Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tale of two halves

The first half was some of the smartest basketball this team has played all year. The second half was terrible, leading to another blowout loss. Defense was the main problem in the second half, but the team got impatient again and seemed to give up once Duke got on a little run. I think this season might be over...and it really depresses me. There is no way a team that played so well last year should be this lost. I understand that they lost a huge presense in Rice, but that doesn't explain how why these guys are not working together or sustaining any effort for a full game.

Instead of doing my usual likes and dislikes, I am going to make a few recommendations on saving the season:

-- Shorten the rotation to a 8 guys who will play smart and hard.
Forget upside or loyalty. Just play the guys who will pass and run the offense how it should be run.
-- Have a come to Jesus meeting with Sanders.
Injures don't explain all that is going on or wrong here. He keeps making the same stubborn mistakes over and over. We will not win without Sanders playing much much better.
-- Give the sophomores more playing time. I think we know the JR class's limitations. Let us see what we truly have in the sophs.
-- Stop shooting 3s.
We can't make them. We need to work the ball instead of chucking it.

Time is running out...not just on the season but on this class of six juniors. If these guys can't play better and recognize what works, they will probably be the same mess next year.

I will keep hope and faith. Let's hope it is rewarded. I would hate to see Al's career end on a down note.


matthew said...

the saddest part about Sanders is that his numbers have been the same, pretty much, for all 3 years.

FG % down a little this year, but the other stats remain relatively constant. Too bad....

Harry Collins said...

wow, I did not know the stats were so consistent with my eyeballs. I've been saying that for two years - the guy has not improved at all. That's pretty amazing, usually you see significant, gradual improvement for a guy who starts right from the get-go (think Dudley). I think we have seen Sanders' ceiling, and it's low. That's why it's time to sit him down. I think he is actually hurting BC a lot with his defense, turnovers, poor shot selection, I'd rather have Roche or Elmore taking his minutes. The guy sucks.

Pretty tired of the announcers defending him by saying he is working his way back from the ankle injury. His first game back was December 13 (2 months ago!) Gimme a break!

Harry Collins said...

Sanders: 5-22 fg, 12 points combined in 66 minutes against Clemson & Duke. Awful.

Thomas said...

Where's John Oates posting up for a 3 when you need it?

Matt said...

Raji's last 5 games - 4.6 ppg. What is going on with him?

blist said...

Al's career is ending?

Bravesbill said...


Opinionater said...

I am approaching "flatline" status while watching the 2009-2010 version of Eagles Hoop. However, there was a "blip" on the radar screen during the first half against the "Dookies" which had the nurses scrambling at my bedside! But lo and behold, The ACC put in a new rule that you have to play two halves!....

Sanders---awful. Trapani, worse (great shot selection, huh?), Raji has gone incognito since a fine performance against Miam1, etc. etc.)

P.S. It was a pleasure to hear Bob Knight's commentary last night.

TBSBC03 said...

Yeah, I'm confused by the end of career comment. This may be a down year, but we've spent the last decade as a perennial tournament team. And, as with every conversation when someone wants to go kneejerk and can a coach, who exactly would we get to replace him? I don't think Billy Donovan is waiting by the phone for our call.

CMondo1 said...

the season died the moment they lost to Maine.

"you can't spell CBI, w/out BC."

I do have hope for saturday, though. Perhaps the team can come together, using a unified hatred of Greivis Vasquez as motivation.

Erik said...

Greivas is as inconsistent as Boston College is.

Claver2010 said...

I have a feeling that this is going to be TOB vs. non-TOB all over again. No one can deny Skinner's success at BC but let's look at what he's done the last 3.5+ years:
66-46 Overall
24-27 in the ACC
3-3 in the ACC Tourney
1-2 in NCAA Tourney

Considering the joke OOC schedule we play it's pretty embarrassing that we are 42-19 in OOC competition. Can anyone think of three biggest OOC wins in this time span? Home against Michigan St. (Dudley's senior year), you come up empty after that. I think we all think these numbers will get worse before this will get better this year. Personally one of the most alarming parts of this is can anyone name someone who has improved over his course at BC on this team? The only person I can think of is Dunn and he is a one dimensional player. To see the quit I have in these players throughout the year is embarrassing and the fact that Al has allowed Rakim to pout his way around without repercussions is even more embarrassing.

These might be the low light of Skinner's tenure but 4 years is a decent size sample and sometimes all coaches get.

morrina said...

How many times did Sanders try to take on two or three defenders with his dribble and turn it over? The fact that there was no obvious reaction by Skinner to that alone is very disturbing. The problem is that Sanders thinks he is WAY more talented than he really is, and he is deternmined to be a one man show. It's painfully obvious and really tough to watch over and over.

Raj said...

Our offense is stagnant, and is not working. This forces players to do too much. See reggie jackson, rakim and biko.

Trapani's poor shooting isn't helping any. We don't stretch defenses at all, because we are one of the worst 3 pt shooting teams in the nation.

There is not one player that the other team has to gameplan for. Our leading scorer doesn't create his own shot, and as raji benefited of putbacks early in the year to boost his stats, that's the way our whole team score.

We are small up front, we aren't a guard oriented offense. We have no identity, and the flex just confuses all of our players and then causes us not to get back on D, and giving up easy transition baskets after a miss.

If you see in the first half driving to one side and causing the defense to shift left the weak side wide open, this led to 30% of of our points. Why we go away from things that work, escapes me and reflects poorly on the coaching staff. A number of our players can get to the basket, unfortunately everyone can collapse since we couldnt hit a 3 if our life depended on it. Mail this season in, NIT isn't happening.

Charles said...

Great Post Raj. Unfortunately this system doesn't seem to work for the players we have in it, and the result is chaos. Unfortunately, none of the recruits we have coming in are anything to be excited about leading me to believe the program is on the decline. Aside from wins and losses, BC's style of play and personality hasn't filled the seats in Conte the past few years. I'm not ready to run Al out of yet, but if we spend another year floundering in the ACC and losing to inferior teams, we may have to start thinking about a mid-major coach that could generate some excitement again

TBSBC03 said...

That 24-27 record in the ACC looks subpar, until you recognize that we have the third-most ACC wins since joining the conference, after Duke and Carolina.

~ said...

Charles -- why a "mid major" coach? Can we aim a little higher?

John said...

I know some people weren't a huge fan of Tyrese, but maybe he was more of a leader on this team than he was given credit for. Last year he was the only senior on a pretty much all freshman/ sophomore team bringing with him that experience. It seems that perhaps no one person is coming out and leading this team.

I personally would like to see Reggie step up and become a leader. He plays with a passion and aggressiveness that I think the team can rally around.

Claver2010 said...

TSBC, correct as of now we are tied for 3rd most wins in the ACC since joining but we are a bad day away from being #7.
1. UNC: 51
2. Duke: 48
3. BC: 35
4. Clemson: 35
5. FSU: 34
6. Maryland: 34
7. VTech: 31
8. UVA: 29
9. Wake: 28
10.Miami: 27
11.NC St: 26
12.GTech: 22

And if you make it solely the past 4 years (after Craig Smith graduated) we are 8th.

Charles said...

As TBS said earlier, Billy Donovan's not waiting by the phone for our call. There's nothing wrong with a mid-major coach- we all have to start somewhere. Villanova did alright hiring Jay Wright from Hofstra, and hell, if you want to consider URI a mid-major Al Skinner wasn't a bad hire either. What I meant was someone with a little more enthusiasm and energy towards the program. I think we could all agree there's something off about this team, and the fact that they're relatively experienced shows an inability on the part of the coaches to develop their talent. You could point to this year as an anomoly, but I challenge anyone reading this to show that the core of this team (Southern, Roche, Paris Sanders, etc) have shown progress in their games. I'm not in the "run Skinner out of town" camp (not that it'll happen anyways), but something is wrong. Could be as simple as a staff reshuffling or different offensive strategy to fit the personnel...only time will tell.

eagleboston said...

If smaller Catholic schools such as Georgetown and Gonzaga can have perennially great programs, why can't BC?

Should we be satisfied that Al turned around our program and gave us a few great moments and a couple tournament appearances? Or should we grow restless and demand to get to the next level? Does this not sound like TOB Version 2.0? But, many on this blog who blasted TOB still defend Al. I'll never understand that logic. It is mind-boggling.

:~) said...

Check your facts before posting EagleBoston

Top Ten Catholic Universities by Enrollment - 2006-2007 Academic Year

1 DePaul University IL 28,521 (enrollment)
2 Saint Leo University FL 24,980
3 St. John's University NY 22,443
4 Fordham University NY 18,129
5 Loyola University Chicago IL 17,569
6 Saint Louis University MO 17,358
7 Georgetown University DC 16,604
8 Boston College MA 16,590
9 Regis University CO 15,713
10 Seton Hall University NJ 12,643

Source: US Department of Education, IPEDS Data Analysis System
Variable: 12-month unduplicated headcount total: Academic year 2006-07

matthew said...

thats such a mod34b comment to make, about 14 people

mod34b said...

Not me matthew...And, by the way, what are you doing making independent comments? You're supposed to be following around and supporting everything CT say.

Adam M. said...

The difference between Al and TOB is that Al has at least won conference championships (both tournaments and regular seasons) in the Big East. TOB can't say the same at BC. While you may say that winning a conference championship qualifies as "mediocrity," it's a lot better than anything TOB did, and I think gives Al a little more job security than TOB. Al also has a National Coach of the Year award to his name...TOB does not.

:~) said...

Matthew, My point was that Georgtown is not a smaller Catholic College. Rather, its a large Catholic College equal in size to BC. And thus, it makes no sense to argue, as Eagleboston does, that BC should be able to produce as good a basketball team as a smaller Catholic school as Georgetown b/c Georgetown is not smaller. The argument is also stupid b/c, size does not matter (execpt for guys like you matthew). Duke is smaller than both BC and Georgtown and its got -- well you know

eagleboston said...

The symbol guy is including graduate students. BC is larger than both G'Town and Gonzaga when you only count undergrads. I did my research symbol guy and size does matter, as the bigger schools have much larger athletic budgets.

:~) said...

Nice try, EagleBoston. You are full of baloney

ps. I am smiley, not symbol guy

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