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Thread: Graves is going nuts at Oregon

  1. #1

    Default Graves is going nuts at Oregon

    I know it is upsetting to some but this is not normal to be drawing players out west in this fashion. It has been a west to east flow.

    He has five, 5 stars committed already. The crazy thing is he is looking under every rock from Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, California to New Jersey and is going into other schools backyards to do it.




    https://www.oregonlive.com/ducks/201...asketball.html

  2. #2
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    Graves did a great job of recruiting at Gonzaga, he obviously has significantly stepped up his game with the money and facilities offered at Oregon.

    As I have mentioned on this board numerous times, If we continuously keep recruiting student athletes ranking between 80-100+, it is very difficult to compete, on the basketball court, with the teams that are recruiting student athletes ranked in the top 50. If you want the program to grow, we need to upgrade our recruiting or make better use of international players or transfers IMO.

    ZagDad

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    It all starts with recognition...

    Add then the new BB facility and GU is going in the right direction.
    Also ZD don’t forget the coaching staff has stayed together for a number of years and are building a track record.
    They are also not only looking at the player but the student.... can thin things down a bit. Talent and the numbers game are only part of the whole package.

    Again... going in the right direction.

    Go Zags!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SkipZag View Post
    It all starts with recognition...

    Add then the new BB facility and GU is going in the right direction.
    Also ZD don’t forget the coaching staff has stayed together for a number of years and are building a track record.
    They are also not only looking at the player but the student.... can thin things down a bit. Talent and the numbers game are only part of the whole package.

    Again... going in the right direction.

    Go Zags!!
    You are 100% right on most of your statements. All of GU's student athletes have done a stellar job in the classroom. For the vast majority of the student athletes, their chance to earn a living playing their sport is remote and their chance of having a long term career in their sport is even more remote, making the educational component of the student athlete even more important.

    My points above were confined to the basketball aspect recruiting. How about a summer analogy, the deep end of the pool is growing, admittedly slower than some of us would like, but it is growing. If you want to swim in the deep end, you need better swimmers, if your happy playing in the shallow end and occasionally advancing out to the transition area, your current level of swimmers is just fine. But if you want to spend your time in the deep end, you need better swimmers.

    In basketball terms, if you are happy winning or contending for the WCC championship and WCC tournament every year, great. If you are happy just making the NCAA tournament 80% of the time, winning one game in the tournament 40% of the time and winning two games 20% of the time, great, you have achieved your goal, status quo is acceptable and changes are not necessary. But if your goal is set higher than these standards, you are going to need better athletes to consistently achieve these higher goals.

    Is it easy to simply recruit better athletes that still meet your academic requirements? Of course not. As you noted above, it takes name recognition for those out of area recruits to want to come to Spokane. Name recognition to the national media takes years of exposure and several back-to-back-to-back years like we had this year, not one-off years then backtrack to a more typical year. The new BB facilities also help, but other schools in the WCC are getting these facilities and many if not most of the teams in the P-6 conferences have had them for years. But, having the facilities certainly adds another arrow to the quiver for recruiting particularly when the educational component is so important.

    The one issue I disagree with you on is that things are improving. In what way do you feel they are improving, in results, in recruiting, etc? In CLF's 1st year, (with primarily KGs recruits) she took the Wbb team to the Sweet-16 (should have been the Elite-8). We have never matched that performance until this year, when we lost the play-in game to the Sweet-16 due to two major injuries. If she consistently makes it to the Sweet-16, I would agree with you, but until this year, the Wbb team did not even win another first round game n the NCAA tournament and one year we did not even make the tournament. Maintaining from what the team had her first year, I will agree, but results wise, I am sorry, I just don't see the improvement. I will agree that this year's team played as much or more together as a team than any Lady Zag team I have seen previously with only the Zag team of Vandersloot, Standish, Redmon, etc being close.

    If you look at our recruiting classes over, say the last 4 years by CLF and her staff, the high school rankings for her recruits have not changed significantly. High School rankings certainly are not everything, but your chances of having a 5-star athlete playing like a 5-star athlete are much greater than trying to "coach-up" a 3-star athlete to play at a 5-star level. It can be done, but it is not likely to happen on a consistent basis. Once again, final evaluations can't be done until the players are finished with their careers, but based strictly on HS rankings, there has been little to no improvement in CLFs recruiting, IMO.

    I see the Wbb program at Gonzaga about where the Mbb program was about 20 years ago. Minimal name recognition by mainstream media. Not mentioned in the same sentences as teams from the P-6 conferences. Talent provided mainly by a bunch of over-achieving, over-looked recruits, some with a chip on their shoulder with something to prove. GU Mbb did not get where they are today in their ability to recruit overnight. They identified over-achieving local players, mined the international market doggedly and made use of transfers to improve their performance both in and out of conference to earn that name recognition. The Wbb did a great job this year meeting all these goals, but can CLF duplicate the results next year and not have another drop-off in the level of play. It is not the single year results which provide name recognition, it is the consistent level of top tier performance which earns you that name recognition.

    I certainly understand the difficulties in recruiting Top-50 players who meet both the athletic and academic standards, but it can be done. The GU Mbb have a 100 APR for the last 4 years (I believe), so the kids are out there and the Mbb has given the blueprint on how to get there to the Wbb team. I personally would like to see some recruits in the 70-80's in the next year or two and then 60-70's within 5 years and then continued downward movement in the subsequent years. I just have not seen this level of improvement in CLF's 1st 5 years on the job. I hope we seen bigger steps in improvement in recruiting in the next 5 years.

    ZagDad

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    Well ZD agree with you 100% except...

    For the last paragraph... first, I think CLF and the team have improved. Last year they were ranked the majority of the year which has never happened, that I know of, before. While the team didn’t have the superstar, it did have a number of very good players.... to the point that if we hadn’t lost LS and JT, would have played (in my opinion) at least a game or two more.
    As for the player rankings, while it gives you some idea of a player’s level, it’s not a true science. Hence, how a player adapts to college can go lots of directions.
    In my years as a director, I found that there were certain things I looked for... and the gut feeling was in the mix.

    As for CLF and her staff, by now they have a type of person in a player that they are looking for and while they may be a 5 or 4 or 3, the potential and the ability to get there, has to be high on the list. (Can you say Z)
    In the numbers game... rankings 1 - 100, where would you have scored CV out of high school?

    While its fun to talk the talk, it still is just a roll of the dice...

    Go Zags!!

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    Skip:

    Great discussion. I think we agree much more than we disagree. A few more thoughts

    This year was the very best in many ways, with the final result likely limited by a couple of very unfortunate injuries. After our sweet-16 appearance in CLF's first year we missed the tournament the next year then lost in the first round the next two years. A great year this year, but can CLF and the team back it up next year and start a positive growth trend or are they going to regress like they did the last time the went to the sweet 16? IMO, 1 year does not a trend make.

    Also agree that recruiting is somewhat a crap shoot. However, as I stated above, I believe that your odds of having a player, play as a 5-star, is much more likely when you start with a 5-star player than when you start with a 3-star player. Does not preclude a 3-star player from growing into a 5-star player, but IMO, more 5-star players are going to play like 5-star players than there will be 3-star players who grow into 5-star roles.

    You picked two (2) of the most difficult Lady Zags to evaluate; Zee had minimal basketball experience (primarily a track player) but had off the charts athletic ability. Was given a scholarship based on her athletic ability more so than for her basketball prowess. CV was not extremely gifted athletically, but her specialty was in the assist, seeing the open player before they became open (like another Zag player). Hard to evaluate this skill in HS particularly by the national rating services. However, CV was special in college not only due to her skill but also because of who she played with and the type of offense KG ran. IF CV did not have Bowman, Standish, Redmon, Bekkering, Bowen, etc. as players to finish the basket from her passes, or if she played in CLF's much slower offense, she likely would have been a very good, but not great, collegiate point guard and certainly would not have put up the numbers (points and assists) that she did. Even today, while it is widely acknowledged that CV is one of the best PG's in the WNBA, she was not even selected to the all-star game. Nobody (but the coaches) appreciates the art of the pass or the running of an offense, it is all about the points.

    What is interesting is that CV is still the only BB player to have more than 1,000 assists (1,118) and 2,000 points (2,073 pts) in her collegiate career. However, it is very likely (barring injury) that Sabrina Inoescu will not only become the second BB player to have more than 1,000 assists (792 currently - had 311 last year and 298 the year before) and 2,000 points (1984 currently, 755 pts this year and 748 the year before) in her collegiate career but she will likely exceed CV in both points (certainly) and assists (possibly) after next year among other stats. Knowing KG, if it is at all possible or close, he will leave Sabrina in to get both ends of the record. Both of these two extraordinary point guards had the same collegiate head coach. Coincidence, I think not.

    ZagDad

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    That again goes with what you are looking for in a player and position. And KG has a type of player he is looking for and with the recognition he and OU has, like UConn, he can pick and choose while GU has to work for the recruit.

    That to me is the next level... and it just doesn’t happen. Ask Mark...

    While working to get there is a goal, lets not forget who and what we are... the one and done to me is not GU nor what it is for a student athlete.

    Good talk...

    Go Zags!!

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    Just added Minyon Moore grad transfer from USC. My goodness what is in the water in Eugene?

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    Quote Originally Posted by SkipZag View Post
    While working to get there is a goal, lets not forget who and what we are... the one and done to me is not GU nor what it is for a student athlete.
    The one and done is not much of an issue in the Wbb game (at least not yet) and by looking at the most recent draft, probably won't ever be much of an issue as long as the pay for WNBA players is so repressed.

    In the Mbb game, the one-and-done game play has removed much of the "student" portion of the student athlete (certainly among the Top 50 collegiate players). Hopefully when the existing NBA CBA expires after the 2020-2021 (I believe) season, they will remove the 19 year old and 1 year removed from high school requirements from the CBA thus making the one and done issue somewhat mute. Adam Silver has mentioned they plan to make this change if they can get agreement from the NBAPA.

    ZagDad

  10. #10

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    Ducks could have up to eight ESPN five-star recruits on the 2020-21 team:

    Transfer Sedona Prince, a 6-foot-7 center and the nation’s No. 8 overall prospect in the class of 2018, committed to join the Ducks over Notre Dame and UConn.

    https://www.oregonlive.com/ducks/201...rom-texas.html

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    Default Graves is going nuts at Oregon

    Quote Originally Posted by seacatfan View Post
    Just added Minyon Moore grad transfer from USC. My goodness what is in the water in Eugene?
    Graves is a phenomenal recruiter. Among the best out there. His decisive, no nonsense and transparent communication style is appreciated by recruits... And their families.

    My personal experience with him:

    At one point we were fumbling around with UCLA, had an excellent (SOLID) offer from LMU, which ultimately was our choice of course. PAC12 school Utah had offered as well. Early on Chels wanted to be in the PAC12 if possible (more exposure, etc.).

    Was lining up official visits and was confirming logistics with Utah Coach Lynne and she called me back, and for whatever reason, they rescinded her offer? (Said something about a finance meeting / issue funding her scholarship).

    I made a list of the PAC 12 coaches. A board member on my company's Board of Directors was on ASU's board. Called him. Called Washington. Next I called Coach Graves. Chels, as far as I know, wasn't on his radar...at all.

    He answered and I introduced myself and he Googles her right then and there over the phone and after several seconds says something like:

    "#53 ESPN, 95/100 4 star player (96 is a five star), #9 PG, Back to back L.A. City Championships...Hell yeah! I want to meet her! We're building something special here in Oregon"

    That was it. No mixed signals. No ambiguity. Just straight out.

    Never did make the trip to Oregon. She wanted to stay home. And LMU was the best choice for many other reasons.

    But Graves has the makings of a dynasty up there. His first big coup of course was getting Sabrina Ionescu. Cal fans were stunned that anyone could pass up a full ride scholarship at such a prestigious academic institution. But it was about basketball! And winning championships. I mean they were really perplexed by her decision.

    Now he's using the "momentum begets momentum" principle. The practically guaranteed trip to the final four this year resonates with a lot of the elite prospects.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Thanks for sharing that! Was sorry to see him go, but he's something special.
    I will thank God for the day and the moment I have. - Jimmy V

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