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View Full Version : Give Heytvelt another chance



DubZag
02-22-2007, 09:22 PM
I figure most (70 percent I'm guessing) Gonzaga fans don't want to see Josh Heytvelt playing ball anywhere other than Gonzaga next season, and I am definitely one of them. I'll preface all of this by saying that what Heytvelt did was terrible -- yes, terrible. I will not cast stones though, because even though I have never used heavy drugs (dabbed in weed a bit after HS), I am still no better than him. When I was 20, I was doing some stupid things as well.

What he did was incredibly selfish, and to me, that's the worst part of it. He let down his teammates and coaches, and the Gonzaga fans. He let down the school. He let down all of Spokane, he let down his daughter. He let down just about everyone.

But this young man is not a lost cause, and I refuse to write him off at this point. He made a huge mistake, but he should get another chance -- even if he doesn't deserve it. It's called compassion and forgiveness. Gonzaga sells itself as a family oriented school and program. Well, if my family would have written me off and disowned me after doing something incredibly stupid for the first time (or at least the first time getting caught), well, I wouldn't consider them family at all. I KNOW it's a felony and that makes things more difficult, but hopefully Josh gets the help he needs.

This is all relying on whether Josh realizes that he most likely has a problem and needs help, and will take any and all measures to redeem himself and make amends with everyone. I'd love to see this kid succeed.

Don't kick him to the curb yet... He needs to be shown love, albeit VERY TOUGH LOVE. If Josh accepts his new circumstances, of being watched like a hawk and treated like a child at first, then give the kid another chance.

At any rate, I am praying for him that he gets through this tough time and realizes what he is about to lose.

Go Zags!

SteeleMan
02-22-2007, 09:52 PM
The thing is, nobody here (I assume) knows what JH is thinking or what he wants. There are many, many rumors floating around about JH. Smoking the MJ in high school, "dating" a teammate's girlfriend, thinking about Europe to play for some money... all rumors...

But noone, unless you're very close to him, I assume, knows what he is thinking, what his real past is with his friends and teammates.

Would he be one of the great GU Basketball players? Certainly could be. But I think, as DR was quoted, the team has moved on and may not be willing to look back.

maineblackbear
02-22-2007, 10:03 PM
"But I think, as DR was quoted, the team has moved on and may not be willing to look back."

and that is the real deal. the team has moved on. No-one on campus (or very Few ha ha) has had zero idea about the situation. The team knows and has moved on.

This is no condemnation of Josh. Or Theo. Believe me I spent enough time in Catherine-Monica staring into burning candles that I am not condemning people who may have made similar mistakes to me. Frankly, I got pulled over by a cop once who had he looked into my First Aid kit, things would have been very very serious.

But this is about the team. If the team has moved on, then so be it.

Josh needs to find a place to re-construct. Maybe even Eastern or Idaho or some JC.

But, if you have ever been a part of a team, that has tried to welcome back someone who has been 'excommunicated' for reasons detrimental to that team-- the reconciliation effort is such a struggle, and works so seldomly, that it is usually not worth it.

mbb

DubZag
02-22-2007, 10:12 PM
Two very good posts. Thanks guys.

I am all for giving him another chance, ONLY if its what HE wants. If Josh is fine with not being a part of the GU family, then he can go elsewhere, and I will still hope and pray that he puts it together at his next stop.

I just hope that if he has seen the error in his ways and wants to rejoin one of the top programs in the nation, he should be given another chance. If he is sincerely sorry for what he has done and owns up to the damage he has caused, a second chance should be made available, but like I said earlier, a VERY short leash needs to be put around his neck. Any more mishaps after the second chance, and Josh is ghost from GU.

But he could not care less for all we know... But the fact that he is still attending classes might be a sign that Josh wants to stick around. Who knows, but one thing for sure is that we will know in the next few months.

TheZagPhish
02-22-2007, 11:15 PM
But, if you have ever been a part of a team, that has tried to welcome back someone who has been 'excommunicated' for reasons detrimental to that team-- the reconciliation effort is such a struggle, and works so seldomly, that it is usually not worth it.

Well put. I hope that the team has a central voice in the decision. No matter what their decision would be, it would be appropriate.

I hope it's not taboo to suggest it but the remaining team looks better. There's a synthesis present that was not there before. Intangible as it is, the team feels like a healthier unit. I couldn't say if there was an underlying dominance struggle between Josh and Derek, but I never really felt that Drav held authority over Josh. In Heytvelt's absence Derek appears more a captain, the sharing has increased and it looks more fun.

I really like Josh and thought he was getting to be amazing in recent games. If he returns, great, I hope he works hard and becomes an epic comeback story. If he's gone for good, the team will advance and this will be a wild chapter of this extraordinary year.

94zagoldwomanasherdsmen
02-22-2007, 11:28 PM
I hope it's not taboo to suggest it but the remaining team looks better. There's a synthesis present that was not there before. Intangible as it is, the team feels like a healthier unit.


Not in the least...I for one, and I'll wager a number of Zag fans like this line up better. Similar to people (i.e. I, who love Mallon's heart but don't always love his play) should feel free to comment - many of us are the people who respond to the team by showing up as students, and yes..later in life showing up with check books to help our school out.

I like the guards, and I'm loving seeing Pendo come into his own as a scoring threat, and if this results in JH moving on and making room for some talented recruits that can fit into a guard-dominated rotation? I won't object, or I can live with it - I like Josh's game, just not his decision making ability - and trust me, I'm very glad I didn't get caught doing many things I've done, I'm also a 5 - 10 guy who couldn't shoot a bball to save my arse.

Pargo's mess-ups versus the shot clock as a sophomore for example, I don't think we'll see them as a junior ever, and as a senior, they're money - and will scare the holy be jeezus out of our opponents. I think maybe even more than Derek, he's come into his own sans Heytvelt, and Micah - well that's more than just fool's gold, he's gonna be something to see in the next few years.

I wish the best to Josh, I hope TD gets his S figured out and comes back, but either way, I can live with it...I just hope the guards have figured out that all roads do not lead to the post, and Josh'll have to earn his spot back. We've all done that.

DubZag
02-23-2007, 02:38 AM
Interesting points made by everyone who has responded so far... Good stuff.

As far as the team being better without Josh... That's interesting. I'm not saying they're not, but I just don't know about that. It would be tough to go very deep in the tournament with a four-guard set, as cohesive as that unit seems right now. I have played basketball my whole life, and I became a Gonzaga fan after attending their high school summer camps, so I know a bit about the game. It always seems like the really successful teams have good big men who can rebound and block (or alter) a lot of shots. Having that inside/outside game when playing the big schools is a must. Would we have still beaten UNC without Josh hounding Hansbrough? When Gonzaga has done well in the tournament, it has been when we have had capable bigs (Calvary, Batista to name two).

I should also admit that I haven't followed the team this year as much as I have in the past, and I haven't seen the issue(s) regarding D-Rav and Josh. Can anyone elaborate on this? Has there been anything reported, or does it just seem like they don't get along on the court?

Josh is a monster talent, but his decision making, both on and off the court, leaves a lot to be desired at this point. We'll see. This definitely goes beyond basketball, and the last thing that I want to see is Gonzaga sacrificing its integrity in order to keep a talented player on the squad, especially if he doesn't want to be here. I want the best for both the program and Josh, whatever that may be.

bigblahla
02-23-2007, 05:24 AM
My opinion on Josh is No way. Theo's a different story but it's up to the school, staff, team and the players themselves. However this ends up I wish Josh and Theo the best.

Go!! Zags!!!

Bulldog
02-23-2007, 06:39 AM
Josh may get off easy or he may have to join the service to avoid jail time, no one knows at this time. No matter how good he is, I no longer have confidence in his playing for the Zag's. He has other options, just hope not in the WCC, however I think pepperdine has been known to give convicted criminals another chance.

CDC84
02-23-2007, 08:00 AM
I hope it's not taboo to suggest it but the remaining team looks better. There's a synthesis present that was not there before. Intangible as it is, the team feels like a healthier unit.

The bottom line is that if GU wants to win games with the personnel they have right now, each and every guy has to play their tail off at all times. The guys are aware of their limitations - both in terms of size, talent and depth. Because they are playing so hard, and their look is so novel to opponents, it makes them look better than they actually are in my opinion. Even if GU manages to win these final two and roll right through the WCC tourney, which they are certainly capable of, I don't expect them to last long in the NCAA's unless they get the perfect matchups. The team sorely lacks size and a low post scoring threat in the post to beat elite teams. And they will have to beat an elite team in the 2nd round (if they win their first game) due to the poor seed they'll get. Obviously, I hope I am wrong about this.

Obviously, when Josh was part of the lineup, he was not a pure scoring threat in the post, but he at least provided a semblance of one. If anything, he provided another scoring option, rebounding, the ability to block a shot, and 5 more fouls. That being said, I have really enjoyed watching the Zags the last couple of games. They are playing solid, fundamental basketball, and each guy has been playing their heart out.

BobZag
02-23-2007, 10:00 AM
The team had this same cohesive look to it in November, when the guys rolled against EWU, Rice, Baylor, UNC, TX, UW... They were a unit.

Now they have that same look.

So having Josh or not having Josh hasn't made a huge difference as far as team cohesiveness and having fun playing.

FuManShoes
02-23-2007, 10:48 AM
The team's playing better since Sean got hurt. He simply can't run the floor the way a 4-guard lineup with Pendo or Kuso can. That's been the key. Josh can run and alter shots, much like Kuso, and hit outside shots like Pendo. In his last few games, Josh had shown a better willingness to bang down low and clean the boards. The Zags of November were a run and gun squad, but had increasingly gotten bogged down in a lazy half-court offense. I think part of that was the personnel. Kuso was too foul prone and Sean was playing more. As much as I love Sean's heart, I don't think his game has helped the Zags this year. From here on out, I think the Zags will live or die on Pendo and Kuso's abiliy to stay on the floor as rebounders and forces on the pick and roll.

jayray
02-23-2007, 11:16 AM
Even if GU manages to win these final two and roll right through the WCC tourney, which they are certainly capable of, I don't expect them to last long in the NCAA's unless they get the perfect matchups. The team sorely lacks size and a low post scoring threat in the post to beat elite teams. And they will have to beat an elite team in the 2nd round (if they win their first game) due to the poor seed they'll get. Obviously, I hope I am wrong about this.

Obviously, when Josh was part of the lineup, he was not a pure scoring threat in the post, but he at least provided a semblance of one. If anything, he provided another scoring option, rebounding, the ability to block a shot, and 5 more fouls. That being said, I have really enjoyed watching the Zags the last couple of games. They are playing solid, fundamental basketball, and each guy has been playing their heart out.

Kuso, was/is more of a post scoring threat than Josh has ever been. While he doesn't have the talent of Josh - he uses what he has and plays hard enough that he is day in day out a better player than Josh. Now that he has been turned loose, thanks to Josh, he is showing his potential. He is also just as good as a shot blocker as Josh. Comparing Josh vs. Kuso in blocks per minute and points per minute, Kuso was putting up better numbers.

So I don't see how your argument would change with Josh or without Josh - GU still needs to play hard and get the right match ups no matter what. Need 5 fouls? Put Foster or Burgess in. I don't buy the argument that now that Josh is out GU somehow needs to have all these lucky match ups and play like they have never played before. That is basically the way it has always been for GU (and most all teams) in the NCAAs.

It is just like last summer when Josh was talked up to God status on these boards before playing a full game ever in a GU uniform. Josh hardly made the zags a final four team - he still had a real long way to go. With or without Josh, GU has the potential and personnel to make a run if they get their stuff together.

CDC84
02-23-2007, 03:23 PM
Kuso, was/is more of a post scoring threat than Josh has ever been.

Jayray = I couldn't respectfully disagree with you more on this. We’re coming from different planets on this one.

Kuso can do absolutely nothing in the post but dunk and lay the ball in. He's a liability on offense, and worst of all, he's bankrupt as a foul shooter, which is really troubling when you play in the low blocks. No amount of hustle and team play can make up for this. He might have the least amount of offensive skills of any GU big man this decade that has seen regular playing time. Josh isn't a true low post big man, and yet Kuso has nowhere near JH’s skill level down low. I'm serious. He's that limited. I don't consider making 2 footers off of wide open feeds and rebound put backs to be "offensive skills."

In an ideal world, he doesn't play as much as he is playing right now, but Few has no alternative. He is not a starting player in a top 25 program: he's a role player. But Foster and Burgess just aren’t good enough, so he has to log heavy minutes. That is, if he can stay out of foul trouble. If Foster and Burgess were good enough to play, they would be receiving heavy minutes right now, because GU is in desperate need of post scoring and size. Problem is, neither of those guys can cut the mustard on either end of the floor.

As far as your take on Kuso's defensive play, rebounding and shotblocking prowess....I am fully in agreement with you. Other than his tendency to pick up cheap fouls, he is better than JH on this end, end of story. More importantly, his hustle, grit and maturity inspires his teammates.

Lastly, I don't know of anyone on GUNation who hyped Josh in the sense that they guaranteed he would be a great player. Perhaps there were a couple. What people said, and what I said, is that he has the potential to be great if he wants it to be that way. There are very few D-1 college ball players that have more natural ability, athleticism and skill than Josh does. I say that with my hand on stack of Bibles..I believe in it that strongly, and will never back down from it. But as we have seen with recent events, no matter how many natural gifts you may have, they are rendered completely and utterly useless if you don't have what it takes upstairs. JH doesn't have that, so he not only doesn't look as good as he could, but he hurts his team at the same time. If he dedicated himself to the game the way a guy like Pendo does, he would be walking out of GU as a future NBA all star, but as it stands right now, I wouldn't even pick him in the second round. That's why I am probably as ticked off about what has transpired as anyone besides, well, maybe his teammates. I mean, guys like Pendo, Kuso, Raivio...they would dang near give a limb to have what Josh has below the head.

If Gonzaga has final 4 aspirations the next two seasons, they had better hope they can get or develop a big man that has more offensive skills than Kuso. Unfortunately, the guy who I thought might deliver the goods in time, Theo Davis, got his hand caught in the cookie jar as well...albeit in a less serious cookie jar than Josh did.

SteeleMan
02-23-2007, 07:31 PM
he's bankrupt as a foul shooter
i agree with this 100% except the two he cooly laid down vs. Memphis.

J-Lo
02-24-2007, 09:12 AM
I've heard many times on this board that we should be giving Josh another chance; that it's the "Jesuit" thing to do; that everyone makes mistakes.

Tell that to Dan Fitzgerald. Here's someone highly decorated in the College Basketball world; who has a history of being involved in the community, helping people in all manner of ways; and who, until Mark Few, had the best winning percentage in Gonzaga basketball history.

And he was unceremoniously booted from the program for his mistake.

Few people know the specific details, but the official line is that he maintained a slush fund (potentially for helping out players financially) which may or may not have been an NCAA rules violation. In the face of a potential black eye, GU kicked him to the curb, never to return. The man who built the program into what it is today wasn't even present in the opening of K2.

I just think that we can look to Gonzaga's past as an indicator of what they'll do in the future. Don't be surprised if GU's callous nature comes through yet again.

sittingon50
02-24-2007, 03:23 PM
Think you're off on several accounts, J-Lo. From everything that we've been told no players benefited (directly) from Fitz's slush fund. He used the money mostly to help recruiting (better rental car, etc.).
Secondly, numerous accounts have it that Fitz hasn't stepped foot on campus because he holds a serious grudge. Understandable.
Pretty hard for me to see any linkage in the 2 incident's at all.