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huskerzag
02-22-2014, 11:30 PM
Hey all, first post here. Wanted to introduce myself, give a few thoughts on the current situation/Gonzaga basketball/Karnowski/whatever else. Been a lurker for a long time, just never bothered to register.

As my name suggests, along with fervently following Gonzaga basketball, I am also a Nebraska Cornhusker football fan. Nebraska's woeful basketball seasons seem to be a thing of the past with the arrival of Tim Miles, however, so maybe I can look forward to Nebrasketball a little bit in the future instead of pegging all of my hopes squarely to Mark Few's door. Anyways, a quick history of Nebraska football: Nebraska can be compared to the bluebloods of college basketball for their dynasty throughout the 70's, 80's, and 90's. 250 or so wins, finished every single season for 20 odd years in the top 10 in whatever poll happened to be most relevant at the time, 5 national titles, couple Heismans, tons of bowl wins, tons of success. This was all on the back of Bob Devany first, then Tom Osborne, a college football hall of fame coach, and genuinely a good person in his own right. He ran the ball with his triple option formation, played solid defense, controlled the clock, and won games. He brought in local kids who played hard, and pulled good talent from odd and diverse places. Sound familiar? Tom Osborne chose to retire in 1997 after yet another national title, handing the reins over to his young running backs coach, Frank Solich. Frank was a good-to-great, certainly not average, coach at Nebraska. He coached the team to a conference title, even a national title game. His team was a perennial top 20 team, which was great. However, for whatever reason, the Husker faithful wanted more. Tom Osborne had departed winning 3 national championships in his final 4 seasons, a feat that has not been matched in college football to date. Frank Solich, they said, would never attain such heights. Top 20 finishes, BCS bowls, conference titles, they just weren't good enough. The powers at Nebraska wanted national titles, and they wanted them immediately. Steve Pederson, Nebraska Athletic Director at the time, listened to these voices and fired Frank Solich, who had been with the program 30 some years. In six seasons, Solich finished in the AP top ten three seasons, winning a conference title, two division titles, and appearing in a national title game. From here on- I'm sure the present day status of Nebraska is well known. Pederson hired Bill Callahan, a west coast offense, pass happy coach, who genuinely dismantled everything that had made the Nebraska program great. He did so to the discord of Husker nation, and did so while losing games. Callahan's squads failed to make a bowl game in 2 of his four seasons, an unthinkable collapse for a once great football program. The present day features Bo Pelini desperately trying to put Nebraska football back on the map, with success so far. I think he will get them there, but who knows what the future holds.

My point? I have seen quite a few people suggesting Mark Few is not the answer, is not doing enough with his talent, will never get over the hump. Tom Osborne won 3 national titles, his only 3, in the last 4 years of his 25 year head coaching career. The calls for Tom's head were loud until the 90's, but those folks are eating their words now. Frank Solich, I would argue, had a good shot of following the same trend. He was let go before that could occur. If Gonzaga lets Mark Few go, who knows who they bring in? Who knows what happens? Nebraska, arguably among the top 3 of all college football programs at the time, was even susceptible to mediocrity when they attempted to change the system that made them so great. Would I be willing to trade consistency, tournament appearances, conference titles, and everything Few has built for a potential flash in the pan coach trying to win a title before jumping to the NBA? After watching that happen at Nebraska, no. Take it from me, it's not worth it. Cherish the consistency Mark Few brings to Spokane, because without him the odds of success become very, very slim.

Now that I got that out my system, on to some game observations:

Tough road trip. 2 losses in a row. Tough opponents though, Grier seems to have the Zag's number. BYU is tough at the Marriott Center. I traveled to Salt Lake to watch Gonzaga play there last season. Loud, hectic, and crazy. Tough, tough place to win.

How will the Zags answer? Hopefully, this serves as a big wake up call. Fires 'em up a bit. But who knows. This team seems mentally soft. They seem to back down a bit... That will change next season, I guarantee it.

Personnel wise, I think Mark Few has had a tendency to reward loyalty to the program with PT. I'm not so sure that is the best route. I had a coach when I played college lacrosse who would tell us that if we had a freshman breathing down our neck as an upperclassmen, that freshman was going to start. Build for the future. I think Coleman is the future. David Stockton has shown up big, but he just does not look like a division 1 guard to me. Doesn't pass the eye test, and is to prone to wild fluctuations in the stat line. Get Coleman in there, saw it a bit more in the second half tonight. I think next year is going to be a lot of fun.

Karnowski is Karnowski. 1 rebound against BYU made me sick to my stomach. I'm hoping to see a big sophomore-junior year jump, or a reduction in minutes next season. Needs to hit the weights even harder this summr.

Dranginis is the man. Pangos is streaky, but he is the undisputed leader of this team. GBJ, just shoot. Please. Steven Gray like talent, just too much of a headcase. Nunez is solid. Barham doesn't pass the D1 eye test either. If a team scouts for him, might as well leave him on the bench.

Like I said, next year is when I see it coming together. Pangos, Coleman, Nunez, Wiltjer, Karnowski starting line up? Dranginis/Bell/Edwards off the bench getting good minutes? That is an athletic lineup, and it is going to be a lot of fun. Hopefully we can finish this season strong, get a few wins in March, and have some momentum heading into next season. Can't wait, go Zags!

Oregonzagnut
02-22-2014, 11:44 PM
Nobody here says fire Few. Few just needs to utilize the talent he has in ways that he is not used to doing. I still try to trust that his system is evolving along with his recruits, but I am not seeing his ability to make adjustments at halftime. Especially when it is painfully obvious that he will do the same thing every game no matter the opponent.

But this game in San Diego was decided by the refs. 33 FT's granted to USD and 11 FTs granted to Gonzaga. They made 23 and we made 6.

Gonzaga shot 50% from the field and 46% from 3.
USD shot 40% from the field and 36% from 3.

The refs rewarded flopping, cheap shots and tickyi tack fouls ALL DAY LONG. The flopping just about made me sick. We won that game, USD flopped. Gonzaga needs to start understanding that cheap shots are coming and we have to either fight fire with fire or play even harder!

zags422
02-22-2014, 11:49 PM
GBR

Zagsker
02-22-2014, 11:50 PM
GBR!!!!!!!

Zag-SKER

demian
02-23-2014, 12:20 AM
This is a great post. Let me start by saying I loved the Nebraska cornhuskers of 1993 through 1998 (I think that was the time frame). Cory Schlesinger is probably my all time favorite football player. I loved watching tommy Frazier push Florida state right to the brink of a major upset of that great fsu team in 1993/1994 orange bowl. The 1994/1995 orange bowl and national title win over Miami (where Schlesinger went crazy in second half with two long td runs) and embarrassed warren sapp and those other hurricanes I hated so much back then was one of my favorite games ever. Watching Nebraska and tommy Frazier humiliate florÓda gators was a thing of beauty in the title game the next year. But I will never forget a comment I heard Jim Rome say in the late nineties - "Tom Osborne was known as an underachieving coach for years who couldn't win the big games but that all changed when he started recruiting "South Floridian Gangsta Speed" to Lincoln, Nebraska. That is when Nebraska started to win national titles and dominate the orange bowl and the Florida teams. I thought that was an interesting perspective. Seemed to be somewhat accurate. Maybe I am way wrong on that. I would trust your knowledge more on that subject than mine. But I agree 100% with you that firing Frank Solich still makes no sense to me. I agree firing few is not an option or even something that I want but I do think Gonzaga needs to recruit a different type of player if they are going to get to next level. I am not seeking for the "South Floridian Gangsta Speed" that Osborne and Nebraska recruited to get to the next level (allegedly) but I do think gonzaga needs tougher players, more athletic players, and the really good programs have tough players, athletic players who are skilled also and work hard. I think Gerard Coleman and Angel Nunez are in the mold of what I am looking for. Of course I know I am not the coach of gonzaga and I know nothing compared to few but that is more of the type of player I think we need to get to next level but they also need to be highly skilled as well. Is that likely that we could recruit such a player to Gonzaga, "legally", probably not. So I guess I will be satisfied with what we have under few. It's better than most programs but I don't think we will ever be in the elite category nor do I ever see us making a final four under mark few. Sorry but that is just my thoughts. I really really hope I am wrong and mark few and gonzaga prove me wrong and make a final four.


Hey all, first post here. Wanted to introduce myself, give a few thoughts on the current situation/Gonzaga basketball/Karnowski/whatever else. Been a lurker for a long time, just never bothered to register.

As my name suggests, along with fervently following Gonzaga basketball, I am also a Nebraska Cornhusker football fan. Nebraska's woeful basketball seasons seem to be a thing of the past with the arrival of Tim Miles, however, so maybe I can look forward to Nebrasketball a little bit in the future instead of pegging all of my hopes squarely to Mark Few's door. Anyways, a quick history of Nebraska football: Nebraska can be compared to the bluebloods of college basketball for their dynasty throughout the 70's, 80's, and 90's. 250 or so wins, finished every single season for 20 odd years in the top 10 in whatever poll happened to be most relevant at the time, 5 national titles, couple Heismans, tons of bowl wins, tons of success. This was all on the back of Bob Devany first, then Tom Osborne, a college football hall of fame coach, and genuinely a good person in his own right. He ran the ball with his triple option formation, played solid defense, controlled the clock, and won games. He brought in local kids who played hard, and pulled good talent from odd and diverse places. Sound familiar? Tom Osborne chose to retire in 1997 after yet another national title, handing the reins over to his young running backs coach, Frank Solich. Frank was a good-to-great, certainly not average, coach at Nebraska. He coached the team to a conference title, even a national title game. His team was a perennial top 20 team, which was great. However, for whatever reason, the Husker faithful wanted more. Tom Osborne had departed winning 3 national championships in his final 4 seasons, a feat that has not been matched in college football to date. Frank Solich, they said, would never attain such heights. Top 20 finishes, BCS bowls, conference titles, they just weren't good enough. The powers at Nebraska wanted national titles, and they wanted them immediately. Steve Pederson, Nebraska Athletic Director at the time, listened to these voices and fired Frank Solich, who had been with the program 30 some years. In six seasons, Solich finished in the AP top ten three seasons, winning a conference title, two division titles, and appearing in a national title game. From here on- I'm sure the present day status of Nebraska is well known. Pederson hired Bill Callahan, a west coast offense, pass happy coach, who genuinely dismantled everything that had made the Nebraska program great. He did so to the discord of Husker nation, and did so while losing games. Callahan's squads failed to make a bowl game in 2 of his four seasons, an unthinkable collapse for a once great football program. The present day features Bo Pelini desperately trying to put Nebraska football back on the map, with success so far. I think he will get them there, but who knows what the future holds.

My point? I have seen quite a few people suggesting Mark Few is not the answer, is not doing enough with his talent, will never get over the hump. Tom Osborne won 3 national titles, his only 3, in the last 4 years of his 25 year head coaching career. The calls for Tom's head were loud until the 90's, but those folks are eating their words now. Frank Solich, I would argue, had a good shot of following the same trend. He was let go before that could occur. If Gonzaga lets Mark Few go, who knows who they bring in? Who knows what happens? Nebraska, arguably among the top 3 of all college football programs at the time, was even susceptible to mediocrity when they attempted to change the system that made them so great. Would I be willing to trade consistency, tournament appearances, conference titles, and everything Few has built for a potential flash in the pan coach trying to win a title before jumping to the NBA? After watching that happen at Nebraska, no. Take it from me, it's not worth it. Cherish the consistency Mark Few brings to Spokane, because without him the odds of success become very, very slim.

Now that I got that out my system, on to some game observations:

Tough road trip. 2 losses in a row. Tough opponents though, Grier seems to have the Zag's number. BYU is tough at the Marriott Center. I traveled to Salt Lake to watch Gonzaga play there last season. Loud, hectic, and crazy. Tough, tough place to win.

How will the Zags answer? Hopefully, this serves as a big wake up call. Fires 'em up a bit. But who knows. This team seems mentally soft. They seem to back down a bit... That will change next season, I guarantee it.

Personnel wise, I think Mark Few has had a tendency to reward loyalty to the program with PT. I'm not so sure that is the best route. I had a coach when I played college lacrosse who would tell us that if we had a freshman breathing down our neck as an upperclassmen, that freshman was going to start. Build for the future. I think Coleman is the future. David Stockton has shown up big, but he just does not look like a division 1 guard to me. Doesn't pass the eye test, and is to prone to wild fluctuations in the stat line. Get Coleman in there, saw it a bit more in the second half tonight. I think next year is going to be a lot of fun.

Karnowski is Karnowski. 1 rebound against BYU made me sick to my stomach. I'm hoping to see a big sophomore-junior year jump, or a reduction in minutes next season. Needs to hit the weights even harder this summr.

Dranginis is the man. Pangos is streaky, but he is the undisputed leader of this team. GBJ, just shoot. Please. Steven Gray like talent, just too much of a headcase. Nunez is solid. Barham doesn't pass the D1 eye test either. If a team scouts for him, might as well leave him on the bench.

Like I said, next year is when I see it coming together. Pangos, Coleman, Nunez, Wiltjer, Karnowski starting line up? Dranginis/Bell/Edwards off the bench getting good minutes? That is an athletic lineup, and it is going to be a lot of fun. Hopefully we can finish this season strong, get a few wins in March, and have some momentum heading into next season. Can't wait, go Zags!