View Full Version : Be reasonable

Angelo Roncalli
09-17-2009, 01:05 PM
Fr. Royce used to used to distill Kant's categorical imperative to two little words: "be reasonable."

Zag fans would do well to apply this maxim to Bol Kong.

Some won't.

My crystal ball tells me that if Kong doesn't begin the season: (a) as a starter; (b) as a completely dominant force; and (3) GU's leading scorer, rebounder, shot-blocker, etc., there will be flurry of threads questioning his recruitment and signing.

Give the young man a reasonable chance.

He hasn't played organized team basketball for nearly a year and half.

He has one year of JC equivalent ball under his belt.

There have been posts questioning whether he may be a one and done guy. I'm highly, highly dubious.

Mark Few has remarked before that sometimes it takes JC players nearly the better part of their first year in D-1 to become acclimated to the style of the D-1 game and to their teammates.

Gonzaga's offense is complex. It's going to be a big learning curve for Bol.

Remember, JP Batista did not start in the first 14 games of his first season at GU (he wasn't eligible for the first few games, he wouldn't have started them anyway). It wasn't until the 11th game of the season when JP had a breakout game against Oklahoma State that he made any real noise as a Zag.

Give Mr. Kong the same chance. Don't be surprised if he struggles along the way.

09-17-2009, 01:13 PM
Who's Bol Kong?

09-17-2009, 01:15 PM
I second that, Angelo. Give the guy a break. Now that he's here he's no longer a comic book superhero or Keiser Sossa or whatever we've billed him as; he's a human being--just another new player trying to adjust to Gonzaga basketball.

09-17-2009, 01:24 PM
Agreed - a year and a half without playing an organized game (and having never played D-I) I'm not looking for him to contribute much before WCC play at least.

09-17-2009, 01:30 PM
Give Mr. Kong the same chance. Don't be surprised if he struggles along the way.

What, no walking on water? What about water to wine?

He may change expectations to whines, I know, but here I though Kong would lead GU over the Los Angeles Lakers to win the NBA champ, after curing cancer and winning the Nobel in Science, Peace and Literature. The Nobel for Literature awarded for the novels, "The unbearable airness of me" "Bol Kong shugs" and "Portrait of a Basketball player as an artist."

Gee, are you saying Bol Kong may be human? That he won't bring peace in the Middle East? Who sneezed in you Captain Crunch?

09-17-2009, 01:41 PM
My hero Bill Walton won the national college player of the year title 3 years in a row. As long as Kong does that - and I think we all know he will - I am happy to cut him a little slack as he adjusts to GU and the NCAA.

Go Bulldogs! Get Bigger!

09-17-2009, 01:49 PM
Rust all over KONG! I think Angelo's thoughts are very correct. We really don't know how he'll react to D1 challenges. He has the talent...no doubt...but he will need some time to hone (rehone) his skills and figure out the way to best contribute. Good kid with talent, discipline (obviously) and desire. Hard to beat that combination. Time will tell.

09-17-2009, 01:55 PM
I agree that we need to be patient and let the kid adjust but that being said I have a lot of faith in Kong. He waited a year and a half unknowingly to come to Gonzaga to play. If he can demonstrate half that amount of dedication to improving his basketball skills on the court he will be a tremendous player for our program.

09-17-2009, 03:34 PM
This is kind of pointless...not to say I don't agree. However, no matter what you say, there is always going to be a contingent of people on this board that will come out of the woodwork to call someone out. He's lucky he's not a point guard.

It is something we (unfotunately) will have to live with until Kong adjusts his super hero powers from the canadian to the american way of life.

The hype of him getting in, was blown way out of proportion.

09-17-2009, 04:17 PM
Being reasonable on a message board??


Just play ball, Bol.

Go Zags and congrats Mr Kong!!!!!

09-17-2009, 04:44 PM

We heard an equal amount of hype (if not more) about Daye, Pargo and Heytvelt. At times they lived up to it. At times they didn't. But we loved them all the same.

After watching Jeremy in his freshman year, I really couldn't understand the hype he was getting. He eventually lived up to it, but from reading these boards, he was God's gift to Zag basketball during a freshman campaign where, from my vantage, he looked more like a turnover machine.
I will add that I can't think of a single Zag that improved more over the course of four years than Jeremy. Before our eyes, he morphed into a bona fide star. He was in the national discussion and he was the face of Zag hoops. He evolved into a great, great player for the Zags.

Why the different approach for Kong? Are you afraid that he will fail miserably? Do you want to "cover your tracks"?

I say build him up. Make him part of the discussion. I say this because I believe he has the goods to get it done. I have confidence that he will live up to the billing. I sincerely believe that his upside is worth the "risk". And I would love for him to be a star. The face of the franchise. The Morrison of the future.

And if he doesn't?

Well....big deal. I'm not going to think of him any differently than I think of any other Zag. I can be critical of their game at times. But don't ever make the mistake of thinking that I am not ultimately grateful that they chose Gonzaga.

09-17-2009, 04:56 PM
Angelo's "Voice of reason" will not be able to turn Bol Kong the mythical character into Bol Kong the real person. Fanaticism and short-term nsanity are part of all athletic readerboards, and part of athletics in general. Athletic competition, and I think especially basketball, sometimes brings out a very unusual character in all, or let's say most, fans. I think the word fan must have come from the word fanatic. Some GU fans who post here have had a very good time with the mythical Kong, and I imagine it will continue until he leaves Gonzaga. I feel creating the mythical Kong has all been done in a fun way, and no one, in my opinion, has been insensitive while building this very interesting character, Bol Kong. I say, let it continue as long as their is no harm in it and it's done in a creative healthy way....In the true spirit of Zag Lore. The Gonzaga story in many ways has been kind of a fantacy, or let's say something like a dream. The Zag story has been built in a very creative way that has appealed to the child in all of us. So let it continue. It has always been the monitors and administrators job to monitor what gets onto the board. It will continue to function that way. I think the Mods has done a great job letting the myth get created, and now live. It's been fun for many folks.

Regarding the real Bol Kong. I don't think he should be treated any differently than any other Zag player. And he would most likely not want to be treated any differently. The voice of reason will always caution fans to be logical and reasonable regarding players, and especially Freshmen. Fans' expectations for Freshman is usually very low. But I think this group is different, and thus there has already been a call for a "special name." And I think that thread has also been very good, and also brings out a lot of creativity by posters. The voice of reason even persists in that thread saying just let them be Zags. Or GU. Wow!!!! It is meant to bring out something different in us because, imo, this is a very special class. Has there ever been 8 new players competing for playing time in one year? Not in my memory. And I think that there is "special" talent in this group. Many of us fans have believed there will be a group that will lead us to the Final 4. It certainly could be this group? Could it be this year? Who knows. I say let the games begin and lets see what happens. We have believed. And we will not stop bellieving. THE BEAST IS YET TO COME!!!

09-17-2009, 05:02 PM
Bol Kong said in one of the videos I found in a Google search that his goal was to play in the NBA after a year or two of college basketball in the states.
So he has very high expectations of himself, and doesn't necessarily see himself as sticking around for a degree. At least that's what I made of the interview. Wish I had saved the link, but I was just surfing for anything Bol.

09-17-2009, 05:24 PM
I really think if Bol can give the team about 5 points and a few rebounds and some help in situations where his size and athleticism can be utilized.

It takes a typical Juco transfer a half a year to a full year to get acclimated to high level D1. I view Bol as a Juco type guy. Of course, there are always exceptions. Even Batista took half a year to break out.

My 2 pesos.

09-17-2009, 05:41 PM
BZ, very well stated. And to add to this, he has been out of organized ball for over a year. Will he be good? Yes. Will it happen this year? Maybe near the end. Next Year? Yes, if he lives to "his" expectations. But we need to give him playing time and chances to make errors and grow.

09-17-2009, 06:05 PM
His second year here will likely be when he starts really shining as advertised.

09-17-2009, 09:04 PM
Actually, I think Angelo's words of wisdom should apply to this whole team with its eight newcomers. This year will be the journey and it will be a fun one if we can just give these young men a little space.

09-17-2009, 09:29 PM
Actually, I think Angelo's words of wisdom should apply to this whole team with its eight newcomers. This year will be the journey and it will be a fun one if we can just give these young men a little space.

Fortunately, the level of the Zags play will not have anything to do with what is said on this Board, or what we think or say. They are two entirely different games that are somehow connected in cyberspace. There already exists a huge space between the players and us here on GUBoard. I think they will have all the space they need. Have you not heard, that probably most likely the team does not even read this board. We know Mark Few discourages it.

This message board is very much affected by the way the Zags play. And quite the opposite, the team is not affected by the message board at all. There are times though that I am crazy enough to think that Mark Few is reading the board and listening to what I have to say....Now is that crazy or what? When I realize that he doesn't and he blows a game by playing that darn Zone Defense, or disciplines Josh or spoils Matt, then I know I am just one more Zag fanatic who's nuts about the team. I love this Board, and it is cerainly a lot of fun for me, and extremely entertaining most of the time. The diversity here is so awesome. There are all kinds of fans who blog here and we will, most likely, contine to express ourselves in a whole lot of different ways. I am grateful the members of this board (anyway at least a few) have tolerated me as long as they have.

09-17-2009, 10:07 PM
NCAA Division One, even for the best high school players is a significant jump. Everyone now playing in D1 was the Kong, Olynyk or Arop of their high school team.

As such, I would be quite surprised to see any of the first year players play enough significant minutes that would result in fans creating undue expectations on them.

I think all will contibute this year, and be very strong, but off the bench sharing minutes. The importent thing to remember is that this is a team game; your bench may not win you a game, but a successful team has a bench that will not lose you a game. This is where the eight will show thier true value.

If on the other hand, one of these players (Bol) gets starter minutes, then the situation changes somewhat as the coaching staff are expecting more. As no one has ever compared Bol to say, Gary Payton, the expectation will be for him to score.

The question in my mind for this year is not can he meet fans expectations, it is, will he get the chance?

MHO anyways.


09-18-2009, 01:27 AM
I think one or two of them will start all the time, unless Will Foster starts. We only have Matt, Steve, and Meech and Rob to begin the games, so SOME of the new players will start, at least one, and that may be rotated. In a way, Poling and Grant are not exactly new players.

09-18-2009, 07:42 AM
For me, what is especially exciting about this year's Zag team is the unknown. This in contrast to last year, when we had a better read on the talent, and our expectations were high, and rightfully so. And the team did well, I very much enjoyed the season. This year, the only known for sure player factors are in Matt, Steven G. and Meech - and I assume they will bring their game this year to an even higher level. Rob? An unknown quality in my thinking. Injuries have prohibited him from really showing what his contribution will or will not be. So again, it will be exciting to see what develops from this team. On paper, the talent appears to be there. But even if this is true, so many other factors enter in. Attitude for one. These youngsters, and we need to keep in mind they are youngsters, are accustomed to being "the stud" on their teams. Now they are just one among a team of studs. Other factors include injuries, sharing playing time, etc., etc. Few and staff have a challenge, but if anyone can mold these new guys into a winning, classy outfit, our coaches can. I'm trying to keep my expectations in check, while at the same time knowing the fun and satisfaction for me will be in watching these young individuals develop into eventual winners - which I'm confident will happen over time. The Zag winning tradition, winning in more ways than just on the basketball court, will over time continue. How much time, at this point, we just don't know - but I know I'll be there to support them all every step of the way - and I'm just as sure you all will be too.

09-18-2009, 07:56 AM
No, I expect him to score every single point for the Zags this season. :p

Das Zagger
09-18-2009, 11:11 AM
Give Mr. Kong the same chance. Don't be surprised if he struggles along the way.

I'll be surprised if he doesn't struggle. I know the jump from high school to college athletics is huge for just about any player. I've heard he is pretty good but as I've seen in the past at GU, one player doesn't make a team.

09-18-2009, 11:57 AM
Angello, I am going to be more than reasonable, I'll give him until mid March as far as I am concerned. Let's no rush him into any SMC games. ;)

09-26-2009, 06:51 PM
Fr. Royce used to used to distill Kant's categorical imperative to two little words: "be reasonable." [/snip]

I spoke with Fr. Royce this evening and relayed this post to him. He was amused and I'm sure pleased to know that his words are remembered after all these years. He loves baseball and is a huge Mariners fan.

09-26-2009, 07:05 PM
Just noticed that Bol Kong and Burger King have the same initials. I assume I can "have it my way". I choose a National Championship in 2010! With extra bacon!

09-26-2009, 07:06 PM
How quickly people forget the last, highly heralded player out of Canada, who had admission problems, and who had not played in a year before joining the Zags. That kid got busted for drugs, lasted a year, transfered away from the Zags, and never panned out. Give Kong some room to grow.

09-26-2009, 07:59 PM
How quickly people forget the last, highly heralded player out of Canada, who had admission problems, and who had not played in a year before joining the Zags. That kid got busted for drugs, lasted a year, transfered away from the Zags, and never panned out. Give Kong some room to grow.

Honestly, I think Theo Davis's problem was that he never really had the passion necessary. Either he said that himself or a lot of people around him said that. Plus, he had a very difficult time with personal matters, such as his father being ill.

With Kong, I think it's different. It's clear that this kid wants to play. Look at all he's been through in the past year or so. Other people may have just said screw it and stayed in Canada, but Kong continued to fight to come here.

But I definitely do agree with you that Kong needs to be given time, and we fans need to be patient with him.