Don't get it...

-

EricLA

Cronus
Joined
Aug 24, 2011
Messages
12,214
Likes
20,722
After a 50 point blowout of Cinci, I expected to come on the board and see happy smiling faces. Cincy, after all, is a team who was 9-4, brought back most of their core group from last season, and after lackluster games going back to SJU, I thought people would enjoy seeing UCONN look smooth and on point.

Not so much apparently. First, let me say that the point of my post is not to criticize anyone, or discourage people from posting, but rather to point out the reality of this team. I saw numerous comments in several threads regarding "unwatchable - not pretty UCONN basketball" and "bench brick after brick" and "in love with jumpers - no post play" and many variations thereof.

This team starts a 6'1" "center". The best shooter in the nation is 6'3" so she's not going to spend the entire game posting up in the paint. Geno is a master at masking weaknesses and playing to strengths. The strength of this team is NOT in the paint. Even the announcers got caught up in it ("UConn outscored in the pant 50-10 vs. Baylor. Concerted effort to get the ball inside blah blah"). Against big teams that pack it in, UCONN will have almost zero success in the post. Especially against a team like Baylor with multiple mobile bigs.

So what are our strengths? There are others who are better analysts than I am, but spacing, ball movement, screens, pick and rolls, back door cuts, motion offense, quickness and size of our guards and ball handlers, 5 legit scoring options, and yes jump shooting. And by the way, there is not a single team out there who doesn't have flaws. Of ALL the top 25 teams, only L'ville and NC State are unblemished at this point. L'villes only top 25 tussle was a 5 point win over Kentucky. NC State's best win was by 4 over Michigan State. News flash - parity is here.

As for the bench, as Dennis Green (HC of the Arizona Cardinals) said "they are what we thought they were". Most of them look competent when playing with most of the starters, but when we get all of them in at the end of games, they usually end up playing against the other teams' starters. Not a good recipe for success. But these are kids who were not recruited to play 20 MPG at UCONN. They are great kids, teammates, and representatives of the University and WCBB program. In big games, UCONN probably won't go any deeper than 6 right now.

Even in the national championship game of 2016 - the blowout vs. Syracuse, UCONN only went 6 deep with Collier coming off the bench. Chong played 3 minutes, Butler 2 minutes, and Pulido, Ekmark, and Lawlor all logged 1 minute each (Lou was injured that game). UCONN has never been that deep in big games anyway and the expectation that the bench "needs to get better so they can spell starters in big games" is simply not going to happen.

In years past, during UCONN's most dominant runs, the rest of WCBB discussed ad-nauseam of UCONN was "bad" for WCBB. They lamented the uncompetitive blowouts especially in the American. Continually went on and on about how we needed to get out of the conference blah blah. The reality is the American is the home of UCONN sports. NOT going to change any time soon, if ever. That's one reason we play such a challenging OOC schedule. This is a team with flaws. We've had a remarkable ride. I don't see it coming to an end yet, but you think this year is tough - just wait till next season with Lou and Pheesa graduate. The bench and reserves are never going to be more than they are - some improvements of course are possible - but they will not suddenly become Gabby Williams or Kia Nurse or Morgan Tuck.

UCONN fans in general are uber-spoiled. 11 NC's, 6 perfect seasons - it's not possible to maintain that forever. Are we fans of UCONN, or just fans of winning? Given the limitations of this team, can we enjoy what they do? Good luck to the team the rest of the season - may it be injury free. Play hard, have fun, and go get 'em...
 

oldude

bamboo lover
Joined
Nov 15, 2016
Messages
7,897
Likes
23,954
Unfortunately, complaining about the coach and players is the easy way for too many. Taking the time to actually understand what's happening in the game, and just how difficult a challenge it is to maintain the level of competition that UConn has over 30 years at a non-P5 school in northeast CT requires a little more effort.
 
Joined
Feb 14, 2017
Messages
1,247
Likes
2,462
Completely agree EricLA. Lots of positives from last night, offensively and defensively, lots of improvement from previous 2, 3, 4 games... lots of bright lights for the rest of the season, and NO UCONN injuries.

I see great positives moving forward... GO HUSKIES...
 

wallman

UCLA Bruin
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
1,184
Likes
1,185
Well said Eric. I barely come on this unrecognizable board any more. The longtime posters are few and far between. There are a bunch of seemingly imposter posters who act like they know Uconn basketball and clearly don't from their posts.

Those that have short memories act like spoiled brats whining that their knowledge is far superior to your own HOF coach. Sure, everyone can have debatable questions but some of these posts are not that.

Womens basketball in general deserves more respect from some of you who constantly bitch and moan about their game. There has been a great rise in the game and it is thanks to teams like Uconn. Just wait until next year or will some of you have short memories again and change your tone, and start making excuses wink wink.
 
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Messages
9,501
Likes
13,031
Even in the national championship game of 2016 - the blowout vs. Syracuse, UCONN only went 6 deep with Collier coming off the bench. Chong played 3 minutes, Butler 2 minutes, and Pulido, Ekmark, and Lawlor all logged 1 minute each (Lou was injured that game). UCONN has never been that deep in big games anyway and the expectation that the bench "needs to get better so they can spell starters in big games" is simply not going to happen.
I'm loving everything essential about your post, but I'll quibble with this point. Gabby started that championship game in place of the injured Lou. That 2016 team essentially went 7 deep for most of the season until the final game and a half, and that's not counting the occasionally significant contributions from Chong, who hit a dagger 3 vs. Maryland in what was by far the closest game of the season. That team undoubtedly had a stronger bench, in terms of both quantity of minutes and quality of play, than the current team so far.
 

EricLA

Cronus
Joined
Aug 24, 2011
Messages
12,214
Likes
20,722
I'm loving everything essential about your post, but I'll quibble with this point. Gabby started that championship game in place of the injured Lou. That 2016 team essentially went 7 deep for most of the season until the final game and a half, and that's not counting the occasionally significant contributions from Chong, who hit a dagger 3 vs. Maryland in what was by far the closest game of the season. That team undoubtedly had a stronger bench, in terms of both quantity of minutes and quality of play, than the current team so far.
Of course you are right - I did mention that Lou was injured in the NC game, but UCONN had the luxury of the #1 and #4 or so recruit as freshmen coming off the bench and both of them were terrific and college ready their first season. Pheesa had some growing pains of course, not unlike ONO, but we don't have that luxury right now. Pheesa was more college ready that ONO and our 1st player off the bench is ONO, Irwin, or Coombs. Far cry from Lou or Pheesa or Williams coming off the bench! ;)

Also Chong was a starter her very next year, much like ONO will be next year. Who's our 5th starter? My $'s on Griffin over Coombs, Camara or Irwin...
 
Joined
Nov 12, 2017
Messages
970
Likes
1,215
Given that UCONN is now starting conference play, the coaching staff will have ample opportunity to bring along the bench through game time minutes. This year, more than past years, UCONN may need to rely on a bench player contribution (foul trouble, injury, etc.). Bench players need game time minutes to increase their confidence, and, meld with teammates on the court in game situations. I believe the UCONN coaching staff will bring along the bench, and, come tournament time, UCONN bench players will have their moment and make important contributions.
 

KnightBridgeAZ

Grand Canyon Knight
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
3,632
Likes
2,307
So what are our strengths? There are others who are better analysts than I am, but spacing, ball movement, screens, pick and rolls, back door cuts, motion offense, quickness and size of our guards and ball handlers, 5 legit scoring options, and yes jump shooting.
Is that all???

Seriously, yes, and those things have always been true of a UConn team. Don't leave out the defensive side either.

UConn is, ultimately, always better - definitively better - than all but a handful of teams. That handful might (or might not) be able to challenge UConn. But it has never been more than a handful. And part of the reason is the above. Geno has always game-planned with the talent he has, and has generally been successful.

My takeaway from what I've seen about the Baylor game here on the BY is that it was a bad match-up for UConn. They happen, a coach will learn from it, and, as necessary, will adjust should a re-match occur.
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2015
Messages
2,373
Likes
3,035
Seeing how many posters are freaking out over the loss to Baylor, a much bigger team that was ranked in the top ten, on their home court, and being dissatisfied with the Cincy win, what are they going to do next season when UConn loses to a Tennessee team with more talent but a far inferior coach? The Boneyard will short circuit.
 
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Messages
9,501
Likes
13,031
Seeing how many posters are freaking out over the loss to Baylor, a much bigger team that was ranked in the top ten, on their home court, and being dissatisfied with the Cincy win, what are they going to do next season when UConn loses to a Tennessee team with more talent but a far inferior coach? The Boneyard will short circuit.
1547178727497.png
 

DaddyChoc

Choc Full of UConn
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
12,037
Likes
8,595
fans are worried... last 2 seasons ended with disappointing losses and at the half way point of this season UConn has already lost one game. With no big-time recruits coming in next season... fans are worried that this is the end of a dynasty. Of course there's gonna be panic in their post. They are venting and of course we dont want to look worried even if we all are.

Anyone taking bets on UConn winning the championship this season?
 
Joined
Apr 7, 2016
Messages
559
Likes
672
The only thing I notice about this year's team that seems different from the previous few years, is our defense is not as dominating. No matter who we played, we could always count on the defense to keep us in games, create turnovers, and generate fast break baskets. By observation, not as frequent this year. Though that is likely to change in AAC competition. This team can win it all. But, as Coach has said, the team has to do everything really well, at the same time. There is little room for error.
 

oldude

bamboo lover
Joined
Nov 15, 2016
Messages
7,897
Likes
23,954
The only thing I notice about this year's team that seems different from the previous few years, is our defense is not as dominating. No matter who we played, we could always count on the defense to keep us in games, create turnovers, and generate fast break baskets. By observation, not as frequent this year. Though that is likely to change in AAC competition. This team can win it all. But, as Coach has said, the team has to do everything really well, at the same time. There is little room for error.
Graduating the last 2 NDPOY’s + a 6’6” backstop may have something to do with UConn’s defense this year vs last.
 
Joined
Jan 5, 2013
Messages
908
Likes
1,456
Graduating the last 2 NDPOY’s + a 6’6” backstop may have something to do with UConn’s defense this year vs last.
Didn't you make the claim a while back that this year team's defense is better than last year?
 

oldude

bamboo lover
Joined
Nov 15, 2016
Messages
7,897
Likes
23,954
Didn't you make the claim a while back that this year team's defense is better than last year?
I think UConn’s “team” defense has been OK this season, particularly the various zone packages that Geno is employing. What the Huskies miss is the on-ball pressure that Kia & Gabby brought to the table, which lead to more turnovers and easy transition baskets.
 
Joined
Dec 13, 2014
Messages
784
Likes
1,284
fans are worried... last 2 seasons ended with disappointing losses and at the half way point of this season UConn has already lost one game. With no big-time recruits coming in next season... fans are worried that this is the end of a dynasty. Of course there's gonna be panic in their post. They are venting and of course we dont want to look worried even if we all are.

Anyone taking bets on UConn winning the championship this season?
UConn will be in the final Four and could win it all, 40% chance.
 

Top