Before I get into this I want to give full disclosure on my opinion on Malik Yarbrough. I like him. More than reasonable people should. I choose to omit his dog shit rejected shots from my memory, and hold onto the times he shakes both his man and the help defender, and goes in for the layup.
Glad I got that off my chest. Now, that being said, what in the hell does he think he is doing bringing the ball up the court even half as much as he has over the first three games. Something odd happens to human beings over 6’6” when they put on a Billikens jersey. They all think they are point guards. Please explain to me how a 6 foot 6 inch tall, 230 pound player’s skills are best utilized anywhere but on the baseline, or at best on the wing. I mean for Christ’s sake, he weighs more than our damn centers. God help us if any team actually does their homework and decides to press us. Go down low. Go be big and strong. Get a rebound.
Even more astounding than the heaviest man on the court semi-routinely bringing the ball up is the fact that apparently Jim Crews is TOTALLY FINE with all that shit. He was recently quoted (somewhere, probably) as saying he doesn’t want to have defined positions on his offense……………excuse me? That is either extremely misguided, or just the laziest coaching strategy of all time.
Me: “Hey Jim, what is your guys’ offensive philosophy?”
Jim probably: “Oh we just go run around and hope someone comes open. Sometimes we set screens.”
This would be funny if it wasn’t actually what we do. I saw Gillman legitimately attempt to bring the ball up against Brooklyn before Reynolds ran over, brought him to his senses, and demanded the ball. Thank you Miles.
Now I hear what you are saying. “Chris, of course there are positions on offense. Of course they have a plan, and a system the team runs. You are being ridiculous. Jim merely wants to open up the offense and allow his players to be creative and use their athleticism to make plays.”
You’re probably right of course. I’m sure there’s a plan. The plan is apparently to stand on the sideline with your arms crossed as your strong forward does his best John Stockton impersonation. I like that philosophy actually. I’m going to go into work tomorrow and tell my bosses, “Hi guys. Hey, I know you hired me to do financial forecasting, but I was thinking I want to try my hand at electrical engineering. You guys cool with that?” What could go wrong………
I know during this “weekly rant” feature one of us is supposed to calm the other down, but you gave me the really difficult task of speaking positive about our fearless leader. However, I will at least acknowledge that we’re sitting at 3-0 and averaging 77.0 pts/game.
Last year during the first three games, the Billikens averaged a drastically different 62.3 pts/game.
Jim Crews mentioned in the beginning of the year that they were going to try a new offensive philosophy:
“Generally speaking, we have used ball screens but this is the opposite with screens without the ball,” Crews said. “It’s not like running play No. 1 or play No. 2 or a little tweak here or there. It’s constantly reading the defensive man and moving accordingly.”
Read that again.
Read it a third time….
Now, everybody, repeat after me:
What the actual shit?
Hey, Jim. What’s going to be different about the offense this year?
“Well, I think this year I’m actually going to try and see what they’re doing defensively before I pick my retarded plays.”
I would also like to point out that it appears offense is up in college basketball this year (I know we’re only 3-4 games into everyone’s seasons, relax). At 77 pts/game, SLU only ranks 151st in offense (out of 351).
I don’t think it’s unrealistic at this point to have some optimism about Billiken Basketball, the team appears to have made some solid upgrades to last year’s forgettable season.
But, in an attempt to ruin your week, I finally got around to checking out Jim Crew’s contract status. His contract ends after the 2017-2018 season.
See you Tuesday.