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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:09 PM   #26
blmillini
Location: Bloomington, IL
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Originally Posted by RecLeagueHero View Post
Well, it is shooting...but it's also quality of shots. Early on we were getting a lot of open looks in transition and even in our half-court offense to a degree. Now we are taking a lot of forced shots in the half-court that aren't really very clean looks.

A lot of that is a byproduct of defense. Can't run if you aren't getting stops. And you also can't run effectively if you have to send your guards to the defensive glass because your front line can't board.

So it's not just quite as simple as not hitting shots IMO.
I believe we are failing to get open looks not as much because of what we are doing differently but because teams are defending us differently. If you watch the early games teams were sitting back more than they are now. Anyone that is a threat to shoot a 3 on our team now is being shadowed on the perimeter and challenged every time they see the ball. Teams don't have to worry about back cuts because we don't do much of it, don't often see it when it is open, have trouble getting the ball there when it is open and have trouble catching it when we do get it there. The guys that cannot shoot from three are getting more space as their defenders provide help when one of our guys drives. Better player movement and passing would move us into the elite category on offense.

However, we still do not consistently play good enough defense either. Our bigs aren't going to stop anyone without help and our guards struggle to stop the dribble drive. Since both of those require defensive help, we end up getting exposed on the perimeter. And, yes, other teams are getting wide open looks from three as a result. On the defensive end we simply need to consistently pick up the intensity. It can't just happen for half of the game like it did against NW.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:43 PM   #27
SummerofGeorge
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Originally Posted by blmillini View Post
I believe we are failing to get open looks not as much because of what we are doing differently but because teams are defending us differently. If you watch the early games teams were sitting back more than they are now. Anyone that is a threat to shoot a 3 on our team now is being shadowed on the perimeter and challenged every time they see the ball. Teams don't have to worry about back cuts because we don't do much of it, don't often see it when it is open, have trouble getting the ball there when it is open and have trouble catching it when we do get it there. The guys that cannot shoot from three are getting more space as their defenders provide help when one of our guys drives. Better player movement and passing would move us into the elite category on offense.

However, we still do not consistently play good enough defense either. Our bigs aren't going to stop anyone without help and our guards struggle to stop the dribble drive. Since both of those require defensive help, we end up getting exposed on the perimeter. And, yes, other teams are getting wide open looks from three as a result. On the defensive end we simply need to consistently pick up the intensity. It can't just happen for half of the game like it did against NW.
I am not completely buying into the "we are not getting good shots" theory. I do think there is some shred of truth to it but when we were shooting the lights out early in the season many of those shots were contested and many of our misses now are open, or at least as open as they were earlier. This is a confidence issue. These guys crumble when their shots don't fall. Part of the reason for that is their feeling that there are no other options to go to when the shots aren't dropping - hence the live and die by the 3 approach. I know many will disagree but imo this is more a mental issue than a strategic issue.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 08:17 PM   #28
Redfoxdogs
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Originally Posted by illinois_hustle View Post
Illinois needs a team shrink. You KNOW what's in their heads now ... OMG OMG OMG we're going down the same path as last season, my draft stock is disappearing, why can't I make any shots, etc. Which translates to pulling the trigger too early, not seeing the entire court, being stiff on defense, thinking too much, being 1" off on your shot which translates to clanks, slumping shoulders, and 2-5.
So....isn't the Psych Dept. pretty highly ranked??? Let the Psych students have at 'em!
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 09:30 AM   #29
SummerofGeorge
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So....isn't the Psych Dept. pretty highly ranked??? Let the Psych students have at 'em!
Give them seats right behind the bench!
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 09:47 AM   #30
pckldr
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Give them seats right behind the bench!
I thought hazing was discouraged.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 09:49 AM   #31
Indicchief
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There is a lot more wrong with this team than a shooting slump. Defense. Passing. Running the offense...
Playing too much one on one! Unable to take success.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 02:26 PM   #32
RecLeagueHero
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Tupper 1/20/13:

"Iíll cut right to the chase: What youíre watching now is the residue of recruiting misfires the past five years. What youíre watching is a team whose core is made up of fourth-year players who have never been able to sustain success, who have never been skilled shooters or ball-handlers, who are capable of rising up and playing the occasional terrific game, but have never been able to do it over and over and over again."

http://herald-review.com/sports/illi...a4bcf887a.html

Tupper is dead on with what I've been saying.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 03:33 PM   #33
illinirevolution
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I believe Coach Groce and the team will get these things worked out. Our responsibility as fans is encourage the team and not perpetuate a negative attitude. They have shown what they can do. Go ILLINI
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 03:36 PM   #34
OrangeAndBlue217
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I believe Coach Groce and the team will get these things worked out. Our responsibility as fans is encourage the team and not perpetuate a negative attitude. They have shown what they can do. Go ILLINI
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 10:34 AM   #35
BZuppke
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My concern is his use of the English language. "We're not playing very well". Or perhaps he meant to say "We're not playing very good basketball". How can these guys play well if they aren't very good at speaking English?
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 10:50 AM   #36
Monte Carlo
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They can say they care all they want, but actions do speak louder that words and we are seeing the same relapses we saw last year in regards to suddenly playing poor defense and making stupid mistakes and I for one don't see the effort. I can forgive losing, if I feel the team is doing everyting in their power in regards to playing hard, full-out b-ball, but I am not seeing that. I see a team that makes no effort to rebound, that makes half-hearted efforts to fight through screens and box out opponents. That, at least to me, is the part that makes me not want to watch this group anymore if they continue as they are right now. I am not a fair weather fan - I have followed the Illini since the days of Audie Matthews and Rich Adams - but when you route so hard for a team, it truly does take a lot out of you when they continually lift you up only to let you back down again! If I see the effort, then I will continue to watch even if they lose, but you lose the effort and you have lost the fan - call that fair weather if you want. I do think it all goes back to the players' mentality and having seeming extremely fragile egos. Some guys you back in a corner and they will fight like the Tasmanian Devil and others you back in the corner and they cower and cover their faces. I am afraid that our core senior group of Griffey, Paul & DJ are the latter and since they are the leaders, the upperclassman and in the case of Paul our best player, that doesn't bode well. I think this brings up again why Abrams was voted MVP last year. That speaks volumes to me.
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 12:12 PM   #37
IlliniSF
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Comment by Doc Rivers on Espn talking about his team's losing streak that Groce could say to his team this morning. " this team wants everything to come easy. And I told them the only way to win easy is to play hard".

Could use it on the fragile minds on this team.
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 12:37 PM   #38
blmillini
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Originally Posted by SummerofGeorge View Post
I am not completely buying into the "we are not getting good shots" theory. I do think there is some shred of truth to it but when we were shooting the lights out early in the season many of those shots were contested and many of our misses now are open, or at least as open as they were earlier. This is a confidence issue. These guys crumble when their shots don't fall. Part of the reason for that is their feeling that there are no other options to go to when the shots aren't dropping - hence the live and die by the 3 approach. I know many will disagree but imo this is more a mental issue than a strategic issue.
I'm not saying there isn't a confidence issue. I do believe that is a problem as well. However, I do still believe that poor shooting started when teams started to defend us differently and we have not been able to adjust. Therefore, we don't get as many good looks. Therefore, we struggle to hit the contested shots which then results in a decline in confidence. Then, when we do get the open looks, we start thinking about it more and everything snowballs.
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 12:47 PM   #39
bigballinman
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Illinois is what you call fools gold. We do alright in non league play but once league play begins are true colors come out. I was hoping this year would be different but its the same ole same ole. When we got on a early roll, seth davis and some said we were overrated and we keep proving them right.
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 02:00 PM   #40
UncleBob
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Originally Posted by BZuppke View Post
My concern is his use of the English language. "We're not playing very well". Or perhaps he meant to say "We're not playing very good basketball". How can these guys play well if they aren't very good at speaking English?
Yep, you nailed it. :rolleyes:
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Old Jan 22, 2013, 08:37 AM   #41
orangeBlue
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You know, I. I really don't care. Illinois sports, however flawed they may be, deserve a much better fan base. GO ILLINI
The problem ain't in the stands.
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Old Jan 22, 2013, 09:26 AM   #42
Cool Hand Luke
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Originally Posted by Chief4Ever View Post
Illinois sports, however flawed they may be, deserve a much better fan base.
The Illinois fan base, however flawed they may be, deserve much better sports.

Minnesota L 84-67
Wisconsin L 74-51
Northwestern L 68-54

I think many, maybe most, of us would agree this group of players has been beat down and lost all confidence. And I'd suggest many of us somehow excuse the way they've played due to these issues.

Do you not think the Illini fan base is also beat down and lacking confidence?

You know why some fans stop watching, stop showing up for games, stop paying attention at all? Because it hurts. So many people care so much, it hurts when they see the Illini basketball and football teams fail miserably. It makes their stomachs churn and it keeps them up at night.

Don't tell me Illini sports deserve better fans. It is quite the opposite. Look throughout college sports and observe what most people would consider the great atmospheres and rabid fan bases and you tell me what the common denominator is.

2011 attendance numbers:

Alabama
Football: 101,821 (100% capacity)
Basketball: 10,983 (71% capacity)

Penn St
Football: 101,427 (95% capacity)
Basketball: 7,457 (49% capacity)

LSU
Football: 92,868 (99.6% capacity)
Basketball: 7,153 (54% capacity)

Georgia
Football: 92,613 (99.8% capacity)
Basketball: 8,250 (78% capacity)

Hmm. Seems odd, no?

__________________
"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take. We keep swinging here. That's just kind of who we are. We swing." - John Groce

Last edited by Cool Hand Luke; Jan 22, 2013 at 09:32 AM.
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