Lineup / set changes required to salvage the season | Syracusefan.com

Lineup / set changes required to salvage the season

RF2044

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I usually avoid the forum after a loss, as the knee jerk reactions are often as unpleasant as the loss itself. I'm actually pleased to see that things are fairly tame today.

Given how the season has unfolded, its been apparent that the injuries prevented the team from gelling properly in the preseason, and given Frank's lack of mobility, he's hurting us out there and making our offensive struggles worse.

Two years ago, we struggled immensely in the preseason portion of our schedule -- then got a lot more competitive [including beating three top 10 teams] after making some lineup changes. There are a couple that need to happen now, given the execution we're seeing on offense.

First, with all due respect to a veteran like Frank [who is one of my favorite players on the team -- full disclosure], it is time for him to sit until he's physically recovered. Please note, that doesn't mean that he shouldn't play -- but he needs to come off of the bench as a stabilizing factor, instead of going through the motions when he's physically impaired. This might seem harsh [especially given the way I've been rah-rah about this kid in the past], but this is an opportunity for Frank to show leadership, and he might be able to earn his way back into the lineup later in the season, when he's back at full strength. Plus, I'm willing to bet that he'll be better playing full tilt for 10 minutes, instead of 70% for longer stretches of minutes.

Carey shifts into the starting point guard role in his place, and is given a green light to attack. Speed is his weapon, and he should be directed to push the ball at every available opportunity to see if the team get get easy scoring opportunities in transition. When the team secures a rebound, players like Battle, Hughes, Brissett, in particular need to be coached to get out and fill a lane. IF a good "take" doesn't manifest, then settle back into the half court offensive set. Carey needs to get into the lane -- he's shown that he can do a lot of damage there, both as a scorer and passer. But he has to do more than just be a conduit in half court sets to swing the ball around the perimeter. More on this later.

Hughes also bumps out of the starting lineup. Not because he's been inadequate, but because the team just seems to perform better with Dolezaj on the floor. Marek is playing starter's minutes anyway -- this just makes it official.

In terms of the lineup, that makes the starters Carey, Battle, Dolezaj, Brissett, and Chukwu. Hughes becomes the first sub off the bench, essentially subbing for four positions [and having the others just shift around] other than Carey. Frank subs for Carey, and Sidibe subs for Chukwu. For now, Boeheim gets parked until he shows a bit more readiness.

Bringing Hughes / a hopefully healing Howard off the bench gives us two guys capable of scoring double figures as reserves. In the event that the team just can't get started, bringing them in could be a shot in the arm. Or, if the team gets off to a fast start, then you roll with it and adjust accordingly on a game-by-game basis.

In terms of offensive sets, I honestly am not seeing the iso stall ball that some seem to complain about every game. I see a team that is running a motion offense, with lots of guys looking to potentially drive. Battle can do it a little, same with Hughes, and same with Brissett. But when those opportunities aren't there, we end up just swinging the ball around the perimeter aimlessly as the shot clock winds down, until somebody has to force. That's not "iso," it's wasting the shot clock and then having to force.

The issue I have with that is not the concept behind what the team is doing. They are moving the ball swiftly, they [on paper] have several shooters, and they have a couple of guys [including forwards] who can put the ball on the floor and create if there's space. The problem is -- THERE ISN'T SPACE most of the time. Why? Because we're playing four out, and sometimes five out if the center is used as a screener, so the defense can sit back and keep the ball outside because they aren't afraid that we're going to burn them from deep. Against Ohio State, that backfired because we shot ~50% from three point range. But against most teams, they're content to let us swing the ball around and shoot 33% from behind the arc -- it plays into their hand.

So what's the antidote... because the other elements are in place for this offense to actually work? Well, the main thing that's lacking is forcing the defense to react, which in turn creates vulnerabilities that can be exploited. This can be accomplished in two ways. One, make an entry pass into the post -- either on a drive or on a feed. Obviously, Chukwu isn't a guy we can force the ball into a la Rak, but look at how different things were in the second half against Georgetown, when we got the ball inside a couple of times off of forcing defensive movement -- Chukwu scored 8 points and had a couple of key buckets when defenders were out of position. So, whether off of a drive or an entry pass, the ball has to go inside, and force the defense to react to it. I also wonder if Brissett could be "this guy" on offense for us. He seems better suited for it anyway than Chukwu, despite the inefficieny finishing inside.

Another wrinkle would be to do what teams consistently look to do against us -- get the ball to the foul line extended. THIS might be what would work best for our team, as we have several people who could do damage there. Brissett. Dolezaj. Battle. Hughes. Hell, ODU used a 6-4 guy there, and that guy could turn and face up for a mid-range jumper, or take the ball into the paint and pass it to open spots when the defense collapsed. We could certainly emulate that same style with someone like Battle or Hughes or Brissett.

Why would this be effective? Because it would force the defense to react. And when that happens, space opens up, and it would be up to that facilitator / play maker to make the correct read. If the shot is there, take it. If the baseline opens up, then deliver the ball for a baseline three or someone cutting. And if the center comes out to challenge, then dump the ball down to the big. Of if guards dump down to follow the ball to the free throw line, then kick it back up top for a wide open three [like teams consistently do against us]. We have the right personnel to run this type of set and do damage -- no matter which player ends up being in that facilitator role.

The difference between our sets now is that swinging it around the perimeter makes it easy for defenses to defend us and force long shots. Getting the ball down low or at the free throw line extended forces the defense to make a choice. Watch how UVa plays against us -- heck, watch most college teams, and you'll see that there is a constant probing of what the defense will do. Again, we've got the personnel to make this work and thrive doing it. This wouldn't be a fundamental change, it would just be a nuance that the team could be coached to do.

I'm reminded of something an old coach once told me during a losing streak, about how when things seem bleak, you need to focus on execution and let things take care of themselves. The offense has potential, it just needs to be tweaked to put our players in the best chance to succeed and score more points. And the only way to do that is to [1] get out in transition and actively seek easy scoring opportunities, and [2] by adjusting the offense slightly to put more pressure on opposing defenses.

My two cents.
 

OttoinGrotto

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The thing that bothers me about our offense is how often the set seems designed to get the ball to a player, or even multiple players during the set, in a position where there's nothing they can do with the ball immediately after catching the pass.

So often we pass it out to a guy on the perimeter who catches it with their back to the basket. We're talking old school fundamentals here, but they're not in a triple threat position, they're in a zero threat position. Yeah, we moved the ball, but in a way that put NO pressure on the defense. The defender has time to catch up to the play, because our offensive player doesn't present any instant danger. They're going to have to gather and face, and the time it takes to do that removes nearly all of the advantage of whatever action rubbed them free.

I love JB, but... it's lazy offense. Our team just doesn't appear to work very hard to put our players in position where they have an advantage offensively.
 

newmexicuse

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Very thoughtful good post, but i do not see your suggestions as game changers. Basically it is tweedle dee and tweedle dum. The only move a see that will really change the concept of what we are doing and open things up, is to move Brissett to the 5, Ty to the three, and start Howard and carey.

Oshae needs something to get him going, starting him closer to the basket might do that. It also might help his rebounding which has tailed off. He is the only player we have who has the potential to be a real inside threat.

In terms of D, yes, this will hurt our interior d, but hopefully that will be offset by having a quicker lineup to help our three point D.

It leaves marek to sub the forwards, and we still have chuk if we need to step up interior d. When Marek comes in Ty can go back to guard to rest Frank or john. Ty plays 40 minutes anyways.
 

OrangeDW

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There’s no cutting with a purpose. Everything seems to be a go through the motions. No urgency until we are in dire straights. Sick of it.

Agreed. It’s a horrific watch.

I really thought it would be better this year with some depth, the additions of Hughes and Carey, and Sidibe providing us with at least a bit of low post scoring. Thought we’d get out and run a bit too.

Lol.
 
B

Brooky03

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Stop playing our centers. They're not helping us much on defense, very little on the glass, and not at all on offense. Their contributions are almost always a net negative. Play Marek and deal with the easy shots in the lane that teams are getting against our real centers anyway.

Play Carey more. If that means taking Frank out more often/longer or playing a smaller lineup, just do it. He's the only player on this team right now with an obvious NBA skillset. Lucky for us, he's an undersized SG so we might get to see him in Orange a lot longer than if he were an inch or 2 taller. He's the only guy who can dribble a darn basketball proficiently.

Press more. Shorter rotations with all-out, gamble for turnovers, pressure. This team is not going to be good offensively at a slow pace, medium pace, or fast pace. We just don't have the offensive talent. So the team should hang its hat on defense, which has been lackluster so far. Get the players committed to playing 'balls to the wall' while they're on the court and sub them out as soon as they start sucking wind. We have the depth to pull this off.
 

leftytg

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dribble dribble dribble dribble pass to wing.
dribble dribble jab step dribble pass back to top of the circle.
dribble dribble dribble pass to other wing.
dribble dribble dribble jab step back back to top of the circle
dribble dribble dribble crossover one step jump shot one foot inside the 3 point arc.
clang.

The above describes about a third of the offensive possessions. It's awful and stagnant and the results are no surprise. It's like the whole team is trying to conserve energy on the offensive end.

Every time Howard jacks up a pull up jumper from just inside the 3 point line with 18 seconds left on the shot clock I want to scream. That is 100% of the time bad offense, even on the rare times it actually goes in.
 

cliftonparksufan

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dribble dribble dribble dribble pass to wing.
dribble dribble jab step dribble pass back to top of the circle.
dribble dribble dribble pass to other wing.
dribble dribble dribble jab step back back to top of the circle
dribble dribble dribble crossover one step jump shot one foot inside the 3 point arc.
clang.

The above describes about a third of the offensive possessions. It's awful and stagnant and the results are no surprise. It's like the whole team is trying to conserve energy on the offensive end.

Every time Howard jacks up a pull up jumper from just inside the 3 point line with 18 seconds left on the shot clock I want to scream. That is 100% of the time bad offense, even on the rare times it actually goes in.
To think some of the best offenses don't even dribble unless it's a drive and dish.
 

cliftonparksufan

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I usually avoid the forum after a loss, as the knee jerk reactions are often as unpleasant as the loss itself. I'm actually pleased to see that things are fairly tame today.

Given how the season has unfolded, its been apparent that the injuries prevented the team from gelling properly in the preseason, and given Frank's lack of mobility, he's hurting us out there and making our offensive struggles worse.

Two years ago, we struggled immensely in the preseason portion of our schedule -- then got a lot more competitive [including beating three top 10 teams] after making some lineup changes. There are a couple that need to happen now, given the execution we're seeing on offense.

First, with all due respect to a veteran like Frank [who is one of my favorite players on the team -- full disclosure], it is time for him to sit until he's physically recovered. Please note, that doesn't mean that he shouldn't play -- but he needs to come off of the bench as a stabilizing factor, instead of going through the motions when he's physically impaired. This might seem harsh [especially given the way I've been rah-rah about this kid in the past], but this is an opportunity for Frank to show leadership, and he might be able to earn his way back into the lineup later in the season, when he's back at full strength. Plus, I'm willing to bet that he'll be better playing full tilt for 10 minutes, instead of 70% for longer stretches of minutes.

Carey shifts into the starting point guard role in his place, and is given a green light to attack. Speed is his weapon, and he should be directed to push the ball at every available opportunity to see if the team get get easy scoring opportunities in transition. When the team secures a rebound, players like Battle, Hughes, Brissett, in particular need to be coached to get out and fill a lane. IF a good "take" doesn't manifest, then settle back into the half court offensive set. Carey needs to get into the lane -- he's shown that he can do a lot of damage there, both as a scorer and passer. But he has to do more than just be a conduit in half court sets to swing the ball around the perimeter. More on this later.

Hughes also bumps out of the starting lineup. Not because he's been inadequate, but because the team just seems to perform better with Dolezaj on the floor. Marek is playing starter's minutes anyway -- this just makes it official.

In terms of the lineup, that makes the starters Carey, Battle, Dolezaj, Brissett, and Chukwu. Hughes becomes the first sub off the bench, essentially subbing for four positions [and having the others just shift around] other than Carey. Frank subs for Carey, and Sidibe subs for Chukwu. For now, Boeheim gets parked until he shows a bit more readiness.

Bringing Hughes / a hopefully healing Howard off the bench gives us two guys capable of scoring double figures as reserves. In the event that the team just can't get started, bringing them in could be a shot in the arm. Or, if the team gets off to a fast start, then you roll with it and adjust accordingly on a game-by-game basis.

In terms of offensive sets, I honestly am not seeing the iso stall ball that some seem to complain about every game. I see a team that is running a motion offense, with lots of guys looking to potentially drive. Battle can do it a little, same with Hughes, and same with Brissett. But when those opportunities aren't there, we end up just swinging the ball around the perimeter aimlessly as the shot clock winds down, until somebody has to force. That's not "iso," it's wasting the shot clock and then having to force.

The issue I have with that is not the concept behind what the team is doing. They are moving the ball swiftly, they [on paper] have several shooters, and they have a couple of guys [including forwards] who can put the ball on the floor and create if there's space. The problem is -- THERE ISN'T SPACE most of the time. Why? Because we're playing four out, and sometimes five out if the center is used as a screener, so the defense can sit back and keep the ball outside because they aren't afraid that we're going to burn them from deep. Against Ohio State, that backfired because we shot ~50% from three point range. But against most teams, they're content to let us swing the ball around and shoot 33% from behind the arc -- it plays into their hand.

So what's the antidote... because the other elements are in place for this offense to actually work? Well, the main thing that's lacking is forcing the defense to react, which in turn creates vulnerabilities that can be exploited. This can be accomplished in two ways. One, make an entry pass into the post -- either on a drive or on a feed. Obviously, Chukwu isn't a guy we can force the ball into a la Rak, but look at how different things were in the second half against Georgetown, when we got the ball inside a couple of times off of forcing defensive movement -- Chukwu scored 8 points and had a couple of key buckets when defenders were out of position. So, whether off of a drive or an entry pass, the ball has to go inside, and force the defense to react to it. I also wonder if Brissett could be "this guy" on offense for us. He seems better suited for it anyway than Chukwu, despite the inefficieny finishing inside.

Another wrinkle would be to do what teams consistently look to do against us -- get the ball to the foul line extended. THIS might be what would work best for our team, as we have several people who could do damage there. Brissett. Dolezaj. Battle. Hughes. Hell, ODU used a 6-4 guy there, and that guy could turn and face up for a mid-range jumper, or take the ball into the paint and pass it to open spots when the defense collapsed. We could certainly emulate that same style with someone like Battle or Hughes or Brissett.

Why would this be effective? Because it would force the defense to react. And when that happens, space opens up, and it would be up to that facilitator / play maker to make the correct read. If the shot is there, take it. If the baseline opens up, then deliver the ball for a baseline three or someone cutting. And if the center comes out to challenge, then dump the ball down to the big. Of if guards dump down to follow the ball to the free throw line, then kick it back up top for a wide open three [like teams consistently do against us]. We have the right personnel to run this type of set and do damage -- no matter which player ends up being in that facilitator role.

The difference between our sets now is that swinging it around the perimeter makes it easy for defenses to defend us and force long shots. Getting the ball down low or at the free throw line extended forces the defense to make a choice. Watch how UVa plays against us -- heck, watch most college teams, and you'll see that there is a constant probing of what the defense will do. Again, we've got the personnel to make this work and thrive doing it. This wouldn't be a fundamental change, it would just be a nuance that the team could be coached to do.

I'm reminded of something an old coach once told me during a losing streak, about how when things seem bleak, you need to focus on execution and let things take care of themselves. The offense has potential, it just needs to be tweaked to put our players in the best chance to succeed and score more points. And the only way to do that is to [1] get out in transition and actively seek easy scoring opportunities, and [2] by adjusting the offense slightly to put more pressure on opposing defenses.

My two cents.
Thanks. I know you hit on our defense a little bit but weren't't most people expecting us to be more agressive on defense using our depth and thus speeding up the game for our offense. Was it the injuries that prevented this to happen or just the lack of opportunities from made baskets. Also I saw this team score 50 points in the 2nd half so I know it's capable.
 

kingtidge

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Agreed. It’s a horrific watch.

I really thought it would be better this year with some depth, the additions of Hughes and Carey, and Sidibe providing us with at least a bit of low post scoring. Thought we’d get out and run a bit too.

Lol.

It's remedial...

Like a combination of lazy, poor game IQ and lack of skill.

The team has regressed measureably since end of last season. Still early enough to turn it around, but shocking part is how bad they look. This was supposed to be a dark horse final 4 team?? LOL! I drank that kool aid before the season and wanted to believe, TBH. Unfortunately, the lead balloon has crashed to earth in a heap. The way things are, it will be another nail biter on the bubble at best. It could also be a lot worse.

Chukwu looks like a freshman project big... Any growth he had last year is gone. Bad timing on defense and not jumping for rebounds with no sense of timing... Hand eye coordination horrible and hands like paddles.

Sidibe, supposed to be better offensively...but plays no measurable defense whatsoever... Massive liability in the defensive half court set.

I sure as hell hope JB is already working the JUCO circuit for a competent big for next year. Our inability in the low post is strangling. It's been a glaring need for years now, so I am not holding my breath.

Brissett - the biggest head scratcher... Thought he'd have a breakout season and get on the NBA draft board... He seems to have lost almost all his ability to drive the basket and finish and get putbacks in the paint. That should be his bread and butter. Seems all he's done is work on his perimeter jumper, as if that is all he needs to go pro... Absolutely baffling.

Battle looks good but is being held back by the ineptitude around him, assuredly. The lazy pass around offense is maddening.Our ISO plays are slow and late and our players won't take on their man in those sets and opt to pass back around the horn until someone gets stuck settling for a 3 or long range jumper off the dribble.

It's one dimensional and painful to watch.

Any team that can stifle our transition game has a puncher's chance to take us down currently, unless we drain treys. Our half court sets are that abysmal.

JB has his work cut out for him. This team collectively plays at less than the sum of their parts... And the coach has to own that.
 
Last edited:

SoBeCuse

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Good post RF.

Do you really think these guys are good passers collectively though? JB basically concedes that we don’t need to pass and get assists from this so called ‘motion’/dribble-drive offense against M2M. I think passes or at least PRODUCTIVE passes mostly happen as a last resort when things discombobulate, break down, a guy picks up his dribble, etc. It also seems like they waste a lot of time with the dribble and or those passes need to happen much quicker. These are systemic issues/flaws by now it seems. We’ll see. It’s becoming really hard to watch.
 

Col. Bleep

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I'm sorry.
I know it's wrong because the analysis is well done and sincere.
But when I saw the idea that the Orange should expand their offensive sets I admit it.
I laughed out loud.
And not because it shouldn't happen.
Just because it won't.

And I don't believe anyone even mentioned the hopeless interior passes aimed to the center under the hoop.
Even when there are 2 or 3 opponents nearby.

A leopard doesn't change its spots.
Especially one that's been prowling the jungle for 43 years.
 

rrlbees

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dribble dribble dribble dribble pass to wing.
dribble dribble jab step dribble pass back to top of the circle.
dribble dribble dribble pass to other wing.
dribble dribble dribble jab step back back to top of the circle
dribble dribble dribble crossover one step jump shot one foot inside the 3 point arc.
clang.

The above describes about a third of the offensive possessions. It's awful and stagnant and the results are no surprise. It's like the whole team is trying to conserve energy on the offensive end.

Every time Howard jacks up a pull up jumper from just inside the 3 point line with 18 seconds left on the shot clock I want to scream. That is 100% of the time bad offense, even on the rare times it actually goes in.

Hot take
 

Col. Bleep

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dribble dribble dribble dribble pass to wing.
dribble dribble jab step dribble pass back to top of the circle.
dribble dribble dribble pass to other wing.
dribble dribble dribble jab step back back to top of the circle
dribble dribble dribble crossover one step jump shot one foot inside the 3 point arc.
clang.
Beautiful and unfortunately accurate.
Although you did leave out the pointless top of the key screen by the center that goes nowhere.
 

SoBeCuse

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Not true... We seem capable of getting the occasional moving pick violation with that! That goes somewhere - turnover!

Abandon the ones with Marek setting them! Plus I worry he’s going to get hurt on some of them. I bet he is too!
 

rrlbees

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Take off the orange bifocals for a change. It’s sadly pretty accurate the ‘set’ mocking descriptor post.

Not accurate at all.
 

pearl31

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Take off the orange bifocals for a change. It’s sadly pretty accurate the ‘set’ mocking descriptor post.
everyone get yerself a pair of the sobe crystal-clear specs y'all!!
 

rrlbees

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I usually avoid the forum after a loss, as the knee jerk reactions are often as unpleasant as the loss itself. I'm actually pleased to see that things are fairly tame today.

Given how the season has unfolded, its been apparent that the injuries prevented the team from gelling properly in the preseason, and given Frank's lack of mobility, he's hurting us out there and making our offensive struggles worse.

Two years ago, we struggled immensely in the preseason portion of our schedule -- then got a lot more competitive [including beating three top 10 teams] after making some lineup changes. There are a couple that need to happen now, given the execution we're seeing on offense.

First, with all due respect to a veteran like Frank [who is one of my favorite players on the team -- full disclosure], it is time for him to sit until he's physically recovered. Please note, that doesn't mean that he shouldn't play -- but he needs to come off of the bench as a stabilizing factor, instead of going through the motions when he's physically impaired. This might seem harsh [especially given the way I've been rah-rah about this kid in the past], but this is an opportunity for Frank to show leadership, and he might be able to earn his way back into the lineup later in the season, when he's back at full strength. Plus, I'm willing to bet that he'll be better playing full tilt for 10 minutes, instead of 70% for longer stretches of minutes.

Carey shifts into the starting point guard role in his place, and is given a green light to attack. Speed is his weapon, and he should be directed to push the ball at every available opportunity to see if the team get get easy scoring opportunities in transition. When the team secures a rebound, players like Battle, Hughes, Brissett, in particular need to be coached to get out and fill a lane. IF a good "take" doesn't manifest, then settle back into the half court offensive set. Carey needs to get into the lane -- he's shown that he can do a lot of damage there, both as a scorer and passer. But he has to do more than just be a conduit in half court sets to swing the ball around the perimeter. More on this later.

Hughes also bumps out of the starting lineup. Not because he's been inadequate, but because the team just seems to perform better with Dolezaj on the floor. Marek is playing starter's minutes anyway -- this just makes it official.

In terms of the lineup, that makes the starters Carey, Battle, Dolezaj, Brissett, and Chukwu. Hughes becomes the first sub off the bench, essentially subbing for four positions [and having the others just shift around] other than Carey. Frank subs for Carey, and Sidibe subs for Chukwu. For now, Boeheim gets parked until he shows a bit more readiness.

Bringing Hughes / a hopefully healing Howard off the bench gives us two guys capable of scoring double figures as reserves. In the event that the team just can't get started, bringing them in could be a shot in the arm. Or, if the team gets off to a fast start, then you roll with it and adjust accordingly on a game-by-game basis.

In terms of offensive sets, I honestly am not seeing the iso stall ball that some seem to complain about every game. I see a team that is running a motion offense, with lots of guys looking to potentially drive. Battle can do it a little, same with Hughes, and same with Brissett. But when those opportunities aren't there, we end up just swinging the ball around the perimeter aimlessly as the shot clock winds down, until somebody has to force. That's not "iso," it's wasting the shot clock and then having to force.

The issue I have with that is not the concept behind what the team is doing. They are moving the ball swiftly, they [on paper] have several shooters, and they have a couple of guys [including forwards] who can put the ball on the floor and create if there's space. The problem is -- THERE ISN'T SPACE most of the time. Why? Because we're playing four out, and sometimes five out if the center is used as a screener, so the defense can sit back and keep the ball outside because they aren't afraid that we're going to burn them from deep. Against Ohio State, that backfired because we shot ~50% from three point range. But against most teams, they're content to let us swing the ball around and shoot 33% from behind the arc -- it plays into their hand.

So what's the antidote... because the other elements are in place for this offense to actually work? Well, the main thing that's lacking is forcing the defense to react, which in turn creates vulnerabilities that can be exploited. This can be accomplished in two ways. One, make an entry pass into the post -- either on a drive or on a feed. Obviously, Chukwu isn't a guy we can force the ball into a la Rak, but look at how different things were in the second half against Georgetown, when we got the ball inside a couple of times off of forcing defensive movement -- Chukwu scored 8 points and had a couple of key buckets when defenders were out of position. So, whether off of a drive or an entry pass, the ball has to go inside, and force the defense to react to it. I also wonder if Brissett could be "this guy" on offense for us. He seems better suited for it anyway than Chukwu, despite the inefficieny finishing inside.

Another wrinkle would be to do what teams consistently look to do against us -- get the ball to the foul line extended. THIS might be what would work best for our team, as we have several people who could do damage there. Brissett. Dolezaj. Battle. Hughes. Hell, ODU used a 6-4 guy there, and that guy could turn and face up for a mid-range jumper, or take the ball into the paint and pass it to open spots when the defense collapsed. We could certainly emulate that same style with someone like Battle or Hughes or Brissett.

Why would this be effective? Because it would force the defense to react. And when that happens, space opens up, and it would be up to that facilitator / play maker to make the correct read. If the shot is there, take it. If the baseline opens up, then deliver the ball for a baseline three or someone cutting. And if the center comes out to challenge, then dump the ball down to the big. Of if guards dump down to follow the ball to the free throw line, then kick it back up top for a wide open three [like teams consistently do against us]. We have the right personnel to run this type of set and do damage -- no matter which player ends up being in that facilitator role.

The difference between our sets now is that swinging it around the perimeter makes it easy for defenses to defend us and force long shots. Getting the ball down low or at the free throw line extended forces the defense to make a choice. Watch how UVa plays against us -- heck, watch most college teams, and you'll see that there is a constant probing of what the defense will do. Again, we've got the personnel to make this work and thrive doing it. This wouldn't be a fundamental change, it would just be a nuance that the team could be coached to do.

I'm reminded of something an old coach once told me during a losing streak, about how when things seem bleak, you need to focus on execution and let things take care of themselves. The offense has potential, it just needs to be tweaked to put our players in the best chance to succeed and score more points. And the only way to do that is to [1] get out in transition and actively seek easy scoring opportunities, and [2] by adjusting the offense slightly to put more pressure on opposing defenses.

My two cents.

No disrespect RF but I have a couple disagreements.

One, the lineup won’t change for changes sake in hopes of improving something. A couple years ago we made changes for a couple of reasons. First, one player was clearly playing out of position. So we made that move. We don’t have any starters playing out of position. Second, in splitting time, a backup was clearly playing better than the starter, so that move was made. We don’t have any backup playing better than a starter right now.

Two, pushing the ball more would require a change to our defensive philosophy with this set of players. We would need to have the guards break after a shot and look for an outlet pass. We play it safer and don’t gamble a lot with that because we don’t dominate the boards. We typically send 1 guard to the boards and the other hangs around the foul line or extended for the long rebound. It’s also displayed by the fact we more often than not have the guard on ball side come back to the rebounder/ball to get it in their hands. Thus when we run or push the ball it’s usually after a steal, turnover, or long rebound.
 

CuseFaninVT

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No disrespect RF but I have a couple disagreements.

One, the lineup won’t change for changes sake in hopes of improving something. A couple years ago we made changes for a couple of reasons. First, one player was clearly playing out of position. So we made that move. We don’t have any starters playing out of position. Second, in splitting time, a backup was clearly playing better than the starter, so that move was made. We don’t have any backup playing better than a starter right now.

Two, pushing the ball more would require a change to our defensive philosophy with this set of players. We would need to have the guards break after a shot and look for an outlet pass. We play it safer and don’t gamble a lot with that because we don’t dominate the boards. We typically send 1 guard to the boards and the other hangs around the foul line or extended for the long rebound. It’s also displayed by the fact we more often than not have the guard on ball side come back to the rebounder/ball to get it in their hands. Thus when we run or push the ball it’s usually after a steal, turnover, or long rebound.
JB also doesn't trust chewy or Sid to successfully make an outlet pass.
 

Alsacs

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RF and Coach Orange provide the best analysis of the team.
I hope the offense improves. As another bubble season will suck but I am expecting little to change other than hopefully Frank gets healthier and we our 3’s fall.
If we make shots we can win road games.
This team isn’t a NC contender though and that was the preseason hype. Even with a healthy Frank and Carey this isn’t a NC contender.
 

SoBeCuse

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JB also doesn't trust chewy or Sid to successfully make an outlet pass.

Possible. Run after a made basket. Change pace somehow. Do something. Frank isn’t that type but I see Kansas and other teams off a miss have their PG come back to the Centers, receive a handoff or whatever from them with their momentum heading up the court and go. Get moving! Jalen could do this.
 

NorSyr66

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Good post RF2044...In another thread I posted a different lineup change but its weakness was "no rebounding". I can see your suggestions as another place to start. The one thing many of us out here agree on is CHANGE SOMETHING. No way we can continue to play on with out changes. A message has to be delivered to the team that what is currently happening must change. We both agree that Carey and Dolezaj need to be added to the starting unit. Having said all this, I need to stop sounding like I know what is best and let the coaches address the current situation. Hopefully they at least recognize their is a problem. Please take some, any steps to try and fix it. Even steps that fail do not put us any worse off. At least something different was tried.
 

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