Ask yourself, do I feel lucky?
- Sep 19, 2011
"The guard play…I can’t even ….I try not to talk about it." And he also said John doesn't know what we do. So Frank should be showing him how, as I'm sure he's tried, and Hop, Red and GMac have already spent how many hours showing them how to run the offense in practice? I think it is more than execution, want-to and know-how, I go back to that elusive chemistry element that is obviously missing. Down time around the holidays could help with that, let's hope so.Jim Boeheim’s radio show is on Thursdays from 7-8 or 9PM on ESPN Radio in Syracuse, which is AM1200 or FM 97.7 on the dial. The show originates from the Cavalier Room at the Marriott in Downtown Syracuse. The first hour, hosted by Matt Park, the Voice of the Orange, is on their general network. The second hour, which begins with the conference season, is hosted by Gomez, a local radio personality.
You can call into the show locally at 315-424-8599 or nationally at 1-888-746-2873. For Gomez’s portion, use 315-424-8599. Or you can submit questions from this page:
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Or on Twitter at mattpark1 or “askBoeheim”.
The show can be heard in Syracuse on FM 99.5. It’s sometime simulcast on AM 1200 or FM 97.7. You can also get it on: WGVA
I will be posting my rough transcript the night of the broadcast focusing on my questions, the team and their last and next games and then a second post the next day on other things that were discussed.
“Coach, this week we’ve played the team Jeff Sagarin ranks as the 150th best team in the country and beaten them by 48 points and the team Sagarin ranks as #138 and lost to them by 33 points. One difference between those teams is that Eastern Michigan plays zone and St. John’s plays man for man. Why does this seem to be a different team vs. man for man than it is vs. a zone? “
(I have, in some instances, put together statements from different parts of the broadcast on the same subject. In recent years they have started out doing one hour shows and then shifted to two hour shows in January. When they do two hour shows. I will do two posts: one on the night of the broadcast on the issues directly relating to the team on the other the next days on other things that were talked about.)
(It’s still an hour show at this point.)
Coach started out saying “There’s nothing to talk about” and then spent the next several minutes talking about it. “It’s as bad as it can get in all aspects….We’ll talk it over. It will do alit good to get away from the game for a while….. We can’t seem to find consistency. Tyler Lydon has come on real good. Taurean Thompson is doing all you can ask of a freshman. Andrew White is in positon sometimes. We’re getting nothing from anyone else. …We missed 5 straight lay-ups in the second half….Some of the new guys are the problem and some older guys….We’ve played well at times. We had a 10 point lead on Connecticut. We were a couple of plays away against Georgetown. …It’s not fun….We had turnovers in open court situations. We are losing balls underneath the basket. We missed or had blocked 6-7 lay-ups. We tipped rebounds around. We couldn’t finish plays. …We’ve never played on this level of basketball. …The players are upset but that doesn’t win games. Doing something about it wins games. …basketball is a game of adjustments, little adjustments. But we aren’t able to make them….We will play Cornell and then have 4-5 days of practice….It’s not going to turn around unless we make it turn around. “
Matt said it’s a good thing the team has a few days off before Christmas. JB: We try to arrange the schedule so we are off after the 21st and back on the 27th or 28th to give us a couple of days of practice before the next game.”
I called in my question and coach was in total agreement that this is a different team against a zone than against and man for man and that we aren’t likely to see any more zones. “We have good stand still shooters. If you move the ball against a zone you will get open shots. We are not good against a man for man. I wouldn’t play zone against us. I don’t expect to see it….Our point guards get by the defense but don’t finish. We need to set screens for Andrew but we panic and try to run through things instead of running the offense….We rebounded pretty well in the second half….We aren’t able to defend the back of the press. We’re not good enough at the pick and roll. We’ll run if we get an opportunity but I don’t think we can go up and down….People are making us play defense and we need to make them play defense. ” I told him I hope those 4-5 days of practice would help. He said “I hope so”.
I also told him the true fans would keep rooting for the team. He said “I’m not upset with the fans. I don’t blame them for being upset with the team the way we played.”
Liam from Pompey called in. He noted that Jim “hammered on the refs” and wanted his thought son the officials. JB: “We got some bad calls early. I talked to the officials about it and it didn’t matter. Once we started playing so badly, it doesn’t help to talk to the officials. “
Back to his description of the game: We were aggressive on the boards and got inside in the second half. I tried to tweak the defense but we couldn’t get in positon and gave up four straight lay-ups. We left three point shooters open. We didn’t get fast break points – but then we didn’t get them last year.”
Our next opponent, Cornell, is only 2-8 but they can score- 84 points in their last game, (an 84-92 loss to Troy). They were ahead of USC by 10 points, (a 67-79 losss0> They have good shooters and guard play and are much improved over last year.
After that comes Boston College in the first ACC game. Matt said that they were a team that we might normally have “taken lightly”. Jim jumped on that, saying that “We aren’t thinking of taking anyone lightly.”
They talked about Grayson Allen, who has been suspended indefinitely by Coach K. JB: “I don’t know him but he seem3d very repentant. He’s different from Draymond Green, who doesn’t think he’s wrong. crazy things happen in the heat of battle. “ They talked about the eight McDonald’s All-Americans on the Duke roster. “It’s hard to get time for 8 really good players. Most teams have 1-2 really good guys and 6 other guys.”
Rob in Syracuse wondered what it will take to get this group of Syracuse players to mesh. JB: “It’s never bene like this. Normally you have 1 new guy (to work into your rotation)0. 2 is a lot. 4 is really a lot to try to fit in….it hasn’t been a good fit. In college basketball it all starts in the backcourt. Tyus Battle is a freshmen. Frank Howard is really in his first year. John Gillon doesn’t understand how we play. Frank and John know they haven’t played well. We need better guard play and more form our two seniors. We need them to play better – quickly.
Pat in Syracuse called in and pressed the wrong button. Frist he gave some personal history: his first ever game was pearl against “the Admiral”, David Robinson, (the win in the Carrier Classic or the loss in the NCAAs?). “This was one of my worst ever experiences. It was a nightmare. But once the game is over, whether you lose by 1 or 31, it’s just one game and it’s over.”
Then Pat said “It’s obvious we have a lot of talent
JB: “It’s not obvious to me. You’re going by pre-season predictions – including mine. You need to watch the games and ask yourself: Do you see a lot of talent?”
Pat: (after a pause) “I see a lot of confused souls.”
JB: “They know what they want to do. They haven’t bene able to do what they needed to do. They haven’t shown that they have talent. Lydon, Thompson and Andrew White have show talent in certain areas. The other guys…we need to bring that out. Our defense has been in and out. Last night was the worst since DePaul. We won the Big East Tournament the next week. We also got beat by 25 by Seton hall and went on to have a good year. (2011: we started 18-0 and then lost to Pittsburgh, Villanova, Seton Hall by 68-90 and then Marquette on the way to a 27-8 record and another loss to Marquette in the Round of 32.) This team has not shown they can be a good team.“
Pat: We didn’t’ want to recruit the St. John’s players and they beat us.
JB: People say St. John’s hasn’t beaten anybody. Well, neither have we and until we do I don’t see the talent we are supposed to have here. It’s not confusion- it’s a lack of execution.”
Matt said that the problem isn’t selfish players. JB: Everybody wants to score and to play well. Andrew is supposed to shoot and we told John to drive to the basket because we have no low post game. There’s no question we are not the team we thought we were. The guard play…I can’t even ….I try not to talk about it. But it is what it is.
Later Jim came back to this subject and said “regarding Pat’s point, we may have talent but are not playing up to it” (I suspect that was Pat’s point.) “We’ve bene trying to tweak it. We’ve made more changes in 12 games than we have in years. We’re trying to play better. I can name ten guys – like Scoop Jardine or Andy Rautins- who were not ready as freshmen or sophomores (and had good careers) Unless you are a top ten player, it’s hard- and some of them have problems. Duke has that one guy who is averaging 22 points now but was 0 for 10 against us last year. (Luke Kennard- it was 0 for 9 and he’s averaging 20.4). It takes a year. We will get better...Things can turn around. They did last year. We had a very tough schedule last year, especially on the road: We played Georgetown and St. John’s on the road. We played Pittsburgh, Duke, Virginia Louisville, North Carolina and Florida State on the road. We hung in every game.”
Matt said goodbye to Jim at 7:56 and, after break, had to fill the last couple of minutes. Jim is usually there to the end of the show and is often talking as the closing music starts. I don’t know why he left the show a bit earlier than usual. He didn’t seem upset but he’s clearly frustrated by the way things are going this year.