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Not sure how people think this was a good season


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Author Topic: Not sure how people think this was a good season  (Read 3586 times)
Madram
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« on: March 18, 2017, 09:24:51 am »

Everybody get ready to gang up on me but I think we need to take a hard look at this season and someone needs to tell me why we are so excited and optimistic about this seasons results. We actually got worse this year which is never a good sign in a coaches second year.

Say what you want but not sure how people are grading this season as a success. Let's look at the facts..

Overall record was much worse this year. Went from 17-14 last season to 13-19 this season (not good )

Conference record Took a step back at 7-11 this year compared to 8-10 last year ( had some good wins this year vs Rhodes island etc.. but also had many embarrassing losses)

Home record was 14-5 last year compared to 8-9 this year ( terrible home season)

Non conference record 9-4 last year compared to 6-8 this year ( sooo bad)

Scoring margin this year was -3.3 compared to +2.0 ( for you math majors that's worse than last year )

Not sure how people are grading this season as A success so please tell me.

If you're going to just blame everything on injuries you better come with something to back it up such as the injuries of everyone else they played and who was hurt during which games and why you feel that was the sole reason.

Anyway let's hear it ..
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2017, 11:12:05 am »

Well, it depends on your expectations and whether your perspective is short range or long-range. If you just look at the W-L, it was worse than last year's. Then again, last year's OOC schedule had more cupcakes than Entenmann's and so many home games you'd think the team had been grounded by their parents. But that was done for a reason; the program had to halt a culture of futility that had folks saying it was impossible for us to compete in the A-10, or even in D-1. Invigorated by a new coach and stellar performances from 2 seniors, we did that. I don't think before last season, many folks expected a winning record.

This year, we upped the schedule a bit, and Coach Neubauer  tried to put in his system -- half successfully. The team stats after our first dozen or so games told the story. Defensively -- something that has to be taught -- we were getting it done.  [A graphic in last nights's Marquette-South Carolina game showed Fordham as #3 in the NCAA this season in forced turnovers]. We were getting more shots than the opponent -- just not hitting them at a good enough rate. A modest improvement in shooting percentage would have led to a rather dramatic shift in the W-L.  But once JN knew he didn't have the horses, he shifted strategies (wow, a coach who doesn't think his 'system' is the ultimate in basketball, and the problem is his kids don't play it properly, and who has the guts to make a change!) and the record began improving dramatically. Yep, we had some nice conference wins, a couple of heartbreaking losses, and we were gassed at the end due to injuries, but there weren't many beatdowns coming down the stretch (a hallmark of prior Fordham teams).

If the roster stays intact, we've got 10 returning players for '17-18, each of whom has shown they can contribute something in an A-10 game. Probably around 2500 returning career points in scoring, a nice problem to have. We add Perris Hicks and hopefully a couple of decent recruits.  By itself, this season's record wasn't anything to get excited about. But if you view the season in the context of a 5-year program turnaround plan -- which I do -- we're precisely where we should be, maybe a bit ahead of schedule. Losing culture, gone. A coach who sets out to win every game. Players who believe they can do that. We're making progress.

 
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2017, 11:34:46 am »

Everybody get ready to gang up on me but I think we need to take a hard look at this season and someone needs to tell me why we are so excited and optimistic about this seasons results. We actually got worse this year which is never a good sign in a coaches second year.
 

This was one of the most bizarre seasons in Fordham history.
 
I would have to answer it with a non answer. The only true way to determine if this year was a success is to see how we play next year. If everyone is healthy and JC, CS, AA are all back and Slanina becomes a force at center, and Havsa continues to develop like he did and Bunting becomes that bruiser that he showed brief flashes of this season, then yes, taking a few hits this year would have been well worth it.

This year's grade is an inconclusive, its like waiting for the toxicology report........TBD
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2017, 11:51:27 am »

I think on balance it was an "ok" season. Injuries played a part, both good and bad. We lost some of Slanina's development time, but we got to see that Havsa can play.  Hawkins was a flawed positive.  AA was both brilliant and MIA at times.  Sengfelder was solid (I just wish he had made that free throw!) and Tavares was a disappointment. JC was up and down, Bunting had his moments but is limited.  I think the coaching was overall a positive, dealing with the changing cast and adapting to the practicalities of what worked.

All in all, not what we all wished for, but not a complete disaster. I think the most positive thing is the team, on the verge of completely dissolving about midseason, kept fighting and competing.  They got some W's against some strong conference teams and has given the long-suffering fan base some hope going into next season.  We still need more talent but there are some guys who now have more experience.
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« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2017, 11:52:36 am »

I'm not sure why anyone thought we wouldn't be worse this season.  We lost our 2 leading scorers and our leading rebounder and shot blocker.  We lost many games to injury, but still pulled off a number of upsets on the road.  I'm not arguing that makes this a successful season - I agree with 85 that it may be the most bizarre in my nearly 40 years of watching - but there is much to look forward to next year.

Yes, replacing Hawkins will be difficult, but not nearly as tough as replacing Rhoomes and Thomas was this year.  We will hopefully have Slanina and Hicks healthy and bring in transfers and/or recruits.  We will also have an experienced roster next year, which goes a long way in college hoops.  A lot of hurdles remain, but the arrow is pointed up, imo.
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« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2017, 12:37:16 pm »

I'm not sure why anyone thought we wouldn't be worse this season.  We lost our 2 leading scorers and our leading rebounder and shot blocker.  We lost many games to injury, but still pulled off a number of upsets on the road.  I'm not arguing that makes this a successful season - I agree with 85 that it may be the most bizarre in my nearly 40 years of watching - but there is much to look forward to next year.

Yes, replacing Hawkins will be difficult, but not nearly as tough as replacing Rhoomes and Thomas was this year.  We will hopefully have Slanina and Hicks healthy and bring in transfers and/or recruits.  We will also have an experienced roster next year, which goes a long way in college hoops.  A lot of hurdles remain, but the arrow is pointed up, imo.

We went backward in virtually any measurable criteria.   The only feel good IMO was 2 quality wins.  Are we better than 3-4 years ago?   Yes we are.  So what?  We remain a bad program and we took a big step back with a truly (mediocre) OOC schedule.  The wait and see for a final grade is this year's recruiting class.  It has to be markedly better.  Depending on our guys to get better is great but other teams will develop their talent as well.  Coach needs to bring in better players.
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« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2017, 01:03:38 pm »

5 conference road wins was a positive.

It was a weird season that will have to play out next year if there were any benefits . To me, that's always a crap shoot on the whole rebuild thing. There is so much change from year to year with transfers and academic issues that you have to be ready each season. I don't think anyone gets a 5 year or even 4 year rebuild. It just doesnt work that way anymore.

Its a huge "if" but if everyone is back and healthy, winning records both in and OOC are the only things that will be acceptable, in my view.
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« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2017, 01:33:09 pm »

We went backward in virtually any measurable criteria.   The only feel good IMO was 2 quality wins.  Are we better than 3-4 years ago?   Yes we are.  So what?  We remain a bad program and we took a big step back with a truly (mediocre) OOC schedule.  The wait and see for a final grade is this year's recruiting class.  It has to be markedly better.  Depending on our guys to get better is great but other teams will develop their talent as well.  Coach needs to bring in better players.

Couldn't agree more for the most part. This season was surprising and weird. Totally disappointed in OOC performance and losing to a team like Sacred Heart was horrible. I was somewhat surprised how "well" we did in conference considering the OOC. But to your point yes we are more competitive in the A10. However like you I don't think you can expect to do better just because some guys are returning and they should improve.  I also am not using the injuries as an excuse. I actually thought we started playing better with a shorter bench and some of the better players getting more minutes as opposed to be shuffled in and out. I do not equate depth to quantity as some do. Some will disagree but I do not think getting Pekarek and Zarko back will help in the long run especially if they take minutes from better players. I kind of equate our situation to those of mediocre teams in the pros that win just enough and therefore they don't draft early and its hard to improve. In our case we are mediocre in the A10 league. If we ever expect to get out of the 8-12 place range its going to take a raising of the talent level in order to get there. I know its too early to predict next year's team in terms of performance but I would feel a lot better if we had a commitment or 2 at this stage from some talented players. I think JN did a great job coaching this team and getting what he could out of it, especially in the A10. but he needs to step up the recruiting. His next early signing recruit will be his first at Fordham.



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« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2017, 01:42:45 pm »

The recruiting issue is paramount right now.  We ate a scholarship this year.  I can understand if you couldn't get an A-10 quality player late but then you have to be in the mix for a mid year transfer or an end of last year transfer. It is definitely a concern that we got nobody mid year and nobody in early signing period. Why? Because if history repeats, we will probably lose 2 guys or more as transfers. That's the way it is these days....we need an impact recruit. .... domestic......
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« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2017, 01:49:54 pm »

Well, it depends on your expectations and whether your perspective is short range or long-range. If you just look at the W-L, it was worse than last year's. Then again, last year's OOC schedule had more cupcakes than Entenmann's and so many home games you'd think the team had been grounded by their parents. But that was done for a reason; the program had to halt a culture of futility that had folks saying it was impossible for us to compete in the A-10, or even in D-1. Invigorated by a new coach and stellar performances from 2 seniors, we did that. I don't think before last season, many folks expected a winning record.

This year, we upped the schedule a bit, and Coach Neubauer  tried to put in his system -- half successfully. The team stats after our first dozen or so games told the story. Defensively -- something that has to be taught -- we were getting it done.  [A graphic in last nights's Marquette-South Carolina game showed Fordham as #3 in the NCAA this season in forced turnovers]. We were getting more shots than the opponent -- just not hitting them at a good enough rate. A modest improvement in shooting percentage would have led to a rather dramatic shift in the W-L.  But once JN knew he didn't have the horses, he shifted strategies (wow, a coach who doesn't think his 'system' is the ultimate in basketball, and the problem is his kids don't play it properly, and who has the guts to make a change!) and the record began improving dramatically. Yep, we had some nice conference wins, a couple of heartbreaking losses, and we were gassed at the end due to injuries, but there weren't many beatdowns coming down the stretch (a hallmark of prior Fordham teams).

If the roster stays intact, we've got 10 returning players for '17-18, each of whom has shown they can contribute something in an A-10 game. Probably around 2500 returning career points in scoring, a nice problem to have. We add Perris Hicks and hopefully a couple of decent recruits.  By itself, this season's record wasn't anything to get excited about. But if you view the season in the context of a 5-year program turnaround plan -- which I do -- we're precisely where we should be, maybe a bit ahead of schedule. Losing culture, gone. A coach who sets out to win every game. Players who believe they can do that. We're making progress.

 
3 things I totally disagree with. If last year's OOC schedule was a cupcake, this year's was not far behind. We lost 2 games to 2 teams we had no business losing to Manhattan and Sacred Heart and 2 of our wins were against NYIT and Lipscomb not to mention Rider. In the "tougher" games we didn't even compete in some like St John's and Rutgers neither of which had great talent.

In terms of the roster staying in tact, sure you can assume some players will get better but every team will expect that from their returning starters. I also don't think quantity translates to depth. Its no coincidence this team played better with a shorter bench since the better players got more time. Addition through subtraction as Peter would say.

Listen we finished 10th in the A10 and the only way we will get better and move up is the bring in better talent. Every team in the conference has players returning but where we lag is in the recruiting. So far we don't have a commitment. There are two goals here. One is establishing a foot hold to build on and yes maybe we can build on this. But at the same time we are competing against our conference opponents and they are not standing still. In fact when it comes to recruiting this year most are ahead of us. Lets see where this ends up after Spring recruiting but unless we get a couple of talented players in here no way I will be as optimistic as you are.
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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2017, 02:10:22 pm »

For the first half of the year including the OOC and the first three conference games, I feel the team was definitely subpar and a big disappointment.  I know we lost our two top scorers and had to make some adjustments but losing to some really bad teams in these games was unacceptable.  We went 6 and 10 in this weak scheduled period.

Having said that, the second half of the season after those listed above had some really enjoyable games and moments.  We went 7 and 9 in this period with a lot of injuries and missed time and played much tougher teams than the first half.  Although, this did give Ohams and Havsa a chance to play, it also meant that with a short bench our guys were pretty tired by the end of these games.  Missed free throws and stupid plays happen when you're tired. 

During this period, except for a blowout at home against Richmond, we were very competitive in losing or won our remaining games.  We went 7 and 9 in this period, not great, but we beat VCU at home and Davidson and URI on the road. 

I feel if we can get an impact transfer to replace Hawkins and Perris Hicks becomes a serviceable A-10 player, we will be better next year.  But, we have to win our OOC games.
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« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2017, 02:16:55 pm »

The title of this thread is idiotic refuting an argument no one is making.  Everyone agrees this year was a mixed bag, no one is doing cartwheels. Not surprising given the genius who started this thread.   Slanina was projected as our starting center injured his shoulder preseason.  Works his way into the lineup shows he is a skilled player only to have his season end. He is like adding a talented big recruit.  Hicks was projected as significant rotation player, he can be considered a talented recruit.  Havsa shows he can play.   Ohams progressed as the year went on.  His development is key because if he turns into a 25 minute a game player that is adding another talented player.  See how this works?.  We are not outrecruitibg the league we need to develop players to keep moving forward.  The OOC was a disaster I left this team for dead but they regrouped down the stretch and showed they can play at this level.  We beat two of the three tournament teams and had a shot to take down Dayton for the first time.  All with an admittedly short bench, primarily because of Hicks and a Slanina. No one is relying on Zarko or Pekare another statement made to refute an argument not being made.   The foundation is there, need to add shooter badly and another forward, probably two JUCOS and a freshman this year.  I am looking forward to next year and not sweating the talent evaluators.

Enjoy the tournament enjoy the summer fall will be here before we know it.  
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« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2017, 02:50:50 pm »

We went backward in virtually any measurable criteria.   The only feel good IMO was 2 quality wins.  Are we better than 3-4 years ago?   Yes we are.  So what?  We remain a bad program and we took a big step back with a truly (mediocre) OOC schedule.  The wait and see for a final grade is this year's recruiting class.  It has to be markedly better.  Depending on our guys to get better is great but other teams will develop their talent as well.  Coach needs to bring in better players.

I don't disagree with anything you say, but the reality is that it will be a rare occurrence for us to win the recruiting game.  It can happen now and then, but by and large, we will lose to our conference foes.  The other option is to win the player development game.  Find under the radar guys and make them better players.  Coach needs to get better players, AND develop better players.
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« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2017, 03:13:26 pm »


3 things I totally disagree with. If last year's OOC schedule was a cupcake, this year's was not far behind. We lost 2 games to 2 teams we had no business losing to Manhattan and Sacred Heart and 2 of our wins were against NYIT and Lipscomb not to mention Rider. In the "tougher" games we didn't even compete in some like St John's and Rutgers neither of which had great talent.



All of the games you mentioned occurred in the early part of the year when JN was trying to play his style and finding out that, while the defensive part of it has taken root, the offensive ability was lacking. Our bigs were running around too much on defense and getting winded. Hence the losses. I agree that the Manhattan and Sacred Heart losses were awful. In Lipscomb's defense, they were a 20-win team that knocked off Missouri on the road.

But here's the thing to remember about the OOC -- if you want to play home games in the RHG, it's going to have to be against smaller conference schools. The big boys simply won't come to our place. So the key to ramping up the OOC schedule is going to be finding small conference opponents who will come for a visit and be worth playing.

As others have said, it was a strange year. Almost like we had different teams in the first and second half.
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« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2017, 03:25:05 pm »

The title of this thread and the OP's post is a straw man. I do not recall anyone saying it was a good season or a success.
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« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2017, 04:09:08 pm »

The recruiting issue is paramount right now.  We ate a scholarship this year.  I can understand if you couldn't get an A-10 quality player late but then you have to be in the mix for a mid year transfer or an end of last year transfer. It is definitely a concern that we got nobody mid year and nobody in early signing period. Why? Because if history repeats, we will probably lose 2 guys or more as transfers. That's the way it is these days....we need an impact recruit. .... domestic......

This is the correct answer.  As you said earlier, I think we need to take a big step forward next season.  I'm not convinced that Hicks and projected improvement from our returnees move the needle to where it needs to be, given the loss of Hawkins.  I'm also concerned about the lack of signees thus far, but there's still some time to fix that.   
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« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2017, 04:09:37 pm »

The title of this thread and the OP's post is a straw man. I do not recall anyone saying it was a good season or a success.

Really you don't? Go back and read posts and the most recent one about grading this season as a B..
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« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2017, 04:46:28 pm »

Then quote and respond to it.
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« Reply #18 on: March 18, 2017, 04:54:39 pm »

Really you don't? Go back and read posts and the most recent one about grading this season as a B..

Perhaps I missed them. Has to be the minority thinking that though. There are a myriad of opinions on this forum about countless topics and rarely a consensus on anything.
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« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2017, 06:30:11 pm »

Did I miss a thread or poll somewhere?  Who declared this season a success or "good?"  Stupid post.  Others make valid points, but Richie68 and Rich93 seem to be the only ones offering a reasonable evaluation of our season.  There are two types of people in this world - those who get it and those who don't.  If you can't see the progress our program is making, then ...
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« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2017, 08:23:14 pm »

Not really certain anyone said this was a "good" season as much as the Conference portion was more surprising than expected after the OCC portion. What concerns me is whether our recruiting is keeping pace with the progress the program is making.
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« Reply #21 on: March 18, 2017, 09:13:14 pm »

I agree with most of what people are saying.  This season showed us we have a good coach and some players with potential to compete. The big deciding factor will be the recruiting.
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« Reply #22 on: March 18, 2017, 10:01:06 pm »

Did I miss a thread or poll somewhere?  Who declared this season a success or "good?"  Stupid post.  Others make valid points, but Richie68 and Rich93 seem to be the only ones offering a reasonable evaluation of our season.  There are two types of people in this world - those who get it and those who don't.  If you can't see the progress our program is making, then ...

So tell me how being worse in almost every single measurable is progress? Please tell me.. as much "progress" as you think we are making , you realize that the rest of the A-10 is not just standing still right? Dayton, VCU , Richmond , rhodyb, Davidson oh yea they recruit also
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« Reply #23 on: March 19, 2017, 01:44:41 am »

Non-conference strength of schedule rank was 250th this year, 350th last year.  Last year only 1 team's occ sos was worse.  Sacred Heart and Manhattan losses still brutal but a young team with no parts and Chartouny down or playing injured.  Took a while to find their ID.  Then had a great run, ended with 2 heartbreakers.  But 7 wins in conference is still more than they had in any season pre Neubauer since 2007, and 15 wins in his first 2 years more than the prior 7 years combined.  Let that sink in. You averaged 2 wins a year in conference the 7 years pre Neubauer.

Btw, the team also got out scored by more last year in conference despite 1 more win (-4.8 pg last year, -4.2 this year).  Put whatever grade you want on it. The team was still much better than any Pecora team and is much better shape for next year.  Hawkins improved during the year and had some good games but he's not as hard to replace as Rhoomes, much less replacing Rhoomes and Thomas.

If healthy I expect the team to be pretty good next year but we will get a better view as the season approaches as far as late arrivals,unexpected departures etc.
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« Reply #24 on: March 19, 2017, 07:43:37 am »

Non-conference strength of schedule rank was 250th this year, 350th last year.  Last year only 1 team's occ sos was worse.  Sacred Heart and Manhattan losses still brutal but a young team with no parts and Chartouny down or playing injured.  Took a while to find their ID.  Then had a great run, ended with 2 heartbreakers.  But 7 wins in conference is still more than they had in any season pre Neubauer since 2007, and 15 wins in his first 2 years more than the prior 7 years combined.  Let that sink in. You averaged 2 wins a year in conference the 7 years pre Neubauer.

Btw, the team also got out scored by more last year in conference despite 1 more win (-4.8 pg last year, -4.2 this year).  Put whatever grade you want on it. The team was still much better than any Pecora team and is much better shape for next year.  Hawkins improved during the year and had some good games but he's not as hard to replace as Rhoomes, much less replacing Rhoomes and Thomas.

If healthy I expect the team to be pretty good next year but we will get a better view as the season approaches as far as late arrivals,unexpected departures etc.


7-11, 13-19.. 

You are throwing out schedule rankings, injuries, young team, going from "horrific to just bad" and calling it improvement.  We're not the worst team in the A-10 anymore so that's a good thing.  Without an infusion of talent, I don't see what we have coming back as a basis for much improvement.  Every good team will work on improving their returning players.   That's not a difference maker.  Players have a ceiling on how much they can improve. We need better players for better results.  Everything else is the same "pie in the sky" we've heard for years.  Winning more games is the only improvement that matters
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« Reply #25 on: March 19, 2017, 07:53:01 am »

To me, it comes down to the last game. Teams moving in the right direction win that game.
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« Reply #26 on: March 19, 2017, 08:09:26 am »

To me, it comes down to the last game. Teams moving in the right direction win that game.

So your analysis of the season comes down to Anderson missing a free throw?   

Improvement next year starts with the current players like Ohams and a Havsa improving because that adds players to the rotation.  Ignoring our starting center and Hicks being injured ignores facts.  They come back it is adding two more players.  that is the way good A-10 teams are built.  All three tournament teams were upperclassmen heavy because they developed their players and then supplemented with a few underclassman.  We have the foundation to have a good season next year with the addition of a couple of pieces this spring.
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« Reply #27 on: March 19, 2017, 12:51:20 pm »

So tell me how being worse in almost every single measurable is progress? Please tell me.. as much "progress" as you think we are making , you realize that the rest of the A-10 is not just standing still right? Dayton, VCU , Richmond , rhodyb, Davidson oh yea they recruit also
Dude, at the beginning of December you declared Neubauer had driven this program into the ground, and that hypothesis was summarily destroyed.  Three months later you're refuting a claim that, as far as I can tell, no one ever made.  I cited posts from Richie68 and Rich93 to rebut your most recent delusion, and we can add Drunkle's post to that list.  Two types of people in this world, Madram ...
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« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2017, 01:06:17 pm »

Did I miss a thread or poll somewhere?  Who declared this season a success or "good?"  Stupid post.  Others make valid points, but Richie68 and Rich93 seem to be the only ones offering a reasonable evaluation of our season.  There are two types of people in this world - those who get it and those who don't.  If you can't see the progress our program is making, then ...

So tell me how being worse in almost every single measurable is progress? Please tell me.. as much "progress" as you think we are making , you realize that the rest of the A-10 is not just standing still right? Dayton, VCU , Richmond , rhodyb, Davidson oh yea they recruit also

How can anyone take someone seriously if he doesn't even have the basis knowledge on using the Message Board? 
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John
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« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2017, 01:11:40 pm »

Just a couple of numbers to throw out there.

We scored 2090 points this year, and assuming the roster stays intact, 79.1% of our scoring will be back next season. That's not typically a bad thing (and, no, don't tell me the number is to be devalued because our players stink, they don't).

In addition to 1653 points of returning scoring, other players will, if the roster stays intact, bring an additional 1,705 career points of scoring back. That would mean that next year's team brings 3,358 of career scoring into the season.

So JN won't have a "we're young", or "inexperienced" excuse next season (not that he's ever used it, but his predecessor never tired of it). We add Hicks, hopefully we add a couple more pieces. Unless the recruits of other A-10 schools have capes and an "S" on their chests, we have a chance for a major move forward in the conference.

The team can still practice until the NCAA tourney ends. Has anyone seen a post-season practice? Any of the wounded back?
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