grey: I will tell you I haven’t given up on the Pack. If you look back at my preseason prediction, as well as my post game comments after the Arizona win, they are consistent. I’ve been pretty clear that I felt like this team was going to struggle against teams that pack it in around the basket and play zone. They’re going to surprise some teams that are willing to go up and down with them.
If our strategy against a zone is to stand around and chuck up the first open look from the perimeter, then we’re really going to struggle given our lack of shooting ability. If this is the philosophy of our coaches, then we had better be recruiting shooters (though we seemingly have at least one sitting on the bench). I think there’s hope that it gets fixed this year, but it’s got to get fixed by going inside out, driving the lane, etc.. It’s not going to be fixed passively tossing the ball back and forth between two guards standing around the hash lines and not even trying to score until about 13 seconds left in the shot clock. Saturday also wasn’t the first time that the offense has completely stalled out against a zone, and without some buckets, we seemingly can’t set up the press.
We’re also in big trouble if AF has the green light on every possession. Packi’s got the stats, but he’s currently one of the least efficient players in D1 basketball. Good kid, plays hard, always draws a tough defensive assignment, but just not a primary scoring option. He’s likely what we’ve got, but given that, we need to spread it out more.
Let’s not polish this thing too much. UNCG got their 3rd all time win against an ACC team on Saturday. They did it with a massive run that spanned 25+ minutes of live action. It was the reverse of the Penn State game. That was the definition of ugly. Step up, own it, and move on. I saw KK doing that in his refusal to make excuses due to Markell’s absence.
There’s a lot of basketball left to be played. Realistically, we’re picked near the bottom of the ACC, and that may just be where we finish (though I still think we’re going to do better than 12th).
Also, our non-conference scheduling has been odd to say the least. I appreciate the focus on academics during exam weeks, but between the game spacing and diet of cupcakes, we’re potentially in for a shock when league play starts. Our first opponent just got a win against Florida, and that should be one of the easier games on the schedule. We just lost to a SoCon team (which good ACC teams just don’t do). This needs to improve next year. It was one of the few bright spots of Gottfried.