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Reborn
04-22-2015, 06:45 AM
I thought I'd start a new thread for discussion about the one and two guard positions. I think we all feel really good about Perkins, and I know I feel that as he takes over the offense we will be quite happy. This is hard to say, especially because I liked Kevin so much, I think Perkins is going to be a better point guard then Pangos. I think his limited play last season is still going to help him get ready for our very tough OOC schedule.

I'm not sure who's going to start at the two. It really could be either McClellan or Melson. McClellan is certainly going to be the back up for Perkins I think. These two guys are both very good defensive players, and that is going to help with the transition the Zags are making at the guard spots. They will certainly miss Gary Bell, but I think both these guys will learn to be very good defenders as well. We didn't see much at all what McClellan can do offensively. It wasn't his role last year to score. But his past indicates that he is a capable scorer.
And Melson, in his limited duty, did not shoot the ball particularly well from behind the arc. You could certainly see that he has a scorers mentality (which I believe is good), and hopefully we will get to see his ability to score blossom this year.

Because of the strength of these players, Few and staff has not had to recruit very hard at the guard spots either. We have very strong guards coming back next year. I believe that if needed, Alberts could also play at the two, which leaves space for Wiltjer to play some at the three. In terms of recruiting for the two and three for next year, If Few recruits anyone they will have to be a player who's willing to be a red-shirt, imo. For this reason, all the talk that there is about GU recruiting some guards, I just don't see that happen. And I could see Gonzaga getting a transfer, likeWesley, at the small forward position. We'll see.

webspinnre
04-22-2015, 06:55 AM
Don't count out Kyle as the two, depending on what happens with transfers.

jazzdelmar
04-22-2015, 07:00 AM
With Josh and Mac I think the PG is in good hands......I don't see Melson or KD ever at the point.....Just not good enough handles. And I agree, Born, in due course Josh and Melson or Josh and Mac will represent an upgrade over KP and GB...In time...

GonzagasaurusFlex
04-22-2015, 07:10 AM
The only sure thing with the back court next season is that Perkins will start at the point and McClellan will play point when Perkins is not in. Other than that, I would not be surprised by any number of scenarios. I could see any one of three guys starting alongside Perkins: Melson, McClellan or KD..who knows, maybe even Alberts could earn it. The 2 guard spot is there for the taking, imho, which is great motivation for the off season for these guys.

Here's a random scenario....what if Connor Griffin blows up and forces the coaches to start him at the 3...this could allow KD to start at the 2, which is where his body is best suited anyway if he's gonna play professionally. Connor could be an ideal 3 in the sense that he would be the scrappy glue guy who focuses on rebounding and defending.....but he has to prove he can knock down open 3's in order to earn pt there.

Edited to add: I'm hoping McClellan gets 100% healthy and becomes more of a scorer and consistent outside shooter for the Zags. We know he can score big time, he just wasn't asked to do so last year. I'd be very happy to see him earn the starting 2 guard spot...and equally happy to see Melson blow up there ! :clap:

Mr Vulture
04-22-2015, 10:13 AM
I feel good about the PG position for next year but the SG position will be an interesting watch. I hope that Melson takes a step forward but its hard to say if he will or not. I haven't seen Alberts play but I'd imagine his minutes are on the wing at this point. I think Kyle D plays on the wing primarily as well. I really think we are going to bring in a couple of shooters that can play this year as well...probably a wing primarily and then a combo guard.

raise the zag
04-22-2015, 10:21 AM
Melson has all the tools/attributes to become a great player, yet until he learns how to pass to bigs or his open teammates, he won't be starting.

Most likely McClellan over him.

Melson can shoot, slash, jump, defend, yet his passing or lack thereof has been problematic at times within this offense. Love his "gunslinger" mentality, yet his post passes seem forced and his inability to find the open shooter was a liability more than an asset. His PT took a hit when his 'out of flow' shots/drives weren't falling. He is a work in progress, imho.

Perkins
McClellan
Dranginis (depends on transfers)
Wiltjer
Karnowski

23zagmd
04-24-2015, 05:20 AM
I've said this before, the one thing that has me a little concerned for next year is our jumpshooting ability....This group of guys has not proven that they can knock down jump shots on a consistent basis....

For this reason, I think you will see Melson in the starting lineup along with KD at the 3 and KW and PK. I just don't think McClellan is enough of an offensive threat, from what I saw all year, to be a 9-12 pt pg player. His role seems to be more of a defensive stopper and 3rd guard option. We all know how few gets set with his guard lineups and sticks with them!

amaronizag
04-24-2015, 06:15 AM
I think our 3 pt shooting will be fine next year. Our offensive style and the mix of players on our team has led to fairly balanced scoring the last 2 or 3 years. By that I mean several players contribute in the scoring column every game. Last year GU ranked 238th in 3pt attempts. The previous two years we ranked 175th and 212th in the nation. We just don't put up many 3's. I love that we work the ball into our bigs, but I would also like to see more 3's in the air every game. I would also like to see more guard penetration. Last year we were down in that category as well with a FT rate ranking of 122nd. Two years ago we were ranked 49th. If the shot clock is shortened next year, I think we'll see less passing around the perimeter, more hard drives to the hoop, and more 3's in the air. All of these thinks will lead to a faster pace, higher scoring, and a more enjoyable game to watch, at least to my taste.

Reborn
04-24-2015, 06:29 AM
I've said this before, the one thing that has me a little concerned for next year is our jumpshooting ability....This group of guys has not proven that they can knock down jump shots on a consistent basis....

For this reason, I think you will see Melson in the starting lineup along with KD at the 3 and KW and PK. I just don't think McClellan is enough of an offensive threat, from what I saw all year, to be a 9-12 pt pg player. His role seems to be more of a defensive stopper and 3rd guard option. We all know how few gets set with his guard lineups and sticks with them!

Some nice ideas, guys. I think one thing to remember about our guards is that they did not play a lot last year. And certainly did not have a very big role on offense when they did play. So it's kind of hard to really judge them by how they played last year. We must remember also that Melson was going to be a redshirt and suddenly, because of the injury to Perkins, he was asked to burn his redshirt and fill in for Bell. I KNOW that Silas was NOT ready to play at a high level, but he did his best, and I believe the sacrifice he made for the team, has been vastly overlooked here on the board. I have as much faith in him as I had at the beginning of the season. I also feel exactly the same way about McClellan. He missed most of the season and filled in and played a certain role on the team last year, and he was NOT expected to score. But when he was on the court I still saw a very athletic, smart player with a lot of speed. I believe that these two guys can and will score next year. Their roles will be entirely different.

cjm720
04-24-2015, 07:10 AM
I think our 3 pt shooting will be fine next year. Our offensive style and the mix of players on our team has led to fairly balanced scoring the last 2 or 3 years. By that I mean several players contribute in the scoring column every game. Last year GU ranked 238th in 3pt attempts. The previous two years we ranked 175th and 212th in the nation. We just don't put up many 3's. I love that we work the ball into our bigs, but I would also like to see more 3's in the air every game. I would also like to see more guard penetration. Last year we were down in that category as well with a FT rate ranking of 122nd. Two years ago we were ranked 49th. If the shot clock is shortened next year, I think we'll see less passing around the perimeter, more hard drives to the hoop, and more 3's in the air. All of these thinks will lead to a faster pace, higher scoring, and a more enjoyable game to watch, at least to my taste.

Good post...too bad the refs will ruin any game flow in most games, but I digress.

Mr Vulture
04-24-2015, 09:22 AM
I agree as well that consistent outside shooting is a concern for next year. I think the staff has even said the same. At this point in time I'd prefer to see Melson start with McLellan being the first guy off the bench. I think he can play both the PG/SG spots and can be used based on the game situation by Coach Few. I really think we add a wing/SG that can come in and contribute immediately. I would imagine two of the spots would be used for JC/HS guys that could redshirt for a year of development and a role in 2016 when we lose Shem, KD, and Wiltjer at a minimum.

DixieZag
04-24-2015, 09:38 AM
I agree with Web. I think KD is the ideal two. Perk, backed my EMac, KD backed by Melson, Alberts at 3 or 2 depending on need. Wiltjer at weird 3, Sabonis 4, Karno 5.

I know the topic is guards and I get mocked for this. So, I'll say this. If we can start a very small 3 guard rotation and make it work, I don't see how we can't start an elite 3 big rotation with maybe adjustments on Defense and make it work, especially with KD b/c he is sooo versatile on defense and offense. Perk is fairly tall, long, too. I think we'd be able to do some mean zone, while also just outsizing a lot of teams and clogging the middle. Of course, keep in mind, I know nothing.

jazzdelmar
04-24-2015, 10:04 AM
I agree with Web. I think KD is the ideal two. Perk, backed my EMac, KD backed by Melson, Alberts at 3 or 2 depending on need. Wiltjer at weird 3, Sabonis 4, Karno 5.

I know the topic is guards and I get mocked for this. So, I'll say this. If we can start a very small 3 guard rotation and make it work, I don't see how we can't start an elite 3 big rotation with maybe adjustments on Defense and make it work, especially with KD b/c he is sooo versatile on defense and offense. Perk is fairly tall, long, too. I think we'd be able to do some mean zone, while also just outsizing a lot of teams and clogging the middle. Of course, keep in mind, I know nothing.

Three all Americans on the frontline makes sense to me, too, Dix.

jchocolate99
04-24-2015, 10:28 AM
I just don't think McClellan is enough of an offensive threat, from what I saw all year, to be a 9-12 pt pg player. His role seems to be more of a defensive stopper and 3rd guard option.

Who knows if it will ever translate into the zag system but he was a scoring threat at his last school so that is in him. having to sit out half the year and also have that extended by injury would make it hard for anyone to really get involved with the system especially since by that time the rotations were getting set. I was encouraged to see him take three point attempts towards the end though so that will keep defenders honest with his slashing ability.


Three all Americans on the frontline makes sense to me, too, Dix.


I know the topic is guards and I get mocked for this. So, I'll say this. If we can start a very small 3 guard rotation and make it work, I don't see how we can't start an elite 3 big rotation with maybe adjustments on Defense and make it work,

Dude... the rotation was perfect last year so if it aint broke don't fix it. Wiltjer starting at the four and Karnowski starting at the five with Sabonis coming off the bench to add that fire and intensity with a sprinkle of Edwards here and there. We're gonna have to lean very heavily on the bigs till the guards prove themselves plus it is a defensive liability with Wiltjer at the three which has been mentioned by multiple posters on this board. We're not doing the zone that everyone envisions because we rarely used it last year because for the most part are man D was good enough. The perimeter D will potentially be even better next year and it has been one thing that GU has been striving to get better at so lets not go backwards in that dept with an inefficient starting lineup

Mr Vulture
04-24-2015, 10:34 AM
I guess I'm the only person that doesn't see a lineup consisting of two post players and a stretch four being a viable lineup. Then you throw in a guy like Dranginis at the SG position and we can't matchup defensively at all. I think KD is clearly a wing player and that Wiltjer will be playing the four spot. If you think Sabonis is starting game one next year, barring injury, I think you will be seriously disappointed.

jchocolate99
04-24-2015, 10:42 AM
I guess I'm the only person that doesn't see a lineup consisting of two post players and a stretch four being a viable lineup. Then you throw in a guy like Dranginis at the SG position and we can't matchup defensively at all. I think KD is clearly a wing player and that Wiltjer will be playing the four spot. If you think Sabonis is starting game one next year, barring injury, I think you will be seriously disappointed.

oh you're not the only person that sees a problem with it. me and many other posters keep poking the holes in the logic of such a rotation but the same posters are just adamant to have it be. If we're gonna lean on that front court next year I want a rotation that is gonna keep them fresh throughout the game and that means not having the three of them start. Having Sabonis come off the bench is a godsend because when a starter sits we essentially bring another starter who's fresh off the bench... how many teams can say that??

ZAGGED OUT
04-24-2015, 10:45 AM
oh you're not the only person that sees a problem with it. me and many other posters keep poking the holes in the logic of such a rotation but the same posters are just adamant to have it be. If we're gonna lean on that front court next year I want a rotation that is gonna keep them fresh throughout the game and that means not having the three of them start. Having Sabonis come off the bench is a godsend because when a starter sits we essentially bring another starter who's fresh off the bench... how many teams can say that??

+1 to both the last posts.

To stay on topic, my starters as of now:
Perk (McClellan)
Melson (??)
Dranginis (Alberts)
KW (Sabonis)
Shem (Edwards)

To the off topic 3 big rotation: It won't happen imo. No way can KW guard a SF and still stay fresh on the offensive end. Rotating our bigs at 25ish mpg will keep them fresh and wreck opposing front lines. Or we can put them all out at once, get them all gassed at the same time, and probably deal with 2 of them fouling out every night....

DixieZag
04-24-2015, 11:09 AM
oh you're not the only person that sees a problem with it. me and many other posters keep poking the holes in the logic of such a rotation but the same posters are just adamant to have it be. If we're gonna lean on that front court next year I want a rotation that is gonna keep them fresh throughout the game and that means not having the three of them start. Having Sabonis come off the bench is a godsend because when a starter sits we essentially bring another starter who's fresh off the bench... how many teams can say that??

Oh, get off it. No one is "adamant" about anything. It is also easy to poke holes in the logic in not keeping all 3 legit All-American candidates on the floor much of the time. It's nothing but an opinion, one that seems every bit as legitimate as starting 3 upper classmen under 6'2 two years ago. If Kevin or Gary can play the 3....

We (or at least I) posted this b/c the idea of having a big, long, fast, good defensive guard at the two, KD seems perfect to me, like a luxury, too.

jchocolate99
04-24-2015, 11:36 AM
Oh, get off it. No one is "adamant" about anything. It is also easy to poke holes in the logic in not keeping all 3 legit All-American candidates on the floor much of the time. It's nothing but an opinion, one that seems every bit as legitimate as starting 3 upper classmen under 6'2 two years ago. If Kevin or Gary can play the 3....

We (or at least I) posted this b/c the idea of having a big, long, fast, good defensive guard at the two, KD seems perfect to me, like a luxury, too.

you've posted your opinion on this rotation many times with me replying back to it so yes I will call that being adamant on your want for that rotation. Yes it is your opinion and it is my opinion to make my case against it. If you feel my adamant comment was an attack sorry it wasn't intended to be. I disagree with your opinion but at least you back it up with explanation which I can at least respect as I have backed up my responses with explanation. Nothing wrong with debate ;) as far as keeping 3 potential All-Americans off the floor I can poke that one too... they're potential All-americans playing in the POST. Having Wiltjer play the three is not having your best players on the court at the same time because Wiltjer is NOT the best player on the team at the 3 position.

Mr Vulture
04-24-2015, 12:08 PM
Oh, get off it. No one is "adamant" about anything. It is also easy to poke holes in the logic in not keeping all 3 legit All-American candidates on the floor much of the time. It's nothing but an opinion, one that seems every bit as legitimate as starting 3 upper classmen under 6'2 two years ago. If Kevin or Gary can play the 3....

We (or at least I) posted this b/c the idea of having a big, long, fast, good defensive guard at the two, KD seems perfect to me, like a luxury, too.

I don't see us as having even two All American candidates so I guess that is my issue with the logic. I think Kyle Wiltjer will be preseason All American and could end being the POY. However, thinking Shem is even close is a little bit too much koolaid for me. I love his game and he is a very valuable piece of the team but AA..I don't see it. As for Sabonis, he has a great motor and if he can develop a 12-15ft faceup game, perhaps he would get into the discussion but right now, I don't see him even in the discussion for preseason AA.

DixieZag
04-24-2015, 12:14 PM
I don't see us as having even two All American candidates so I guess that is my issue with the logic. I think Kyle Wiltjer will be preseason All American and could end being the POY. However, thinking Shem is even close is a little bit too much koolaid for me. I love his game and he is a very valuable piece of the team but AA..I don't see it. As for Sabonis, he has a great motor and if he can develop a 12-15ft faceup game, perhaps he would get into the discussion but right now, I don't see him even in the discussion for preseason AA.

I appreciate the good point.

JC? Pretty weak re: "Adamant" when I even put that I don't know much and am continuing to hear others points with interest and continue to hear how stupid I (and others) are. Someone here has a sig from Larry Bird about the "Best Players Play" and that's sort of my inclination.
Of course my main point was that KD can play the two, and listed, as others did, who I thought the line-up should be.

I promise not to slash Few's tires if he doesn't see my wisdom.

jazzdelmar
04-24-2015, 12:23 PM
Who knows if it will ever translate into the zag system but he was a scoring threat at his last school so that is in him. having to sit out half the year and also have that extended by injury would make it hard for anyone to really get involved with the system especially since by that time the rotations were getting set. I was encouraged to see him take three point attempts towards the end though so that will keep defenders honest with his slashing ability.




Dude... the rotation was perfect last year so if it aint broke don't fix it. Wiltjer starting at the four and Karnowski starting at the five with Sabonis coming off the bench to add that fire and intensity with a sprinkle of Edwards here and there. We're gonna have to lean very heavily on the bigs till the guards prove themselves plus it is a defensive liability with Wiltjer at the three which has been mentioned by multiple posters on this board. We're not doing the zone that everyone envisions because we rarely used it last year because for the most part are man D was good enough. The perimeter D will potentially be even better next year and it has been one thing that GU has been striving to get better at so lets not go backwards in that dept with an inefficient starting lineup

Dude, plenty of games DS got fewer than 20 minutes. He's the best player on next years team, imo, and needs to get more than that. What do you suggest?

webspinnre
04-24-2015, 12:33 PM
There are 80 minutes available. I'd love to see something like 27/27/26, with that varying depending on foul trouble, matchups, etc. Edwards is available as needed. If, surprisingly, we are able to work some sort of zone out, maybe those #s go up to 30/28/28 or something.

jchocolate99
04-24-2015, 12:36 PM
I appreciate the good point.

JC? Pretty weak re: "Adamant" when I even put that I don't know much and am continuing to hear others points with interest and continue to hear how stupid I (and others) are. Someone here has a sig from Larry Bird about the "Best Players Play" and that's sort of my inclination.
Of course my main point was that KD can play the two, and listed, as others did, who I thought the line-up should be.

I promise not to slash Few's tires if he doesn't see my wisdom.

No point that you made or anyone else made is stupid man. You made an opinion as did I and for all I know you ultimately could be right but this is just discussion and debate to get through the offseason. Everyones opinions are welcomed on this board and help keep discussions going and active. You said nothing disrespectful and I hope you don't feel I did but know one needs to feel their opinions are stupid cause no one on this board has the answer if so we'd be coaching ourselves right :)

Zagcity
04-24-2015, 12:48 PM
I'm of the opinion that jchocolate99 and DixieZag have a difference of opinion. ;)

IowaSERE
04-24-2015, 01:00 PM
Why does everyone insist that KW is playing the 3 on D? He should play the 3 on O and the 4 on D. Have DS play the 3 on D. What he lacks in lateral quickness he makes up in hustle. Plus he has an entire off season to work on speed.

webspinnre
04-24-2015, 01:14 PM
Why does everyone insist that KW is playing the 3 on D? He should play the 3 on O and the 4 on D. Have DS play the 3 on D. What he lacks in lateral quickness he makes up in hustle. Plus he has an entire off season to work on speed.

Did you see him get abused by that 6-6 fellow I think in the ND State game? How they keep driving by him over and over?

IowaSERE
04-24-2015, 01:19 PM
Did you see him get abused by that 6-6 fellow I think in the ND State game? How they keep driving by him over and over?

Yep saw a young 19 year old Freshman that needs to work on his footwork on D. If anyone can improve, its him. KW isn't going to get faster, DS could.

Mr Vulture
04-24-2015, 01:19 PM
So the answer is to cover another teams 3 man with Sabonis? Really? If you want Sabonis to foul out in 10 minutes of game time you could do that. If they were to ever play those three together, it would have to be a form of zone defense as they couldn't guard anyone man to man consistently.

Please understand, none of this is based on any of the three being talented players..its just a reflection on the lack of athleticism defensively we'd have on the floor with that lineup. I could see them maybe using it as a look now and then but not as the base lineup.


Why does everyone insist that KW is playing the 3 on D? He should play the 3 on O and the 4 on D. Have DS play the 3 on D. What he lacks in lateral quickness he makes up in hustle. Plus he has an entire off season to work on speed.

seacatfan
04-24-2015, 01:20 PM
Agree with above, Sabonis is no better of a perimeter defender than Wiltjer. He is better in the paint on both ends of the floor.

Sabonis had a strong freshman year, really good rebounder, efficient scorer in the low block. I'm not as high on him as most on this site. I don't see him as the best player on the team next year (I'd take Wiltjer for sure and maybe others), and don't see him as an All American either. There are several things he does really well, but I don't see him as having much versatility. He can't score all over the floor like Wiltjer and you can't run the offense through him and have him abuse double teams hitting cutters or shooters the way Karnowski does.

MDABE80
04-24-2015, 01:36 PM
Sea: part of this is politics. Domas and his story ar emuch loved by the media. He has a slightly better season in yr 2, he'll be awarded some nite AA standing. Might be honorable mention or 3rd team but he'll get something....he sure earns his keep every game. Kyle Witjer's a shoo in for AA.
It's not what we on this board think that really matters when it comes to the awards. It's what the media sees. They raise a fuss over a kid and he gets awards. In our case, I think we help that along.
We have some very amazing board watchers who don't register or comment.

IowaSERE
04-24-2015, 01:49 PM
Agree with above, Sabonis is no better of a perimeter defender than Wiltjer. He is better in the paint on both ends of the floor.

Sabonis had a strong freshman year, really good rebounder, efficient scorer in the low block. I'm not as high on him as most on this site. I don't see him as the best player on the team next year (I'd take Wiltjer for sure and maybe others), and don't see him as an All American either. There are several things he does really well, but I don't see him as having much versatility. He can't score all over the floor like Wiltjer and you can't run the offense through him and have him abuse double teams hitting cutters or shooters the way Karnowski does.

Good points. Freshmen rarely get any better as they get older.

seacatfan
04-24-2015, 02:15 PM
Good points. Freshmen rarely get any better as they get older.

Of course he can improve multiple facets of his game as he gains experience. Maybe eventually he'll be equal to PK in passing and facilitating offense out of the low block. I feel quite comfortable saying he will NEVER be a shooter like Wiltjer, but few are. Could get better on defense too. But nothing is a given. Some players improve weak areas, some players are stuck with certain deficiencies throughout their careers. We'll see.

Zagdawg
04-24-2015, 02:29 PM
Seacat how are your boys going to do after losing their top 4 players?

MickMick
04-24-2015, 02:46 PM
+1 to both the last posts.

To stay on topic, my starters as of now:
Perk (McClellan)
Melson (??)
Dranginis (Alberts)
KW (Sabonis)
Shem (Edwards)

To the off topic 3 big rotation: It won't happen imo. No way can KW guard a SF and still stay fresh on the offensive end. Rotating our bigs at 25ish mpg will keep them fresh and wreck opposing front lines. Or we can put them all out at once, get them all gassed at the same time, and probably deal with 2 of them fouling out every night....

A truly realistic post and I absolutely believe that this is how it will play out. A transfer could change things up a bit. Dranginis will play 2 or 3 depending on who it may be, with his default at 3. KD will get extended minutes at 2 or 3 even if a really good player shows up.

MickMick
04-24-2015, 02:53 PM
Good points. Freshmen rarely get any better as they get older.

Robert Sacre disagrees. RS was ringing alarm bells as a freshman. He developed an outstanding ability to extend his defense to the perimeter and could effectively switch with any position and still provide a more than competent defensive presence. He wasn't remotely close to that kind player his freshman year. Probably the best baseline defender of the Mark Few era.

BobZag
04-24-2015, 03:23 PM
Alberts can play the 2 and rotate with Melson.

Five guards for three spots. That's not bad. Six for three might be better, in case of injury.

kitzbuel
04-24-2015, 04:14 PM
I appreciate the good point.

JC? Pretty weak re: "Adamant" when I even put that I don't know much and am continuing to hear others points with interest and continue to hear how stupid I (and others) are. Someone here has a sig from Larry Bird about the "Best Players Play" and that's sort of my inclination.
Of course my main point was that KD can play the two, and listed, as others did, who I thought the line-up should be.

I promise not to slash Few's tires if he doesn't see my wisdom.
I really don't see how the mechanics of Sabonis, KW, Shem will work on offense. They can't all post. If KW is consigned to the wing he plays a Mathias Monninghof role. He loses some of his dynamism not matching up against less mobile 4s. We won't get much increased rebounding because he is out too far.

seacatfan
04-24-2015, 05:25 PM
Robert Sacre disagrees. RS was ringing alarm bells as a freshman. He developed an outstanding ability to extend his defense to the perimeter and could effectively switch with any position and still provide a more than competent defensive presence. He wasn't remotely close to that kind player his freshman year. Probably the best baseline defender of the Mark Few era.

I'm pretty sure IowaSERE's post was sarcasm aimed at me.

seacatfan
04-24-2015, 05:48 PM
Seacat how are your boys going to do after losing their top 4 players?

Well now is the time for fans to focus on optimism for development of young players rather than lamenting everyone that left. No doubt it's a TOTALLY different team, a bit of a rebuilding year, but definitely not devoid of talent. Maybe there will be less pressure and weight of expectations next year and it might be a fun season, could surprise some people.

As for specifics, Zeus returns and will anchor the middle of the defense. I don't expect significant improvement from him, but hopefully he can find some consistency. He was actually a beast during a short segment of the season, but didn't maintain that level of play most of the year. Power forward should be Ryan Anderson, a transfer from Boston College that I believe averaged 16 pts and 9 rebs. 2 years ago in the ACC. He will only have 1 year of eligibility. It's not unrealistic to think there won't be a dropoff from Brandon Ashley, who never found any consistency during his 3 years at UA. Gets more speculative for the backcourt and wings. PG will probably either be soph Parker Jackson-Cartright (who is small but very quick and can be disruptive on both ends of the floor, also displayed a better than expected 3 point stroke) or RS juco transfer Kadeem Allen, more of a combo guard (allegedly was really good in practice while he sat out this year--but that's what you always hear about RS players). Sr. Gabe York could start at the 2, was once only a spot up shooter but he's improved slashing and also become a fairly good defender. Incoming Fr. McDonald's AA Allonzo Trier might also start at the 2 or the 3. He's a scoring machine with 3 point range. Another Fr. Ray Smith is a SF kind of in the mold of Hollis-Jefferson and Johnson in terms of size/athleticism. He's coming off a knee injury, missed most of his Sr. year. Jr. Elliot Pitts and incoming Fr. Justin Simon could add depth at the wings. One of Simon or Smith could RS next year. Depth in the frontcourt, Ristic will be a soph next year. Another 7 footer. Much better foot work and post moves than Zeus, but not as good defensively. Incoming Fr. Chance Comanche is a long, lanky, raw post player. I don't expect much from him immediately. Arizona just got a little boost, USF immediately eligible transfer Mark Tollefson just committed to UA today. Will give them a different look with a stretch 4.

I think they'll miss T.J. McConnell the most, even though of the 4 leaving he's least likely to make it in the NBA. He was just the perfect PG for them last year. I liked what I saw of PJC, but it's a big leap from playing spot minutes as a backup to being "the man." They lost a lot of talent, size and length in RHJ, Johnson and Ashley, but none of those guys were consistent. Next year will be a smaller lineup, could be better shooting overall and more pure scoring ability from the wings. They could still challenge for the Pac 12 title next year, I don't see anyone else that is a run away favorite. Utah returns most of their contributors but will definitely miss Delon Wright.

seacatfan
04-24-2015, 06:34 PM
Just so it doesn't seem I'm being too delusional, Arizona is only losing 1 more starter than Gonzaga. Optimism is rightfully high for the Zags, all are expecting another really strong year. That all hinges on significant stepping up and/or improvement from Perkins, Melson, McClellan, Dranginis and Alberts. Both teams lost all of their starters at the 1, 2 and 3.

webspinnre
04-24-2015, 07:39 PM
Tollefsen to UA? Interesting.

Reborn
04-24-2015, 08:12 PM
Tollefsen to UA? Interesting.

I think Gonzaga has more returning players than Arizona has. Sabonis could have been a starter, and is as good, if not better than PK. Dranginis is a red-shirt senior with a ton of experience. I think that that makes GU a better team next year. Zags will beat Arizona in K2. UCLA Loses Powell and Looney; so I think GU takes UCLA at home. I would like to see Gonzaga as the best in the West and get a 1 or 2 seed in the West, and be in the Spokane pod. That is a very good path iMO to Elite 8 again.

zag67
04-25-2015, 08:11 PM
Also do not forget that Eric McCellan was a starter and has lots of experience running a team. We have 3 of the best big men in NCAA D1 basketball (and do not forget Edwards as an unknown). They will help solidify many games as we bring our new guards up to speed. That means we need Dranginis and EM to step up at the guard positions while the others are improving. Perkins was doing super until hurt and Melson showed many minutes of solid play. Alberts will come in and give solid minutes and as the year goes on will improve and be ready for March.

And am happy with what we have and are hoping that we are looking for players that will be helping in the following years. Unless another player like Wesley (great team player willing to sacrifice individual accomplishments) shows up, look into the future and go with what we have.

amaronizag
04-26-2015, 08:25 AM
For all of you trying to predict what the lineups will be next year, have fun, just don't expect your expectations to be met very often, but expect EVERYBODY'S predictions to be met some of the time. Don't think logic has anything to do with it, and don't think offensive and defensive efficiency has anything to do with it. And remember, the lineup starts changing about 3 minutes into the game. Players need rest, make mistakes and immediately get benched, make fouls, don't match up well against opponents, etc so the number of combinations of players we see throughout the game is quite high.

A couple of years ago I did a whole lot of spread sheets showing Few's 10 most used player combinations. The players were Coleman, Bell, Dranginis, Pangos, Stockton, Dower, Barham, and Karnowski. I statistically analyzed the data in many different ways. I looked at points per possession, seconds per possession, number of times each combination was used, number of possessions used, percent of the time used, offensive efficiency of each combination, defensive efficiency of each combination, net efficiency of each combination, and net point advantage. I also looked at other factors. What was interesting was that we only used our three most efficient player offensive combinations 18% of the time. I thought the reason for that had to be in the defensive numbers and/or net efficiency so I looked at those numbers too. The reason wasn't in defensive performance. When I compared the difference between points scored per offensive possession minus points allowed per defensive possession, the analysis showed that of the ten most frequently used lineups, we used our four most efficient player combinations only 38% of the total game time, but we used our three least efficient player combinations 39% of the total game time.

There must have been other factors besides analytics .... senior players vs young players, experience, keeping everybody happy with floor time, who knows??? But there was no rhyme or reason in the numbers and the only thing we can be sure of is that most of the 7 or 8 top players will play together at various times in various combinations, but which ones will play together most frequently is very hard to predict. But in the off season, it sure is fun to speculate when there are no live games to scratch our basketball itching.

bartruff1
04-26-2015, 09:05 AM
Over the next 5 years or so, I will be amazed if any new guard combo is better (for the team) than Kevin and Gary. Some may have better numbers for a season or two, but to be better IMHO they would have to lead the team to a better record...... I hope so...but I doubt it.

There is more, a lot more, to being good than being a bigger or better athlete.

NotoriousZ
04-27-2015, 08:36 PM
Over the next 5 years or so, I will be amazed if any new guard combo is better (for the team) than Kevin and Gary. Some may have better numbers for a season or two, but to be better IMHO they would have to lead the team to a better record...... I hope so...but I doubt it.

There is more, a lot more, to being good than being a bigger or better athlete.

Will there be a better guard tandem than Pangos and Bell? Maybe not, but Perkins looks to be a superior defender and passer already. Assuming Dranginis is at the three spot, the only question mark for me is at the two. And that's not a problem either because I'd love to see McClellan out there with Perkins. Melson and Alberts should be great also.

The Pangos and Bell era is over, but the future looks bright. Very bright.

Reborn
04-28-2015, 08:12 AM
Very few players come to Gonzaga and start as freshmen. I mean those two guys have been around Gonzaga forever I think. I am so used to them. It will take some adjusting but it will happen. New players will show up and be really good. The thing that makes college athletics so wonderful is that every player moves on at some point and new ones show up and we get to love them too. It's beautiful. In the end they are all Zags, and become part of our family. We are the lucky ones who benefit by getting to know all the new players. I look forward to the future, and am extremely excited about next year.

IowaSERE
04-28-2015, 09:00 AM
Rarely do we get the luxury of having a RS freshman who PLAYED in 5 games with the team. JP will be a stud from the get go as he already has game time experience. I see this as a huge bonus for the team next season.

Josh could end up being an all time great if he ends up staying all 5 years. He already has 5 wins and 17 assists under his belt.

DixieZag
04-28-2015, 09:14 AM
I am really high on Drainginis. I think he has been the good soldier - he came in the class with Gary/Kevin and I think he will step up as a real leader. I also love his defense and stat stuffing on the other end. If he can find a little consistency from 3pt range, we would have one of our best all-around players in a long time.

I like his game so much that I kind of cringe when I hear getting a scoring wing coming in. I think we have one and I think it would be very hard to get one better than KD.

Vanzagger
04-28-2015, 11:13 AM
I agree Dixie. Our three Super Seniors will lead us back to Houston. Our other Senior, Karno, will dominate as well. No room anybody else next year.

Mr Vulture
04-28-2015, 11:24 AM
Completely disagree..I think there is clearly room for a perimeter player as we don't know what Melson or Alberts will truly be able to provide. They both seem to have all the upside potential necessary to thrive. However, they are still unknown at this point in regards to production. In fact, my biggest concern going into next year is the SG position...

ZagsObserver
04-28-2015, 11:26 AM
Completely disagree..I think there is clearly room for a perimeter player as we don't know what Melson or Alberts will truly be able to provide. They both seem to have all the upside potential necessary to thrive. However, they are still unknown at this point in regards to production. In fact, my biggest concern going into next year is the SG position...

My biggest concern as well.

zag67
04-28-2015, 03:28 PM
I guess, I am one of those that think we are half full and not half empty. At shooting guard I think that it may be by committee until one of them steps up. For the 2/3 positions we have Dranginis, McClellan, Melson and Alberts. We are not sure whether any of them will have a high percentage at the 3 point line, but all of them are competent and solid. With Wiltjer coming back he could be our high percentage 3 point shooter. The rest of them are solid defensively and know how to attack the basket and kick it out to the open person to shoot. We want to pound the ball inside and use our strength in the middle. Then the following year Perkins, Melson, and Alberts will be taking more of the load.
I could not be happier with the players that we have returning. This team will again be ready in March. They may have some ups and downs early, but that should be expected with the youth we have at the 1/2/3. They may not be better than this years team, but could go farther because many of the top teams are losing major talent and they also will be young.

VaBeachZAG
04-28-2015, 03:49 PM
Completely disagree..I think there is clearly room for a perimeter player as we don't know what Melson or Alberts will truly be able to provide. They both seem to have all the upside potential necessary to thrive. However, they are still unknown at this point in regards to production. In fact, my biggest concern going into next year is the SG position...

Exactly!! As of right now, the one glaring weakness of this team is perimeter scoring (KW aside). Players we have may step up in that regard, or they may not (certainly have not to this point, so no guarantee they will). Resolve that one glaring weakness, and this team can make another great run. We have the scholarships, so it nothing short of crazy to gamble with our current unknowns if there is a chance the team can be made stronger still with a known/proven perimeter scoring transfer.

Vanzagger
04-28-2015, 04:33 PM
we have size. When it counts the most and every possession is life or death(2nd&3rd weekend) we now shoot over them. Unless we have 5 DI hoopers who forgot how to shoot we will be fine.

The game just became easier. The days of 6ft shooting guards and small forwards encouraged to hunt their shots by coach are over. Passing to our NBA bigs just became easier as well.