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View Full Version : A few more post-game observations: Dower, offense



CDC84
12-05-2011, 09:46 AM
Message to Sam Dower: you need to man up in a game like that. Unless he starts showing more toughness in the post - both in terms of rebounding and defense - I would almost rather see Ryan Spangler in a game vs. a Big 10 team. Especially when Sam isn't making shots. Sam has got to get tougher. Especially against BCS opposition who can bully him in the low blocks.

There is plenty of blame to go around, but I still pin most of the blame on Marquise Carter and his complete no show performance vs. Illinois. His experience and leadership were needed in that game. Especially with the inexperienced guards in their first hostile road environment. Let's hope this serves as a wakeup call for him. I'm sure Few wasn't happy.

I can appreciate that this is an inside/out team, but as the season moves forward, Few and Co. need to figure out a way to get the guards more open looks from the perimeter. Especially in the first half of games. It's great to see all those one on one matchups in the post, but the guards need to be in the flow of the offense so that when the double teams come in the post in the 2nd half, they are ready to score. I felt Gonzaga was almost too reliant on Sacre in the first half. It just wore him down. As some people have mentioned, Rob needs to do a better job of spotting open shooters after a post feed.

MDABE80
12-05-2011, 10:02 AM
1. Sam is lazy. He's living of the good job he did as a frosh. He doesn't play defense and he rarely gets in position to rebound. Shooting is off. He needs some work. I expected him to be gangbusters this year...not so much anymore. We need help in scoring and rebound...look to Spangler.

2. Carter's performance and leader ship is AWOL. It's created a void. Someone will fill it. I don't see Pangos, Bell or DS sitting around waiting for a parttime leader. They will lead.

I agree pith your third paragraph CDC. Rob's obviously carrying the load...hard to do with 3-4 apes hanging on you . He did wear out. We need more "big help" which Elias did in the second half. We need more though...I wonder why Few's opposed to 3 bigs against a big strong set of bigs like IU had. Maybe Edi will help...I don't picture him as a Big" though.

Baldwinzag
12-05-2011, 10:16 AM
honestly, couldn't agree more with both posts above. good observations and points, guys.

hey, we're still scoring 70+ pts per game. We don't really need 'instant' offense from a back-up PF right now. We need toughness, competiveness, & rebounding, especially vs Illinois. Color me shocked we didn't see Spangler banging around in there vs Illini. Who cares if he's nervous on offense, he would have been a presence instead of a hinderance down low.

Sam is not focused enough. also, I've mentioned this several times, he appears to go completely away from the game-plan every night out, its as if he's not reading the scouting report or watching film prior to games. I'll watch Elias/Hart/Sacre defend a team or situation the EXACT same way only to watch Dower do the opposite, hence the numerous dunks by Meyers Leonard or the comeback by Notre Dame when he was in the game or non-stop fouls being called. His foul problems this season are due to laziness and not being ready to play.

He's fouling at a high rate b/c he's 2 or 3 steps behind the play, even on offense this season.

he got a little too caught up in the press-clippings about his potential b/c the focus/fire/fundamentals are not there, at all.

this isn't a personal attack, rather just watch 5 mins of him on the court and he's sticking out like a sore thumb. moreso than Spangler in limited mins.

His points vs WMU came on put-backs, terrific passes via Stocks/Pangos, and open shots. The kid can shoot & score, that's for certain, yet he's just not been ready at all to make an impact.

also, from his recent interviews, he doesn't seem to mind or notice at all.

bostonzagfan
12-05-2011, 10:23 AM
3 bigs would mean playing dower or spangler. at this point i only want them in when sacre or harris need a breather, then sub them right back out when harris/sacre are ready to go back in / are refreshed.

of course in blowouts the situation is different. spangler will get his time to develop in WCC games.

primal23
12-05-2011, 10:30 AM
Dower and Carter have been awful this year. After last year I thought both would shine this year, Carter looks like he did the start of last year, but without the benefit of a Gray to pick up the mess. Dower looks like he just isnt there or doesn't care, no fire. I really like both players, but at this point both need to be on the low end of the bench. I would have Spangler with his hesitancy on offense and freshman mistakes for his desire and just flat out trying. Carter IMHO is the reason the team lost.

On the positive, Pangos, Bell, Stock, Sacre and Harris played well. Hart even had moments.

jim77
12-05-2011, 11:05 AM
Great posts.

I'm still seeing visions of JP Batista flattening a defender with his "SHOUDER" picks. I agree with everybody that our guards do need more (OPEN) loooks. Pangos didn't get many because his defender was draped all over him. Time for us to set a few good solid picks on defenders and get them to look over their shoulders. The opposing defense needs to know there will be a price for that tight defense. If our guards can't get free...then guys like Sam need to set them free.

If you didn't see Sparty play last night I suggest you watch the replay....if we come in apprehensive against Michigan St we'll suffer the worst loss in the history of the kennel. Sparty looked GOOD.

CanadianZagFan
12-05-2011, 11:15 AM
Sam is a redshirt sophomore, the guy is in his 3rd year with the program, if he does not start to show a pulse soon I fell he will be nothing more than bench player for his career.

Baldwinzag
12-05-2011, 11:19 AM
Dower and Carter have been awful this year. After last year I thought both would shine this year, Carter looks like he did the start of last year, but without the benefit of a Gray to pick up the mess........ Carter IMHO is the reason the team lost.

On the positive, Pangos, Bell, Stock, Sacre and Harris played well. Hart even had moments.

There is one thing I can't understand about Carter and maybe someone can help.

Why, in good God, has be tried to become a different player this season?

He's playing like he's Dwayne Wade or at least trying to be -- its not his game.

He's actually become aggressive to a fault, imo. Its taking away from players who can actually finish the dribble-drive into the lane -- such as GBJ.

Has he forgot what got him playing time? It was 3pt shooting, a nice mid-range shot just inside the 3pt, defending passing lanes, and an occasional floater in the lane. Now, all of a sudden, he thinks his 170lb frame is Lebron James. I'd venture to say he's less athletic than Pangos or Stockton on drives as well. He doesn't have Bell's hang time or muscle.

WTH is this about? Did the Coaches tell him to drive in the lane w/o having an outlet or open shot every chance he could get? Is he trying to entice someone in the stands or look like an NBA player?

He found his niche last season and has since lost it. Not to say he can't find it again.

I gave him the 'benefit of the doubt' after going 3-13 in Game 1 and looking like a completely different player, yet now its getting annoying, especially since he's NOT learning or attempting to change his game.

A few things:

-- he needs to make an open 3pt.
-- quit driving the ball like a mad man, its really not his game.
-- when you he gets in the lane, he's a skinny small dude, what happened to your patented floater? He's shooting himself in the foot.
-- its ok to make the hard move to the basket, yet have some body control -- he's plowing right up and into the defense.
-- i can't even begin to count how many times he's passed up Pangos or Stockton waiting in the wings for an open shot by blindly going for a contested layup
-- he's making the game harder than it has to be and playing frustrated and out of control.

cjm720
12-05-2011, 11:23 AM
I can't disagree Baldwin. As a senior, he's trying to be the man...he'll figure it out.

Baldwinzag
12-05-2011, 11:23 AM
Sam is a redshirt sophomore, the guy is in his 3rd year with the program, if he does not start to show a pulse soon I fell he will be nothing more than bench player for his career.

He's certainly talented enough.

We know he can score. He did it at high school and in college. Its not a fluke with him.

Its more about his lack-luster, too cool for school ways in the post. Sam is starting to believe he's better than he actually is and he's starting to play like it. They call this the Sophmore slump. You can only have a so-called "slump" if you were good your first year. Its not a slump if you sucked your frosh season. Kids begin to think the game comes natural and you get better b/c you play. It takes continued hard work, focus, and a certain mentality to improve every night out or every season.

Right now, Sam simply IS NOT engaged on the court. Why can we assume this? B/c he's slapping players on fouls, not fighting for position on offense or defense, isn't executing the game plan whatsoever, and the effort all over the court is non-existent.

The good news...we know he has the ability, but it starts with what is going on upstairs.

jim77
12-05-2011, 11:28 AM
There is one thing I can't understand about Carter and maybe someone can help.

Why, in good God, has be tried to become a different player this season?

He's playing like he's Dwayne Wade or at least trying to be -- its not his game.

He's actually become aggressive to a fault, imo. Its taking away from players who can actually finish the dribble-drive into the lane -- such as GBJ.

Has he forgot what got him playing time? It was 3pt shooting, a nice mid-range shot just inside the 3pt, defending passing lanes, and an occasional floater in the lane. Now, all of a sudden, he thinks his 170lb frame is Lebron James. I'd venture to say he's less athletic than Pangos or Stockton on drives as well. He doesn't have Bell's hang time or muscle.

WTH is this about? Did the Coaches tell him to drive in the lane w/o having an outlet or open shot every chance he could get? Is he trying to entice someone in the stands or look like an NBA player?

He found his niche last season and has since lost it. Not to say he can't find it again.

I gave him the 'benefit of the doubt' after going 3-13 in Game 1 and looking like a completely different player, yet now its getting annoying, especially since he's NOT learning or attempting to change his game.

A few things:

-- he needs to make an open 3pt.
-- quit driving the ball like a mad man, its really not his game.
-- when you he gets in the lane, he's a skinny small dude, what happened to your patented floater? He's shooting himself in the foot.
-- its ok to make the hard move to the basket, yet have some body control -- he's plowing right up and into the defense.
-- i can't even begin to count how many times he's passed up Pangos or Stockton waiting in the wings for an open shot by blindly going for a contested layup
-- he's making the game harder than it has to be and playing frustrated and out of control.

agree...Heck, whens the last time he drove to the hoop and actually landed on his feet?

ZagWhisperer
12-05-2011, 11:33 AM
It would have been nice to have Kelly available for that game. He is not apposed to moving his feet to play defense / rebound.

In my mind the ability to score does not offset defensive effort. Everyone on the team is responsible for the result. One cannot take the stance that player X will rebound / score / whatever but rather take ownership themselves.

I remember Axel Dench had an epiphany on his approach that did wonders...

sonuvazag
12-05-2011, 11:35 AM
It's been stated before, but Dower is scouted now for going to his left. Get in the gym and work on that right hand.

zagzilla
12-05-2011, 12:49 PM
First the positive:

Harris looked good again. Keep it up!

Negatives:

Sacre got tired. I saw it on his face.
Carter's only move seems to be the dribble drive which too often would up dead ended in the trees
Dower a liability on defense and teams have scouted his offensive game which has made him ineffective.

ZZ

Baseline
12-05-2011, 02:16 PM
I know next year is a Looong way away, but if Dower doesn't pick it up we will have one huge hole. Its so far I shouldn't think about it, but it keeps crossing my mind. This team without Sacrae will be very different.

roxdoc
12-05-2011, 02:54 PM
Carter has been mostly filling in as the wing or SF. I think the coaches have told him to start slashing like a wing.

thickman1
12-05-2011, 03:25 PM
Carter has been mostly filling in as the wing or SF. I think the coaches have told him to start slashing like a wing.

If true, that's just dumb. This team doesn't have a good slashing wing option. Maybe Edi will be that guy. You play to your strengths and force other teams to adapt. That's like telling a singles hitter on a baseball team that he's hitting fourth now and needs to try to become a power hitter. Or an option quarterback to become a pocket passer. It's just not realistic.

thickman1
12-05-2011, 03:28 PM
Message to Sam Dower: you need to man up in a game like that. Unless he starts showing more toughness in the post - both in terms of rebounding and defense - I would almost rather see Ryan Spangler in a game vs. a Big 10 team. Especially when Sam isn't making shots. Sam has got to get tougher. Especially against BCS opposition who can bully him in the low blocks.

There is plenty of blame to go around, but I still pin most of the blame on Marquise Carter and his complete no show performance vs. Illinois. His experience and leadership were needed in that game. Especially with the inexperienced guards in their first hostile road environment. Let's hope this serves as a wakeup call for him. I'm sure Few wasn't happy.

I can appreciate that this is an inside/out team, but as the season moves forward, Few and Co. need to figure out a way to get the guards more open looks from the perimeter. Especially in the first half of games. It's great to see all those one on one matchups in the post, but the guards need to be in the flow of the offense so that when the double teams come in the post in the 2nd half, they are ready to score. I felt Gonzaga was almost too reliant on Sacre in the first half. It just wore him down. As some people have mentioned, Rob needs to do a better job of spotting open shooters after a post feed.

I agree with everything here. In addition I'd like to see continue to work on his mid-range game and driving ability to the hole. He had a couple of drives against Illinois where he just blew by his guy. I'm surprised he didn't throw down a dunk on one of the plays. He has the ability to slash with his quickness. Additionally, stretching the defense by taking the three - which he's pretty good at making - would help.

Vanzagger
12-05-2011, 03:41 PM
redshirt

MDABE80
12-05-2011, 03:55 PM
Sam hasn't done what must be done yet. He will not, despite being told several times ( and agreeing) he must refine his game so he can go to his left and use his right hand. Now though...this laziness is another matter. What do you do with a kid who won't play hard and play defense? SIt.,, He's not Ammo...Few had to eat it then..not now. Besides let the Spanglermeister get some experience. It'll pay off in the future.
After seeing Sam's work this year, It might not be in him to be a scarpper. We need new bigs anyway. Guard and wings are fine for this and next year. It's those bigs we must get.

I really like Sam. A bit more work and he'll he a star. He has the talent.

04ZagFan
12-05-2011, 04:30 PM
Sam isn't under the radar anymore, and teams are doubling him, and playing him tough... He kinda came in games as a freshman and had it somewhat easy. He'll adjust with the help of the staff and be a great asset down the stretch this year, and a WCC first teamer as a junior.

MickMick
12-05-2011, 05:51 PM
I want to see a tall rangy Kieta at the three.

Watch the Wake Forest game from last year. The young man can slash. He also hustles down court in transition for easy layups. His wingspan has almost accomplished a one man "double team" on occasion. He can rebound.

Until Edie gets back and even through the half dozen games it takes for him to get comfortable, I would like to see:

*Pangos, Stockton, Bell, and Carter fight it out for time at the two guard spots. May the best three win.

* Kieta, Hart, and eventually Edie rotate through the small forward spot. May the best two win and for now, there is only two.

*If Dower doesn't shore up his game, I'm all for pulling KO's redshirt. This whole redshirt thing was all about getting KO minutes and as it stands, he should probably be the first substitute in for Sacre.

Zags11
12-05-2011, 06:03 PM
Sam dower when/if he starts playing like last year will make the team even better. He shoots jumpers and is just missing them. It will open up the floor for pangos, stockton and when sacre is on floor too will help him.

Carter is doing well driving imo. He is shooting terrible from 3 and not helping the floor open up. When/if he does the team will score even more.

Ezag
12-05-2011, 06:11 PM
I hope it doesn't take Carter till February again to get rolling or we're in trouble. As wobbly as Spangler is, put that guy in there and let him get some game timing. Dower wil not replace Sacre next year and we need to start grooming Spangler now.

04ZagFan
12-05-2011, 07:06 PM
Can't believe we've already given up on Dower.. LOL this board sometimes.. SMH

El Zag
12-05-2011, 10:48 PM
Perhaps he is a little discouraged from the Few Pooh Pooh of the three.
If he has seen a post player in a past WCC tournament game get his ass
chewed for taking a couple early 3 pt. shots ,(even though shooting 100 %) ,
then it is a definite possibility.
Regardless , he is the coach and as Vince Lombardi said " If you're not
fired with enthusiasm . You will be fired , with enthusiasm.

Also , it is the best TEAM that is going to win and if Keita and Moninghof
were allowed to participate , the team would play better , if not immeadiatley,
then later on down the road (IMHO) .

Pargo the Destroyer
12-05-2011, 11:22 PM
This team next year is going to be a sh*t show if dower doesn't wake up. No Harris and no Sacre.......it will be laughable. I already have nightmares of what Sparty is most likely going to do to the frontline in 5 days. No doubt the boys will compete but will that be enough...

bigblahla
12-06-2011, 05:31 AM
Can't believe we've already given up on Dower.. LOL this board sometimes.. SMH

I don't think anyone has given up on Sam we're just wondering when is he going to wake up and do what needs to be done.

His screens are half-hearted, his footwork is methodical and offense predictable making him easy to guard when his shot isn't falling. His "D" is average at best at this point.

I think all anyone is asking and hoping for is more effort on Sam's part.

Just my opinion.

Go!! Zags!!!

siliconzag
12-06-2011, 08:08 AM
Sometimes instead of lowering the boom on guys it is better to talk about strengths and opportunities, meaning areas of potential improvement.

I won't reiterate some of the excellent insights above. What occurred to me was that our offense was too predictable. We seemed bound and determined to push the ball inside, and this resulted in a number of turnovers and forced shots. Sacre appeared exhausted, and Leonard got friskier as the game went on. The Illini looked like they enjoyed a surge of confidence that energized their offense. It is important to note that it began at the defensive end of the floor by securing multiple stops.

The Zags have become entirely too predictable offensively, and defensively for that matter. It is as if we have only Plan A, Plan B is still being considered, and Plan C inconceivable. Some say that the Illinois defense and size of the guards made it impossible for our shooters to break loose. Yet there were several times when kick outs would have found guys wide open and able to drain threes. We are not going to win against major competition that can match or beat us inside by making only 5 three pointers a game. This 3 point threat needs to happen in order to open up the middle.

Michigan State's coaching staff has already reviewed the tape of the game against the Illini. So if we bring the same strategy, we may well be facing our second loss. I think the Illini are possibly a little better than MSU at this point, but that point is moot. And it is going to take more than mindfulness on the part of a few guys who seem to have lacked focus until now. It is going to take offensive imagination, which has heretofore been a missing ingredient.

Sili

04ZagFan
12-06-2011, 08:19 AM
Now I've seen a few people say this team needs Kieta...? HUH!? Kieta? Really? You can make a case for Hoff, but Kieta?

roxdoc
12-06-2011, 09:15 AM
Great post - hit the nail right on the head. Better get going on Plan B because Illinois just showed Sparty how to win.

xjzico
12-06-2011, 01:06 PM
It is as if we have only Plan A, Plan B is still being considered, and Plan C inconceivable.
I feel we're still on Plan A and it will always remain Plan A. If that doesn't work, it's the fault of the players.[/sarcasm]

Zagalicious
12-06-2011, 03:15 PM
:doh: I still don't see how in the world Carter got WCC MVP. Sometimes non-existent on the floor.

Zag79
12-07-2011, 11:01 AM
Dower and Carter have been awful this year. After last year I thought both would shine this year, Carter looks like he did the start of last year, but without the benefit of a Gray to pick up the mess. Dower looks like he just isnt there or doesn't care, no fire. I really like both players, but at this point both need to be on the low end of the bench. I would have Spangler with his hesitancy on offense and freshman mistakes for his desire and just flat out trying. Carter IMHO is the reason the team lost.

On the positive, Pangos, Bell, Stock, Sacre and Harris played well. Hart even had moments.

A guy that played 14 minutes is the reason we lost, when others on the court actually playing werent doing much of anything... Am I missing something? Sure, if Carter plays how he did late last year we probably win the Illinois game. That being said, he only played 14 minutes and was two for three from the floor. Sacre had a great first half, but vanished in the second. He only had two rebounds, which at 7 feet tall that's inexcusable. Pangos was 1-5 from three. Stockton played 30 minutes, and scored most of his 9 points in the final minute when the game was over. His 4 turnovers to 2 assists killed multiple momentum swings when we could have gotten over the hump and taken the lead. Even Few's decision to play who for how long can be questioned if you ask me, leaving Carter on the bench the whole second half cost us as much if not more than MC hurt us. A few more rebounds for Sacre mixed in with smarter decisions and some offense by Stockton and we win regardless of Carter. From what we saw last season, it wouldn't surprise me to see him take off as the season progresses. I like where this team is headed and MC's ability can only make us better.

Robzagnut
12-07-2011, 11:08 AM
:doh: I still don't see how in the world Carter got WCC MVP. Sometimes non-existent on the floor.

He's a slow starter. He'll be fine later in the year. He will define has role once he plays more with all the newcomers.

Same with Sam. Teams have made adjustments to his game, he needs to adjust back. He's got too much talent and the coaches will work with him.