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D.J. Richardson having a senior season to remember

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Old Feb 15, 2013, 10:59 PM   #26
Originally Posted by chiefini View Post
I think you are probably correct, for the most part. I know I for one never specifically called for DJ to sit, but after I went to the WI game at the AH, I said I was really disappointed in all of our seniors, and I was ready for them to be gone and looking forward to our new class coming in. Kudos to you and the few who stood by DJ, Illini70math. You were right; I should have trusted in Groce. Mea culpa. I won't let it happen again. Go Illini
I don't think we will go far wrong very often trusting in Groce. The guy really believes in his system, and it appears he can get the players to do so as well. That is about 90% of the battle if you have even reasonable talent on the roster, and we do.

Add to that the fact that he is a plus recruiter, and things are looking good going forward. Now, if we can just beat NW on Sunday!

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Old Feb 16, 2013, 06:05 AM   #27
I should have trusted in Groce

That was a quote earlier... Is this BW's legacy? Groce is clearly the real deal, but at the first sign of trouble people started turning on him? There is a truism in customer service that someone that has a problem resolved successfully becomes a more loyal customer. The team had to believe in the coach, the system and each other - overcome their problems to bond together. We can start to believe now too. As I tell my dad, who was one of the pessimists, what the season is telling us is that BW left the cupboard pretty 'darn' empty (Frank Martin left BW way more at K-State), but Groce is wringing everything out of the players. We cant pound inside, so he has made the team a 3 pt shooting machine to open the lane so when Abram, Paul, and Bertrand get a step on their defender they can get to the rim...
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 01:22 PM   #28
Dan's Avatar
Location: Champaign, IL
Culture Change

Did DJ hear these words and magically flip a switch? Of course not. DJ didn't really start clicking until one or two games later. But the process that John Groce has laid out for DJ from April until now has all been pointed towards one goal: an aggressive DJ Richardson, not a tentative DJ Richardson. If he misses a lot of shots between there and here, so be it.

And that got me thinking about the culture change that John Groce has been trying to implement in the whole program. As he said last summer when he came up with the "TNT" theme, he realized that he needed to take a fairly talented team and instill toughness across the board. He wasn't going to come out and say it, but I think he saw what we saw -- a team that followed their former coach's insecurity. When the coach yells "no" when you raise to shoot (DJ) or he takes you out at your first defensive mistake (Tyler), you're not learning toughness. You're learning that you'd better not take any risks.

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Old Feb 16, 2013, 02:10 PM   #29
Illiniwek06's Avatar
Location: N of I-80
Really enjoyed Alioneye's post. Some great points.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 03:14 PM   #30
Location: Plainfield
Well said as always. I've said it before, but where Bruce Weber came from shaped him. He came from Purdue/Keady, where they were always the undermanned team as compared to IU, UI, scUM and others. SIU as well. They had to play as the inferior talented team: Control, system etc. afraid that too many mistakes and the other team would "out athlete" them. That doesn't work at Illinois. We have the talent to play an aggressive and at times reckless game. Groce comes from Matta's tOSU and was shaped by that culture. He's the right fit.
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