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View Full Version : The News Tribune's Write-up/Steven + Zags



Kiddwell
11-09-2010, 04:55 PM
Pretty much about Coach Few being focused on Steven being focused. (Had forgotten the Zags entered last season unranked.)

:]

http://www.thenewstribune.com/2010/11/09/1416233/a-different-kind-of-leader.html

MDABE80
11-09-2010, 05:10 PM
Steven is the key to this season. He's got the talent to be and 18 ppg kid. His defense is strong. He's got the athleticism to be a great one.

Elias comes along nicely and adds a few ppg to go with 9 rpg, we'll have two Bona Fide AA's. Steven's undervalued. Highhopes for him...if he gets his shooting form back. On any night, it's not a stretch for him to put up 25 pts. He needs consistency. Let's hope he has a killer season. Could use a haircut;) This "predator" look....well...

upan8th
11-09-2010, 08:45 PM
Oh, Abe, c'mon... Correct me if I'm wrong. Aren't you the poster who perennially harps on the need for the Zags to "get tougher", "get a mean streak", "GET BIGGER", "get a killer instinct" etc, etc. And now you're down on Steven's "predatory" locks?

This is GONZAGA Abe. The very last bastion of unrestrained hair expression in all of the collegiate ranks. Let's see how much "stronger", "tougher", and "remorseless" this season's edition of the team is w/dreadlock Steven at the helm. Then, if it doesn't work out, and say, we lose the SDSU game, then, hell yes, I say shear him like an MCRD probie.

seasontixholder
11-10-2010, 04:04 AM
Wow. Steven finally said that he wants to be in the NBA next season. :D

Best news of the young season.

jazzdelmar
11-10-2010, 04:13 AM
for some reason steven brings to mind trajan langdon of duke. he too was sort of an everyman who didnt quite make the mark he could have, but did well nonetheless....im proud of sg, if he averages 12 ppg he will have had a wonderful college experience (tho leaving a bit more on the table)...a class kid all the way.

FuManShoes
11-10-2010, 06:56 AM
It hasn't surfaced so much on this board lately and I don't mean to open a can of worms, but I've always been perplexed with the level of frustration and animus some have with Steven. The kid has never embarrassed himself or his school - unless one's close-minded enough to consider an athlete performing theatre embarrassing. He seems quite curious and introspective and I'd wager most of us would be proud to call him our kid. The problem is we come at this, and Few comes at this, as basketball people. And so we get our panties in a bunch that Steven has interests besides basketball and is so open about them.

Maybe Steven would have already been an All-American if he'd spent those stage hours in the gym. Then again maybe he'd never have made shots at the buzzer if he didn't have a calmness and confidence honed through non-basketball endeavors. I think everyone, including Few, should cut Steven some slack. Or if Few really thinks pushing Steven's buttons is the way to get the best out of him, perhaps find a better way to express it, because the way he's gone about it so far seems kind of petty to me.

U Zig, I Zag
11-10-2010, 07:19 AM
It hasn't surfaced so much on this board lately and I don't mean to open a can of worms, but I've always been perplexed with the level of frustration and animus some have with Steven. The kid has never embarrassed himself or his school - unless one's close-minded enough to consider an athlete performing theatre embarrassing. He seems quite curious and introspective and I'd wager most of us would be proud to call him our kid. The problem is we come at this, and Few comes at this, as basketball people. And so we get our panties in a bunch that Steven has interests besides basketball and is so open about them.

Maybe Steven would have already been an All-American if he'd spent those stage hours in the gym. Then again maybe he'd never have made shots at the buzzer if he didn't have a calmness and confidence honed through non-basketball endeavors. I think everyone, including Few, should cut Steven some slack. Or if Few really thinks pushing Steven's buttons is the way to get the best out of him, perhaps find a better way to express it, because the way he's gone about it so far seems kind of petty to me.

I tend to agree. Steven is like the Angelina Jolie of the team: thespian, humanitarian, 40-inch vertical, 3 or 4 seemingly randomly adopted kids (jk, but it wouldn't surprise me if Steven hand feeds abandoned kittens in his free time.)

He probably has deferred leadership and 'spotlight' actions to other players - probably since he first walked on the floor at GU. He was an understudy, if you will.

Well, guess what Steven? You are headlining this show. It's not a one man show, it's an ensemble but they still need a leader. I think that's what Few wants from him.

If he wants the NBA (average good to excellent numbers each game and he gets drafted, I think) then he has to turn it on a bit...

ZagNative
11-10-2010, 07:44 AM
I'd wager most of us would be proud to call him our kid. The problem is we come at this, and Few comes at this, as basketball people. +1 for your whole post, FuMan, but especially this portion.

It's hard for me to believe Coach Few's needling is helpful. Sometimes recently I've wondered whether communication between Coach Few and his players lately is top down only...

I also remember what Manny Arop said (http://www.albertahoops.com/manny_arop.htm) when he committed to Gonzaga:
“Gonzaga is a Top 25 school and academically they have smaller classes so it will be easier to get to know professors,” Arop said. “Their coaching staff was nice. They’re interested in developing players and your character. They care about that more than basketball. That’s a place I want to go to because I want to become a better person to go along with being a better basketball player.”Looks like Steven is fulfilling that promise.

sonuvazag
11-10-2010, 08:01 AM
I can live with wildly inconsistent production from Gray as long as it falls within the range of 16-52 points.

LongIslandZagFan
11-10-2010, 08:13 AM
Just so we can stop trying to read between the lines... Reading e tea leaves... Consulting astrological charts...


Asked if he believes Gray is focused on basketball now, Few shrugged his shoulders and said, “I don’t know. I didn’t say he was out of focus.”

Can we move on with our lives now? Maybe it is just me, but I would be very happy with a double digit scorer who leaves GU well rounded and not necessarily in the NBA than a kid that leaves with no sense of purpose in the world outside of hoops.

JoeZag
11-10-2010, 08:27 AM
It hasn't surfaced so much on this board lately and I don't mean to open a can of worms, but I've always been perplexed with the level of frustration and animus some have with Steven. The kid has never embarrassed himself or his school - unless one's close-minded enough to consider an athlete performing theatre embarrassing. He seems quite curious and introspective and I'd wager most of us would be proud to call him our kid. The problem is we come at this, and Few comes at this, as basketball people. And so we get our panties in a bunch that Steven has interests besides basketball and is so open about them.

Maybe Steven would have already been an All-American if he'd spent those stage hours in the gym. Then again maybe he'd never have made shots at the buzzer if he didn't have a calmness and confidence honed through non-basketball endeavors. I think everyone, including Few, should cut Steven some slack. Or if Few really thinks pushing Steven's buttons is the way to get the best out of him, perhaps find a better way to express it, because the way he's gone about it so far seems kind of petty to me.

+1
He is one of the most outstanding young men I have ever encountered in the world of college basketball. A true class act.

ID ZAGFAN
11-10-2010, 08:51 AM
It hasn't surfaced so much on this board lately and I don't mean to open a can of worms, but I've always been perplexed with the level of frustration and animus some have with Steven. The kid has never embarrassed himself or his school - unless one's close-minded enough to consider an athlete performing theatre embarrassing. He seems quite curious and introspective and I'd wager most of us would be proud to call him our kid. The problem is we come at this, and Few comes at this, as basketball people. And so we get our panties in a bunch that Steven has interests besides basketball and is so open about them.

Maybe Steven would have already been an All-American if he'd spent those stage hours in the gym. Then again maybe he'd never have made shots at the buzzer if he didn't have a calmness and confidence honed through non-basketball endeavors. I think everyone, including Few, should cut Steven some slack. Or if Few really thinks pushing Steven's buttons is the way to get the best out of him, perhaps find a better way to express it, because the way he's gone about it so far seems kind of petty to me.

I come at this as a retired teacher/basketball person. I am overjoyed to see a young man who is able to devote himself to basketball and to utilize his other talents and excel academically.

I saw too many young athletes who put all their energies into football or basketball, thinking that would be their future and spent only enough time and energy on academics to stay eligible. When the athletics failed them, they had no skills to fall back on.

One of the reasons I support Gonzaga athletics is that they put a great emphasis on academics and on developing the whole person.

Congratulations to Steven for becoming a fine young man as well as a fine athlete.

ZaGranny

D Hark 2003
11-10-2010, 08:52 AM
for some reason steven brings to mind trajan langdon of duke. he too was sort of an everyman who didnt quite make the mark he could have, but did well nonetheless....im proud of sg, if he averages 12 ppg he will have had a wonderful college experience (tho leaving a bit more on the table)...a class kid all the way.

Umm, what? if he averages 12 points a game??? Correct me if I'm wrong but didnt Steven average 13+ points per game last year? He will average somewhere in between 15 and 20 this year in his sleep.

Nevtelen
11-10-2010, 08:55 AM
It's hard for me to believe Coach Few's needling is helpful. Sometimes recently I've wondered whether communication between Coach Few and his players lately is top down only...

I also remember what Manny Arop said (http://www.albertahoops.com/manny_arop.htm) when he committed to Gonzaga:Looks like Steven is fulfilling that promise.

I'm sure Few is also talking about this with Gray, but he just uses all avenues available to him to express his opinion. Also, several of those quotes looked suspiciously like things I've heard Few say in other venues (the Mark Few show, other articles) so I wouldn't bet that all of them were necessarily gotten specifically for this piece. Plus, being focused is part of being consistent and if there's anything Gray really DOES need this season, it's consistency.

jazzdelmar
11-10-2010, 09:06 AM
Umm, what? if he averages 12 points a game??? Correct me if I'm wrong but didnt Steven average 13+ points per game last year? He will average somewhere in between 15 and 20 this year in his sleep.


point was, EVEN in gray avgs ONLY 12ppg, for a variety of reasons (not all bad, he may become more of a distributor this year) he will have had a great career....ok?

BobZag
11-10-2010, 09:19 AM
Steven must channel his inner Tybalt. If he does, he'll be fine.

MDABE80
11-10-2010, 10:17 AM
It's a haircut he must get......;)

jazzdelmar
11-10-2010, 10:24 AM
doc-hair is strength

ZagNative
11-10-2010, 10:35 AM
It's a haircut he must get......;)The chant of old farts since the beginning of time.

http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff232/ZagNative/Junk/Emoticons/dreadlocks1.gif

kitzbuel
11-10-2010, 10:55 AM
Steven must channel his inner Tybalt. If he does, he'll be fine.
Heck no! I don't want him out at mid-season!

BobZag
11-10-2010, 10:59 AM
Heck no! I don't want him out at mid-season!

It's all about the hate! Grrrrrrr.

MDABE80
11-10-2010, 11:00 AM
The chant of old farts since the beginning of time.

http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff232/ZagNative/Junk/Emoticons/dreadlocks1.gif

"Such a shame to cover that handsome face with all that hair"...what Abe's mom used to say when I was Steven's age. lolol..RIP mom..you were right. (again).

seasontixholder
11-10-2010, 11:42 AM
At the risk of being accused of caging a magnificent Free Bird, I tend to agree with MFew. And not specifically about a player this year. I see value, after 3 years of being Renaissance Man, of throwing yourself into something as hard as you can in an area where you have superior talent, simply for the educational and personal development aspects. For non-sports people as well. Just as a test of human limits. If not now in the educational experience, when?

Mark Few has standing here because of his realization that BB is not a life unto itself. He adopts that philosophy in his own life and with his staff. Not exactly a pauper, he still has forgone tons of money in practicing what he preaches. But at the same time, he has the wisdom of applying one's self vigorously at the proper time and place.

Having seniors dedicate themselves is not a new idea, and it is part of an old bargain. It allows coaches to 1. have role models beyond practice hours 2. have a motivating tool for underclassmen to overachieve for "the seniors." Really, BB101.

It's also a part of the giving-something-back-to-the-school tradition. Keeping the streak alive has huge monetary benefits to GU, and losing it introduces jeopardy. That's not something that a senior or two can be expected to carry alone, but someone who cherishes the school can't overlook it either.

Steven works hard in games, has received a well-rounded education, and has been a great asset to GU. Good luck with the season and beyond. It sounds like that Few is getting through to him a bit ;)

sonuvazag
11-10-2010, 12:03 PM
I recall on the Mark Few show, Sacre said Steven worked very hard in the off-season. Maybe its just an assumption based on what seems to be a full plate of activities that Gray is not dedicated in his basketball development.

For the record, I have no idea how Gray or any of his teammates spend their time. As for his focus, he seems so relaxed, it may be difficult to tell if he's taking things too easy.

Nice post, seasontixholder. IMO, Few has a right to expect something from Steven. If nothing else, just a fulfillment of his abilities.

titopoet
11-10-2010, 12:37 PM
I kinda think we give too much cadence to Coach Few's comments for the public. He is too good and experienced a coach to be giving the farm up to a reporter. He uses the media, not the other way around.

I think he uses the media to push players or give them props as for what he wants from them. I remember last year before the MSU game, we was down playing the game and giving the impression that they were going to be lucky to leave the building alive. The game showed a team that not only knew it belonged with MSU, but thought it should win. I am certain that they believed they could win and the impression that Few gave was for the media and not his players. Last year Few pushed Gray to be more a slasher and playmaker and Gray responded quite well. With a year under his belt in that new role, I suspect Gray will continue to shine.

FuManShoes
11-14-2010, 10:33 PM
Searching for Zag news I stumbled onto a blog post called "The curious case of Steven Gray, Part I (http://larevblog.wordpress.com/2010/11/12/the-curious-case-of-steven-gray-part-one/)." In it, the author, Scott, takes issue with the way Mark Few has discussed Steven's life outside basketball, much as some of us here have, and assails this board for propagating the myth that basketball is life.


... When someone posted the link to the Sun’s most recent “I don’t know” article on GUBoards, the ensuing discussion ranged from acceptance of Gray’s acting (as long as he performed on the court, of course) to, incredibly, a celebration of Mark Few’s ability to use the media to motivate his players. Nothing even resembling a criticism of Few’s actions let alone a real, honest assessment of what it means that one of Gonzaga’s best players is on record saying he doesn’t want to be known as just a basketball player.

While I agree with some of the blogger's points, I think he overlooks debates we have had about the efficacy of Few's public comments and goes too far in ascribing somewhat sinister motives to Few and the rest of us fans. Do we get caught up in fandom? Yes. Do we have unrealistic expectations of these young men? Yes. Do we truly believe that they should sacrifice every ounce of youthful curiosity and expression in the pursuit of our basketball dreams? I sure don't.

But whatever you believe, you should read Steven's blog post about his trip to Africa this summer (http://www.gonzagainzambezi.org/http___web.me.com_gulead_Site_Gonzaga_Blog_Gonzaga _Blog.html/Blog_10/Entries/2010/5/24_Entry_1.html). Keep in mind this comes from a kid who has the hopes of his teammates and all of Zag Nation on his shoulders.


Sitting in my room I ultimately decided that when you boil it all down it’s 3 weeks out of my life so I should be able to give that up for a truly great group of kids who’s biggest flaw is loving you too much. He told me he wanted my camera so he could remember me but I told him I would write him a letter instead, so the next day I gave him a letter saying thank you for being so welcoming and being a friend that I could have in Zambia and the response was amazing. He brought to me a homemade card that he had someone help him with that said thank you for showing him a kind heart “because not everybody can accept me like you have done”. Just to see the time he put into it put into perspective what we can do while we are here and how much mean to some of them. When I am able to take a step back and look at the generosity people show and sacrifices they make, it seems and sounds so simple, and yet proves so hard to do. All they have done is love us, they have shown me how love can make your life so fulfilling, their love has been felt at our core.

When I read that, and read of Steven's other exploits, and then see him dominate games with seeming ease and a smile on his face, I know we have it good and that the kid will be OK, regardless of whether he realizes our hoop dreams. The same could be said for Ammo, or Matt, or Jeremy, or Josh, or any other player we deify as Zag Material.

seasontixholder
11-15-2010, 04:01 AM
Steven said in one interview that he wanted to pursue pro ball, now. It seems that he has a goal; and while it's not his endgame in life, it's a medium-term desire.

He seems to have embraced the coaches' advice/prodding about focus. From the ever-present smile on his face, it looks like he is having a blast, realizing just how much he can do.

Basketball is part of life, too. Excellence through full realization of talent is an esthetic in itself, and pleasurable, regardless of the pursuit. It also can be a fallback in a lousy job market. Seniors tend to begin to take that into consideration; not a small detail or far-off hypothetical any longer for them.

On the opposite side of the coin, those younguns who pursue athletics as their primary goal are not necessarily declasse roughnecks undeserving of admiration. The constant adulation of a cultural multi-tasking here also contains a backhanded sneer against those whose just don't want to spread themselves around at this point in their lives. Has John Stockton failed at life because he didn't spend hours at poetry or building canals for peasants in Nicaragua?

tyra
11-15-2010, 05:53 AM
This issue (Is sTeven the leader? Is Steven's head "fully into the game"?) was settled in the IUPUI game when Steven jumped in the mix after the hard foul on Sam. It's Steven's team. Game. Set. Match.

titopoet
11-15-2010, 06:57 AM
This issue (Is sTeven the leader? Is Steven's head "fully into the game"?) was settled in the IUPUI game when Steven jumped in the mix after the hard foul on Sam. It's Steven's team. Game. Set. Match.

Also, it shows that Few knew what he is doing as well. Gray is my favorite not only for his basketball skills, but for the man he is becoming. Gray learned a lot about teamwork, passion and compassion from his other activities and now he is bringing those to the court as well. I knew he was going to be a great leader, after all didn't Kelly launch his acting career by following Steven?

ZagMania
11-15-2010, 07:07 AM
Steven is making it very, very hard for me to not have him take over as my favorite Zag ever. How can you not love this guy?

Also, his hair this season is sweet.

TacomaZAG
11-15-2010, 09:06 AM
In fact, channel your "inner Ronny Turiaf" in the hair department. Steven is our only chance this year for the continuation of the "all hair team", following in the footsteps of DD, Ronny, Ammo, and Bouldin.

Go ZAGS

Dogtownkid
11-15-2010, 10:46 AM
Steven needs to keep the hair. It's gorgeous! He's gorgeous!

On the other hand, Mathis Mönninghoff's hair... Very strange-looking.

The whole question of Steven's focus/lack of exclusive focus on basketball keeps reminding me of John Updike's "Rabbit Run," about the life of a former high-school basketball star who's now selling kitchen gadgets.

I'm with Seasontixholder on this one.