My take on this team

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This is a team of promise, maybe we want the future to arrive now, so we get frustrated by what we see. It will come. Our biggest problem is we simply don't have shooters. Period! Don't think that Bouknight is the shooter either (he hits 45% from the field and 34% from 3 for his career). He is also nearly 100% unlikely to be here next year. I worry about Akok. Is he Ater Majok? He has by all indications a high ceiling, but sometimes guys with high ceilings never get out of the basement. We don't have that answer yet. I noticed after Gaffney dropped 20 he was suddenly the guy. He may be that guy, but one game says a lot less than the 50 or so that preceded it. Polley is a coach killer. The reason being is that romance with him coming in and getting hot and providing instant offense. Here is the problem with that. He is a 6'9" kid that averages 2 rebounds and a grand total of 5 assists on the season....but the romance he provides that this might be the game he gets hot, I have to play him 20 minutes a game (his average). The problem with that is 4 out of 5 games or 3 out of 4 games, take your pick, he kills you. He kills you because he can't make shots, and does nothing else, so you have 4 contributing players on the court for 20 minutes and one doing absolutely next to nothing. He is the worst type of player to have on a roster. He will be your feast 1 game, and your demise the next 3 or 4. But you have to play him, just in case. No you don't, the statistics say no!

Cole is not a good offensive player. He is what I call a high volume shooter, not a scorer. His offensive efficiency is horrible. 36%/34%. The problem is where do you turn? Gaffney looks more steady as a point guard, but his numbers are terrible. Adams for some reason appears to have regressed, he shoots 30%, that just doesn't earn minutes.

The guys that should be taking the shots, simply aren't getting the ball enough, because as several pointed out here, our offense is so predictable, and ends typically with a high ball screen and roll and a bad shot as the shot clock expires. Martin is a very efficient scorer, he shoots 46.4% from 3, which is variance, but he is our best 3 option and he needs to take more. Sanogo averages 5 shots per game, and 1 of those is typically a put-back. This kid needs set plays sliding back and forth with picks across the lane. Yes, he short arms some shots, but he hits 52.4%. Is that an option that we should ignore? Even if doing so, and his FG percentage dropped to 45%, name one player on the roaster that shoots that? Oh yeah, Martin, the other guy that should be taking many more shots. If you have 4 players in your rotation shooting in the 30s, why are they taking so many shots? We are trying ball screens to get 35% shooters looks. So we go into long painful scoring droughts. We have athletic players, why don't we play fast off a made hoop? Why don't we try leaking out off of a miss? Why don't we attack a press? We have a quick athletic team, but we don't do things to use that.

We are young and at this point, we are missing complete players. We have players that can do some things well, a lot of them, but that is not enough. I'm expecting in 2 years, a lot of these players will be doing more things well. It won't matter if 1 of those things we do well is not shooting well. I don't care how well we do everything else if we can't shoot, the NCAA Tournament won't last long.
 

polycom

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This is a team of promise, maybe we want the future to arrive now, so we get frustrated by what we see. It will come. Our biggest problem is we simply don't have shooters. Period! Don't think that Bouknight is the shooter either (he hits 45% from the field and 34% from 3 for his career). He is also nearly 100% unlikely to be here next year. I worry about Akok. Is he Ater Majok? He has by all indications a high ceiling, but sometimes guys with high ceilings never get out of the basement. We don't have that answer yet. I noticed after Gaffney dropped 20 he was suddenly the guy. He may be that guy, but one game says a lot less than the 50 or so that preceded it. Polley is a coach killer. The reason being is that romance with him coming in and getting hot and providing instant offense. Here is the problem with that. He is a 6'9" kid that averages 2 rebounds and a grand total of 5 assists on the season....but the romance he provides that this might be the game he gets hot, I have to play him 20 minutes a game (his average). The problem with that is 4 out of 5 games or 3 out of 4 games, take your pick, he kills you. He kills you because he can't make shots, and does nothing else, so you have 4 contributing players on the court for 20 minutes and one doing absolutely next to nothing. He is the worst type of player to have on a roster. He will be your feast 1 game, and your demise the next 3 or 4. But you have to play him, just in case. No you don't, the statistics say no!

Cole is not a good offensive player. He is what I call a high volume shooter, not a scorer. His offensive efficiency is horrible. 36%/34%. The problem is where do you turn? Gaffney looks more steady as a point guard, but his numbers are terrible. Adams for some reason appears to have regressed, he shoots 30%, that just doesn't earn minutes.

The guys that should be taking the shots, simply aren't getting the ball enough, because as several pointed out here, our offense is so predictable, and ends typically with a high ball screen and roll and a bad shot as the shot clock expires. Martin is a very efficient scorer, he shoots 46.4% from 3, which is variance, but he is our best 3 option and he needs to take more. Sanogo averages 5 shots per game, and 1 of those is typically a put-back. This kid needs set plays sliding back and forth with picks across the lane. Yes, he short arms some shots, but he hits 52.4%. Is that an option that we should ignore? Even if doing so, and his FG percentage dropped to 45%, name one player on the roaster that shoots that? Oh yeah, Martin, the other guy that should be taking many more shots. If you have 4 players in your rotation shooting in the 30s, why are they taking so many shots? We are trying ball screens to get 35% shooters looks. So we go into long painful scoring droughts. We have athletic players, why don't we play fast off a made hoop? Why don't we try leaking out off of a miss? Why don't we attack a press? We have a quick athletic team, but we don't do things to use that.

We are young and at this point, we are missing complete players. We have players that can do some things well, a lot of them, but that is not enough. I'm expecting in 2 years, a lot of these players will be doing more things well. It won't matter if 1 of those things we do well is not shooting well. I don't care how well we do everything else if we can't shoot, the NCAA Tournament won't last long.
How much basketball would you say you watch yearly?
 

shizzle787

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Cole is a Division 2 scorer. He played for a MEAC school for the last couple years. The MEAC is one of the worst conferences in Division 1 and probably should be a Division 2 conference. He is not big enough to beat Big East guards off the dribble. Tyrese Martin is our best all-around scorer (sans Bougknight). He should be a lot more selfish. When I looked back at our 2014 title run, I realize that we didn't score by playing team ball; we scored by letting Napier, Daniels, and Boatright beat people off the dribble. We should be working him like our thoroughbred right now.

As far as Polley, he really hasn't progressed much in his four years. His bright spot is getting hot. Gaffney is better off the dribble than a lot of people realize but he needs to assert himself more.
 
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There were offensive possessions in the first half where we had our bigs on either side of the lane and the guard could have taken the ball down the lane and shot or dished but we continued running sideways. There is no reason to have Sanogo who CAN finish around the rim up top for most of the shot clock. With our big guys up top our guards just going lateral and the whole offense stagnates. It seems like we are afraid to run on a defensive rebound and no one try's too. Jackson was matched up on a Friar defender that had no way to defend him on the baseline and we didn't care. Let's keep wasting our possessions. Gaffney if he is afraid to blow bye 2 defenders is not the answer.
 
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Cole is a 2G period. He gets in trouble when he tries to force a shot in the lane. Let Andre and Gaffney run the show and feed Cole for some pull ups/
 

ClifSpliffy

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UConn players who have seen significant minutes this year
3 Seniors
3 Juniors
2 Sophomores
2 Freshman
Not young at all.
disagree. if we are complete, then a lineup with jalen, james, andre, martin, and adama can happen, which is soph, soph, frosh, junior, frosh. add it up: 2,2,1,3,1 then divide by 5.
result? 1.8 years average, which equates to somewhere around march of ur 2nd year in college
for life experience. it's an old truism that for many, something happens between the time u leave in may, and ur return in september to begin ur junior year. math is our friend. 1 upperclassman, and the rest, not.
 
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How much basketball would you say you watch yearly?
Let me just say, my job is NCAA sports and pro sports, I will leave it at that, and I have a lot of the first-hand experience, as well. I'm not an expert, I am an opinion from observation. Let me be clear, this all sounds like a knock against UConn. It isn't. I think Hurley has elevated the talent on the roster significantly. It is still young, green, and growing if you will. I'm a big fan of what Hurley brings to the program. I am not a big fan of the substitution patterns and the lack of adapting to inefficiencies on the offensive end. There is no mitigation efforts, just an apparent acceptance it isn't good. Do you remember the early years of Calhoun teams? We had no shooters, but what he did have is 40 minutes of hell. His teams turned a woeful offense, into turning the opponent over frequently with relentless pressure, and points! We need points, not a weave, a screen, and a prayer. Why are we working so hard to get guys that shoot in the 30s open? We have better options, but they are not part of the offensive game plan at any level of significance that makes a difference.
 
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UConn players who have seen significant minutes this year
3 Seniors
3 Juniors
2 Sophomores
2 Freshman
Not young at all.
You make a good point, so let me clarify young. Our seniors are a product of another coach, that did not bring players in that were as talented as the younger players. If you consider the 2 freshmen (Sanogo, Jackson), if they were the seniors it would look a whole lot different. If you look at the juniors now, and what will be juniors that are sophomores now (although Bouknight will be gone, that is also my point). Out better players with higher ceilings are young. If Polley, Whaley, and Carlton were to come back next year, are they starting? I doubt it.
 
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Outside of Bouk, our guards are not UCONN level. Cole is a good backup. Adams and Gaff can’t hang. Polly is out of his league. We need better talent. Simple.
I totally agree with that, but somehow our offense is geared to get them bad shots at the end of the shot clock???
 
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Cole is a Division 2 scorer. He played for a MEAC school for the last couple years. The MEAC is one of the worst conferences in Division 1 and probably should be a Division 2 conference. He is not big enough to beat Big East guards off the dribble. Tyrese Martin is our best all-around scorer (sans Bougknight). He should be a lot more selfish. When I looked back at our 2014 title run, I realize that we didn't score by playing team ball; we scored by letting Napier, Daniels, and Boatright beat people off the dribble. We should be working him like our thoroughbred right now.

As far as Polley, he really hasn't progressed much in his four years. His bright spot is getting hot. Gaffney is better off the dribble than a lot of people realize but he needs to assert himself more.
Great points! Agree! Martin reminds me of Saunders but in a better way, Sanogo to me is Adrien, with even more potential, Jackson is Henefeld, so there are 3 players that are going to rise to or above the level of some good past players. Gaffney is a poor man's Ollie, not a lot of scoring, but can be a serviceable point guard. All indications (Chief at least), he has the tools, but does he get those tools out of the basement and towards the ceiling?
 
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There were offensive possessions in the first half where we had our bigs on either side of the lane and the guard could have taken the ball down the lane and shot or dished but we continued running sideways. There is no reason to have Sanogo who CAN finish around the rim up top for most of the shot clock. With our big guys up top our guards just going lateral and the whole offense stagnates. It seems like we are afraid to run on a defensive rebound and no one try's too. Jackson was matched up on a Friar defender that had no way to defend him on the baseline and we didn't care. Let's keep wasting our possessions. Gaffney if he is afraid to blow bye 2 defenders is not the answer.
Another good response! We all see it, why is there no mitigation of an offense that is below average, it is like we accept it. Lately, it is impacting our defense, look at what teams are shooting against us lately!
 

polycom

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Let me just say, my job is NCAA sports and pro sports, I will leave it at that, and I have a lot of the first-hand experience, as well. I'm not an expert, I am an opinion from observation. Let me be clear, this all sounds like a knock against UConn. It isn't. I think Hurley has elevated the talent on the roster significantly. It is still young, green, and growing if you will. I'm a big fan of what Hurley brings to the program. I am not a big fan of the substitution patterns and the lack of adapting to inefficiencies on the offensive end. There is no mitigation efforts, just an apparent acceptance it isn't good. Do you remember the early years of Calhoun teams? We had no shooters, but what he did have is 40 minutes of hell. His teams turned a woeful offense, into turning the opponent over frequently with relentless pressure, and points! We need points, not a weave, a screen, and a prayer. Why are we working so hard to get guys that shoot in the 30s open? We have better options, but they are not part of the offensive game plan at any level of significance that makes a difference.
It’s so obvious you watch a lot of basketball, good luck reading this board there aren’t many like you.
 

QDOG5

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disagree. if we are complete, then a lineup with jalen, james, andre, martin, and adama can happen, which is soph, soph, frosh, junior, frosh. add it up: 2,2,1,3,1 then divide by 5.
result? 1.8 years average, which equates to somewhere around march of ur 2nd year in college
for life experience. it's an old truism that for many, something happens between the time u leave in may, and ur return in september to begin ur junior year. math is our friend. 1 upperclassman, and the rest, not.
You may disagree but you are wrong. The majority of minutes have been played by upperclassmen. You write down a lineup that has never been on the floor together at the same time. Why use that lineup to prove this team is young. Both you and @EASTFLA are writing about if's and could be's and might be's. I'm writing about what has happened until now. Here are the minutes distribution numbers though the PC game. Seniors - 555, Juniors - 1082, Sophomores - 477, Frosh - 290. Math is our friend. Uconn is not a young team.
 
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It’s so obvious you watch a lot of basketball, good luck reading this board there aren’t many like you.
I appreciate that thank you, but I have seen some very good opinions here.
 
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You may disagree but you are wrong. The majority of minutes have been played by upperclassmen. You write down a lineup that has never been on the floor together at the same time. Why use that lineup to prove this team is young. Both you and @EASTFLA are writing about if's and could be's and might be's. I'm writing about what has happened until now. Here are the minutes distribution numbers though the PC game. Seniors - 555, Juniors - 1082, Sophomores - 477, Frosh - 290. Math is our friend. Uconn is not a young team.
I see your point, but regardless we are a young team. One of the reasons things break down that way is we only have 2 freshmen, and out of the 3 sophomores we have 2 have been injured pretty much the whole season. We are forced to play upperclassmen. If it was the other way around and Bouknight and Akok were healthy and let's say Cole and Martin were not, you would see a much different picture. Also, 2 of our juniors never played 1 game for UConn, and neither are experienced on this level. They absorb most of the junior minutes. Your point on its own merits are valid, I understand where you are coming from, but to call this an experienced team when 4 upperclassmen have ever been on the court together is a stretch. I agree with you if the only input considered is minutes, but a lot more goes into experience than raw minutes in my opinion.
 
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Cole is a 2G period. He gets in trouble when he tries to force a shot in the lane. Let Andre and Gaffney run the show and feed Cole for some pull ups/
Cole actually is better running the point and dishing using hesitation dribble with bursts of speed to get by his man. He is not an elite finisher due to his lack of height and athleticism. He has basically a 2 times better Assist to Turnover ratio than Gaffney. Gaffney needs to play off the ball more and get it in key areas to drive or shoot. Andre is more of a point forward at this stage. I can't see giving him the keys at running the point right now.
 

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