either showed some offensive aptitude early and were just raw or caught behind someone better, or were super athletic.(Christmas, AO, Jackson, Melo, Watkins, Etan, Hill come to mind).

Also, I think Chukwu improved a lot in his time at SU. The first time I saw him play he looked Sean Williams level. He became a solid defensive player who occasionally could be effective on offense - much moreso than he used to, at least. Improved greatly at the FT line. Had a few monster games. I think you could have him be coached by the greatest big man coach in the history of the world for 4 years, and he would maybe be very minimally better. He’s just limited in terms of physical talent, beyond being tall. Hard worker and tough kid though whose overall basketball awareness really came along.
Agree with this completely. You can't teach kids to catch or not trip over their own feet. The biggest problem with bigs is that they are in limited supply, so you typically have to lower the bar on talent and athleticism in direct proportion to height...the taller a prospect is the more you overlook the fact that they can't walk and chew gum at the same time because they can rescue cats from trees without a ladder.

If you get a guy who is tall, talented and athletic most good coaches can develop him or refine his talent having very little to do with how tall the coach is.
 

shu 49

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Recent examples - Keita was one player we developed (turned him into a monster on D). Christmas is another. I also think you're right about Chukwu ... who I concede was not a well-oiled offensive machine when he left but improved A LOT at SU. There are other examples - I was going to include Lydon (forward), who went from barely top 100 to 1st round. He struggled in the NBA but he really developed well at SU even to have a shot (we didn't help him much by playing him out of position).

The flip side of it is recruiting. We lost our best center prospect in at least 10 years to Hop. No doubt, part of that was relationship, but IMO some of it was the rep' Hop has with bigs ... worked with them at the Pics and was respected for his ability to develop guys. Some of it is perception .. come here and we have a guy that will work with you. It doesn't have to be a former big, although clearly that helps in recruiting bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc..). All our assistants are former guards. I just think balance would help with player development and recruiting.
It’s so hard to rate a Christmas cause he came in with a short hook but lacking knowledge of the defense but could also block shots. Second year he showed more offense but we never passed down low even though he could score fairly easily. Third year some people say he looks more polished offensively but still we aren’t passing him the ball as I am screaming at the tv to drop it down low. The kid could score numerous ways. No one looked for him. Now Sr. Year and we have no outside guys but one kinda so what do we do, drop the ball to Christmas and wam now he scores as good as any big in class. In fact we did very thing to get him the ball. He could always score. He just wasn’t our focal point at time. Watch the tapes.
 

reedny

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It’s so hard to rate a Christmas cause he came in with a short hook but lacking knowledge of the defense but could also block shots. Second year he showed more offense but we never passed down low even though he could score fairly easily. Third year some people say he looks more polished offensively but still we aren’t passing him the ball as I am screaming at the tv to drop it down low. The kid could score numerous ways. No one looked for him. Now Sr. Year and we have no outside guys but one kinda so what do we do, drop the ball to Christmas and wam now he scores as good as any big in class. In fact we did very thing to get him the ball. He could always score. He just wasn’t our focal point at time. Watch the tapes.
Oh I watched him play many times. But what I saw was someone offensively raw - 3-6 points per game for the first three years ... even though his minutes climbed substantially. There were also different guards, some better at feeding than others. So I don't think it was guards. Then senior year, the light went on. Rak tripled his average and was the MIP of the ACC. I think Hop and the staff did a great job helping him work on his low moves and his jumper, giving him confidence and being patient. And I loved what he was able to accomplish senior year. So you and I will have to agree to disagree on this.

I also think others are missing the point on bigs and recruiting. IMO we lost the best recruit in a decade to Hop ... the strong "relationship' involved was built on his rep at SU. We've also lost recruits for coaching reasons to St. Bonnies (Ossun) and others. Teams coached by former bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc) have no problem recruiting them. To me it's human nature - young bigs want to get coached up by someone skilled at their position. We haven't had anyone like that since Hop left.
 
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pfister1

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I also think others are missing the point on bigs and recruiting. IMO we lost the best recruit in a decade to Hop ... the strong "relationship' involved was built on his rep at SU. We've also lost recruits for coaching reasons to St. Bonnies (Ossun) and others. Teams coached by former bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc) have no problem recruiting them. To me it's human nature -young bigs want to get coached up by someone skilled at their position. We haven't had anyone like that since Hop left.
How does Hop fit that defintion?
 

reedny

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How does Hop fit that defintion?
Knows how to develop and work with bigs, including as an assistant at the Olympic games. And by all accounts, VERY good at it.
 

pfister1

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Knows how to develop and work with bigs, including as an assistant at the Olympic games. And by all accounts, VERY good at it.
You appear on one hand to be saying that big recruits want to play for former bigs. Then you say they want to be coached up by someone skilled at their position.

Hop was neither, just a coach who can teach the position.
 

shu 49

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Oh I watched him play many times. But what I saw was someone offensively raw - 3-6 points per game for the first three years ... even though his minutes climbed substantially. There were also different guards, some better at feeding than others. So I don't think it was guards. Then senior year, the light went on. Rak tripled his average and was the MIP of the ACC. I think Hop and the staff did a great job helping him work on his low moves and his jumper, giving him confidence and being patient. And I loved what he was able to accomplish senior year. So you and I will have to agree to disagree on this.

I also think others are missing the point on bigs and recruiting. IMO we lost the best recruit in a decade to Hop ... the strong "relationship' involved was built on his rep at SU. We've also lost recruits for coaching reasons to St. Bonnies (Ossun) and others. Teams coached by former bigs (Manning, Ewing, etc) have no problem recruiting them. To me it's human nature - young bigs want to get coached up by someone skilled at their position. We haven't had anyone like that since Hop left.
I do agree with all that I just remember arak having some moves as a frosh.
 

reedny

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You appear on one hand to be saying that big recruits want to play for former bigs. Then you say they want to be coached up by someone skilled at their position.

Hop was neither, just a coach who can teach the position.
Obviously, since I've used Hop as an example, I'm referring to someone skilled at teaching the position, either a former big or a big "guru". You're being deliberately thick.
 

longtimefan

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Obviously, since I've used Hop as an example, I'm referring to someone skilled at teaching the position, either a former big or a big "guru". You're being deliberately thick.
So, why can't one of the current assistants develop into a big man guru? After all, Hop did not take on the centers until Bernie was shown the door.
 

IthacaMatt

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The kid was playing for the amateur squad associated with a Dutch professional team before IMG, so he didn't just pick the game up last December when he arrived in the states. Not going to dig into the nonsense of the comparisons to Thompson or McCullough, which I agree are silly albeit for different reasons.
Turns out he only played for that Dutch club team for a year or two. He is still learning the game. "Eyes don't lie".
 

Oakland

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Why did it take 4 yrs for Christmas to develop?

I’ve never been fully sold on that. Christmas developed as much as anyone we’ve had and we didn’t have a “big man coach” that played in the paint.

The guys that haven’t developed just weren’t very talented IMO. And I’m talking offensively as I assume most are when they discuss this topic.

I can’t think of one stiff we’ve had that really developed. Stiffs are gonna be stiffs no matter what position the guy coaching them played 20 years ago. You can’t get blood from a stone. You just hope they improve a bit and play smart out there and can clog the paint and get some rebounds. And the guys who I can think of that developed were not a surprise because they either showed some offensive aptitude early and were just raw or caught behind someone better, or were super athletic.(Christmas, AO, Jackson, Melo, Watkins, Etan, Hill come to mind).

Also, I think Chukwu improved a lot in his time at SU. The first time I saw him play he looked Sean Williams level. He became a solid defensive player who occasionally could be effective on offense - much moreso than he used to, at least. Improved greatly at the FT line. Had a few monster games. I think you could have him be coached by the greatest big man coach in the history of the world for 4 years, and he would maybe be very minimally better. He’s just limited in terms of physical talent, beyond being tall. Hard worker and tough kid though whose overall basketball awareness really came along.
 

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