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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:04 PM   #1
IlliniSpine
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We'll be in the top 20 as teams like UK (#8, now 4-3), Ok st (#15), CO (#19) lost.

The Gonzaga game is going to be a HUGE test. 4 Hour flight cross country, 2 hour time difference, rainy dreary Washington weather (I would know). I think our guards can match up well. Nervous about our guys down low. Hope the boys come ready.

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:35 PM   #2
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We'll be in the top 20 as teams like UK (#8, now 4-3), Ok st (#15), CO (#19) lost.

The Gonzaga game is going to be a HUGE test. 4 Hour flight cross country, 2 hour time difference, rainy dreary Washington weather (I would know). I think our guards can match up well. Nervous about our guys down low. Hope the boys come ready.
It has also been said that this team is the best team that Mark Few has had at Gonzaga. Unlike UK being ranked based on their recruiting class and so far havent lived up to the hype. I have no doubt that Gonzagas ranking is for real and a win would be huge.

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:38 PM   #3
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The Gonzaga game is one of if not our most difficult game of the season...it's one of the few times where i can honestly say i'd be happy with a respectable loss. It's a road game on the west coast against a team tailored to exploiting our weaknesses.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:49 PM   #4
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The Gonzaga game is one of if not our most difficult game of the season...it's one of the few times where i can honestly say i'd be happy with a respectable loss. It's a road game on the west coast against a team tailored to exploiting our weaknesses.
Yeah we may not win this one, but I expect us to play with a lot of energy.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:55 PM   #5
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The Gonzaga game is one of if not our most difficult game of the season...it's one of the few times where i can honestly say i'd be happy with a respectable loss. It's a road game on the west coast against a team tailored to exploiting our weaknesses.
Illinois also has a team tailored to exploit Gonzaga's biggest weaknesses: athletic guards and big men with shooting touch.

Gonzaga has struggled this year vs. athletic guards who can defend their passing lanes and drive the lane. Also their big guys aren't very quick, even Harris, meaning they will have some issues defending ball screens. They may not be quick enough to recover to the screener on a pick-and-pop, so Griffey could have a field day.

It will be a good game. Each team has strenghts and weaknesses that sort of counteract each other. Zags have home court though, that will be tough as hell to overcome.

A win over Gonzaga would be huge for this team and for this program. That's the kind of thing that gets you recognition and helps you perceptionally in recruiting.

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:01 PM   #6
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Illinois also has a team tailored to exploit Gonzaga's biggest weaknesses: athletic guards and big men with shooting touch.

Gonzaga has struggled this year vs. athletic guards who can defend their passing lanes and drive the lane. Also their big guys aren't very quick, even Harris, meaning they will have some issues defending ball screens. They may not be quick enough to recover to the screener on a pick-and-pop, so Griffey could have a field day.

It will be a good game. Each team has strenghts and weaknesses that sort of counteract each other. Zags have home court though, that will be tough as hell to overcome.

A win over Gonzaga would be huge for this team and for this program. That's the kind of thing that gets you recognition and helps you perceptionally in recruiting.
Yeah, I think a lot of people forget sometimes what we can do as opposed to what the other team can do.

Pangos and Stockton are small and not as athletic as our quartet of guards. We can give them a lot fits!

Even a really good showing in a loss would be a good boost for everyone. Let's face it no one expects this team to go 40-0

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:09 PM   #7
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Yeah, I think a lot of people forget sometimes what we can do as opposed to what the other team can do.

Pangos and Stockton are small and not as athletic as our quartet of guards. We can give them a lot fits!

Even a really good showing in a loss would be a good boost for everyone. Let's face it no one expects this team to go 40-0
yeah Gonzaga really has no one on the perimeter quick enough to stay in front of Abrams, Paul or Bertrand... Bell Jr. is solid but he's not the quickest guy either, his athleticism is similar to a DJ Richardson. Abrams will have all the lanes to the basket that he wants, I hope he can utilize them and play as well as he did in Maui at times.

Gonzaga in their close games has struggled to keep the other team's guards in front of them and hasn't closed out well to the 3-pt shot, especially when its a big shooting from deep. Gonzaga's bigs don't seem to be very accustomed to closing out and checking people on the perimeter.

Illinois has what it takes to win the game... we'll see who's strengths prevail I guess

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:12 PM   #8
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yeah Gonzaga really has no one on the perimeter quick enough to stay in front of Abrams, Paul or Bertrand... Bell Jr. is solid but he's not the quickest guy either, his athleticism is similar to a DJ Richardson. Abrams will have all the lanes to the basket that he wants, I hope he can utilize them and play as well as he did in Maui at times.

Gonzaga in their close games has struggled to keep the other team's guards in front of them and hasn't closed out well to the 3-pt shot, especially when its a big shooting from deep. Gonzaga's bigs don't seem to be very accustomed to closing out and checking people on the perimeter.

Illinois has what it takes to win the game... we'll see who's strengths prevail I guess
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:21 PM   #9
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yeah Gonzaga really has no one on the perimeter quick enough to stay in front of Abrams, Paul or Bertrand... Bell Jr. is solid but he's not the quickest guy either, his athleticism is similar to a DJ Richardson. Abrams will have all the lanes to the basket that he wants, I hope he can utilize them and play as well as he did in Maui at times.

Gonzaga in their close games has struggled to keep the other team's guards in front of them and hasn't closed out well to the 3-pt shot, especially when its a big shooting from deep. Gonzaga's bigs don't seem to be very accustomed to closing out and checking people on the perimeter.

Illinois has what it takes to win the game... we'll see who's strengths prevail I guess
Just raised my confidence for this game
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:52 PM   #10
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Just raised my confidence for this game
We beat them last year when they were favored...
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 02:59 PM   #11
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We beat them last year when they were favored...
We were also at home.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 03:09 PM   #12
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You have watched Gonzaga play right? GB jr. Is very quick and athletic. Pangos and little Stockton do a great job of working together to help subdue the other teams pg. Those two can play together this year and Stockton has looked crisp this year. Guy Landi Edi has some size for a guard and is much improved from last season. I don't expect him to score much but Few knows he will match up better with our bigger guards playing solid D, grabbing a few boards and if they are lucky a few points. Mike Hart who is a high IQ guy plus tireless worker along with Kyle Draganis who is a rs freshman earning good tic give you length and depth at the 3. They are going to be daring us to shoot deep threes because they think along with the rest of the country except us that they're going to dominate the battle on the glass We have to keep them honest and use the pump fake, and attack the open spots on the court off the dribble drawing other defenders making athletic plays whether it's a jumpers, going to the rack or making a pass but don't let he refs determine he plays. We might not get all the calls up in Spokane and we can't play soft. It's going to be a great game and I can't wait.

I'd probably pick a different team to try and talk about next time.

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Old Dec 2, 2012, 03:22 PM   #13
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Illinois also has a team tailored to exploit Gonzaga's biggest weaknesses: athletic guards and big men with shooting touch.

Gonzaga has struggled this year vs. athletic guards who can defend their passing lanes and drive the lane. Also their big guys aren't very quick, even Harris, meaning they will have some issues defending ball screens. They may not be quick enough to recover to the screener on a pick-and-pop, so Griffey could have a field day.

It will be a good game. Each team has strenghts and weaknesses that sort of counteract each other. Zags have home court though, that will be tough as hell to overcome.

A win over Gonzaga would be huge for this team and for this program. That's the kind of thing that gets you recognition and helps you perceptionally in recruiting.

Very nice analysis. Thank you. The Gonzaga team has become a favorite for me. They always are a fundamentally sound team that values every possession. During the five years I recently lived in the PNW, I followed the Zags more than any other Pacific team, primarily because they play like a classic Midwestern game. They take defense seriously. I think that's one reason they do well in the west. They play hard, and like they understand the game.

That said, you picked apart this year's Zags with respect to their team weaknesses.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 03:42 PM   #14
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It seems like nationally it's our guards vs their bigs because they're deeper in the front court while we have the bigger guards who are shooting great. What I'm not hearing is how good of shooters Pangos and GB Jr. are with a really improved Stockton not far behind. Both Harris and Dower have the ability to hit on the perimeter too. It's going to be he toughest game of the year, we're looking solid as in the 3 rd round at worse with Sweet 16 aspirations and this game is a huge gauge to me for conference because I think Gonzaga would be a top 5 team if they were in the Big with top 3 potential in that fictional scenario.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 03:44 PM   #15
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You have watched Gonzaga play right? GB jr. Is very quick and athletic. Pangos and little Stockton do a great job of working together to help subdue the other teams pg. Those two can play together this year and Stockton has looked crisp this year. Guy Landi Edi has some size for a guard and is much improved from last season. I don't expect him to score much but Few knows he will match up better with our bigger guards playing solid D, grabbing a few boards and if they are lucky a few points. Mike Hart who is a high IQ guy plus tireless worker along with Kyle Draganis who is a rs freshman earning good tic give you length and depth at the 3. They are going to be daring us to shoot deep threes because they think along with the rest of the country except us that they're going to dominate the battle on the glass We have to keep them honest and use the pump fake, and attack the open spots on the court off the dribble drawing other defenders making athletic plays whether it's a jumpers, going to the rack or making a pass but don't let he refs determine he plays. We might not get all the calls up in Spokane and we can't play soft. It's going to be a great game and I can't wait.

I'd probably pick a different team to try and talk about next time.
Yeah I have seen them play. I didnt talk about them. Grapes did. I just agreed with what he said because he is right. I obviously am not over looking the Zags or saying we are going to blow them out. But I know we can win this game. One thing is for sure you defend Gonzaga in all your posts like they are your favorite team. I agree I think it should be a great game up at their place.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 11:38 PM   #16
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I just hope we're 9-0 going into this one....

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 01:03 AM   #17
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I just hope we're 9-0 going into this one....
I'm hoping we have a nice shooting day vs. Western Carolina and go into the Gonzaga game nice and confident ... boy, would winning at Gonzaga be a huge win for this team (granted, as you said, that we make it to 9-0 first! ).
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Old Dec 3, 2012, 02:18 AM   #18
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You have watched Gonzaga play right? GB jr. Is very quick and athletic.
If Bell jr. is quick and athletic, then DJ Richardson is quick and athletic. Bell's not an elite level athlete. Nor does he have great size. He's strong, and a good shooter, but that's pretty much it. Illinois should be able to keep him in front. He likes to shoot though. like Richardson, a high percentage of his shots are 3's.

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Pangos and little Stockton do a great job of working together to help subdue the other teams pg. Those two can play together this year and Stockton has looked crisp this year.
No offense but this is stupid. Pangos and Stockton on the floor together against Illinois is not something Mark few is going to want to do. Paul has 5 inches and 40 pounds on Stockton and 3 inches and 20 pounds on Pangos, and neither of them are as quick as him. Abrams is quicker and stronger than both of them. Etc.

Pangos is a great offensive player that has to be accounted for. He and stockton actually have similar offensive efficiency numbers, but Pangos's usage is obviously much much greater. That being said, they each have to guard their own guy, and teams with athletic guards have been able to slow them down offensively and cause problems for them defensively. And they would have huge problems keeping Illinois in front of them if they're on the floor at the same time.

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Guy Landi Edi has some size for a guard and is much improved from last season. I don't expect him to score much but Few knows he will match up better with our bigger guards playing solid D, grabbing a few boards and if they are lucky a few points.
At the cost of playing who? Playing a less efficient or less confident offensive player allows opponents to get away with things defensively; i.e. doubling Harris. In actuality, Landry Edi has actually been very solid, giving them good defense, a few rebounds, and a few efficient points.

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Mike Hart who is a high IQ guy plus tireless worker along with Kyle Draganis who is a rs freshman earning good tic give you length and depth at the 3.
Mike Hart is a 10mpg reserve who doesn't do much and has the same problems as the other Gonzaga guards, minus Landry Edi.

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They are going to be daring us to shoot deep threes because they think along with the rest of the country except us that they're going to dominate the battle on the glass We have to keep them honest and use the pump fake, and attack the open spots on the court off the dribble drawing other defenders making athletic plays whether it's a jumpers, going to the rack or making a pass but don't let he refs determine he plays. We might not get all the calls up in Spokane and we can't play soft. It's going to be a great game and I can't wait.
Illinois has a chance to dominate on their ball screens if they execute. The guards should be able to drive the ball, especially Abrams and Paul, given that their defenders aren't as fast or as big. Pick and pop opportunities will be abundant as Gonzaga bigs aren't the most mobile for recovering off screen help. Driving lanes should be plenty.

But there's no question Illinois will have to shoot the ball well from deep to win this game. Gonzaga has a huge frontcourt size and strength advantage and they're one of the best rebounding teams in the country.

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I'd probably pick a different team to try and talk about next time.
Honestly, a few of the things you said were totally silly. No point in making remarks like this to begin with.

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 02:35 AM   #19
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It seems like nationally it's our guards vs their bigs because they're deeper in the front court while we have the bigger guards who are shooting great. What I'm not hearing is how good of shooters Pangos and GB Jr. are with a really improved Stockton not far behind. Both Harris and Dower have the ability to hit on the perimeter too. It's going to be he toughest game of the year, we're looking solid as in the 3 rd round at worse with Sweet 16 aspirations and this game is a huge gauge to me for conference because I think Gonzaga would be a top 5 team if they were in the Big with top 3 potential in that fictional scenario.
Gonzaga is an elite offensive team. They're getting efficient scoring as they assist well and they shoot high-percentage shots.

The question is, defensively, can they defend teams with athletic guards and big men who can shoot? And offensively, can their guards still be as effective at running the offense and making shots against bigger, longer, more athletic defenders?

I don't worry as much about Illinois offensively, outside of the sheer number of three-point attempts. If the 3-pt shooting were an anomaly, we would have seen some signs by now, but 8 games into the season the team is shooting 42% from three despite their highest-volume three-point shooter only making 35% on the year so far.

The questions for Illinois in this game are whether or not they will have enough focus being on the road and playing a super late game to take care of the ball and be crisp defensively, and whether or not they get destroyed on the boards.

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 06:32 AM   #20
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How improved is Gonzaga this season really? I always felt that when we played them in the past that Robert Sacre was our biggest problem.
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Old Dec 3, 2012, 09:03 AM   #21
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despite their highest-volume three-point shooter only making 35% on the year so far.
DJ?

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 10:03 AM   #22
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ESPN's "Places to be this week" - Saturday: Spokane Washington

from ESPN:

Spokane, Wash. (Illinois at Gonzaga): So you want to be the surprise of the season? You can start by (a) quitting on your coach last year, (b) being reenergized by his energetic young replacement, (c) blitzing the Maui Invitational en route to the tourney title and (d) surviving your next two home games and moving to 8-0. That's a good start! It creates the possibility (which most Illinois fans must have dreaded in the preseason) that a trip to Gonzaga would be more than a ruthless bloodletting. In any case, this is the real test.

http://espn.go.com/ncb/notebook/_/pa...ege-basketball

I understand that we had a brutal end to last season, but I feel that "bloodletting" is pretty strong language considering we beat them last year with a nearly identical team (yes, I know we where at home).

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 10:06 AM   #23
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from ESPN:

Spokane, Wash. (Illinois at Gonzaga): So you want to be the surprise of the season? You can start by (a) quitting on your coach last year, (b) being reenergized by his energetic young replacement, (c) blitzing the Maui Invitational en route to the tourney title and (d) surviving your next two home games and moving to 8-0. That's a good start! It creates the possibility (which most Illinois fans must have dreaded in the preseason) that a trip to Gonzaga would be more than a ruthless bloodletting. In any case, this is the real test.

http://espn.go.com/ncb/notebook/_/pa...ege-basketball

I understand that we had a brutal end to last season, but I feel that "bloodletting" is pretty strong language considering we beat them last year with a nearly identical team (yes, I know we where at home).
It's all about getting people to read your articles. This is the game where we will definitely miss ML.

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Old Dec 3, 2012, 10:43 AM   #24
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from ESPN:

Spokane, Wash. (Illinois at Gonzaga): So you want to be the surprise of the season? You can start by (a) quitting on your coach last year, (b) being reenergized by his energetic young replacement, (c) blitzing the Maui Invitational en route to the tourney title and (d) surviving your next two home games and moving to 8-0. That's a good start! It creates the possibility (which most Illinois fans must have dreaded in the preseason) that a trip to Gonzaga would be more than a ruthless bloodletting. In any case, this is the real test.

http://espn.go.com/ncb/notebook/_/pa...ege-basketball

I understand that we had a brutal end to last season, but I feel that "bloodletting" is pretty strong language considering we beat them last year with a nearly identical team (yes, I know we where at home).
"Quitting on your coach last year"... That's a superficial, uninformed ESPN statement. Whatever. Circle the wagons, Illinois.

Take care of business tomorrow, prepare and focus like hell for Gonzaga on Saturday, and let's see what happens. Just the fact that there's this much excitement surrounding Saturday is awesome. But eff it, let's get greedy and expect the win. That would blow the doors right off this thing and get everyone back on board.
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Old Dec 3, 2012, 10:53 AM   #25
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Ibby lives for games against Gonzaga.
Saturday we bust out the secret weapon!

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