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View Full Version : Few, Meehan & Others on Sked and 3-Point D



BobZag
12-15-2010, 04:00 PM
http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2010/dec/15/gonzaga-catches-break-schedule/

From yesterday's media day.

Baldwinzag
12-15-2010, 04:47 PM
Few said. “So it’s ‘Alright, everybody get out and guard the 3.’ But if you’re going to guard the 3 then you’re going to give up drives."

As long as we're effectively guarding the perimeter, I don't care if Miss Daisy is driving opposing guards to the hoop...

Given the size of our frontcourt & Rob's/Elias' ability to alter shots, I'd like to see us take more chances with players penetrating against us than consistently giving up open looks to every team we play.

Some will state our players aren't switching on ball screens or communicating well enough, but that isn't entirely accurate. If you notice, players are trained to drop down and collapse on the ball when they get past the 3pt line. We have players such as Manny, Meech, Gray, and even Elias chasing players to the hoop instead of guarding their own. The offense quickly reacts and passes to the open shooter or cutter since our defense loses focus on players w/o the ball. Also, our defense, especially our bigs(Kelly Olynyk is the most guilty of this) loves to challenge the ball screen and allow the pick 'n roll screener a free lane to the hoop OR for the PG to dribble right past them.

We give up so many open looks because our post players are paranoid about guarding penetration, yet the moment they step out to defend a elementary ball-screen, we begin the cycle of "chasing". When Sacre or Olynyk start chasing down their player to stop the screen, a domino effect ensues and our defense collapses. One our guards try to drop back and help or run to the open shooter in the corner...it happens WAY to often for my taste.

It all starts with our philosophy of guarding penetration and/or the open shooter off the initial ball-screen.

The ironic thing is we are rarely, if ever, getting beat from 3pt by the PG shooting off screens. Its the 3,4,5 player who are picking, popping, or sitting in the corner waiting after our guys start helping, helping, switching, helping b/c our team is obsesses guarding the "drive" as Coach Few stated above.

Anyway...

Coach Few will always preach his 'law of averages' mantra, yet its worked against us thus far(he's one of few remaining Coaches who still believe in never fouling when up by 3pts, only seconds remaining, and the other team has the ball).

However, its archaic & meaningless considering our 2pt FG% defense is now equal to our 3pt FG% defense.

Its getting old & out-dated real quick. I can't fathom why Coach Daniels, Coach Giacolletti, etc aren't brining in new defensive adjustments but just helping gameplan(as I'm aware). I hear Coach G is in-charge of developing our defensive assignments, but its the same defense we ran before he arrived. Odd trend, imo.

Players are shooting better--at every position--now than ever before. Its a new generation of basketball. We have Centers or the "5" bombing 3's against us. Its occurred on multiple occasions this season b/c teams have more talented shooters from top to bottom.

Its like trying to defend the Oregon Ducks offense in Football with a Pro-style or traditional 4-3 defense. It doesn't translate anymore. QB's can run 4.4's and Lineman are as quick as most LB's nowadays.

Coach Few has been quoted in years' past about teams will ultimately "live by the 3, die by the 3". Well, it goes w/o saying that teams are making a living against us in every single game. Its caught up to us.

Just like in 2008-2009, we are doing another tremendous job of defending penetration. If you watch other teams(even Top-25 teams), you'll quickly notice other teams are able to drive and dish more frequently than they do vs Gonzaga. Its our system and we execute it quite nicely.

However, the same teams that give up penetration are holding teams to 25-30% from 3pt with consistency. Also, with referrees more inclined to call the offensive player for charge or post players to block shots, its not as effective as it once was...

Yes, it was evident the guys gave a better effort vs Notre Dame, yet The Irish still connected at a 55% clip from 3pt(11-21). The stats suggest ZERO improvement from previous games.

BobZag
12-15-2010, 05:01 PM
I've said this till I'm blue in the face--

Make them drive the ball. Giving up two points is better than three. And a lot of kids just are not good at driving it, they are too used to spotting up for threes. Sheesh, I've never understood the immense fear of two points when teams are killing you game after game with threes. Twos have never cost us games. It's the threes. Trust the bigs and get in the grills of guards on the perimeter.

It's like fearing to guard the A-Bomb too much because you might give up a grenade.

Zagsker
12-15-2010, 07:08 PM
As long as we're effectively guarding the perimeter, I don't care if Miss Daisy is driving opposing guards to the hoop...

Given the size of our frontcourt & Rob's/Elias' ability to alter shots, I'd like to see us take more chances with players penetrating against us than consistently giving up open looks to every team we play.

Some will state our players aren't switching on ball screens or communicating well enough, but that isn't entirely accurate. If you notice, players are trained to drop down and collapse on the ball when they get past the 3pt line. We have players such as Manny, Meech, Gray, and even Elias chasing players to the hoop instead of guarding their own. The offense quickly reacts and passes to the open shooter or cutter since our defense loses focus on players w/o the ball. Also, our defense, especially our bigs(Kelly Olynyk is the most guilty of this) loves to challenge the ball screen and allow the pick 'n roll screener a free lane to the hoop OR for the PG to dribble right past them.

We give up so many open looks because our post players are paranoid about guarding penetration, yet the moment they step out to defend a elementary ball-screen, we begin the cycle of "chasing". When Sacre or Olynyk start chasing down their player to stop the screen, a domino effect ensues and our defense collapses. One our guards try to drop back and help or run to the open shooter in the corner...it happens WAY to often for my taste.

It all starts with our philosophy of guarding penetration and/or the open shooter off the initial ball-screen.

The ironic thing is we are rarely, if ever, getting beat from 3pt by the PG shooting off screens. Its the 3,4,5 player who are picking, popping, or sitting in the corner waiting after our guys start helping, helping, switching, helping b/c our team is obsesses guarding the "drive" as Coach Few stated above.

Anyway...

Coach Few will always preach his 'law of averages' mantra, yet its worked against us thus far(he's one of few remaining Coaches who still believe in never fouling when up by 3pts, only seconds remaining, and the other team has the ball).

However, its archaic & meaningless considering our 2pt FG% defense is now equal to our 3pt FG% defense.

Its getting old & out-dated real quick. I can't fathom why Coach Daniels, Coach Giacolletti, etc aren't brining in new defensive adjustments but just helping gameplan(as I'm aware). I hear Coach G is in-charge of developing our defensive assignments, but its the same defense we ran before he arrived. Odd trend, imo.

Players are shooting better--at every position--now than ever before. Its a new generation of basketball. We have Centers or the "5" bombing 3's against us. Its occurred on multiple occasions this season b/c teams have more talented shooters from top to bottom.

Its like trying to defend the Oregon Ducks offense in Football with a Pro-style or traditional 4-3 defense. It doesn't translate anymore. QB's can run 4.4's and Lineman are as quick as most LB's nowadays.

Coach Few has been quoted in years' past about teams will ultimately "live by the 3, die by the 3". Well, it goes w/o saying that teams are making a living against us in every single game. Its caught up to us.

Just like in 2008-2009, we are doing another tremendous job of defending penetration. If you watch other teams(even Top-25 teams), you'll quickly notice other teams are able to drive and dish more frequently than they do vs Gonzaga. Its our system and we execute it quite nicely.

However, the same teams that give up penetration are holding teams to 25-30% from 3pt with consistency. Also, with referrees more inclined to call the offensive player for charge or post players to block shots, its not as effective as it once was...

Yes, it was evident the guys gave a better effort vs Notre Dame, yet The Irish still connected at a 55% clip from 3pt(11-21). The stats suggest ZERO improvement from previous games.

I agree with everything you just said

ZagAddict
12-15-2010, 07:11 PM
As the article mentions, the opponent 3pt percentage has only increased in the past once we begin conference play. The other WCC teams looking to knock GU from their thrown can shoot the 3pt shot with anyone else in the country.

Mickey McConnell (SMC) - 51%
Jared Stohl (POR) - 50%
Nemanja Mitrovic (POR) - 50%
Eric Waterford (POR) - 52%

Please coaches, pay attention to this routine. Every team in the country has the same game plan against us right now and are having success.

MickMick
12-15-2010, 08:05 PM
Few's defensive philosophy worked to an extent in years past by simply outscoring teams.

So he recruits a defensive minded point guard, but doesn't adjust his philosophy to the personnel. Zags aren't gonna outscore teams so they have to play all aspects of defense well. He recruited that way, he has to scheme that way. Zags have a guard that is physically suited to stop drives to the hoop. Few has depth in the front court to swallow the fouls that accumulate when the guards are beaten.

I can agree with Few's philosophy if he loaded up on scorers that could win by simply outscoring opponents in a wide open scoring fest. I liked the good old days when it happened, but the current roster isn't suited for it.

sonuvazag
12-15-2010, 08:08 PM
+1's around.

ZagDaddy
12-15-2010, 08:42 PM
I've said this till I'm blue in the face--

Make them drive the ball. Giving up two points is better than three. And a lot of kids just are not good at driving it, they are too used to spotting up for threes. Sheesh, I've never understood the immense fear of two points when teams are killing you game after game with threes. Twos have never cost us games. It's the threes. Trust the bigs and get in the grills of guards on the perimeter.

It's like fearing to guard the A-Bomb too much because you might give up a grenade.

I totally agree with this. Few's thinking while sound in the past doesn't have as much credence in today's game. The 3 is as big or bigger a part of the game today as the dribble drive. Open looks from the arc are butter for kids nowadays. Move the line back and his thinking might apply again.

cggonzaga
12-15-2010, 09:42 PM
I've said this till I'm blue in the face--

Make them drive the ball. Giving up two points is better than three. And a lot of kids just are not good at driving it, they are too used to spotting up for threes. Sheesh, I've never understood the immense fear of two points when teams are killing you game after game with threes. Twos have never cost us games. It's the threes. Trust the bigs and get in the grills of guards on the perimeter.

It's like fearing to guard the A-Bomb too much because you might give up a grenade.

Disagree a little here. I'd rather give up contested 22 footers any day of the week. We let guys start driving and Rob and EH and other bigs in the paint starting getting into foul trouble. We can't have Rob or EH in foul trouble as they're 2 of our 3 scorers right now.

ZaginLaw
12-16-2010, 05:49 AM
The law of averages (math) would say to guard the 3 and make them drive and no need to help on the drive.

Shooting 40.1% from the three is equivalent to shooting 60.1% in the key. The WCC's 50% 3-pt percentage is equivalent to 75% in the key.

It's actually a higher equivalent percentage in the key when taking into account the actual # of possessions in each game. Making a three essentially increases the # of possessions you get in a game.

All math points to guarding the three. If the kids can't guard the drive to less than 60%, then we need different players.

Few & Co. need to listen to Coach Knight's commentary. He gave a free lesson on when to switch, not switch, rotate, not foul...

FWIW, that quote on the drive made me cringe. I doubt we'll see a tough defensive mindset and effort without modifying that line of thinking.

kitzbuel
12-16-2010, 07:10 AM
The law of averages (math) would say to guard the 3 and make them drive and no need to help on the drive.

Shooting 40.1% from the three is equivalent to shooting 60.1% in the key. The WCC's 50% 3-pt percentage is equivalent to 75% in the key.



The NCAA 3pt % is 34.9%. That equates to shooting roughly 52.3% from inside. Zags are shooting 52.2% from the inside right now. Given those percentages you should put your money on the teams taking threes, especially since opponents average 4.1 points better when shooting 3pt shots against the Zags.


Opponent / Season % / % vs GU / diff

Southern / 30.4 / 38.7 / 8.3

IUPUI / 33 /17.4 / -15.6

SDSU / 38 /38.5 / 0.5

KSU / 35.5 /46.2 / 10.7

Marq / 31.6 / 28.6 / -3

EWU / 38.9 / 33.3 / -5.6

Ill / 42.1 / 52.2 / 10.1

WSU / 39 / 52.4 / 13.4

ND / 36.9 / 55 /18.1

Average point difference 4.1

Ezag
12-16-2010, 09:04 AM
Few will never make guarding the 3 a priority, never has, never will.

Houston Zag
12-16-2010, 10:34 AM
Mark Few has coached and won more games than any of you. While your bar stool coaching is nice it doesn't fit into the core philosophy that you force the other team to hit low percentage shots.

Not to mention the panick that every one of you will have when teams start driving the lanes against GU and starts the trend of getting our big guys in foul trouble.

I'm sure coach Few appreciates the advise, but I'm siding with coach on this one. Prevent the drive and force the low percentage shot.

billyberu
12-16-2010, 11:04 AM
Mark Few has coached and won more games than any of you. While your bar stool coaching is nice it doesn't fit into the core philosophy that you force the other team to hit low percentage shots.

Not to mention the panick that every one of you will have when teams start driving the lanes against GU and starts the trend of getting our big guys in foul trouble.

I'm sure coach Few appreciates the advise, but I'm siding with coach on this one. Prevent the drive and force the low percentage shot.

Agreed...mostly. Must do a better job defending the 3pt play.

webspinnre
12-16-2010, 11:08 AM
Guarding the three doesn't have to be a priority, it just has to be done better than it is currently being done, to make it so that it actually is a good percentage play. Our guys need to stop getting out of position playing help defense that doesn't actually help, and they need to get their hands up on the perimeter.

Hoopaholic
12-16-2010, 11:17 AM
I posted it prior but watching film you see a different defensive scheme last ND game. Interesting to see if this carries out.

We were switching all screens no matter location or who (G-C, G-G G-F) and was having with the switch with defenders getting lost, dropping off too far and not communicating thus leaving the pop man open for good looks

ND scheme seemed to fight thru screens and "hedge" on screen help, but staying with your man. There is no communication needed but this is dependant on 1. on ball defender fighting through or around the screens in a hard consistent manner (unintended consequences equates to more fouls occurring by us or a good off the dribble shooter getting that free step for an open jumper) 2. hedge man showing enough to ensure a good look on a pull up jumper doesnt occur or a straight drive to the lane is not an option


Shall see which defensive scheme the stick with in generality (you can move back and forth between the schemes depending on the composite makeup of the other team ---ie team has an awesome off the dribble shooter we may adjust to jump switch) they start to stick with........

cjm720
12-16-2010, 11:51 AM
Hate to say it but right now we are fundamentally a weak team against equal or better teams. A see a lot of confusion on defensive rotations (and offensive) and all is needed is another pass by the defense for an easy look.

CDC84
12-16-2010, 12:02 PM
The thing that drives me nuts about all of this is that this team is physically equipped to be the best defensive team in the Mark Few era. But as this thread is pointing out, there's a lot more to defense than just being physically equipped. I mean, there are an awful lot of teams throughout the country that are playing better D than Gonzaga who have guards that are slower than Meech and Gray and who do not have 6-10+ bigs in the middle protecting the rim.

ZagHouse
12-16-2010, 12:02 PM
I thought the paper did an excellent job of pointing out the three point percentages of some of the players that had career nights vs. the Zags. Granted our defense was poor, but guys hit shots . Sometimes you scheme where you can help out knowing your player isn't effective from outside. Zags were burned by players not known for hitting 3's.