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About JwgreDeux

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  1. JwgreDeux

    Men vs. Texas A&M game thread

    When you are trying to elevate with the ball, contact really impedes lift. When you are on defense you are usually have more freedom of movement and you have your hands/arms to keep spacing and have room to elevate. Wiley is a bit slow to make an offensive move at times which allows more contact than quicker players. One of the reasons McLemore is so effective, on both ends really, is how quickly he is able to set himself and elevate. Just think about trying to jump with someone's arm on your hip or shoulder weighing you down, vs have an unimpeded two step buildup to a jump.
  2. JwgreDeux

    The starting lineup

    Bryce is not a versatile player. He can guard the 1 and the 2 and only smaller 3 guys. He can't play any spot on offense but the 2. He is a shooter. Dunbar can guard the 4, 3 and 2 and play the 2, 3 and 4 on offense. He can shoot well enough, he can slash and he can rebound on both ends. I respect your views and opinions on a lot of things, even if we disagree on things. But on this, it isn't close, Brown is no where near Dunbar in terms of versatility, and would not be a good 6th man. Dunbar is our Andre Iguodala. Okeke is everything @cole256 said. He can/should be a problem for most teams. Post up small guys, stretch out big guys. We need to play through him more on offense if we want to challenge for this league and make a deep run into the tourney. The results of the game last night speak for themselves. Rotations looked better, fit and energy was good, shot selection much better.
  3. JwgreDeux

    The starting lineup

    Some of this talk is just madness. Guys go through ups and downs over the course of a career, season, and short stretches. You have to be true to who you are, this team is built to play small. It is what got us to the tournament for the first time in forever last season and is what had us ranked preseason where we were and what has got us to this point this year. In all the games we struggled in, it wasn't just Brown and Harper that struggled, there's plenty of poor play to go around. So you want to just scrap everything and go with a lumbering half court set? I can guarantee you won't see that from CBP because he knows that this team is and how it needs to play to be elite. Brown has a bad stretch combined with Doughty's passiveness and Okeke fading away at times and we lose. What we need is to hit the reset button and turn up the dang pace on offense and defense, not scrap the guys that got us here. More press, more half court pressure, and in turn rotate guys more often. Harper, Brown, Doughty, Okeke and McLemore is our best starting line-up. I understand starting Wiley and if he was playing at a higher level, I would be all for it, but I would re-insert McLemore to go small and up-tempo. I've said it a hundred times, but Dunbar is perfect as our sixth man. If we get off to a slow start, he brings energy, rebounding and instant offense. The other thing that makes him the perfect sixth man is that he can also come in at the 2, 3, or 4 if someone gets in foul trouble. Nobody else on the team can give us what he can as the 6th man. If you stared Harper, Dunbar, Okeke, McLemore, and Wiley what are you going to do with substitutions? What does the style of play look like? When is the last time you saw CBP play a lineup like that? I understand why people advocate for Dunbar to start, he's a good player, but he has more upside coming off the bench. I would get him more minutes though. We know the identity of this team, this is not the point in the season to completely try and change who you are and what you do. Just keep grinding and work on areas where we haven't executed like we want to.
  4. JwgreDeux

    Patient Purifoy Pissed

    This was my primary concern coming into the season. How would CBP handle the additions/returns of players and how would the chemistry be affected. I think the fact that so many of our guys are not playing at their highest level make CBPs job harder, but at this point with his public outbursts, I don't know how you can reward DP with playing time. As far as the rotation goes, I think we have the starting lineup is ok with Dunbar and Mac bringing instant production off the bench. Doughty hasn't been as good off the dribble and going to the rim as I thought he would be and Brown has been in poor form for a handful of games with his decision making. He was better against Georgia, but was maybe overly conservative. Hopefully, CBP can resolve the DP thing one way or another and we can get back to playing fast and free.
  5. JwgreDeux

    NC State Pregame/Postgame Thread

    Statistically, AU and NC State look very similarly. I have watched a little bit of tape on them and we are the better team. We have more talent, a higher ceiling, and a better mix of roles. The question really just comes down to how well we play. I've read most of this thread and other posters have pointed out some key guys etc so I won't due that here. I do want to point out a couple things. First is the strength of schedule so far, AU is 86th and NC State is 337th. The winning percentage of their opponents is 30% while ours is 54%. I think our defense will be considerably better than anything they have seen this season. I think our athleticism will be higher than anything they have seen this season, and our energy will be too. IF CBP has worked out the rotations and we play our game, shoot a decent percentage, and don't let them out-rebound us by more than 5, I think we get the W. Good road test.
  6. JwgreDeux

    UAB game

    I think a big part of the issue against UAB was the groupings on the floor weren't used to running offensive sets with each other. Especially in the first half. And once the game was heading down that path, it is very difficult to just call a timeout and reset with our usual lineup. That ability to reset mentally is part of what Cole is talking about having a mentally weak game. Championship teams can let bad possessions and even bad halves go, and focus in on the remaining time.
  7. JwgreDeux

    UAB game

    CBP absolutely got out coached in this one. I said the primary thing to watch for us in this game was the rotations with the addition of Puriofy, and they were a train wreck. I don't know if that is how CBP had it planned out, or if fouls forced, him to deviate. Either way, the entire first half rotations were puzzling. I'm not excusing anyone's play or any of the bad shooting, but rotating that way putting guys in spots they aren't used to is going to affect them. Combine that with UAB playing well above their average (probably near their ceiling), and you get what we saw. I've also said all along this was Harper's team and he was the key. He showed that again tonight. He closed out the first half and the game. In my preseason expectations post, I said I thought we would lose 4 non-con games. Right now we only have one loss, but have two overtime wins against inferior teams. This game was exactly what I was concerned about. What would the chemistry be like as we add guys back to the mix. This wasn't Purifoy's fault, but CBP's rotations were off, which is why you saw him take Purifoy out of the rotation in the second half. Not because Purifoy was playing poorly, but because the coaching staff knew everything was out of wack. Glad to be able to learn from that game and still have a W. Props to UAB they played their butts off. As far as other teams following that game plan, like @cole256 mentioned, it is very difficult to get players to play that slow for the whole game. Teams will not be able to just decide we are going to play slow against AU. Its very hard to get players to play that disciplined all game long. I wouldn't worry about other teams using UAB's gameplan as much as I would worry about our own staff figuring out how to play all ten guys going forward.
  8. JwgreDeux

    UAB Preview/Review

    I forgot to mention that I will also be watching the starting lineup. I have said that I expect Wiley to take over the starting 5 spot at some point this season. If Purifoy is expected to work his way back in the starting five at the 3 spot. I would expect CBP to work Wiley back in the starting lineup sooner rather than later. Perhaps what happens at the 5 spot is an indicator of CBP's expectations of Purifoy. Total speculation on my part.
  9. JwgreDeux

    Congrats to Bryce Brown

    You are probably right about Mitchell and I didn't want to see him go. Just didn't see anything that made me think he would take giant leap forward. I also fully agree that every year you have to fight for your job, the best should play. I agree that teams will target Harper, they did it late in the season some last year and he struggled at times. I would like to think he is experienced enough to handle it now. We obviously need some depth at PG, CBP is clearly worried about it to be giving Doughty time at the 1.
  10. JwgreDeux

    Bruce Pearl on radio this morning

    Every team plays a long schedule. Every team has a 8-9 man rotation. Almost every team has one guy that plays 30 minutes a night. I don't thing his teams lost their legs due to fatigue. When you get in the tourney and you play teams with great guards or bigs, they can slow you down and are better able to force you to play their style of game. If all you have are guys that can play up tempo then you are going to get beat. CBP didn't have a guy like Wiley at UT and this current roster has the skill set to play fast or slow. I',m not worried about fatigue. Last year had nothing to do with fatigue. We lost Wiley and Purifoy before the season, and then lost McLemore. No team that loses 3 of the 4 guys expected to get minutes in the front court will go deep into the tourney. NC State is a good team. They will likely be ranked when we go in there next week. This game is huge only in the return of Purifoy. UAB is not a good team.
  11. JwgreDeux

    UAB Preview/Review

    Life is crazy busy and I've missed a couple of preview/reviews but I'm back and here we go. Auburn comes into this one in better shape than I forecast we would be. Sitting at 8-1 wit Purifoy coming back, the season is really starting to look like it could be a special year. Things change quickly and I will share more long term thoughts once the non-conference is done, but so far many of my concerns for this season have not come to fruition. Turning our attention to the Blazers, there are a lot of write ups online about this game and I will leave it to them to cover the normal beat writer filler, so lets look at some of the good stuff. UAB's heartbeat is Zack Bryant. The starting guard leads the Blazers in minutes (30.25), points (12.88), assists (3.38), steals (1.88) and blocks (0.50). The only other player who leads a category is Will Butler who leads them in rebounding at 6.4 per game. I think Zack will be in for a long night with the defensive pressure he is going to face and that will lead to a long night overall for UAB. This is not the UAB team that we have seen over the years. They are not an uptempo hyper-athletic team, they really struggle offensively, scoring 68.5 per game, shooting 46.9% from the field and 26% from deep, with 15+ turnovers per game as well. They are going to really struggle against our pressure defense, I would expect a high volume of turnovers and if they don't have a good shooting night, they may not get out of the 50s. Defensively, they aren't very good either. They allow 70.8 per game, force 15 turnovers per game and only block 2 shots per game. If there were ever a night for us to attack the rim, it is this game. They allow a high shooting percentage, 50% by opposing teams, but with only 2 blocks a game I would like to see us focus on getting some points in the paint. Would like to see us finish on dribble drives and throw it in to Wiley and Okeke in the post. If UAB has any advantage in this game it is rebounding the ball. Statistically, they are slightly better. If they have any chance to stay in this game it is going to be because they hammer us on the boards. I'd like to see our guys focus on that and ensure we don't lose that battle. Things I will be watching are centered around the return of Purifoy. From what CBP says, his return will mimic Wiley's and be somewhat gradual. However, unlike Wiley CBP only has four games to get him ready for SEC play. With NC State and Murray St next, two top 50 teams, I'd like to see Purifoy get 10+ mins tonight. How many minutes at the three vs how many at the four will be interesting. Does he shoot jump shots or drive the ball, he is a mystery at this point given how long he has been on the shelf. Without him we are the second best team in the league right now. If he gets right quickly we would be the best team in the league, in my opinion. His size would allow us to be even more multiple with our offensive and defensive looks and I will be watching him closely this weekend. I'd love for this to be a big game given the in-state opponent, but we should crush UAB by 20+. War Eagle!
  12. JwgreDeux

    have quite the ceiling with Purifoy

    McLemore may have been the most integral late last season (although I would say it was Harper), but he certainly isn't the most integral right now. Depth at the 5 spot was a huge problem last season, not so this year. Harper is the key IMO, he makes the system go. Brown, Okeke, McLemore, Wiley are all important, but losing Harper would hurt us more than any other. Don't think it will be Dunbar. I could see something like this. Purifoy works his way back to start at the 3 and Doughty is backup at the 1 and the 2, with Dunbar off the bench at the 3.
  13. JwgreDeux

    Congrats to Bryce Brown

    I was good with how everything was last year, right up until McLemore got hurt. Our defensive style became to create chaos and protect the rim. When we lost our rim protector the whole system collapsed as you said. Barring injury this year, I like the way things are headed.
  14. JwgreDeux

    Congrats to Bryce Brown

    I'm not saying we don't try and keep our guy in front of us. I'm saying that our defense is more of a create chaos than a force jump shots style of defense. Look at the turnovers etc that result. Bryce is a good defender, not best in the SEC, but very good. Probably our best. I hear what you are saying about the fast-break play, but I just didn't quite see it the same. The defender was trailing McLemore, not Brown. Safest thing was to keep it himself. I'm always a fan of rewarding your bigs, just could see why not on that one. Splitting hairs on that one though. We just see it differently here. Brown and Harper both need a lot of minutes for their games. Brown isn't a come of the bench and take 7 shots kinda player. We would be worse off if that is how he was used. Dunbar is excelling in his role. With Purifoy coming back, I'm glad he is our sixth man. Maybe the best sixth man in the league. His game is suited to instant impact minutes. Think CBP has managed him just right.
  15. JwgreDeux

    men vs Dayton Preview/Review

    Dayton is going to test us in a different way than we have been tested this season. They get virtually all of their points inside the 3point arc and will force the ball inside or dribble drive. Toppin is a load at 6-8 220 and is very efficient. They will test our interior defenders, who must stay out of foul trouble. I think we will look to press them and use a lot of perimeter ball pressure to speed them up and disrupt their interior game. Every turnover vs a team like Dayton is ever more valuable, or costly, due to the pace they like to play. So we need to limit our own turnovers while continuing to force them like we have all season. Another area where I think we have a chance to exploit them is rebounding. So far they have not been a very good rebounding team and like turnovers, with their slower pace, every rebound is worth more. Bruce Pearl knows Anthony Grant's style pretty well, and I think we have a good chance to run them out of the gym. However, if we force bad shots, shoot a low percentage and are not able to get them out of their slow pace, we could be in for a fight. If we do end up in a half court style game, I'd like to see us run the O through Okeke more often. His touches have to increase as our schedule gets tougher. Will be interesting to see what CBP does with the rotation as we continue to prepare for Purifoy's return. War Eagle!