Thoughts after seeing hoops team up close
Living in Atlanta makes attending BC basketball in-person a challenge. Saturday's loss to Georgia Tech was my first chance to see Donahue up close and I think it was probably as good a sample as any. BC controlled the tempo, played good defense, yet found themselves trailing late and couldn't pull out the win. I like Donahue and he knows more about basketball than I will ever know, but I think he's making some mistakes with this team. Let me explain.
Doing it all himself.
Steve Donahue is working his ass off during the game. He's pacing, he subbing, he is shouting instructions, he is leading the huddles, he's talking to the players on the bench. His assistants are not as active...especially when compared to how Skinner and JOB's assistants worked during games. I don't know if this is Donahue's preferred method or the inexperience of his staff or if he wants to be the lone voice for these young guys. But sometimes a different voice can make a difference. The assistants should be talking to the bench players during the game. They should be giving feedback to the players who have just come off the floor. Allowing the assistants to do more during the game can free up Donahue and may help the players get better.
The offense doesn't have natural movement.
Every possession is too scripted. The players wait for Donahue's signal and instructions each time in the half court. You would hope that with any offense -- but especially a motion variant -- that guys would move naturally. There should be some flow. Because they don't have freedom I think every one is too stagnant and wastes too much time.
They are passing too much.
I have no problem with the perimeter passing. But these guys need to be more aggressive. Take shots when they are slightly open. Many of our turnovers came when the guys were making one final unneeded pass. There were plenty of terrible passes close to the basket when the guys should have taken the shot.
I think Donahue is a very good game coach. If winning was based solely on in-game coaching and effort, Donahue would have a national championship. But obviously there is more to it. Maybe in order to get better Donahue has to let his players and his staff do more on their own. This team's style of play and W-L record are not pretty, but I think their development over the next month will be interesting to watch.