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View Full Version : Recruiting?



Hextall7388
03-28-2009, 08:31 AM
Let me start by saying it was a terrific season, and we had a great group of guys. Last night we ran into a team that was deeper and more talented, and to make matters worse for the Zags, they probably played one of their best games of the season. If we had lost to Western Kentucky I would have had issues, but there is nothing to be ashamed of when you lose to a team like UNC, especially the way they played.

I firmly believe that you can always learn from a loss, and moving forward, what I hope was hammered home to the coaching staff last night is that this team needs size (bulk) and players that want to get dirty in the paint. Throughout the season we all read the reports and stats and perhaps believed that this team had found the defensive component of the game that has been missing for so long. As we witnessed against WKU and UNC, the team's true colors came out....this was a finesse team. To beat the elite teams and take the next step to the Final Four, we need to be an much more physical team, a team that is able to rebound with elite teams, have a post presence and protect the paint. Because we couldn't beat them in the paint or defensively, we tried to outscore them. The harsh reality is that UNC has more talent and is too deep. Their starting 5 was comprised of 3 - 5 star recruits and 2 - 4 star recruits. Even their bench players Davis (5 stars), Fraser (4 stars), Zeller (4 stars) and Drew (4 stars). If you don't have the talent and depth to compete, you have to dirty the game up....like the Akron coach said before their game with the Zags...play tough defensive hard-nose, punch you in the mouth Big 10 style basketball.

My real issue with the Zags' recruiting over the past couple years, and going forward, is the lack of bulk and toughness. When I look at the roster next year, it's much of the same thing that we have had. We will have lots of height next year, but with the exception of Sacre, no 'big bodies'. Daye is not going to put on 40lbs over the off season. I'm hoping Poling has filled out, but he was thin. Dower, Olynek and Kong are thin (I'm not sure about Harris). Why can't the Zags recruit a 6'8-6'10 guy that carries 250-260 pounds?

When you recruit talented perimeter guys that are tall and thin in high school, you cannot expect that just because they will gain 20-40 pounds over their college career that they are going to change their style and become post players that like to rebound. We have seen this show, it is what the staff tried to do with Josh Heytvelt for the past 4 years....trying to make a perimeter player play the post.....square peg in a round hole. I'm afraid I see a similar situation in the future with Olynek, a 6'11 kid that is playing point guard in high school (don't get me wrong, if he turns out like Josh I'd be thrilled....I'm just making a point).

I look at it this way, very few kids playing any sport, be it basketball, football, baseball or hockey grow up dreaming about being a defensive player. They want to be the star who scores the winning touchdown or makes the winning basket. Most rebounders or defensive specialist are that way because they know they don't have the offensive skills to be the offensive star. They realize this at a young age and focus on what they can do well, and that is defend.

Instead of recruiting all of these offensively skilled, tall thin players and crossing your fingers that they fill into their body and become strong in the paint, maybe we should try the John Bryant or Samhan experiment. Get a big body kid who has from his first days on a basketball court played in the post and rebounded the ball....and then get him into game shape?

Frankly, as an elite program I would think we could recruit at least 1 6'8-6'9 250-270lbs power forward that loves to rebound...can't we?

BobZag
03-28-2009, 08:51 AM
There just aren't many out there, and when there is every big school from here to UConn tries to nab them. For years GU was fortunate with hidden gems like Calvary, Violette, Turiaf (pretty skinny at first) and Batista. The staff has tried to get them.

I'm confident the Zags will have three good back-to-the-basket bigs with post skills next season, with Sacre being a true center. Hansbrough really isn't what anyone would call a big wide body.

bigblahla
03-28-2009, 08:52 AM
Let me start by saying it was a terrific season, and we had a great group of guys. Last night we ran into a team that was deeper and more talented, and to make matters worse for the Zags, they probably played one of their best games of the season. If we had lost to Western Kentucky I would have had issues, but there is nothing to be ashamed of when you lose to a team like UNC, especially the way they played.

I firmly believe that you can always learn from a loss, and moving forward, what I hope was hammered home to the coaching staff last night is that this team needs size (bulk) and players that want to get dirty in the paint. Throughout the season we all read the reports and stats and perhaps believed that this team had found the defensive component of the game that has been missing for so long. As we witnessed against WKU and UNC, the team's true colors came out....this was a finesse team. To beat the elite teams and take the next step to the Final Four, we need to be an much more physical team, a team that is able to rebound with elite teams, have a post presence and protect the paint. Because we couldn't beat them in the paint or defensively, we tried to outscore them. The harsh reality is that UNC has more talent and is too deep. Their starting 5 was comprised of 3 - 5 star recruits and 2 - 4 star recruits. Even their bench players Davis (5 stars), Fraser (4 stars), Zeller (4 stars) and Drew (4 stars). If you don't have the talent and depth to compete, you have to dirty the game up....like the Akron coach said before their game with the Zags...play tough defensive hard-nose, punch you in the mouth Big 10 style basketball.

My real issue with the Zags' recruiting over the past couple years, and going forward, is the lack of bulk and toughness. When I look at the roster next year, it's much of the same thing that we have had. We will have lots of height next year, but with the exception of Sacre, no 'big bodies'. Daye is not going to put on 40lbs over the off season. I'm hoping Poling has filled out, but he was thin. Dower, Olynek and Kong are thin (I'm not sure about Harris). Why can't the Zags recruit a 6'8-6'10 guy that carries 250-260 pounds?

When you recruit talented perimeter guys that are tall and thin in high school, you cannot expect that just because they will gain 20-40 pounds over their college career that they are going to change their style and become post players that like to rebound. We have seen this show, it is what the staff tried to do with Josh Heytvelt for the past 4 years....trying to make a perimeter player play the post.....square peg in a round hole. I'm afraid I see a similar situation in the future with Olynek, a 6'11 kid that is playing point guard in high school (don't get me wrong, if he turns out like Josh I'd be thrilled....I'm just making a point).

I look at it this way, very few kids playing any sport, be it basketball, football, baseball or hockey grow up dreaming about being a defensive player. They want to be the star who scores the winning touchdown or makes the winning basket. Most rebounders or defensive specialist are that way because they know they don't have the offensive skills to be the offensive star. They realize this at a young age and focus on what they can do well, and that is defend.

Instead of recruiting all of these offensively skilled, tall thin players and crossing your fingers that they fill into their body and become strong in the paint, maybe we should try the John Bryant or Samhan experiment. Get a big body kid who has from his first days on a basketball court played in the post and rebounded the ball....and then get him into game shape?

Frankly, as an elite program I would think we could recruit at least 1 6'8-6'9 250-270lbs power forward that loves to rebound...can't we?

Rob Sacre!

Zags are fine, the new recruits although not nationally heralded will bring a more athletic feel to the team. Kong and Arop both have the ability to help in a big way next year both offensively and defensively. Olynyk will probably redshirt and I have no clue about Harris but have heard he's a stud.

Rob Sacre will be the man in the middle. Rob made a statement before he got to GU that he would deliver a national championship before he leaves. There are factors beyond his control but I for one believe him. His loss was huge though most people looked at his stats and thought nothing of it however his advancement from frosh to sophmore was huge from what I saw in the limited time he played and he would have been the anchor in the paint.

Zag Nation we are fine. Let's celebrate a great year and our graduating seniors. :D
Go!! Zags!!!

cjm720
03-28-2009, 08:54 AM
Those type of players get picked off early, usually to BCS schools. We definitely try...

You are absolutely correct in your assessment.

Go zags! Fun year...and it's only going to get better!

mainer6
03-28-2009, 09:00 AM
Everyone keeps mentioning Harris like hes a given. Is he coming to GU next year? And, this is the Harris from Chelan?

bigblahla
03-28-2009, 09:16 AM
Everyone keeps mentioning Harris like hes a given. Is he coming to GU next year? And, this is the Harris from Chelan?

Harris is from Germany.

Go!! Zags!!

Goshzagit
03-28-2009, 09:16 AM
NT

NEC26
03-28-2009, 09:17 AM
They are talking about Elias Harris from Germany. A kind of power/small forward type.

Goshzagit
03-28-2009, 09:21 AM
Everyone keeps mentioning Harris like hes a given. Is he coming to GU next year? And, this is the Harris from Chelan?

Not Harris from Chelan, but rather the Harris (http://www.nbadraft.net/players/elias-harris) from Speyer, Germany.

Zags sign German standout Elias Harris. (http://www.slipperstillfits.com/2008/12/17/696004/zags-extend-foreign-pipeli)

Current Stats: Elias Harris (http://www.eurobasket.com/player.asp?Cntry=ger&PlayerID=74105)

Draftexpress on Elias in '07 (http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Elias-Harris-1382/)

spudzag
03-28-2009, 04:25 PM
There are less than a dozen center/power forward, 4 and 5 star kids that weigh over 220 lbs. 3 or 4 on the west cost. These prospects are surronded for the time they are freshmen in high school by all the BCS schools. It is a very unusual prospect that will turn up his nose at a UNC or a UCLA to select GU. Stover who committed to UCLA and Burton who committed to Oregon State are two prospects that Few was in the hunt for until the end. I though he was very resourceful going to Germany for Harris and Canada for Arop, Kong and Olynyk while not Brockman bodies very solid. I takes more than 10 years to build a tradition and the draw that the BCS can. While I'm sometimes frustrated with the difficulty of pulling any player, Few has been assembling quality talent.

BobZag
03-28-2009, 04:50 PM
Just fyi... Elias Harris is thick and bulky, almost Brockman-like. His pics and vid clips reveal that. And Kong is very well built.

OT, but when Memphis was introduced, I was amazed at how tall, long and...thin they all were...at every position. Ultra-talented, yes, but I even commented to the guy next to me how thin they were. Seeing them in person was an eye-opener for me.

Lloyd Bonafide
03-28-2009, 05:06 PM
The Zags need some big boys. Big East-type players that don't look like they're a junior in high school.

The WCC, as well as the Pac-10 and the Mountain West Conference, really looked sickly this year when playing against the power teams from other conferences.

deathchina
03-28-2009, 05:14 PM
"OT, but when Memphis was introduced, I was amazed at how tall, long and...thin they all were...at every position. Ultra-talented, yes, but I even commented to the guy next to me how thin they were. Seeing them in person was an eye-opener for me."


Thin...and hungry! Fighting over the remaining scraps on the table.

CDC84
03-28-2009, 06:01 PM
I will never forget when Oden squared off against Hibbert in the national semis a couple of years ago. So much was made about how both guys were true 5 men who stuck in the low blocks and had no interest in the perimeter. The whole thing was pitched as a "throw back" game. It's becoming increasingly difficult to find kids who want to play that way.

What's important for Gonzaga to do, for now, is to find guys who want to battle on the glass, and who will put the time in to learn how to box out, anticipate well, etc. You can do that without weighing 260. While not having a lot of bulk is a concern, and I would still rather have a team with height and length in the middle than the reverse.