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Hey guys, I said I'd be open to talk to people about what they felt were deficiencies and what they think will help in the future.

This is non combative but I will post my thoughts which may or may not coincide with yours. Please understand that it's not personal or me saying I know more than you. I will back up my thoughts with logic and examples though, but once again I may disagree but it's not me attacking you. This is a forum and dialogue, if you have a tendency to get upset if someone may not agree with you, then I would suggest not being on a forum but certainly not this particular thread. Thank you. 

 

I have posted sporadically my thoughts, I feel I was very early in trying to explain that our guards didn't seem to be the alpha lead your team types. It was unpopular then and made some upset but in reading posts now it seems that the majority would now agree with me. 

I can post some things that I look at that allowed me to see this much earlier than many but I'd like to bounce thoughts off of others if I could do hopefully this threads will become what I'm hoping.

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What's your opinion on our overall offense from strategy to the execution of said strategy? At the end of the year seemed to be stagnant. Alot of 1 on 1 , no rhythm, too many Isolation plays. We seemed to lose our flow 

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Agreed on the guard play.   My assumption was that our main guards (Zep, WG, and KD) would get stymied at some point in the tourney by bigger, athletic guards - which is what happened.    Couple that with an epically poor showing by our bigs and it's a sure loss.     Our PGs aren't really very good facilitators- a lot of dribbling vs passing and KD is either shooting or driving like a maniac to shoot.    All undersized so I would hope we can land at least one 6'3" guy who can run the offense, not necessarily to be a scorer but to move the ball and defeat double teams.    

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One criticism i have is for the coaching staff and the lineup they played. I thought we had found something with playing the small lineup with Jaylin at the 5 spot. We used that lineup to pull within 1 at the half. We come back out with the usual lineup to start the second half and i really don't have any complaints with that. But we were well into the second half and down double digits i think before we went back to the small lineup. I don't know if the outcome would have been any different but i thought it was strange to go away from what was working for so long. I also thought we were slow to adjust to the ball pressure they were bringing when we tried to screen for the PG. Would have thought we'd figure out a way to punish them for guarding one guy with 2 but we never did. 

Other than that i just think we got punched in the mouth by older and more experienced players. Jabari had an off night shooting and their style of play completely negated of height advantage. They basically ran AU out of the gym. Kudos to Miami for playing a great game. 

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52 minutes ago, cole256 said:

Hey guys, I said I'd be open to talk to people about what they felt were deficiencies and what they think will help in the future.

This is non combative but I will post my thoughts which may or may not coincide with yours. Please understand that it's not personal or me saying I know more than you. I will back up my thoughts with logic and examples though, but once again I may disagree but it's not me attacking you. This is a forum and dialogue, if you have a tendency to get upset if someone may not agree with you, then I would suggest not being on a forum but certainly not this particular thread. Thank you. 

 

I have posted sporadically my thoughts, I feel I was very early in trying to explain that our guards didn't seem to be the alpha lead your team types. It was unpopular then and made some upset but in reading posts now it seems that the majority would now agree with me. 

I can post some things that I look at that allowed me to see this much earlier than many but I'd like to bounce thoughts off of others if I could do hopefully this threads will become what I'm hoping.

You pretty much nailed it earlier in the season when you said guard play would be an issue when it came to the tournament. Jasper and Green do a lot of things adequately and some stuff well but nothing outstanding. If AUburn had Moore or Wong, with zep or Wendell as the backup, easily a much, much deeper run. Also, KD seems to play too fast and gets ahead of himself and being able to make a good play. 

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37 minutes ago, NWALA Tiger said:

What's your opinion on our overall offense from strategy to the execution of said strategy? At the end of the year seemed to be stagnant. Alot of 1 on 1 , no rhythm, too many Isolation plays. We seemed to lose our flow 

I feel that we were sort of handicapped. Our guards are tweeners and aren't super good at scoring and at the same time aren't great ball handlers or facilitators. 

I'm not sure but it looked to me watching us play that if something happened that they didn't walk through and talk about we lacked the creativity to adjust. 

I could also tell that even games we won our guards didn't have confidence handling the ball. Think about it, if one of our guards had the ball and weren't trying to score it wouldn't even be full speed....it would be passive like. It look as if they would be relived to get rid of the ball as opposed to wanting the ball in their hands.

Little things like that.....I'm just saying everybody saw me post about that while we were winning. Little stuff like that.....if I'm a guard watching film, I know they don't want that pressure. I know I can expose them. Just take the big brothers out of the game and I'm going to get them. 

I feel like that's how other players were looking at us. And that's half the battle. Nobody feared us. We didn't have that type of swagger. And the bad thing about our situation was we got on top and that means the wolves are coming for us.....we needed to be a wolf back. I'd say a school like Arizona, you can just look at how they carry themselves.....just completely different than us. And as soon as Smith wasn't superman nobody could step up and say I'll be that guy. 

You're right as far as we had guys that needed help as far as getting good shots but we didn't have any play makers

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19 minutes ago, 1auburn1 said:

Agreed on the guard play.   My assumption was that our main guards (Zep, WG, and KD) would get stymied at some point in the tourney by bigger, athletic guards - which is what happened.    Couple that with an epically poor showing by our bigs and it's a sure loss.     Our PGs aren't really very good facilitators- a lot of dribbling vs passing and KD is either shooting or driving like a maniac to shoot.    All undersized so I would hope we can land at least one 6'3" guy who can run the offense, not necessarily to be a scorer but to move the ball and defeat double teams.    

I think you just gave a really great analysis

Edited by cole256
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20 minutes ago, gravejd said:

One criticism i have is for the coaching staff and the lineup they played. I thought we had found something with playing the small lineup with Jaylin at the 5 spot. We used that lineup to pull within 1 at the half. We come back out with the usual lineup to start the second half and i really don't have any complaints with that. But we were well into the second half and down double digits i think before we went back to the small lineup. I don't know if the outcome would have been any different but i thought it was strange to go away from what was working for so long. I also thought we were slow to adjust to the ball pressure they were bringing when we tried to screen for the PG. Would have thought we'd figure out a way to punish them for guarding one guy with 2 but we never did. 

Other than that i just think we got punched in the mouth by older and more experienced players. Jabari had an off night shooting and their style of play completely negated of height advantage. They basically ran AU out of the gym. Kudos to Miami for playing a great game. 

Yes I see what you are saying. Pretty much we saw the original game plan wasn't working, by time we are playing in the second half you have enough to know we need to do something different.

Also, see what you are talking about in the latter part of your second paragraph? I would say over and over when tourney ball start being able to control the pace is so so important. And that's why when people say how the tournament is about guards, it's because having a great guard pretty much is your key to your team's pace. 

If we have a great PG I don't think we lose, even though Smith is off

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11 minutes ago, aubearcat said:

You pretty much nailed it earlier in the season when you said guard play would be an issue when it came to the tournament. Jasper and Green do a lot of things adequately and some stuff well but nothing outstanding. If AUburn had Moore or Wong, with zep or Wendell as the backup, easily a much, much deeper run. Also, KD seems to play too fast and gets ahead of himself and being able to make a good play. 

Thanks. What I was trying to explain whatever we are doing that was making us look so good during the regular season, throw that out! Guarantee every opponent was going to take that away. So look thru that and think can you see us playing a different way.....I couldn't. I was hoping maybe someone would see it and a light bulb would come on but if someone really harassed our guards....I didn't see them being able to deal with that. 

I was hoping that our defense though would be good enough to make it tough against anybody. Unfortunately 2 of our main guards don't play well overall if they aren't playing well offensively. They let the offense performance effect them overall too much. 

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Another thing to keep in mind about yesterday. We were playing grown men. I saw something where their avg age was 22 or 23. The tourney is a different animal than regular season for several reasons.  Miami will give whoever they play trouble until they run into some guards that are bigger and can control pace and pressure. 

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12 minutes ago, aubearcat said:

You pretty much nailed it earlier in the season when you said guard play would be an issue when it came to the tournament. Jasper and Green do a lot of things adequately and some stuff well but nothing outstanding. If AUburn had Moore or Wong, with zep or Wendell as the backup, easily a much, much deeper run. Also, KD seems to play too fast and gets ahead of himself and being able to make a good play. 

Agree.

We had our 2 guards....it just didn't work out. We found out why Bruce went and got guys like Desi Sills(an automatic bucket getter) and Trey Alexander but both situations fell through. Imagine those 2 starting with our current players. I think Bruce had a vision and we excelled in spite of those situations not working out. 

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My main takeaway from the last game was the abject lack of composure. Credit to Miami for making it so difficult for our guys but the panic and confusion set in way too early, IMO. I don't know what Bruce can do about that, or if it's just this group of guys, or just nobody being used to Auburn being a frontrunner, or what it is/was. But my eyes saw a team just panic and fall apart despite a manageable deficit with plenty of time left. 

If I'm not mistaken, Miami score twice off of stealing our inbounds passes. We had another pass hit one of our guys in the back. And egregious mistakes like that seemed to happen throughout the game and get worse as it went on.

Kind of shocking for me, but maybe not as bad as/more understandable than it seemed. 

 

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I think we all saw the writing on the wall the last 1/3 of the season.  Really frustrating to watch -- to have a generational talent in Jabari without a true PG.  Man, what could have been.

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I think the lack of experience showed last night and the inability to keep their composure. That should come with experience. Things like shooting can improve. I believe we need some bigger guards. One of the plays the bigger Miami guard just backed Zep down and shot over him. More is needed from Cambridge besides rebounds and dunks. I have no information but believe Kessler shoulder may have been reinjured in the last game. All in All I think CBP learned some things last night and is more motivated than ever

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I am far from a basketball expert. I have learned more watching the last 4 BP teams than I have in my entire existence. MoF, Bruce Pearl and his run at AU has turned me into a basketball fan when I never was before. So with that said...Here are my thoughts. 

First off, I think if A. Flan doesn't suffer that scooter injury, this team would have been different and primed to make a longer run, but I still don't think we had the guard play to take over.

I also feel like if we could have some how kept Sharife for one more year, that could have been the difference in 2nd round exit and Final 4. We needed a legit ball handler who can create at the Point. Him and if we still bring in Zep for Def and KD, along with a healthy Flan would have been an unstoppable team. 

Our Guards just weren't experienced enough. Turned the ball over waaaay too much. Took a lot of bad shots, of course it was nice when they made those half court 3s ...Im looking at you W. Green. 

I don't know what happened to Kessler's ability to generate points down the stretch. About midway through the season he became a dominant force on the offensive side of the ball and then it just seemed like our guards forgot how to get him the ball and when he did get it he couldn't make a 2 ft layup. I know teams adjusted to our pick n roll game which worked very well with Kess midseason as well. So a number of things there. 

Outside of Jabari, I don't feel like we had that sharpshooter on the team. So when Jabari was off, it became difficult to generate points especially beyond the ark. 

Cardwell was great coming in on the Defensive end to spell Kess, but not much there in terms of offense. 

All in all, this team was a blast to watch, but Cole said it first and I bought in later that we just didn't have the guard play to make a deep run. 

Lookng forward, With Tre Donaldson coming in next year, does 1 of Wendell or Zep get processed? If so I imagine its Green. I think Zep brings too much on the defensive side of the ball. 

I think J. Williams could be a player next year for sure He improved as the year went on. Jabari and Kess gone, along with Flan and Cambridge IMO. I think BRuce needs to bring in a portal big that can shoot. A stretch 5. I don't even know who fits the bill, but that along with a sniper 2/3 hybrid type would be my wishlist. 

 

edit- Is it me or did the bottom start to fall when all the mess with the football program started up? It seems like right about that time we went from #1 to our first SEC loss to struggling to beat Mizzou and Ugas of the world. Never looked the same again, honestly. That is just my opinion and could be pure coincidence.

Edited by Tigerpro2a
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18 minutes ago, Tigerpro2a said:

I am far from a basketball expert. I have learned more watching the last 4 BP teams than I have in my entire existence. MoF, Bruce Pearl and his run at AU has turned me into a basketball fan when I never was before. So with that said...Here are my thoughts. 

First off, I think if A. Flan doesn't suffer that scooter injury, this team would have been different and primed to make a longer run, but I still don't think we had the guard play to take over.

I also feel like if we could have some how kept Sharife for one more year, that could have been the difference in 2nd round exit and Final 4. We needed a legit ball handler who can create at the Point. Him and if we still bring in Zep for Def and KD, along with a healthy Flan would have been an unstoppable team. 

Our Guards just weren't experienced enough. Turned the ball over waaaay too much. Took a lot of bad shots, of course it was nice when they made those half court 3s ...Im looking at you W. Green. 

I don't know what happened to Kessler's ability to generate points down the stretch. About midway through the season he became a dominant force on the offensive side of the ball and then it just seemed like our guards forgot how to get him the ball and when he did get it he couldn't make a 2 ft layup. I know teams adjusted to our pick n roll game which worked very well with Kess midseason as well. So a number of things there. 

Outside of Jabari, I don't feel like we had that sharpshooter on the team. So when Jabari was off, it became difficult to generate points especially beyond the ark. 

Cardwell was great coming in on the Defensive end to spell Kess, but not much there in terms of offense. 

All in all, this team was a blast to watch, but Cole said it first and I bought in later that we just didn't have the guard play to make a deep run. 

Lookng forward, With Tre Donaldson coming in next year, does 1 of Wendell or Zep get processed? If so I imagine its Green. I think Zep brings too much on the defensive side of the ball. 

I think J. Williams could be a player next year for sure He improved as the year went on. Jabari and Kess gone, along with Flan and Cambridge IMO. I think BRuce needs to bring in a portal big that can shoot. A stretch 5. I don't even know who fits the bill, but that along with a sniper 2/3 hybrid type would be my wishlist. 

 

edit- Is it me or did the bottom start to fall when all the mess with the football program started up? It seems like right about that time we went from #1 to our first SEC loss to struggling to beat Mizzou and Ugas of the world. Never looked the same again, honestly. That is just my opinion and could be pure coincidence.

Some people were teasing about it would affect the bball team but the timing is along there when the team started struggling. Maybe a coincidence but the struggles started around that time 

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First let me say I’m proud of this team and Coach Pearl and the rest of the coaches . That said here is what happened. AU and Pearl are closing in on KY and a few others in being able to recruit the best talent in the country. With that comes the problem of one and dones as well as immaturity( basketball wise). While we had a great team it wasn’t with folks that had played a lot together nor were they older. Miami’s team was much more mature ( basketball wise) but not nearly as talented. That said if you look at our losses they happened following big win games like our opening against Jacksonville. Unfortunately they fell into the trap of underestimating their opponents as well as not being able to regroup after a bad stretch. That is the price you pay at this level and the being able to move easier between schools now, that problem will increase. UK suffered the same way. They were far more talented than St. Pete but St. Pete was much more mature. If you ever want to win an NC in basketball you will have to overcome this youth problem. I’m sure CBP would say the same thing. Now it’s time to regroup. Walker and Smith will be gone but I am sure there will be great talent waiting to take their place. Thanks to the whole team for a great run wish all of them success at the next level . I will gladly take a lot of years just like this. WDE 🦅🦅🦅

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3 minutes ago, Eagle Eye 7 said:

First let me say I’m proud of this team and Coach Pearl and the rest of the coaches . That said here is what happened. AU and Pearl are closing in on KY and a few others in being able to recruit the best talent in the country. With that comes the problem of one and dones as well as immaturity( basketball wise). While we had a great team it wasn’t with folks that had played a lot together nor were they older. Miami’s team was much more mature ( basketball wise) but not nearly as talented. That said if you look at our losses they happened following big win games like our opening against Jacksonville. Unfortunately they fell into the trap of underestimating their opponents as well as not being able to regroup after a bad stretch. That is the price you pay at this level and the being able to move easier between schools now, that problem will increase. UK suffered the same way. They were far more talented than St. Pete but St. Pete was much more mature. If you ever want to win an NC in basketball you will have to overcome this youth problem. I’m sure CBP would say the same thing. Now it’s time to regroup. Walker and Smith will be gone but I am sure there will be great talent waiting to take their place. Thanks to the whole team for a great run wish all of them success at the next level . I will gladly take a lot of years just like this. WDE 🦅🦅🦅

This is very true. It is possible to win with a bunch of one and dones and first year players, but that team has to really gel and gel fast. The best would be to have a couple 1 and dones, and then a roster full of veteran guys on top of it with skill. 

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I think it’s simple … we were shariffe cooper away from being a final 4 team.

His playmaking, composure and ballhandling were needed

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Here is my take and some will not like it. I do not like the 1 and done.   I don’t particularly like the transfer portal.   I know that Jabari has as much potential as probably anyone that has ever stepped foot on Auburn’s campus, but he isn’t NBA ready.   And if he is, what does that say about the NBA.   If guys are going to be able to get money for NIL, reinstatement the three year commitment.   How much fun would it be to see Smith, Okoro and Okeeke on the same team?   I found it hard to watch Auburn this year because of the bad/inconsistency in guard play.  

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Our three guards, Zep, Green, KD, each did some things well but also had limitations. Zep was solid on ball defender especially out front but like all three was a defensive liability against a big guard down low. KD was a solid defender with quick hands who did a good job of stealing but was also undisciplined going for steals and missing and also fouled to many 3 point shooters. None of our guards were great and feeding our big men. Green and KD both had the ability to get hot and helped us win some games when we were not playing well but both were inconsistent on offense and KD was out of control at times and it hurt us. Zep was best facilitator of the three.  We would not have gone as far as we did this year without these three so when I criticize it does not mean I don't like them

We needed a true SG who had to be a 35-40% three point shooter, who could play defense, had a mid range game and ability to go to the rack. We needed last years Flanigan who I think will be good again next year. Last years Flanigan had decent 3 point shot and was strong going to the rack at times showed a pull up jumper but needs to work on that. Last years Flanigan was a lock down defender and a solid rebounder. He was showing signs at end of year on the defense side and going to the rack I expect after a spring and summer we will be real happy with him next year.

A couple of times this year I saw Kessler shoot a mid range shot when facing basket he had good form he should have done it more. In the Miami game at least three different times he used a quick drop step to beat his man and and get to opposite side of the rim to then miss his shot. Kessler did a decent job of defending players away from the basket, he moved his feet well for such a tall player and timed his blocks well. At times he was to intent on blocking and not on rebounding. 

Jabari it is hard to criticize one of the best players I have seen at Auburn so first I will say what I liked about him. One of the prettiest shots I have seen for any player of any size, a great positive teammate, a hard worked, a competitor, a very good defender who could defend multiple positions, a solid rebounder. Now the negatives at time not assertive enough but got better as year went on. Had some issues when people bodied him up outside, the few times he was hitting his shot he settled for shooting the shot instead of taking his man inside and scoring. In a year or two at the most any negative I just said about Jabari will no longer exist because I have read what a great work ethic he has.

I would have liked to see up find more time for Jaylin even if at expense of Flanigan and Cambridge but that also has a limitation on our guards as a SF he could have posted up most SF's in the country but without guards feeding him it would not have been that effective. He already rested Jabari and maybe even a few minutes at the 5 against some teams.

Kessler and Jabari  and to an extent Jaylin could have had an extra 1-3 easy baskets a game with guards who saw they were open and gotten the ball to them then before defense could adjust.  

Edited by AuburnNTexas
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1 hour ago, aubaseball said:

Here is my take and some will not like it. I do not like the 1 and done.   I don’t particularly like the transfer portal.   I know that Jabari has as much potential as probably anyone that has ever stepped foot on Auburn’s campus, but he isn’t NBA ready.   And if he is, what does that say about the NBA.   If guys are going to be able to get money for NIL, reinstatement the three year commitment.   How much fun would it be to see Smith, Okoro and Okeeke on the same team?   I found it hard to watch Auburn this year because of the bad/inconsistency in guard play.  

Regarding Jabari I will just say he is more than ready. The teams that can actually draft him are in rebuilding mode so he will be fine. The guards are all new it may have drove us crazy but if they were all freshmen the results would be similar .

Bari didn’t have the luxury as Chuma. Chuma had vets on the team that allowed him to come on gradually throughout the season

Edited by e808
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It looked like the game plan for all of the teams at the end of the season and tourney was to put Kes in foul trouble, shut down any open 3pts and frustrate Jabari. It seemed as though Green lost some confidence the second half of the season and did not handle traps/double teams well. Maybe it was me but I felt that when Green was hitting threes that everyone's game loosened up. I hated to see Kessler regress a bit but he kept getting snake bit with those cheap fouls. I know the defense kept us in every game but the passing has to be improved during the off-season. KD was feast for famine. His energy could snap the team out of a funk but he tried to keep delivering knock out punches and when he hit a cold streak for a number of games I think it messed with his confidence. Overall, the team stopped having fun because every team for the second half had us as the 'game of the year' and it wore on us. We just need to keep going in an upward trajectory like Duke did in the 80's and we will be right there. 

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5 hours ago, Tigerpro2a said:

This is very true. It is possible to win with a bunch of one and dones and first year players, but that team has to really gel and gel fast. The best would be to have a couple 1 and dones, and then a roster full of veteran guys on top of it with skill. 

Hopefully that where we are headed. I don’t think Pearl has had the talent like will come his way the next few years, so he will have some adjusting to do as well . 

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What I mean by maturity is older guys that been thru ups and downs and that the other players listen to. Ones that could have talked them down of the hiwire last night when things went bad. That was the only thing this team missed having the complete team. 🤔🦅

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