What the heck's going on with Skylar Diggins (in a good way)? | The Boneyard

What the heck's going on with Skylar Diggins (in a good way)?

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Let me start by saying I've always liked Skylar's game. And yes, she surely dismantled UConn in last year's Final Four.

But when everyone started talking about her as a PoY candidate, I was taken aback. And it wasn't just this board. Somehow it had become accepted wisdom that Skylar was one of a handful of the best players in the country. Surely a first team AA.

Didn't compute for me. Didn't come close to computing.

Consider some of her stats last year: 43.2% FG shooting (not very good), 1.25 points per shot (good but not spectacular), 14.5 points per 30 minutes (again, good but not spectacular) and most importantly an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.2, which is frankly not good at all for a point guard. Those are not even close to the numbers you would expect from a first team AA. And, although she had two great games against UConn and Tennessee, she didn't even have that spectacular of an NCAA tournament overall. For example she had 35 assists but 34 turnovers.

And then something happened.

I have no idea what it was, but her numbers this year are absolutely off the charts ... and bear no resemblance to last year.

52.3% FG shooting (vs. 43.2%). 1.48 points per shot!! (vs. 1.25). 18.9 points per 30 minutes (vs. 14.5). A/TO 1.9 (vs. 1.2). 3.4 steals per game (v 2.0).

Yes, this is early season competition and she didn't have a great game against Baylor. But still!! Her numbers are up dramatically across the board.

So, yeah, I'm ready to say that Skylar is first team AA caliber (Oddyssey Sims probably is as well, and I'm not prepared to say Skylar is better, but she's at least first team AA caliber.)

But my real question is, what the heck happened? For those of you who were touting Skylar, were you overlooking that she really wasn't a great player last year (except for two big games), or were you assuming that those two games were the beginning of a transformation? Or is there something I'm missing?
 

AboutWeston

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Maybe the 2011 NCAA experience was what she needed to reach the next level?
 

bruinbball

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I have watched Skylar for nearly 6 years now. There is no doubting why she was deemed the next great guard. It's not something that just happens with stats - it is watching her play when her team needs her. She is willing to take that crucial shot against anyone anywhere. She has that never say die and never give in mentality that I love. She is willing to carry her team on her back - I would say to detrimental levels. I watched it happen twice in high school and now once in college. Sometimes she tries to do too much and against really good TEAMS you need to be able to depend on and trust your teammates will help you overcome - I think this is the weakest part of her game and you will only see it rear it's ugly head at the most crucial of times. I watched her put up 29 points against a team Bolingbrook only scored 28 against as a team. She has the goods but is she willing to share them at crunch time without becoming a liability???

From the Indy Star:
The main one: Skylar Diggins. The 5-10 senior -- also a McDonald's All-American and Notre Dame recruit -- shook off a rough start to give the Panthers a chance. Diggins scored 29 points on the night, 10 in the fourth quarter, and eight in a late 55-second span to help bring her team back from an 11-point deficit with 2:56 to go. Her last bucket, with 45 seconds left, tied the game.
 
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Well put Bruinball. It's that attitude together with the obvious skills that made me like her game so much.

But, it's unbelievable to me how much better she's harnessing that skill and desire this year compared to last!
 

alexrgct

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For some (not necessarily Boneyarders), she was dubbed the next "it" girl because someone had to be. With respect to Griner, in the immortal words of Wilt Chamberlain, nobody roots for Goliath. Maya was gone from WCBB. Skylar excelled on the big stages and is strikingly attractive physically. So there she was- the next "it" girl.

I expected Skylar to have a good season partially on faith. I watched her play enough to know she wasn't consistent or always a factor for much of her first two years at Notre Dame, but as the tourney progressed, I felt like a light went off inside of her. She's not the best player in WCBB; Griner, Nneka, and EDD are clearly better, Sims might be too, and there are going to be some other girls, including Huskies, who will be nipping at her heels by season's end. But once you have the confidence that you can do it on the biggest stage, you tend not to lose it. She's going to be very tough this year and next (though she won't have as much help next year).
 
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still bummed she didn't commit to Stanford. Imagine if she had.....?
 

MilfordHusky

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There are 2 phenomena w.r.t. Skylar.

1. She is a very good player, who may become a great player. Does she have NPOY potential? I don't think so, because she is behind Britney, Nneka, and Elena. Next year, she will be behind Britney, probably Elena, and maybe a Husky or two. Is she a 1st team AA? On a 10-player team, probably this year. Maybe also on a 5-player team.

2. She got a lot of exposure from the Final Four last year and has become a pop culture sensation. She is attractive and huge in the social media. That helps her name recognition, well beyond her actual basketball exploits.

Combine 1 and 2, and she is getting lots of attention.
 

Kibitzer

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We can all agree that she played very well against UConn in THAT game (and I forget how she did in those OTHER games). She is a very good player. She is attractive. She gets a lot of good press as a local girl who went down the street, so to speak, to play for the Fighting Irish.

I cannot accurately draw up comparisons between Diggins and our own Tiffany Hayes, but I can come close on most and look to someone with a better abacus than mine to refine these data.

As I understand it, Diggins is shooting 52.3%, Hayes is at 49.4%. Diggins 1.48 points per shot, Hayes has 114 points on 85 shots. Diggins's projected scoring is 18.9 points per 30 minutes and Hayes is averaging something like 14.8 per game played. Assists to turnovers: Diggins, 1.9 (which I understand to mean 1.9 A to 1.0 T); Hayes, 29 A and 13 TO. Steals? Diggins, 3.4 per game and Hayes, 229 in 8 games. And Hayes is averaging 5.9 rebounds per game.

It would be hard to convince me that Diggins is a better defender than Hayes.

So if Diggins is a sure-fire AA, where does that leave Hayes? Or Hartley? Or Mosqueda-Lewis?

Before we have a premature rush to judgment, maybe we should just watch and see what happens when ND plays UConn.

As always, I like our chances. And those of Tiffany, Bria and Kaleena.
 

doggydaddy

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First, let me say that I think Diggins is a 1st team AA and a terrific player. But...lol.....here are the stats for Diggins, Hartley, Hayes and Lewis.

.....................Diggins..................Hartley..................Hayes...................Lewis
Minutes ..........28.0......................29.0........................28.9...................26.4
FG%................52.3.......................55.4........................49.4....................48.0
3Pt%...............30.0......................41.9.........................34.8....................41.1
FT%................87.0.......................81.3.........................79.3....................75.0
Steals...............30...........................12...........................22........................14
A/TO................50/27...................36/22.....................29/13...................17/7
A/TO Ratio.......1.85......................1.63........................2.23.....................2.42
APG...................5.5........................4.5..........................3.6.......................2.1
RPG..................2.2.........................3.1..........................5.9........................5.4
PPG..................17.6......................14.8.........................14.4......................16.0

4 terrific players. I'm grateful 3 of them are on UConn.
 

MilfordHusky

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Man, someone ought to teach that Lewis kid to shoot FTs. :)

Seriously, I think she'll shoot 85%+ for her career.

I've noticed on the televised games that, every time she misses, the crowd groans. Expectations are very high for the Shot Magnet.
 

Kibitzer

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First, let me say that I think Diggins is a 1st team AA and a terrific player. But...lol.....here are the stats for Diggins, Hartley, Hayes and Lewis.

.....................Diggins..................Hartley..................Hayes...................Lewis
Minutes ..........28.0......................29.0........................28.9...................26.4
FG%................52.3.......................55.4........................49.4....................48.0
3Pt%...............30.0......................41.9.........................34.8....................41.1
FT%................87.0.......................81.3.........................79.3....................75.0
Steals...............30...........................12...........................22........................14
A/TO................50/27...................36/22.....................29/13...................17/7
A/TO Ratio.......1.85......................1.63........................2.23.....................2.42
APG...................5.5........................4.5..........................3.6.......................2.1
RPG..................2.2.........................3.1..........................5.9........................5.4
PPG..................17.6......................14.8.........................14.4......................16.0

4 terrific players. I'm grateful 3 of them are on UConn.
Thanks Gramps. I hope that these stats comparisons will help a few of our critical posters to appreciatethe UConn players just a little bit more.
 
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Thanks Gramps. I hope that these stats comparisons will help a few of our critical posters to appreciatethe UConn players just a little bit more.
If that's the result of my post I'm happy! Tiff, Bria and KML are indeed having great years!
 

DaddyChoc

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I've noticed on the televised games that, every time she misses, the crowd groans. Expectations are very high for the Shot Magnet.

I yell at the television
 
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