2018 Off Season Thread

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Bonnaroo Land
Tyler Underwood could see meaningful minutes. Last year in practice, Trent said the everything ran smoother with Tyler running the show. BU sometimes would remove his son from the scrimmage to allow the others learn the system. Tyler would direct the offense and others depended on him. Maybe he could be our Dakich (OSU).
It seemed that every time I saw Dakich play this year, he would have 2 steals, take a charge and hit a three in like a 30 second span. Would be great to have that kind of player around.
 
New York
It seemed that every time I saw Dakich play this year, he would have 2 steals, take a charge and hit a three in like a 30 second span. Would be great to have that kind of player around.


When is Dakich’s Illinois year? Where do we fall out on his 14 year plan?


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Bonnaroo Land
it is very strange to think that we only have KN and AJ left that played for JG. A new era and new culture indeed.
 
I agree! Recruiting is not BU’s strength. I fear his bull dog intensity and hard !!! demeanor are already wearing thin with players & prospective recruits. As losses continue to pile up and another season is lost, I worry that our program will fall even further behind and a BU rebuild will be nearly impossible.

I am baffled at the unconditional optimism of so many on this board. A massive roster rebuild at the end of March with very few serviceable players left to replace significant contributors of a competitive team that still finished near the bottom of the Big 10. Next year is pretty much lost. Can BU recruit his way out of this mess? I hope so but given BUs recruiting track record - I’m not feeling it.
This is one of the few posts in this whole thread that expresses the realism and gravity of the situation. If Underwood somehow makes this whole deal work no one will be as happy as me. But given what we've seen so far there in no real indication that things are headed in a positive direction. Granted, most of us aren't privy to what is going on and being discussed within the program but all we can go by is what we see happening, and folks, it just ain't good!

The sincere hope is that Underwood can be a consummate recruiter but there are no indications up to this point of that being reality. The most successful period in the relatively recent Illini history came from the the recruitment of high quality players by a guy that isn't regarded as all that good of a game coach.

If this Underwood rebuild is unsuccessful our beloved basketball program is in for an extended period in doormatville.
 
This is one of the few posts in this whole thread that expresses the realism and gravity of the situation. If Underwood somehow makes this whole deal work no one will be as happy as me. But given what we've seen so far there in no real indication that things are headed in a positive direction. Granted, most of us aren't privy to what is going on and being discussed within the program but all we can go by is what we see happening, and folks, it just ain't good!

The sincere hope is that Underwood can be a consummate recruiter but there are no indications up to this point of that being reality. The most successful period in the relatively recent Illini history came from the the recruitment of high quality players by a guy that isn't regarded as all that good of a game coach.

If this Underwood rebuild is unsuccessful our beloved basketball program is in for an extended period in doormatville.
I think what we will (hope) see is that the players being motivated by the coach will need not happen any longer.

Jordan is a consummate player, will be a coach one day pretty sure. Bought in from day one.

Frazier knows where he can lead this team with the other guards and expectations for him.

Williams will be the "blow" up player this year, showed signs last year, offensively wont defer as much imo.

Kipper will get the chance to show maturity and step up as leader. He needs the hard !!! coaching to get the best out of himself.

All the new players will be eager to show what they can do, automatically this will translate in hunger and lack of need for motivation like the coach had to do over and over this past year.

Really looking forward to this year.

Ayo, Griffin, Kane, Giorgi, and 3 more yet....:chief: + new uni's thank god!
 
Peoria, IL
Not a significant upgrade in talent ... but would be a significant upgrade in culture.

Those guys play darn good, unselfish b-ball. Fun to watch.
Moser has stated that he wanted to change the culture and started recruiting winners, guys that had that winning mentality. Hopefully Underwood is doing the same.
 
Atlanta, GA
No good having a team full of talent with a losers mentality.


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Seriously that is not a fair assessment of Finke, how can u measure up when you are playing your college career out of position? Really? MF was and is a shooter and that was what he was recruited to do here. However the crap we had before that recruited him did a terrible job recruiting the right pieces so he had to play most ofhis career playing center. Put MF in the offense we ran while Self was here and he is a totally different player, still maybe the best shooter on this team He has a chance to play major college BB with his brother who in the world can refuse him this once in a lifetime opportunity?

Now Lucas is another story and that's all I will offer up.
If he would have hit more of his open looks he wouldn't be told by the current coaching staff that his role would be diminishing next year. If you can't play defense well (against a 4 or 5) and aren't making shots you shouldn't be a starter or get starter type minutes.
 
Winged Warrior
Not a significant upgrade in talent ... but would be a significant upgrade in culture.

Those guys play darn good, unselfish b-ball. Fun to watch.
Exactly. "Upgrade in talent" is just as tired and over used as "players who fit the system".

Clearly some combination of these is ideal. Loyola is proving that.
I trust BU's evaluation of his program and who he wants on the floor for the next 4 years. I have ZERO doubt the product will be better with whatever type of talent his players have.:illinois:
 
Bonnaroo Land
My impression from reading this board seems to be predominate thought is Kipper will choose to leave, rather than being forced out, by Underwood, or the board :D.

Slight difference in perception, if that makes sense.
Kipper knows how much he improved and how it showed at the end of the year with 27 against Mich and 31 against Iowa, and also all of his 30+ minute games were towards the end. I highly doubt he goes anywhere. He is looking at a much more consistent season and 15 and 7, and 2-3rd team all-b1g potential.
 
It isn't just basketball. There have been significant departures in football, volleyball and women's basketball under the new coaches.
While clearly Whitman is giving his coaches the freedom to think long-term, and that's a positive in a vacuum, you start to wonder if he's tacitly or even explicitly encouraging this kind of turnover.
 
No. Be upset. Demand better than this. Just don't start droning on about firing the coach for three straight years because that's oversimplifying and a waste of everyone's time.

But a healthy Illinois team should never finish with a triple-digit KenPom. It's not good enough and should be seen as the failure that it is. Failing to retain key players with remaining eligibility is also a failure.

So it's a failure to retain key players that led to failure?
 
Michigan
Why? I still do not understand the persistence on this board of getting rid of Kipper.
Kipper is a frustrating player to watch, in that he is his own worst enemy at times. I like his ceiling, and hope he grows enough to get some swagger. Even as is, he has decent production, and we'd miss him. Underwood I think is a guy who can help him develop more of the discipline he needs.
 
DC Area
This is one of the few posts in this whole thread that expresses the realism and gravity of the situation. If Underwood somehow makes this whole deal work no one will be as happy as me. But given what we've seen so far there in no real indication that things are headed in a positive direction. Granted, most of us aren't privy to what is going on and being discussed within the program but all we can go by is what we see happening, and folks, it just ain't good!



The sincere hope is that Underwood can be a consummate recruiter but there are no indications up to this point of that being reality. The most successful period in the relatively recent Illini history came from the the recruitment of high quality players by a guy that isn't regarded as all that good of a game coach.



If this Underwood rebuild is unsuccessful our beloved basketball program is in for an extended period in doormatville.


Finke and Lucas are not the difference in our program being a doormat. We will miss the tourney next year because black is leaving. If we can’t find a guard better than Lucas by the following year we are in trouble. That would be true is Lucas stayed or left.

The only point that makes sense is that people afraid BU personality is going to scare recruits but honestly I don’t see it. I don’t get the sense that a lot of elite talent is looking for a “nice” coach but maybe I am wrong.


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Michigan
While clearly Whitman is giving his coaches the freedom to think long-term, and that's a positive in a vacuum, you start to wonder if he's tacitly or even explicitly encouraging this kind of turnover.
IMHO it shouldn't be unexpected. It's a ton of turnover, but the reality is that this has occurred over a period of just 12 months after a coaching change that was due to a 4 year dumpster fire. Maybe 1 season missing the dance is not a dumpster fire, but the totality sure was.

Underwood was not able to do it with Groce's players. I think he's smart enough to realize that if you're already losing, it's better to switch horses and try it with guys who think fit your system. That, at least, gives you something you can build upon. We have a few pieces already, just need more of his kind of player.
 
Watch Underwood make the tourney next year and everyone lose their minds.
 

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I really thought last year's team, a year older with some upgrades, would make the tournament in 2019. Clearly Underwood disagreed and/or is aiming for something bigger. Either way, I guess all I can do is trust he and Whitman know what they're doing.
 
Paducah, Ky
When I was promoted to a sales manager's position I inherited many agents from a losing culture...that's why I was promoted to change the culture....we haven't been dancing in 5 years and it is long overdue to change the culture and you do that by recruiting better players who fit the system....BU is no different than any other coach in expecting buy in and total effort from players...

I look forward to seeing our seeding in the dance rather than missing or sweating out the selection process...

CHANGE IS NECESSARY FOR GROWTH.....words to live by in all aspec5ts of life...


Go gitt'em BU !!!!
 
st petersburg, fl
Yeah I'm sorry I haven't bailed on Underwood, still have high hopes, but the whole "we're better off gutting the whole thing and starting over from scratch in March with 6 spring signees rather than maintaining some continuity with experienced players like Tejon and Finke because they have played in the big 10 before and lost more than they won" is complete BS rationalization. :noidea:
Agreed. Let's be honest with ourselves. Coming into last year, BU himself essentially stated that he thinks the team has the talent to make the tournament. Looking back, there's three possible conclusions. I don't know which one is right, but without inside information (which I don't have) you can't seriously deny that one of these three isn't the case:

1. BU seriously mis-evaluated the talent on the squad.
2. He was just doing coach-speak and way over-promised (realistically, why would he want to do this in his first year when he would easily get a pass if he didn't?)
3. The talent really is there, but the culture/mindset isn't. Or (essentially equivalently) the skillset doesn't match the system.

My guess (and I think most people's) is predominantly the third. But regardless of which it is, none of them can be construed as "positive". At the end of the day, I'm pretty confident BU didn't think he'd be in this situation a season in after he took the job. Instead of taking one stop forward next year, and two steps the year after, it looks more like a step back next year and then (hopefully) two forward the year after, but possibly just one.

Long-term, I still have faith, but this certainly isn't the ideal trajectory to get there.
 
Honestly, the faster we get rid of Groce betters the better I feel, we had way too many Weber holdovers throughout Groce's tenure. The faster we change the culture the better
Meh... the two bright spots on the team this year were Black and Frazier, both Groce recruits. Mark Smith was a BU recruit as was Matic, and I doubt a player like Finke who was an academic all-conference multiple times and represented UI very well had a "culture" problem. Neither does AJ, who fits in the same category. Whenever the talent and skills are not adequate, people will try to find scapegoats.
 
Also, if you care about who coached them, and coaching them up, you should really tell us about Mark Smith (relatively high ranked) and Matic too. Rather than hypothetical (IF they were coached by another coach). You do not know how Frazier would have performed under a different coach this year, that is totally hypothetical.
Personally, I'm gonna give a coaching staff more than one year to show how good they are at coaching up players.
 
If you don't care who recruited them, then don't misrepresent facts that some players (i.e., Frazier) were recruited by BU when they were not. Especially if they were already signed.

Also, if you care about who coached them, and coaching them up, you should really tell us about Mark Smith (relatively high ranked) and Matic too. Rather than hypothetical (IF they were coached by another coach). You do not know how Frazier would have performed under a different coach this year, that is totally hypothetical.
To pick nits, I think Frazier was recruited by Underwood at SFA.
 
Feliz is the #1 JUCO PG in the country (I'm well aware JUCO talent is nowhere near the level it was before prep schools). He seems to be an offensive upgrade over Lucas (shoots 42% from 3), but I'd imagine would be a downgrade defensively. Staff must think he's an upgrade overall or else they wouldn't be nudging Lucas out the door.
I have seen/heard this numerous times. What is our source on these rankings? Thanks
 
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