can this years young point guards lead their team to the NC | The Boneyard

can this years young point guards lead their team to the NC

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Shabazz, KEA-lite!

Shabazz reclassified and would have been a freshman this year otherwise, correct? Anyway, the premise itself isn't all that shocking, 7 underclassmen from 20 championship teams, not exactly that rare.
 
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What people routinely forget is that Shabaaz was the primary ball handler when he was in the game during the tourny run.
 
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Bazz is not your typical sophomore (& Freshman last season).

Mature for his age: First off he's a mature kid for his age. As far as PGs coming in and playing with the confidence level of an upperclassmen, he and Khalid stand alone as far UConn PGs. You could include Doron, but he was 20-something with a lot of Euro-international and Israeli league experience when he started out.

Prominent Role and Responsibilities - He wasn't your typical by-you-some-time type of freshman that came in when you needed to rest your primary PG. Although JC wouldn't put him in for a while, which by the way would drive me nuts sometimes last season, he played significant minutes at the point and was usually on the floor late in games during some of the most critical parts of the game. He logged the 5th most minutes, 24, on a championship team. In other words, not only did he get a ton of experience as a freshman, but he played at a very high level. He's only going to get better.

Not much of a role change - Why soph's often go through that sophomore slump is due to a change in their role. I don't see his role changing that much. Yeah, he's going to have a slightly more green light to shoot the ball, but for the most part, he's there to run the offense, get the ball into the hands of the scorers, get to the line late in games and defend the other team's PG.

What I've found more telling than just looking at how many young PGs have lead their team to NCs, is how many young PGs that teams rely on heavily end up shooting their teams out of the NCAA tournament early. Chris Paul is the poster child for this. You can point to Brandon Knight taking so many poor shots that IMO, probably cost UK the NC. He played right into the script that I had hoped would happen.

Dana's whole article IMO fails to take any of this into account. Bazz, Marshall & Kraft all have a ton of weapons and do not need to shoulder the scoring. None are take-over-the-game type of players that are the type that shoot you out of a game. I'm not as familiar with OSU, but UConn & UNC have a lot of players who can create for themselves, so it's not like the offense runs completely through any of these young PGs.

As for Teague, there are a lot of young players that also have to be worked into UK's system. T Jones can create for himself but has not proven to be a take-over-the-game type of player even though he has those types of skills. D Lamb came on late in the season, but he still has a ways to go in developing a mid-range and attacking type game. UK's roster is so young that I'll be shocked if they don't again fall short of the NC due to young studs trying to showcase what they got on the biggest stage or even worse, the deer-in-the-head-light phenomena where when things begin to unravel with the season on the line, there's no upperclassmen to settle them down.

Now granted, UConn will no longer have Kemba as that keep-it-together force, but I think that along with Napier, there are enough returning parts that have a ton of success under their belt, that they'll be just fine. Kemba wasn't the only player who came up big throughout the season. Alex had a monster game in Maui. Giffey surprised us early on with some unexpected contributions. Lamb came up huge in the post season as did Bazz & Roscoe.

There's no single player that UConn will have to rely on to win, which is a huge plus. Conversely, I don't know if UNC and OSU can say the same if Barnes and Sullinger have bad games. Both those teams have other talented pieces (Buford, Henson, etc) but they will tend to defer to those two as they did last season. As for UK, they will have some crazy future NBA talent on their team. Youngsters Davis and Teague, along with Jones and Lamb, plus some other talented players does look scary on paper. They are going to be super dangerous when they are at their best. I just see a repeat of this past season. Until the reload with talent year after year method gets it done, I'm expecting the same outcome.
 
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Shabazz, KEA-lite!

Shabazz reclassified and would have been a freshman this year otherwise, correct? Anyway, the premise itself isn't all that shocking, 7 underclassmen from 20 championship teams, not exactly that rare.
That's what I was thinking when I read it. 35% out of the norm which would be 50% isn't exactly a statistical anomaly.
 
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Purely as a fan of the game, I'm really excited to see Teague this year. I think he has the potential to be a really electrifying player. Would have been nice if UK got stuck with Knight for another year and Teague could have taken his talents elsewhere, but unfortunately wasn't the case.
 

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That's what I was thinking when I read it. 35% out of the norm which would be 50% isn't exactly a statistical anomaly.

Ya, me too. And if you take into account that most teams wouldn't be lead by a frosh anyway, as upperclassmen usually play ahead of them, 35% was pretty large in that context. ie There are normally more juniors/seniors starting at most positions, so the number of frosh/juniors that would even qualify to lead their team under these criteria wouldn't be all that high to begin with.
 
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