View Full Version : Why BOTH this year's games with Vols will be different

11-30-2008, 10:34 AM
I was at the BIS game last year and what I saw was a Zag team that was ambushed by a more physical Tennessee team, Jujuan Smith and Co. had their hands all over our guards with hand checks and slaps and they rattled Pargo. I couldn’t believe the refs were letting it go and it took awhile for us to adjust but by then the best we could do was make a run that got us to within 5 or so before a couple of dagger 3’s iced it.

Tennessee was very impressive that day and I don’t think it was a fluke but today will be different for the following reasons:

1.Only one Smith-UT lost an Jujuan Smith NBA guard who was a senior and knew Pargo’s game. Tyler is potential NBA and back but has to deal with our own NBA potential forwards.

2.Josh is back-Heytvelt was nowhere near 100% last year-he is now. More mature, stronger and healthy. I don’t see an answer on UT if he plays like he did vs. MD

3.Taller GU frontcourt-UT’s Smith ,Tatum and Chism are 6’9”, 6’6” and 6”7” respectively vs. Heytvelt, Sacre and Daye who are all 6”10-7’0”.

4.Daye is a year older-Austin is greatly improved. Last year’s game vs. UT was just the 5th in his career.

5.GU defense is much better-Pargo & Meech better on the perimeter and we are blocking a lot of shots with JH and Daye. Opp FG%is under 40% so far

6.UT ball pressure won’t be a surprise this time. We know what’s coming and will deal with it. Pressure will probably be less than last year with J Smith gone

7.Scrappier attitude-versus the Terps we faced pressure and traps and dealt with it while turning them over with our own pressure and intimidating them inside. We didn’t have that last year.

8.Pargo vs. Maze-is a mismatch in our favor this time. Pargo is a senior and maze is a promising but streaky junior. Mirror image of last year. At 240lbs vs 185 lbs, JP is also more physical.

9.GU offensive versatility-we have 7 guys who can score 20+. Somebody is always going to be open. Pargo needs to run the offense and find him.

What am I worried about? Bouldin scares me, our FT % is going to bite us eventually and Gray is 3-18 in 3pt FG’s. Also Pearl is a great coach and will have a gameplan Few will have to counter with moves of his own in the second half.

We will see a great game today-a potential sweet 16/Elite 8 type matchup that wll be a great barometer of where we are at and what we will need to work on.

Go Zags!!!

11-30-2008, 11:02 AM
I agree with your assessment, especially with respect to last year's BIS. Another difference this year is that we have the matchup problems for them, unlike last year. I hope this is the first game against elite competition where we force the opponent to match up to us, instead of the other way around.

Playing Meech and Jeremy at the same time in order to counter their pressure is the wrong way to go, and plays right into Bruce Pearl's hands. We can beat their pressure without sacrificing our offensive weapons and scheme, and when we do we have the advantage in the half court game, both offensively and defensively.

We can, and will, run with them with our typical rotation. Once again, we need to stay out of the three guard offense because Bruce Pearl's scheme will shred us if we play into his hands like that. IMO, they have no answer for Josh/Austin/Micah on the floor at the same time, plus that allows Matt to post up their 2 guard when available.

Jeremy and Matt/Steven will be fine handling their pressure, especially with Austin/Micah helping out at half court. I love our current starting 5 and rotation, no reason to change, especially when the matchups favor us.

IMO, college basketball at the elite level is a big man's game, especially when we have versatile big men like Josh and Austin. Of course you need good guard play as well (we have it with Jeremy/Matt/Steven), but Josh and Austin (Micah also) are the matchups we need to exploit, today and for the rest of the season. If we go with the three guard offense or, god forbid, the 4 guard offense, Austin and Micah sit and our matchup superiority goes away, along with most of our scoring punch.

The most important matchup today is between the coaches, we'll see what happens. It's time for us to start imposing OUR WILL on the opposition, instead of simply trying to keep from the opponents will from being imposed on us.

We have the horses this year, ride 'em.............


11-30-2008, 11:03 AM
I am almost certain he scares the Vols too.

11-30-2008, 11:21 AM
Hope you're right about Matt but so far, he hasn't looked scared our opponents.

11-30-2008, 11:40 AM
Don't forget Bouldin wast he leading scorer last year vs the Vols with 21.

11-30-2008, 11:52 AM
The most important matchup today is between the coaches, we'll see what happens. It's time for us to start imposing OUR WILL on the opposition, instead of simply trying to keep from the opponents will from being imposed on us.

Good point. In years past I think we've all been a bit frustrated with adjustments being made by opposing coaches but not Coach Few. This year things seem a bit different, as evidenced by the way the team has been shredding (most) opponents in the second half. A lot of that has simply been reminding guys to look inside to Josh, and for him to make the most of it. Against most teams, that alone will wreak havoc. This game may require some savvier moves re: beating traps and presses and all that. I hope the Zags -- players and coaches -- bring their A game.

Second halves
Vs. Mont St. - 50-24
Vs. Idaho - 33-35*
Vs. OK St. - 47-34
Vs. Maryland - 43-30

*Major bench minutes given 43-11 1st half lead