The New Guys

SWC75

Bored Historian
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
24,286
Like
43,803
I was exposed to covid and now I'm stuck in quarantine with tons of time on my hands. Luckily we've got a lot of new players and I don't know enough about basketball to make judgements about how good someone is from highlight clips. I really need to watch whole games to form an educated opinion. So I went ahead and watched a ton of games. Here are my opinions. Hopefully you get some entertainment out of my boredom.

Benny Williams 6'9 190 (according to his coach) Height/weight always seems to be a guessing game, but he looks all of 6'9 to me so lets go with it.

The best skill he brings to the table is his jump shot. Its as smooth as any I've seen, and he makes shots at as high a percentage as I've ever seen a high school kid make.

The second best skill he brings to the table is his shot blocking. He's tall, he's long, and he jumps out of the gym. He is a top notch rim protector.

The numbers I found for him (understanding that high school numbers are generally very unreliable) are 14ppg 6rpg 3apg 1.5 bpg. You might not think that sounds like much for a 5 star recruit, but you have to understand his situation. He plays for the basketball factory IMG. Not on their regular varsity team. He plays on their post grad team, which is a bunch of college age kids with college talent. They go around playing other basketball factories and they DEMOLISH them. I watched 7 of their games and no team was within 20 of them by half time. In all 7 games the coach removed all the starters at half time, and played back ups the rest of the way. The point here is, those numbers are being put up in only 13 or 14 minutes of playing time ... I'll let you extrapolate what his per 40 numbers might be. I saved the best stat for last because its the hardest to swallow. According to the site I found, he's shooting 70% from the field and 50% from 3. I know, those are video game numbers. Is it accurate? Maybe and maybe not. I can tell you from the 7 games I watched (which were all blowouts against inferior competition), his shooting numbers seemed right around there. Maybe even better. The kid hardly misses. He's not a huge part of the offense, mind you (nobody dominates the ball for them). He hangs out near the 3 point line and waits for someone to feed him. When they do he usually takes and makes a 3. Sometimes he drives to the basket and finishes. I saw maybe three Michel Jordan-esk turn around jumpers. Not much of a sample size to be sure, but he made them all, and if that is any kind of a reliable weapon, there isn't a college defender capable of bothering him when he takes it.

Lets talk about weaknesses now. The only one is his youth. He's got NBA size, NBA skill, NBA athleticism. Barring injury, he's going to be playing in the NBA the minute he puts on about 20 more pounds of muscle. The only questions are, is he going to be a good NBA player or a mediocre NBA player, and how long is it going to take him to get there? The faster college game affects all freshmen differently. If Benny struggles he won't be the first five star to do so. But, I think the odds are pretty good that he comes in and gives us great shooting while also contributing ball handling and passing, with the defense and rebounding that come around once he learns the zone There really isn't anything he can't do, but of all his attributes I'm probably most excited about his shot blocking. He and Edwards together have the potential to turn back a lot of shots ... pair them with a 6'8 or 6'9 'small' forward, and our zone will look intimidating.

Cole Swider 6'9 225

Best skill he brings to the table, a sweet jump shot.
Second best skill he brings to the table, a very solid post up game.

Cole averages about 20 mpg and 6ppg on a very talented Villanova team that was a top 10 team until their point guard got hurt, and even then made the sweet 16 and gave Baylor their toughest game of the tournament. From what I can see Cole is a very good player that doesn't fit into Villanova's style very will, but still plays just below starters minutes because he's too good to sit. On D, Nova switches on every screen. They want guards tough enough to cover big guys, and big guys quick enough to cover guards. They don't want to have any mismatches when they switch. Unfortunately Cole isn't that kind of guy. When he's matched up against a guard in space its a mismatch. Luckily for us that will never happen playing zone. On offense, Villanova plays mostly 5 out. They run very little motion and do very little screening. They like to have one of their guys beat his man off the dribble and dare the D to leave a player open from 3 to help. It is to Cole's credit that it was rarely his man that left to double team, so he simply didn't get a lot of shots.

In my opinion the best way to use Cole would be to move him around a lot, run pick and pops with him, and run him off screens. Try to get the D to switch into mismatches. Get a guard on him who he can post up, or get a shot blocking center on him so he can take him away from the basket. To me that sounds a lot like how our offense works.

If Cole gets enough minutes, I have very little doubt he will average double figures in scoring. He scores in three ways. Shoot from 3, pump fake one dribble into a mid range pull up, and posting up. He does all three very well. He also can be counted on to make the right pass, and has a solid handle (better than any of our forwards this year).

His weakness is he's not a high flyer, he won't get a ton of blocks, but he's tall, he doesn't mind banging down low, and he goes up for rebounds with two hands and tends to hold on to the balls that come his way. He's going to need to know the zone well to play defense the way we need because he won't be able to make up for mistakes with athleticism, but if he can figure the defense out he will be a very good player.

One other thing of interest to me. I looked at how often Cole played center defensively for Villanova, and the answer is, quite a lot. I'd say about 50% of the time. Could he be a center in a small ball line up for us? He's not going to be the shot blocker Dolezaj was, but he bangs down low better than Dolezaj could, and will probably rebound better. Plus offensively he offers a lot more than Dolezaj ever did because of his ability to pull the opposing center all the way out to the NBA 3 point line. If he does play center it will be like Dolezaj where sometimes he's just not good enough, but the times we can afford to have him there, wow, we would be putting out a great offensive line up.


Symir Torrence 6'3 200

Best skill he brings to the table, speed (both legs and hands)
Second best skill he brings to the table, passing.

Symir began the year as Marquette's starting point guard, and put up good numbers in 2 games before getting banged up, dropping out of the starting line up, and putting up poor offensive stats for the rest of the year. Was he playing hurt? I don't know, but if he was hurt it sure didn't seem like a leg or foot injury, because he really moves quick. Was it possibly a shoulder or elbow injury? Maybe ... his jump shot looked terrible, and he made very few of them despite putting up decent shooting numbers as a freshman.

Marquette has 3 point guards on their team that all play pretty big minutes so a lot of the time Symir was in the game but playing off the ball. This is a terrible way to use a pass first point guard who was struggling with his jump shot, and all the minutes Symir played off the ball were basically zero productivity minutes on offense. When Symir played point he usually made good things happen. Expect Symir to have the ball in his hands 100% of the time with us. On offense he is amazing at getting past his defender and into the lane under control. Remember how Jalen Carey would always blow past his defender, but then be too out of control to make a basketball play when a help defender came? Symir is the opposite of that. He's mastered going just fast enough to keep the defender on his back hip, but not so fast that he can't stop or switch direction when needed. Symir is okay at finishing in traffic, but he's better at drawing help and finding the open man. He's the definition of a pass first point guard. On D, Symir has quick feet and quick hands. He's good at using his length to grab steals when he's out on an island defensively, which I think translates well to playing in our zone. He's also pretty tall for a point guard, and looks pretty long too. I think he will excel in our zone, and also make our press better, not many people are good at both those things, he's one of the few.

I can see why the coaching staff signed Symir quickly. He wants to play for us, he seems like a good kid, and he brings a ton of skills to the table that we need. This feels like a low risk move. If you get excited by lots of points and superstar players, Symir won't thrill you. But if you think Syracuse needs more speed and athleticism, if you want Syracuse to have an excellent defensive option at the top of the zone, and if you want a passer who can help our shooters perform even better, Symir is your guy. Also, for what its worth, I saw a couple games where Marquette was getting pressed, and he handled that nicely too.

Jimmy Boeheim 6'8 215

I wasn't able to find any full Cornell games, so for this one you are going to have to live with my memory of seeing him play in the past rather than recent observations, but I have seen him play 3 or 4 times and I do have a few thoughts.

Best skill he brings to the table, creative finishing around the hoop.
Second best skill he brings to the table, passing.

When people talk about Jimmy, they seem to talk about him as a jump shooter. I get it, he's an ivy league white guy, and his brother is maybe the best shooter in the country. But the truth is Jimmy is far more of a Quincy Guerrier type than he is a Buddy Boeheim type. Both Quincy and Jimmy can hit the 3, but its a small portion of their game. Their bread is buttered slashing to the basket, and posting up. Quincy is more athletic than Jimmy ... but Jimmy is just better at those skills right now. He's got a better handle and he's great at finishing around the basket.

You can go to another post in the Jimmy Boeheim thread and see highlights of a game he scored 25 against Coppin State. If you fast forward that video to the 50 second mark you'll see 4 straight plays where Jimmy drives to the hoop. On each occasion a double team comes immediately, showing that the Coppin State coach saw his driving ability as a major threat. And on each play Jimmy scores despite the double team. Against ACC competition Jimmy won't be able to take it to the basket against double teams and still score, but he won't need to because he's never going to see a double team with shooters like Girard, Buddy, Williams, and Swider around him. Even ACC athletes will have trouble stopping him one on one because he has a great handle and a WIDE variety of methods to get his shot off. What you don't see much of in that Coppin State highlight is Jimmy's post up game. Its top notch, and considering he's going to have lots of time to make moves without needing to worry about help defenders, I think it will be successful here.

The other big thing Jimmy brings to the table is passing. He should replace all the ball handling and passing we lose in Dolezaj. You know that play we ran very successfully the last few years where Hughes, Griffin, or Braswell make a back cut and gets an easy lay up after Dolezaj delivers the ball to them perfectly? Well Cornell runs that play about a hundred times a game. Jimmy absolutely has that pass in his arsenal.

His weakness are a lot like Swiders. He's not a high jumper or a shot blocker. I do think Jimmy is quicker laterally than Cole.

As a whole

When I look at this group I see a lot of basketball skill. A lot of passing, dribbling and shooting. Also a lot of size. I expect Williams and Swider to be 3 point shooters who can go inside from time to time, and I expect Jimmy to give us points in the paint and occasionally shoot a 3. They all seem to have a role to play here.

Awesome write-up, as usual. I don't think I've ever watched an entire game that has already been played. I'm a sucker for highlight film. When I looked at Jimmy vs. Coppin State and Cole's Villanova highlights, (both on You-Tube), it seemed obvious to me that Cole was the better player. He's bigger, played at a faster pace, shot threes like they were lay-ups and was smooth and athletic. Jimmy could do some things but looked like a good Ivy league player. Cole looked like a guy who will wind up in the NBA and a great guy to pair with Benny Williams.

I see the team at this point as three centers, three forwards and three guards, plus whatever Chaz Owens is. I think it will be hard to recruit guys beyond that because I think next year's starting line-up is already in this roster. I think a center or center tandem will emerge from Sidibe, Edwards and Anselem. They may all sit if JB wants to focus on offense and 'go small' against some teams. We may run into the same nepotism criticisms Buddy got early this past season if Jimmy starts or plays too many minutes. I think he should get his minutes backing up Cole and Benny. I continue to think that Girard, the combo guard, should back up the specialists in the backcourt and getting his minutes that way with Torrance at the point and Buddy as the '2'. But JB never did that last year so I won't expect it this year.
 

Orangezoo

Incognito
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
19,993
Like
35,406
OMG! How did I forget Kelly? Apologies. :oops:


So here's the list so far:

bballbeadle
CuseLegacy
cto
Cheriehoop
pacusewife
llandz
Headmaster 9
orangebabe
Zelda Zonk
GonzoinMD
KellySyracuse

That's at least 11. Feel less alone now, bballbeadle? :)
Ok so self imposed sanctions to me for anytime I improperly addressed anyone as male on this list. I knew most but a few I didn't - sorry Zelda/Gonzo
 

richard224

Walk On
Joined
Mar 30, 2021
Messages
15
Like
18
Ah, but you still have not said where this is . . . .

The board is having a little fun with you because I am female. The mistake is easy to make. I am one of only 5 women who post on this board (that I know about).
Haha forgive me! It’s the great Onondaga of course
1619015148264.gif
 

Sgt Cuse

All Conference
Joined
Dec 5, 2011
Messages
2,113
Like
1,939
Awesome write-up, as usual. I don't think I've ever watched an entire game that has already been played. I'm a sucker for highlight film. When I looked at Jimmy vs. Coppin State and Cole's Villanova highlights, (both on You-Tube), it seemed obvious to me that Cole was the better player. He's bigger, played at a faster pace, shot threes like they were lay-ups and was smooth and athletic. Jimmy could do some things but looked like a good Ivy league player. Cole looked like a guy who will wind up in the NBA and a great guy to pair with Benny Williams.

I see the team at this point as three centers, three forwards and three guards, plus whatever Chaz Owens is. I think it will be hard to recruit guys beyond that because I think next year's starting line-up is already in this roster. I think a center or center tandem will emerge from Sidibe, Edwards and Anselem. They may all sit if JB wants to focus on offense and 'go small' against some teams. We may run into the same nepotism criticisms Buddy got early this past season if Jimmy starts or plays too many minutes. I think he should get his minutes backing up Cole and Benny. I continue to think that Girard, the combo guard, should back up the specialists in the backcourt and getting his minutes that way with Torrance at the point and Buddy as the '2'. But JB never did that last year so I won't expect it this year.
SWC - I too thought Cole was the more athletic, quicker player than Jimmy. I found the General seeing it differently surprising as well. I also didn't realize Cole played center.

It will be interesting to see who the offensive center is, and how much it is used next year.

Seems premature to me to be labeling Torrance as the should be starter. He was behind Joe in AAU, had poor numbers at Marquette, and is in his first year with the zone. I think he would be doing well to get up to 10-15 mpg. I don't think he is as good as Kadary, and Kadary didn't deserve to start day 1.
 

All4SU

Living Legend
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
11,005
Like
13,779
I thought he regressed last year, although he played well during the postseason.
I think lots of players experience a sophomore slump as they take on expanded roles. As said above, players usually improve - especially guys who are tough and motivated. I have no doubt we have not seen JG’s best games.
 

CuseFaninVT

Co 2020-21 Iggy Award Winner Hoops Leading RPG
Joined
Feb 27, 2012
Messages
34,211
Like
59,068
Three areas I think Joe needs to and can improve is how he attacks his defender. Neither of these are based on athleticism.

1- Joe needs to speed things up. The moment the defender looks to press him he needs to blow by him even if he has to bring it back out. You don't have to be an elite athlete to get past your man. Joe isn't Jalen Carey out there but he is still fast enough to use a hesitation dribble and make a quick move. I say this as a short guy who was fast always playing against taller better athletes. Just have to find a move or two you can master and go for it. We saw him do this his freshman year at times. I do think CoVid slowed this down. That said he needs to make a habit of this because it will be there as teams will defend the outside shot on him. This is where he can make a play and honestly he is more comfortable on the move than he is stationary unless he is shooting.

2- Face his man up. Joe and in fairness too many guards are too quick to go into protect the ball mode as a ballhandler. This allows the defender to crowd you and force the ball a certain direction. It also means you will require a screen or two every trip to even get room. Joe needs to bring it up and face his man and force the defender to guard him in either direction. This is something another smaller guard in GMac did extremely well. He used a crossover to get space and at times a hesitation dribble too.

3- Joe needs to add the floater back into his arsenal at this level. He is capable and had that in HS. It's the appropriate pairing with growth in the first two areas.

He is still going to run into great defenders who can take things away but right now he is failing to do things that are not athleticism dependent. You then add Symir to the mix whose speed allows him to do both 1/2 well and you get a much more complete offering at PG.

This past year was supposed to be the year Joe had realized College Basketball is quite a bit more difficult than Glen Falls and grown as a player. Between CoVid and even his early success that didn't happen. He seems like a motivated kid who will put in the work to max out his own game. I think he can but this next year is really the telltale.
Wonder if much of this can be put back on the fact Joe, or anyone else, got to play summer ball last year. That and the loss of development time with coaches in the preseason could be at least part of why Joe regressed last year.
 

Orangezoo

Incognito
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
19,993
Like
35,406
Wonder if much of this can be put back on the fact Joe, or anyone else, got to play summer ball last year. That and the loss of development time with coaches in the preseason could be at least part of why Joe regressed last year.

I think that would make the most sense. I also think that he made some comments about gambling too much and trying too hard to make a play at the end of last year. Honestly I get torn hearing that because as a PG you have to be aggressive and it becomes more about improving court awareness and situation than just going into your shell. The alley oops, pushing the ball and being aggressive is what I want in my PG while being a bit more conservative when it's warranted. Having played enough even if it's not near that galaxy in terms level of competition, you are useless as a PG playing super conservative. Plus he got his pocket picked more trying to prevent it than he did being aggressive in year one..


Also just to add- just getting into the lane Joe will have a play available 8/10 times. It will be the lob, the floater and occasionally the kickout. The more he shows the floater the more the lob becomes an option. The kickout is going to be more about shooters getting into their spots and how it's defended and also as a shorter guard your line of sight isn't as great to find shooters and it's often more off chemistry than vision there. I mean study Gerry as a PG- he used that floater or pull up early on and the kick out came later.
 
Last edited:

SWC75

Bored Historian
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
24,286
Like
43,803
I think lots of players experience a sophomore slump as they take on expanded roles. As said above, players usually improve - especially guys who are tough and motivated. I have no doubt we have not seen JG’s best games.

JG as a freshman:
33.0m 15.1p 3.7r 4.3a 1.8s 0.1b = +25.0 8.7mfg 0.4mft 2.3to 2.8pf = -13.2 =
11.8NP 6.0OE 5.8FG TNP: 311

JG in his 'sophomore slump:
27.7m 14.1p 4.2r 5.1a 2.0s 0.1b = +25.5 8.6mfg 0.6mft 3.0to 1.8pf = -14.0 =
11.5NP 4.9OE 6.6FG TNP: 223

He scored a point less, grabbed a few more rebounds, had more assists and a couple more steals. His shooting was the same. He had a few more turnovers but fewer fouls, (which usually means that the player understands the defense more). His net points were virtually the same. His offensive efficiency went down but his floor game improved to make up for it. And this was despite Covid, the pressure from Kadary, etc. That's not much of a sophomore slump. it was made to seem so by comparing him to Kadary, who looked like the better player.

The historical average for SU point guards who played 20 minutes per game is 13.5NP,
Historical Net Points by specific positions
so Joe has to improve to meet that standard. But if he overcame the Covid and the pressure to actually put up comparable numbers t o his freshman years, I think he's capable of making that leap. But with all the shooters we'll have on next year's team, I'm not sure that Sym Torrance might still be the better option.
 

ORANGE OATH

Walk On
Joined
Mar 28, 2015
Messages
200
Like
354
But Cole still won't win MVP of the Carrier Classic.
This brought back my first memory that JAB was not a mellow guy !
I did not attend the game but listened to it on WSYR with Joel Mareinuss.
I clearly remember JB blowing up because Magic won the MVP.
A long time ago in a place far far away.
Thanks for bringing back that moment !
 

721Comstock

2019-20 Iggy Co-Winner Leading Rebounder
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
12,339
Like
45,815
Don’t think anyone is joking, just confused

That somebody is prolly me.

ZZ was Marilyn Monroe's pseudonym for when she was travelling incognito.
I think I (perhaps mistakenly) thought/assumed our Zelda Zonk was female.

They can chime in if they wish to clarify what this Person of Citrus identifies as. ;)
 

SWC75

Bored Historian
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
24,286
Like
43,803
This brought back my first memory that JAB was not a mellow guy !
I did not attend the game but listened to it on WSYR with Joel Mareinuss.
I clearly remember JB blowing up because Magic won the MVP.
A long time ago in a place far far away.
Thanks for bringing back that moment !


That was also the first time i found that our basketball coach wasn't always the smiling, charming guy he had seemed to be.

 

FrancoPizza

2018 Iggy Leading Minutes Per Game Winner
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Messages
5,970
Like
7,849
That somebody is prolly me.

ZZ was Marilyn Monroe's pseudonym for when she was travelling incognito.
I think I (perhaps mistakenly) thought/assumed our Zelda Zonk was female.

They can chime in if they wish to clarify what this Person of Citrus identifies as. ;)
I learned some history tonight but you might be overthinking it.

i assumed ZZ grew up in the 80s and is a Legend of Zelda fan. So most likely a dude in his late 30s-mid 40s.
 

CuseFaninVT

Co 2020-21 Iggy Award Winner Hoops Leading RPG
Joined
Feb 27, 2012
Messages
34,211
Like
59,068
I learned some history tonight but you might be overthinking it.

i assumed ZZ grew up in the 80s and is a Legend of Zelda fan. So most likely a dude in his late 30s-mid 40s.
I love how Zelda is keeping us in the dark here. I'm fairly certain he's early 50s, and is a big hollywood fan and knew of MM's use of that name and that's part of the reason that was selected.

I also am realizing that I spend far too much of life here if I'm aware of these details.
 

Nicknack

Starter
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
1,991
Like
5,110
I was exposed to covid and now I'm stuck in quarantine with tons of time on my hands. Luckily we've got a lot of new players and I don't know enough about basketball to make judgements about how good someone is from highlight clips. I really need to watch whole games to form an educated opinion. So I went ahead and watched a ton of games. Here are my opinions. Hopefully you get some entertainment out of my boredom.

Benny Williams 6'9 190 (according to his coach) Height/weight always seems to be a guessing game, but he looks all of 6'9 to me so lets go with it.

The best skill he brings to the table is his jump shot. Its as smooth as any I've seen, and he makes shots at as high a percentage as I've ever seen a high school kid make.

The second best skill he brings to the table is his shot blocking. He's tall, he's long, and he jumps out of the gym. He is a top notch rim protector.

The numbers I found for him (understanding that high school numbers are generally very unreliable) are 14ppg 6rpg 3apg 1.5 bpg. You might not think that sounds like much for a 5 star recruit, but you have to understand his situation. He plays for the basketball factory IMG. Not on their regular varsity team. He plays on their post grad team, which is a bunch of college age kids with college talent. They go around playing other basketball factories and they DEMOLISH them. I watched 7 of their games and no team was within 20 of them by half time. In all 7 games the coach removed all the starters at half time, and played back ups the rest of the way. The point here is, those numbers are being put up in only 13 or 14 minutes of playing time ... I'll let you extrapolate what his per 40 numbers might be. I saved the best stat for last because its the hardest to swallow. According to the site I found, he's shooting 70% from the field and 50% from 3. I know, those are video game numbers. Is it accurate? Maybe and maybe not. I can tell you from the 7 games I watched (which were all blowouts against inferior competition), his shooting numbers seemed right around there. Maybe even better. The kid hardly misses. He's not a huge part of the offense, mind you (nobody dominates the ball for them). He hangs out near the 3 point line and waits for someone to feed him. When they do he usually takes and makes a 3. Sometimes he drives to the basket and finishes. I saw maybe three Michel Jordan-esk turn around jumpers. Not much of a sample size to be sure, but he made them all, and if that is any kind of a reliable weapon, there isn't a college defender capable of bothering him when he takes it.

Lets talk about weaknesses now. The only one is his youth. He's got NBA size, NBA skill, NBA athleticism. Barring injury, he's going to be playing in the NBA the minute he puts on about 20 more pounds of muscle. The only questions are, is he going to be a good NBA player or a mediocre NBA player, and how long is it going to take him to get there? The faster college game affects all freshmen differently. If Benny struggles he won't be the first five star to do so. But, I think the odds are pretty good that he comes in and gives us great shooting while also contributing ball handling and passing, with the defense and rebounding that come around once he learns the zone There really isn't anything he can't do, but of all his attributes I'm probably most excited about his shot blocking. He and Edwards together have the potential to turn back a lot of shots ... pair them with a 6'8 or 6'9 'small' forward, and our zone will look intimidating.

Cole Swider 6'9 225

Best skill he brings to the table, a sweet jump shot.
Second best skill he brings to the table, a very solid post up game.

Cole averages about 20 mpg and 6ppg on a very talented Villanova team that was a top 10 team until their point guard got hurt, and even then made the sweet 16 and gave Baylor their toughest game of the tournament. From what I can see Cole is a very good player that doesn't fit into Villanova's style very will, but still plays just below starters minutes because he's too good to sit. On D, Nova switches on every screen. They want guards tough enough to cover big guys, and big guys quick enough to cover guards. They don't want to have any mismatches when they switch. Unfortunately Cole isn't that kind of guy. When he's matched up against a guard in space its a mismatch. Luckily for us that will never happen playing zone. On offense, Villanova plays mostly 5 out. They run very little motion and do very little screening. They like to have one of their guys beat his man off the dribble and dare the D to leave a player open from 3 to help. It is to Cole's credit that it was rarely his man that left to double team, so he simply didn't get a lot of shots.

In my opinion the best way to use Cole would be to move him around a lot, run pick and pops with him, and run him off screens. Try to get the D to switch into mismatches. Get a guard on him who he can post up, or get a shot blocking center on him so he can take him away from the basket. To me that sounds a lot like how our offense works.

If Cole gets enough minutes, I have very little doubt he will average double figures in scoring. He scores in three ways. Shoot from 3, pump fake one dribble into a mid range pull up, and posting up. He does all three very well. He also can be counted on to make the right pass, and has a solid handle (better than any of our forwards this year).

His weakness is he's not a high flyer, he won't get a ton of blocks, but he's tall, he doesn't mind banging down low, and he goes up for rebounds with two hands and tends to hold on to the balls that come his way. He's going to need to know the zone well to play defense the way we need because he won't be able to make up for mistakes with athleticism, but if he can figure the defense out he will be a very good player.

One other thing of interest to me. I looked at how often Cole played center defensively for Villanova, and the answer is, quite a lot. I'd say about 50% of the time. Could he be a center in a small ball line up for us? He's not going to be the shot blocker Dolezaj was, but he bangs down low better than Dolezaj could, and will probably rebound better. Plus offensively he offers a lot more than Dolezaj ever did because of his ability to pull the opposing center all the way out to the NBA 3 point line. If he does play center it will be like Dolezaj where sometimes he's just not good enough, but the times we can afford to have him there, wow, we would be putting out a great offensive line up.


Symir Torrence 6'3 200

Best skill he brings to the table, speed (both legs and hands)
Second best skill he brings to the table, passing.

Symir began the year as Marquette's starting point guard, and put up good numbers in 2 games before getting banged up, dropping out of the starting line up, and putting up poor offensive stats for the rest of the year. Was he playing hurt? I don't know, but if he was hurt it sure didn't seem like a leg or foot injury, because he really moves quick. Was it possibly a shoulder or elbow injury? Maybe ... his jump shot looked terrible, and he made very few of them despite putting up decent shooting numbers as a freshman.

Marquette has 3 point guards on their team that all play pretty big minutes so a lot of the time Symir was in the game but playing off the ball. This is a terrible way to use a pass first point guard who was struggling with his jump shot, and all the minutes Symir played off the ball were basically zero productivity minutes on offense. When Symir played point he usually made good things happen. Expect Symir to have the ball in his hands 100% of the time with us. On offense he is amazing at getting past his defender and into the lane under control. Remember how Jalen Carey would always blow past his defender, but then be too out of control to make a basketball play when a help defender came? Symir is the opposite of that. He's mastered going just fast enough to keep the defender on his back hip, but not so fast that he can't stop or switch direction when needed. Symir is okay at finishing in traffic, but he's better at drawing help and finding the open man. He's the definition of a pass first point guard. On D, Symir has quick feet and quick hands. He's good at using his length to grab steals when he's out on an island defensively, which I think translates well to playing in our zone. He's also pretty tall for a point guard, and looks pretty long too. I think he will excel in our zone, and also make our press better, not many people are good at both those things, he's one of the few.

I can see why the coaching staff signed Symir quickly. He wants to play for us, he seems like a good kid, and he brings a ton of skills to the table that we need. This feels like a low risk move. If you get excited by lots of points and superstar players, Symir won't thrill you. But if you think Syracuse needs more speed and athleticism, if you want Syracuse to have an excellent defensive option at the top of the zone, and if you want a passer who can help our shooters perform even better, Symir is your guy. Also, for what its worth, I saw a couple games where Marquette was getting pressed, and he handled that nicely too.

Jimmy Boeheim 6'8 215

I wasn't able to find any full Cornell games, so for this one you are going to have to live with my memory of seeing him play in the past rather than recent observations, but I have seen him play 3 or 4 times and I do have a few thoughts.

Best skill he brings to the table, creative finishing around the hoop.
Second best skill he brings to the table, passing.

When people talk about Jimmy, they seem to talk about him as a jump shooter. I get it, he's an ivy league white guy, and his brother is maybe the best shooter in the country. But the truth is Jimmy is far more of a Quincy Guerrier type than he is a Buddy Boeheim type. Both Quincy and Jimmy can hit the 3, but its a small portion of their game. Their bread is buttered slashing to the basket, and posting up. Quincy is more athletic than Jimmy ... but Jimmy is just better at those skills right now. He's got a better handle and he's great at finishing around the basket.

You can go to another post in the Jimmy Boeheim thread and see highlights of a game he scored 25 against Coppin State. If you fast forward that video to the 50 second mark you'll see 4 straight plays where Jimmy drives to the hoop. On each occasion a double team comes immediately, showing that the Coppin State coach saw his driving ability as a major threat. And on each play Jimmy scores despite the double team. Against ACC competition Jimmy won't be able to take it to the basket against double teams and still score, but he won't need to because he's never going to see a double team with shooters like Girard, Buddy, Williams, and Swider around him. Even ACC athletes will have trouble stopping him one on one because he has a great handle and a WIDE variety of methods to get his shot off. What you don't see much of in that Coppin State highlight is Jimmy's post up game. Its top notch, and considering he's going to have lots of time to make moves without needing to worry about help defenders, I think it will be successful here.

The other big thing Jimmy brings to the table is passing. He should replace all the ball handling and passing we lose in Dolezaj. You know that play we ran very successfully the last few years where Hughes, Griffin, or Braswell make a back cut and gets an easy lay up after Dolezaj delivers the ball to them perfectly? Well Cornell runs that play about a hundred times a game. Jimmy absolutely has that pass in his arsenal.

His weakness are a lot like Swiders. He's not a high jumper or a shot blocker. I do think Jimmy is quicker laterally than Cole.

As a whole

When I look at this group I see a lot of basketball skill. A lot of passing, dribbling and shooting. Also a lot of size. I expect Williams and Swider to be 3 point shooters who can go inside from time to time, and I expect Jimmy to give us points in the paint and occasionally shoot a 3. They all seem to have a role to play here.

Count me with the other 128+ likes... well done, general. I just wish it hadn't taken me 3 days to get to your post. Sorry to hear about your quarantine.

Your post also came at a good time. After this year's rotation management and seeing Kadary go, I've been a bit down on Boeheim and that has manifested into being a bit down on next year's team. However, I'm in a better space now and ready to turn the page - your post helped a lot - thanks, man.
 

kcsu

Living Legend
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
11,989
Like
19,069
Its a fair worry. Next year's frontcourt has more upside than this year's by a pretty wide margin and I think by the end of the year they will be much better defensively. But none of those three guys have any experience so they might kind of suck early. Then again this year's frontcourt really sucked early too, and didn't become solid until the ACC tournament. I dont think it will take that long next year. Maybe until New Years.
Fantastic write-up. Thank you
 

AZOrange

Living Legend
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
15,279
Like
22,856
That was great, as always General. I was especially interested in your thoughts on Benny.

There is poster or 2 (one in particular) who wonder if Benny will see significant minutes on a veteran squad. To my eye, Benny will be the most skilled, well rounded player on the team from Day 1. He is going to play and play a lot. He is a legitimate 5 star talent and a likely one and done.
For sure
 

Online statistics

Members online
134
Guests online
783
Total visitors
917

Top Bottom