Ohio State 77, Illinois 61 POSTGAME

Yeah, having been to most other B1G arenas, the SFC experience is depressingly middle-of-the-pack. Holding out hope a renovated building brings some new life with it.
Agreed. I know there is some sort of sentimental value to the ole lovable spaceship in CU...but I had my fingers crossed for a new arena that could compete with the likes of Value City, Breslin, Pinnacle Bank, etc.
 
I am disappointed that we are in year two of the Nunn/Hill era, and we are having the same discussions as last year. Only instead of JBert and Ekey (both now seemingly better than the two transfers) taking time/shots from Hill/Nunn, it is Starks and Cosby taking time/shots away.

I like Groce, but I think he's digging his grave at UI right now. Next year doesn't look good, and he is coaching scared.

Cosby and Starks have to get limited minutes, and he needs to put the governor on their shots.

Nunn also has to play with more discipline.
 
I appreciate the Tracy Abrams discussions. I don't think a healthy TA would boost us significantly on O, although steady leadership would certainly be a benefit. TA would also be a better defender than either Starks or Cosby. So he would definitely be an asset this year. And if fully recovered will be an asset next year.

I think most of us have hit on a lot of the things that are wrong with this team. Neither Starks nor Cosby has provided much help. Egwu appears as inept on O as he was 2 years ago. Nunn has not made a sophomore leap, at least yet. Morgan has yet to figure out how to play significant minutes without fouling. We miss Darius Paul being in the rotation up front. Leron Black appears more interested in WWE than in playing winning BB. Groce needs to rein him in quickly. We are impatient and disorganized on O and don't run the Offense the way it's coached. Poor communication and lack of concentration on D.

Still time to right the ship here, but an extended run of poor play will doom this team to the NIT. If that happens JG's seat will be very warm in year 4.
 
I am disappointed that we are in year two of the Nunn/Hill era, and we are having the same discussions as last year. Only instead of JBert and Ekey (both now seemingly better than the two transfers) taking time/shots from Hill/Nunn, it is Starks and Cosby taking time/shots away.

I like Groce, but I think he's digging his grave at UI right now. Next year doesn't look good, and he is coaching scared.

Cosby and Starks have to get limited minutes, and he needs to put the governor on their shots.

Nunn also has to play with more discipline.
Starks is playing PG, so he's not taking minutes from Hill, who's still primarily playing the 4 or Nunn, who's playing 2. Cosby is taking some minutes from Nunn (but again, not from Hill), but Kendrick seems really tentative on offense when he's out there, I think if he was more aggressive he might get more minutes. He's also regressed as a defender, IMO.

I appreciate the Tracy Abrams discussions. I don't think a healthy TA would boost us significantly on O, although steady leadership would certainly be a benefit. TA would also be a better defender than either Starks or Cosby. So he would definitely be an asset this year. And if fully recovered will be an asset next year.
When Abrams went down, I think we all expected it would hurt our defense, but we'd be better off on the other end with increased production from Cosby and Starks. Since that hasn't happened, the drop off on defense stands out even more.
 
I also wish we could run more sets for MH. He has to take more than 6 shots per game for us. Far too talented to be only shooting that little. Rub him off cross screens, up screens, whatever. He needs to shoot 13-15 times a game each game.
All we really do now is get him the ball in an isolation situation but against quicker defenders he struggles. Since this team is NOT good one on one we need to be running plays together to get one another open....doubt we will though
 
San Clemente, CA
The ball doesn't go in to the post much with Egwu because he is better at shooting a squared up jump shot and he doesn't ever look to pass to anyone once he's got the ball.....it becomes a black hole. His poor play is the #1 reason for their slump. Outside of the shot blocking he is a 6-11 guy who plays like he is 6-5 on offense, defense and especially while rebounding where he tends to be very soft.

The PG play is problem #2 with lack of penetration to the basket, poor shooting especially from Starks and poor defense.

Groce gets paid a lot of money to fix these problems.....he's going to earn it this season.
 
Oswego, IL
Was it ever mentioned what kind of rumblings there were by Starks' teammates last year? The post made it sound like they were happy he was leaving, but nobody really clarified.
 
Captain Trips-ville, Planet Houston
I also wish we could run more sets for MH. He has to take more than 6 shots per game for us. Far too talented to be only shooting that little. Rub him off cross screens, up screens, whatever. He needs to shoot 13-15 times a game each game.
+infinity
 
All we really do now is get him the ball in an isolation situation but against quicker defenders he struggles. Since this team is NOT good one on one we need to be running plays together to get one another open....doubt we will though
I sound like a broken record, but I said that before the season, I said it when we were on a winning streak, I've said it during the losses. This team has 2 major deficiencies that are hard to overcome: No inside/post play and no quality B1G PG who can drive/penetrate.

Given those deficiencies, good teams extend their defense on the perimeter playing tighter, without having to worry about the inside. Now, if we had more players who can break down their man 1-on-1, create their own shot, and attack the basket, then there would be something that we could do. But we don't. Rice is the only one who can consistently do it, but EVERYONE knows that. And adjust accordingly.

Coaches are coaches, but not magicians. The hypothesis that:

Coaches design plays > *** Magic happens*** > Players end up with many open shots on the perimeter (given the 2 major deficiencies mentioned)

is fundamentally flawed. We are playing some good teams and some great coaches. Away. We are not playing idiots.

This is team has some talent, but not the talent that fans thought before the season. And some major flaws, as mentioned many times, that will be hard to overcome. We will win some games, but don't expect magic to happen with set plays against some great coaches and good teams. Especially on the road where the team will have an even higher psychological/familiarity barrier to climb.
 
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I sound like a broken record, but I said that before the season, I said it when we were on a winning streak, I've said it during the losses. This team has 2 major deficiencies that are hard to overcome: No inside/post play and no quality B1G PG who can drive/penetrate.
Losing Abrams and Paul created those deficiencies. It is a poorly created roster. Hill is more of a shooting guard than be misplayed as a 4.

Tate or Starks are not the answer as a starting point guard.

Rice is a good shooting guard with Nunn and Cosby playing the same position.

Egwu is a poor rebounder and has no inside scoring game.

Groce needs to get Black to play without picking a foul a minute. He can at least help rebound and scoring inside a little bit.
 
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Losing Abrams and Paul created those deficiencies. It is a poorly created roster. Hill is more of a shooting guard than be misplayed as a 4.

Tate or Starks are not the answer as a starting point guard.

Rice is a good shooting guard with Nunn and Cosby playing the same position.

Egwu is a poor rebounder and has no inside scoring game.

Groce needs to get Black to play without picking a foul a minute. He can at least help rebound and scoring inside a little bit.
Hill is a SF who is playing out of position out of necessity. I agree on the rest.

I have also claimed many times that the development of Black is the X-factor on this team. He has some skills and ability (e.g. to help inside) that nobody else on this team has. Much will depend on Black maturing (I like his aggressiveness but his constant little tangles with opponents are totally counterproductive), gaining some confidence, and the staff developing him faster than they would have liked.
 
I sound like a broken record, but I said that before the season, I said it when we were on a winning streak, I've said it during the losses. This team has 2 major deficiencies that are hard to overcome: No inside/post play and no quality B1G PG who can drive/penetrate.

Given those deficiencies, good teams extend their defense on the perimeter playing tighter, without having to worry about the inside. Now, if we had more players who can break down their man 1-on-1, create their own shot, and attack the basket, then there would be something that we could do. But we don't. Rice is the only one who can consistently do it, but EVERYONE knows that. And adjust accordingly.

Coaches are coaches, but not magicians. The hypothesis that:

Coaches design plays > *** Magic happens*** > Players end up with many open shots on the perimeter (given the 2 major deficiencies mentioned)

is fundamentally flawed. We are playing some good teams and some great coaches. Away. We are not playing idiots.

This is team has some talent, but not the talent that fans thought before the season. And some major flaws, as mentioned many times, that will be hard to overcome. We will win some games, but don't expect magic to happen with set plays against some great coaches and good teams. Especially on the road where the team will have an even higher psychological/familiarity barrier to climb.
I agree with you but I think running set plays instead of trying continually trying to do things that these players are not good at doing (breaking down there man 1on1) would give us a much better chance of winning or at least staying in the game. Less talented teams need to then out smart the other teams in order to compete with them
 
Hill is a 3/4 combo.
I disagree. If we had a competent PF and backup, I'd never play Hill at the 4. Just explore his mismatches at the 3. He is playing the 4 because of our roster IMO.

I am disappointed at Cosby so far this season. Not because his shot is flat (I knew that) but because he still looks lost out there and has not been able to do things outside of shooting that he seemed capable at SH. I can understand Groce still giving him minutes (he does not want to "lose" him mentally because he can help more) but time is running out.

The PG situation is what it is IMO. Starks and Tate are who they are.

Nunn was slow out of the gate due to injury but I expect some improvement.

Personally, IF Cosby remains in a slump, I'd decrease his minutes, and try to develop Black a little faster. That will help give Hill some more minutes in the rotation at the 3 with Black adding minutes at the 4 (and backup 5).
 
Losing Abrams and Paul created those deficiencies. It is a poorly created roster. Hill is more of a shooting guard than be misplayed as a 4.
We'd still lack a post presence even with Paul, that's not his game. He'd help on the boards and give us another option at the 4/5, but he's not a savior in that respect.
 
I also wish we could run more sets for MH. He has to take more than 6 shots per game for us. Far too talented to be only shooting that little. Rub him off cross screens, up screens, whatever. He needs to shoot 13-15 times a game each game.
I agree but I don't think the problem is we aren't running enough stuff for him. I just think it's not being executed properly, especially against Ohio St. Hill is constantly catching the ball near the 3 pt line. That's not where he is most effective. He needs to get better position when he posts up so he can take 1 or 2 dribbles and make a move.
 
We'd still lack a post presence even with Paul, that's not his game. He'd help on the boards and give us another option at the 4/5, but he's not a savior in that respect.
Agree...Need a big bruiser down low that likes to stay in paint and post up back to basket.....Have really not had one to speak of since since Marcus Griffin (though he was slightly undersized height wise) and possibly Leonard...but I tell you what really hurt the transition from Weber to Groce and trying to salvage the sinking ship that was Webers last couple of years was when Leonard went pro....left us short with post presence....would have been a lot easier to replace one major position (pg) instead of now two (pg and C).
 
I agree with you but I think running set plays instead of trying continually trying to do things that these players are not good at doing (breaking down there man 1on1) would give us a much better chance of winning or at least staying in the game. Less talented teams need to then out smart the other teams in order to compete with them
I think the point that we disagree is that with no inside/post play and with no B1G PG who can drive/penetrate, there is a severe limitation on the use and value of plays. I rewatched the second half of the game this morning. It is amazing how empty our inside is. Egwu is mainly preoccupied with setting picks on the perimeter (maybe trying to get open for an outside shot himself). Hill is clearly on the perimeter (IMO a clear 3, not even a combo).

We do take some bad shots but not a lot more than other teams IMO. Just that perimeter defenses are tighter, making those shots tougher. That decreases the percentages for both Cosby/Starks IMO. It is not that they got a lot worse as shooters all of a sudden, just that Starks/Cosby are not really effective players utilized on a team with absolutely no inside game.
 
I agree but I don't think the problem is we aren't running enough stuff for him. I just think it's not being executed properly, especially against Ohio St. Hill is constantly catching the ball near the 3 pt line. That's not where he is most effective. He needs to get better position when he posts up so he can take 1 or 2 dribbles and make a move.
Also just a thought....what if the players actually set proper picks and the players with the ball used them properly....SCARY THOUGHT....that stuff is learned in biddy basketball and blows my mind seeing how terrible we are at it as a team
 
We'd still lack a post presence even with Paul, that's not his game. He'd help on the boards and give us another option at the 4/5, but he's not a savior in that respect.
Agreed.

I watched some of his freshman year games that were archived back on ESPN3 at the time of his transfer. Here is my view of Paul's game from an old post:

Paul does not have post moves, he is mainly a face-up player around the basket. He has a decent (OK) mid-range jumper, but he is a very good passer around the basket and in the paint area. Where Paul does most of his damage is getting second chance points from close distance, being very active in the paint.
 
Post moves or not, Paul can at least get boards inside and put the ball up strong. Paul is pretty creative from my understanding, so as long there is production from the 5 it helps on the grand scheme of things. It will be hard for other bigs to guard him if he can score in a variety of ways.
 
Post moves or not, Paul can at least get boards inside and put the ball up strong. Paul is pretty creative from my understanding, so as long there is production from the 5 it helps on the grand scheme of things. It will be hard for other bigs to guard him if he can score in a variety of ways.
Paul can definitely help and could have also helped this year. Unfortunately, it is not that Egwu or our other bigs have set the bar too high in that respect.

But the statement that it will be hard for other bigs to guard him and he will be able to score in a variety of ways is highly exaggerated based on what I had seen.

Players do develop, and maybe Paul did. But the amount of development in transfer/juco years is often exaggerated by fans. I do expect Paul to help, but I agree with the original post by WVC that I don't expect Paul to be a savior in that respect. I do hope though since we do not have many available options for next year in the current recruiting horizon (spring).