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Zerogame
02-07-2008, 09:24 AM
Just a comment on Mark Few.
I see a lot of comments about Coach Few's coaching style and his decisions as to who plays and who sits. I don't think he coaches in a vacuum. What I mean is, I'm sure he consults with the other coaches and values their input and often puts it to use. If he didn't we would see a merry-go-round with staff changes. Good assistants don't stick around if they don't feel valued.
I like the "Brain-trust" that makes up the GU coaching staff.

roxdoc
02-07-2008, 10:02 AM
I wonder if the loss of Bill Grier has contributed to this year's seeming management malaise?

GoZags
02-07-2008, 10:07 AM
I wonder if the loss of Bill Grier has contributed to this year's seeming management malaise?

Huh?

RenoZag
02-07-2008, 10:08 AM
The team is 17 -6, 6 -1 in conference. How is that a coaching staff "malaise?"

Zerogame
02-07-2008, 10:15 AM
I was not aware of this site last year but, I'm willing to bet many of the same comments about coaching was said then also. GU is just to consistent a winner to not have outstanding coaching. Bobby Knight, brilliant coach was just 12 and 8 this season. I gotta believe Few is one of the top ten best coaches in the land. I'll take that anytime.

zag67
02-07-2008, 11:11 AM
I agree with Renozag. I do not see the coaching staff in "malais". I do say that have had to work around injuries and sickness, but that is why they get paid the "big" bucks. We may not agree with them, but in many cases we are not watching practices and do not know how the players are feeling. Of the 6 losses, we were in all but one of the games near the end. In a couple of games, we shot terrible, in another couple there were some "interesting" calls and no calls, but those are not coaching problems. On the whole, I think that they are doing a super job. A few breaks here or there and we would only have 2 or 3 losses.

MickMick
02-07-2008, 11:26 AM
Mark Few is going to be a better coach because of this season. He has confronted some issues that he has not encountered before. Regardless of the great success he has already enjoyed, he will get better.

We are extremely lucky to have him as our coach.

Bulldog
02-07-2008, 11:32 AM
I still think the loss of Bill Grier was a huge loss for the Zags program and a huge gain for the San Diego program.

cggonzaga
02-07-2008, 11:40 AM
Mark Few is going to be a better coach because of this season. He has confronted some issues that he has not encountered before. Regardless of the great success he has already enjoyed, he will get better.


That's funny because that's the same thing that is said every year after we lose in the NCAA's. Every year he doesn't change and here we are this year with hands down our most talented team and we've already lost 6 games with no signature wins. I'm beginning to wonder if Mark can coach very talented players that maybe play a little more loose than previous less talented players who played within the system. If so, Mark needs to go back to recruiting the less heralded players. He has to realize that guys like Jeremy, Josh, Micah, Austin and Ira aren't "system" type players. Take a note from Calipari at Memphis. They don't even run an offense. I'm not saying we need to do that but this type of player that GU recruits now has to be allowed some freedoms outside of the "system".

finechina2003
02-07-2008, 11:41 AM
Zerogame,

Are you implying that Coach Few doesn't make coaching decisions based on input from this board? :D

ZagNative
02-07-2008, 11:49 AM
That's funny because that's the same thing that is said every year after we lose in the NCAA's. Every year he doesn't change and here we are this year with hands down our most talented team and we've already lost 6 games with no signature wins. I'm beginning to wonder if Mark can coach very talented players that maybe play a little more loose than previous less talented players who played within the system. If so, Mark needs to go back to recruiting the less heralded players. He has to realize that guys like Jeremy, Josh, Micah, Austin and Ira aren't "system" type players. Take a note from Calipari at Memphis. They don't even run an offense. I'm not saying we need to do that but this type of player that GU recruits now has to be allowed some freedoms outside of the "system".
And where does Adam Morrison fit within this scenario? System player? No freedom?

RenoZag
02-07-2008, 12:06 PM
Everyone's entitled to their opinion. . .that's what makes the sports world such an entertaining diversion.

I think Few has had to take his share of the blame ( and the credit ) over the years and probably is a better coach now than he was at the start of his tenure.

bigblahla
02-07-2008, 12:26 PM
We are indeed lucky to have Coach Few and staff but I scratch my head at our lack of point production against good half court defense when it seems we have what may be the best collective offensive team ever assembled at GU.

I was amazed we didn't run SCU out of their own gym, we have the horses to do it but that's not the game we played and it turned into a grinder of a win. Why don't we press more? Give LG and Ira some PT in that kind of environment.

I do think the loss of Grier hurt and I think that USD will become our bain before this year is over and in years to come.

At the beginning of the season I thought we would be devastating on offense and better on defense. I thought we would lose 0 or 1 in conference.

At this point of the season I thought we'd be at 18-5 so ok we're 17-6 and if all you do is look at wins and losses that's great but it does matter how you play the game.

It's interactive chess with a ball and hoops. Some of the losses we have remind of the loss to Indiana in the tournament last year. Others like Memphis and UT I blame on being in the WCC with that touch foul whistle first officiating mentality that exposed our inability to adapt to physical play exhibited in other conferences.

The season is two thirds over and I don't think that Coach and staff are getting the best out of our guys and at this point I think the system is part of the problem.

26-8 or 27-7 is a good year. Winning the WCC, making the Dance and even if we lose in the first round it's a heck of a year. That's great but I have a question, is that all it's ever is going to be? I want more, don't you?

There is a flaw in our offensive system. It's good enough to beat 3/4 of the teams we play and put up 20 plus wins a year for a long time to come but the current system with the current talent will not win an elite 8 matchup without a whole lot of luck on our side.

We have the coach, we have the staff and the talent to go all the way, just maybe not this year. Tweak the offense Coach, please!

Just my opinion.

Go!! Zags!!!

Angelo Roncalli
02-07-2008, 01:00 PM
There is a flaw in our offensive system.

The "flaw" in Gonzaga's offensive "system" is that we do not have a wide-body presence. No Casey. No Axel. No Cory. No Fox. No Ronny. No JP. The impacts on offense are many...rebounding, interior scoring, high post screens, match-ups, etc. I don't think it's anything more complicated than that.

bigblahla
02-07-2008, 01:08 PM
Darn it Angelo you're to logical, point well taken.

My point is with that being the case transform the offense to fit the pieces.

Just my opinion.

Go!! Zags!!!

cggonzaga
02-07-2008, 01:46 PM
The "flaw" in Gonzaga's offensive "system" is that we do not have a wide-body presence. No Casey. No Axel. No Cory. No Fox. No Ronny. No JP. The impacts on offense are many...rebounding, interior scoring, high post screens, match-ups, etc. I don't think it's anything more complicated than that.


My point exactly. We don't have or recruit those types of players anymore. Something needs to change.

Texas Zag
02-07-2008, 02:20 PM
These are the best thoughts written on this board in a while.

I agree that we are missing an inside presence and I don't think that is really a coaching problem. Few is a good coach and losing Grier was only a blip that I think he'll recover from.

Kuso and Josh(our current inside) just aren't performing to their expected levels. Kuso showed signs of life against the gaels. I really liked when him and Josh were on the floor together eventhough it was brief.

Finally, this isn't GU's most talented team. The team with JP, Adam, and Derrick would have shot this team right out of the gym.

Angelo Roncalli
02-07-2008, 02:36 PM
Something needs to change.

Memo
From: Mark Few
To: Mark Few
Re: Note to Self

1. Schedule appointment for Steve-o to strap Austin Daye down on the training table and force feed him Muscle Milk - Banana Creme protein supplement with a turkey baster.

2. Talk to chair of biology department about feasibility of fusing JP Batista "back to basket turn around post moves" DNA into Abdullahi Kuso.

3. Have Jennifer increase her daily medieval rack body stretching treatments on Pendo.

4. Have Jerry Krause show Rob Sacre 846 hours of Ronny Turiaf game video.

lawzag
02-07-2008, 03:13 PM
Memo
From: Mark Few
To: Mark Few
Re: Note to Self


I love it!!! :lmao:

MickMick
02-07-2008, 03:23 PM
Memo
From: Mark Few
To: Mark Few
Re: Note to Self

1. Schedule appointment for Steve-o to strap Austin Daye down on the training table and force feed him Muscle Milk - Banana Creme protein supplement with a turkey baster.

2. Talk to chair of biology department about feasibility of fusing JP Batista "back to basket turn around post moves" DNA into Abdullahi Kuso.

3. Have Jennifer increase her daily medieval rack body stretching treatments on Pendo.

4. Have Jerry Krause show Rob Sacre 846 hours of Ronny Turiaf game video.



I keep telling these guys that the Coach has it under control. So does Poling get 1,2, and 4 treatments next season?

Angelo Roncalli
02-07-2008, 03:37 PM
We don't have or recruit those types (wide body) of players anymore.

GU recruited Deon Thompson.

GU recruited Ryan Anderson.

GU recruited Jon Brockman.

GU recruited Aron Baynes.

GU recruited and signed Ian Manhinmi (who then went pro).

GU recruited Matt Hill.

GU recruited and signed Rob Sacre.

GU signed Theo Davis.

GU is recruiting Josh Smith.

And anticipating the inevitable "why don't we have a backup point guard for Pargo" question...

Gonzaga recruited and had a commitment from Carl Ona Embo (France) who "suprisingly" signed a pro contract with an Italian team.

cggonzaga
02-07-2008, 03:53 PM
GU recruited Deon Thompson.

GU recruited Ryan Anderson.

GU recruited Jon Brockman.

GU recruited Aron Baynes.

GU recruited and signed Ian Manhinmi (who then went pro).


GU recruited Matt Hill.

GU recruited and signed Rob Sacre

GU signed Theo Davis

GU is recruiting Josh Smith



We got none of them. We did get skinny dudes who play a different game who we also recruited who are very talented. Change the system. You can't force these guys to play your system if they aren't capable. You recruited them now put them in a position to be successful. Don't be stubborn about having to run the "GU system" with guys that play different games.


And where does Adam Morrison fit within this scenario? System player? No freedom?

Morrison needed those flex screens to get open and ran it to perfection. We also had a great big that was awesome on the block. They ran the system. Morrison just had the green light to shoot whenever he wanted.

alaskazagnut
02-07-2008, 03:55 PM
We lost Grier and gaind Giacoletti. Ray brings different perspectives and ideas and just as our team has personnel changes so does the coaching staff. They have to constantly adjust also.

billyberu
02-07-2008, 03:59 PM
That's funny because that's the same thing that is said every year after we lose in the NCAA's. Every year he doesn't change and here we are this year with hands down our most talented team and we've already lost 6 games with no signature wins. I'm beginning to wonder if Mark can coach very talented players that maybe play a little more loose than previous less talented players who played within the system. If so, Mark needs to go back to recruiting the less heralded players. He has to realize that guys like Jeremy, Josh, Micah, Austin and Ira aren't "system" type players. Take a note from Calipari at Memphis. They don't even run an offense. I'm not saying we need to do that but this type of player that GU recruits now has to be allowed some freedoms outside of the "system".


Quote:
The "flaw" in Gonzaga's offensive "system" is that we do not have a wide-body presence. No Casey. No Axel. No Cory. No Fox. No Ronny. No JP. The impacts on offense are many...rebounding, interior scoring, high post screens, match-ups, etc. I don't think it's anything more complicated than that.

My point exactly. We don't have or recruit those types of players anymore. Something needs to change.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but nowhere in your original post did you state that we're missing a "wide-body". You stated that Mark Few is incapable of coaching blue-chip recruits and that he should recruit players similar to teams from the late 90's. Is that correct?

Quite honestly, I see many flaws in your analysis. Point in fact, is that it was mentioned in another thread that Joey Dorsey has bought into being a system player for Calipari. This I believe to be true and I also believe that it is essential, even for highly talented players, for winning programs that they have players to buy into the system. You have been critical before of Mark Few and it's fine with me because this is a message board, but if someone questions your cynicism on Mark's abilities to coach don't just chalk it up to the pollyannas trying to squash honest discussion on these boards.

I happen to think that Mark Few is one hell of a coach and we're damn fortunate to have him at Gonzaga as there are any number of BCS schools that would love to have his services. Year after year, this man does nothing but develop players and build winning teams. In this run of Gonzaga's there has not, to my knowledge, been one rebuilding year. It has been as seamless as I could ever hope it to be.

My point on your criticism of Mark is not that you shouldn't ever be critical, but that your criticisms are very broad and seem to question Few's fundamental abilities as a coach.

xjzico
02-07-2008, 04:03 PM
Gonzaga recruited and had a commitment from Carl Ona Embo (France) who "suprisingly" signed a pro contract with an Italian team.

Wow, this is the first I heard of that, did I miss something? There was a Turkish guy a while back also, though I forgot his name, but don't remember anything about Embo.

Angelo, as you may seem to know, did Johan Petro of the Sonics also have interest in GU? I heard it mentioned somewhere a while back.

BobZag
02-07-2008, 04:39 PM
This Grier-worship is a product of short memories.

cggonzaga
02-07-2008, 04:41 PM
You stated that Mark Few is incapable of coaching blue-chip recruits and that he should recruit players similar to teams from the late 90's. Is that correct?


If he can't adjust to this type of player than yes. He did great with the "old zag". I've yet to see him do great with the "new zag".


Point in fact, is that it was mentioned in another thread that Joey Dorsey has bought into being a system player for Calipari.

And what exactly is Memphis' system in your opinion. Most every team Calipari has ever had have been athletic, d you up, run and gun kind of teams. That's his system. You don't believe Joey Dorsey fits that perfectly? Sounds like a sytem player from the get go to me. The thread isn't about Memphis or Calipari though. But if you do want to compare the two, Calipari does a helluva job getting the best out of his blue chippers and they may well be on their way to an undefeated season and NC.

All I want is for Few to let his guys play a little bit. I'm tired of certain players being pulled for making mistakes and not others. How is that being broad?


I happen to think that Mark Few is one hell of a coach and we're damn fortunate to have him at Gonzaga as there are any number of BCS schools that would love to have his services. Year after year, this man does nothing but develop players and build winning teams. In this run of Gonzaga's there has not, to my knowledge, been one rebuilding year. It has been as seamless as I could ever hope it to be.

My point on your criticism of Mark is not that you shouldn't ever be critical, but that your criticisms are very broad and seem to question Few's fundamental abilities as a coach.

Since you seem to know how I feel about Mark than you would know that I think he is a good coach just not a great one. Take us to a Final Four or NC and I'll change my tone. Keep taking us to the tournament in an average league year after year with BCS talent and losing in the first couple rounds of the NCAA's and I won't.

Reborn
02-07-2008, 04:42 PM
Man, I don't get the negative attitude about Few at all. Come on guys. Open your eyes. We have recruited Bigs. Josh Heytvelt was quite the Beast at one point of his career. Things haven't exactly gone as planned for Josh. Is that Few's fault, or does it show a flaw in recruiting. I don't think so.

He recruited Sacre, who is one of the top all time players in Canada, and he is a Big. What some of you don't seem to realize is that who Robert is going to be in two years is not who he is right now. Believe that. He will be every bit as good as JP Bautista imo. Give him and Few a break. The center at UCONN, who is probably the best big in Div I right now, was nothing at all as a Freshman, and was not as good as Kuso when we played them. HE IS REALLY IMPROVING.

Andy Poling is not here yet, but he WAS a top recruit. TOP. Give the kid a chance to play at Gonzaga a few years before you right him off.

I think Few is doing great this year, and the best is still to come. We've come a long ways in the last month. He is faced with a problem he has not had to deal with before and it's a good problem to have. He has two Freshman that may be the two best he has ever had in his program, and it's rare that Freshman get the amount of playing time that they are getting. Should Few be blamed for recruiting the type of talent he has on his team right now. And this includes Bouldin. So in all reality, we have a way younger team then we originally thought we had. Of our five best players two of them are Freshmen and one a Sophomore. That is young. I think the problem we're going through right now has to do with egos, and athletes have huge ones. Pendo and Downs are having to take a back seat to two Freshmen, and I think it's tough for them right now. Pendo will overcome it because of who he is. Downs has no one to blame but himself. He has had shots all year that he passed up in the same way that PMAC did consistently. Why doesn't he shoot those wide open 3's. Why does he consistently look to drive when he's as skinny as he is. Maybe its been his wrist. Whatever! Downs, we must remember was a high school American who Few took a chance on. Is that a negative for Few. I think not, and actually I applaud Mark Few for taking the chance on Micah because Micah is a Washington kid. I'd do it. My pure hope is that MIcah and Josh deflate their egos a little bit, and just take on a role that is very important, back up players who give it 100%. Right now, if I were the coach I'd go with Kuso and play Josh as the back up, which he is doing right now actually even though Josh starts. I would not start Micaha.

Few is showing right now why he is one of the best coaches in America. He showed it last year as well. After Josh was suspended did you EVER BELIEVE that we'd win the conference and the conference tournament. I didn't and I'm considered a Pollyanna.

I LOVE YOU MARK FEW AND THANKS FOR ALL THE GREAT TEAMS YOU GAVE US.

Zerogame
02-07-2008, 04:53 PM
May of 2007 ESPN rated the top ten programs of the last 10 years. Zags didn't make top 10 but did make top 12. WOW!!!

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/news/story?id=2862455

zag67
02-07-2008, 05:39 PM
Thanks Zerogame. I think all of us should remember this. The coaches are the ones that have made this happen. They are the constant in the mix of 10 years. They are the ones doing the recruiting and getting the right type of players that will work in the system. How many years have they gone 50-50? How many years have they won less than 20 games? How many years is their winning percentage less than 80 percent? How often do we not make the trournament? When you start answering those types of questions you should start seeing how lucky we are.

Now we might not all agree with them, but in most cases we do not know what has gone on at practice. Also we do not know the aches, injuries, and sicknesses that are going on. We do not know which players are feeling depressed and therefore not doing as well as they should. When you have 14 to 15 young men, trying to get them to work together and build team chemistry is difficult (at best). Therefore I think that the coaches are doing super and that we need to wait and see the rest.

bigblahla
02-07-2008, 07:37 PM
I'm not being negative about Coach and staff but but I do agree with cggonzaga on this point I'm positive the offense could be tweaked to fit the talent better. A square peg doen't fit a round hole no matter how hard you pound on it. We don't have the beast to play inside out.

Just my opinion.

Go!! Zags!!!

billyberu
02-07-2008, 08:26 PM
Well, cg, that's your opinion and your entitled to it. My general opinion of people like you is that you're quite selfish because essentially it's all about what you want. Good for Calipari and his team, but I'm proud of what Gonzaga is. I would love for them to get to the next level and I'm more certain than you that Mark Few can do just that.

spudzag
02-07-2008, 08:58 PM
Mark Few is going to be a better coach because of this season. He has confronted some issues that he has not encountered before. Regardless of the great success he has already enjoyed, he will get better.

We are extremely lucky to have him as our coach.

Same could be said of last year. I certianly agree we are lucky to have Few and company.

alaskazagnut
02-07-2008, 09:08 PM
The only thing that I worry about is the changing dynamics of the players we are attracting. Gonzaga used to attract players who wanted FIRST to be Zag. Morrison exemplified this, like Mallon, Bankhead, Turiaf, etc. Now we are getting kids who have entertained other choices for basketball and feel that Gonzaga is the best choice to get visibilty for NBA scouts (and get a great education if it doesn't pan out).

This quote from Mark Few about Memphis coach Calipari ""It's one thing to get talented players, and another thing to get them to play that hard," Few said. "They have a lot of guys with immediate futures with paychecks."

Mark few knows what NBA futures can do to a kid. I feel this sentiment he is sharing implies that he is learning to do this and has not yet mastered it.

I am glad I am not the only one who thinks that future NBA cash affects our team.

ZagsGoZags
02-07-2008, 09:32 PM
that's true,
the closest we have come to a rebuilding year was last year

if we lost 3 more, though, this will be a rebuilding year that we wanted to be a Final Four - sort of rebuilding year that was never thought of that way until we were forced to

but I think we will beat St Mary's

Coach Few is a great coach
and I am sure he is working on how to get our offense clicking and meshing

my analysis and others for some time now has been the lack of a great 5. I would hope that would be the #1 goal of our recruiting process next year because we will get our superb 1's,2's,3's and 4's back. I would trade some of our rich talent in 1 through 4 (by not recruiting more next year) to get another Big in here to try to help Andy. After all we're losing Kuso, who right now is arguably our best 5 because Josh would rather be a 4.



All we need is a 5 on the par of our past great 5 men, or on par with our 1 through 4 men, and it would work well. And who knows, Maybe Josh's ills will work themselves out soon, or over the summer

there is two cents worth from a fan

bigblahla
02-08-2008, 05:27 AM
Well, cg, that's your opinion and your entitled to it. My general opinion of people like you is that you're quite selfish because essentially it's all about what you want. Good for Calipari and his team, but I'm proud of what Gonzaga is. I would love for them to get to the next level and I'm more certain than you that Mark Few can do just that.

Woooo there partner let's not get into name calling. You have a right as we all do to speak your mind on this board. Just because you don't agree with another member do you really want to call them selfish? To me it's a case of the old you are what you say I am. I mean really who's being selfish cg's not calling you names. I don't know you or cggonzaga but we're all Zag fans here and want what we think is best for the team.

BZ and I have a different viewpoint as to what Bill Grier is going to do at USD. I'm sure he thinks he's right and I think I'm right but I respect BZ's opinion.

I respect the coaches but I do have the right as a fan to expect more. Why? Because I am a Zag fanatic. Change is inevitable, it's not wrong nor is it negative. The old adage if it ain't broke don't fix it is true but that doesn't mean don't fine tune it, don't do preventative maintenance. You don't wait for it to break.

I don't know why when the suggestion comes up on this board that Coach and staff may be struggling with establishing a team identity it turns ugly. Where is it written that we are not allowed to discuss options that we think would make the team better? It ain't that serious folks it's a game.

Just my opinion.

Go!! Zags!!!

ZagsGoZags
02-10-2008, 10:02 PM
Agree. Righteous indignation, name calling, and telling people off, can cheapen this board, and make it like drunks arguing in the bar

ZagMania
02-11-2008, 08:08 AM
Wow, this is the first I heard of that, did I miss something? There was a Turkish guy a while back also, though I forgot his name, but don't remember anything about Embo.


http://europeanprofiles.blog.de/2007/05/21/carl_ona_embo_goes_pro~2309507

jim77
02-11-2008, 08:57 AM
How long has Few been the Head coach??? He's won 80% of his games. Did the guy get lucky??? Like it or not, GU is a fluke in the college basketball world.....NO small school (last decade)has had the success that GU has had. The only logical conclusion for the success is coaching....nothing else. He may do things contrary to what some thing but all in all he's darn succesfull......and that final 4/elite8 may come sooner than most expect. I believe it will come THIS year.

Zerogame
02-11-2008, 09:39 AM
Maybe someone knows…how many times has Gonzaga had a recruiting class rated in the TOP 25?
If you compare that stat with schools like N.C., Duke, Kansas, U.C.L.A., Arizona, Michigan State, Florida, Maryland, Kentucky, Memphis, Louisville, Washington, Texas, Syracuse…I think you get my point.
With heart, coaching, and the best talent in school history, Gonzaga will make noise in March for sometime.
All of you GU alumni must be really proud. Congratulations!