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3 things to help Sean Miller

  • Your points would come across more easily without the superlatives. Next time, try posting about a concern like team shooting percentage and omit comments like Miller can't coach. Then we can have a reasonable conversation about something that really does matter like Arizona's team field goal efficiency.

    WSR Publisher National Basketball Recruiting Analyst Football Writers Association of America U.S. Basketball Writers Association

  • Like Gary said, most of your concerns are very valid, but you make your points in such over the top, hyperbolic ways that it is hard to take some of them seriously.

    i have been harping on shot selection, turnovers, development of the big men and tempo since the season started. all are legit concerns.

    Asking about varying defenses, redshirts and the like are also interesting conversations. I myself like varying defenses, but most coaches do not switch. Monty did and it was a great move. (BTW I hope Miller is keeping the press in his back pocket like Monty did with the press).

    Editor-In-Chief of Wildcat Sport Report and co-host of the Arizona football and basketball pre and postgame shows on 1490 and 104.9.

  • On a slightly different note; Zues fumbling passes, rebounds and missing short shots....

    I am beginning to think it is a matter of him having trouble adjusting to the speed of High Major D1 basketball... He seems to be trying to play faster than he is used to... Its like he is taking his eye off the ball and looking for the move or shot before he has secured the pass or rebound...

    I am willing to bet that once he lets the game come to him he will become a force... He is not lazy and he does get good position... He just seems to be hurrying himself too much...

    Growing into his new body will also no longer be an issue by next season...

    Bear Down...

    BEAR DOWN boys... The best is yet to come....

  • I think that is the true issue. 35 pounds is going to slow anyone down.

    Bear Down Arizona! Wildcat Sports Report, CFO AZ's Certified Tax Coach at Wildcat Tax &

  • One thing all three of our freshmen bigs need to learn to do better is "show" better in the post. Yes, the wings need to get them the ball, but the bigs need to seal their man better on the low block, consistently. This will make them bigger targets, and also put them in balance to make better catches where they have an opportunity to do something with the ball, even if it's to do nothing more than pass back out to the wing.

    Additionally, why ball movement and extra passes is critical, is dribble penetration by the guards after the ball rotates a bit will serve to create cleaner passing lanes for the bigs to make easier catches while cutting toward the basket.

    All three need work on the offensive end of the floor, for sure, but right now when the Cats stall on offense to me I see the guards forcing way too much in passing and shooting and putting the bigs in tough situations. Normally, I'd say the bigs need to adapt better, but when you have 3 seniors as your primary scoring options (Lyons, Hill and Parrom) it should be their responsibility to make those around them better players and not vice versa.

    WSR Publisher National Basketball Recruiting Analyst Football Writers Association of America U.S. Basketball Writers Association

  • Virtually none of these issues have been ignored or forgotten and now you bring up things as if you re the only one to have ever mentioned them.

    I have written about the development of the big men in at least one article, and in many posts.

    Many others have talked about tempo, offensive movement, and virtually everything that you now claim as you own ideas. Trip.

    Your only claim to infamy is the supposed genius of switching defense which Brad and others who actually know what basketball is have addressed. Time for a new schtick. Instead of setting yourself up as the board contrarian know it all, try just being normal.

  • We all know the zone would have done wonders against Stanford on Wed without Jarrett. The Zone saves your Big men from getting into foul trouble and makes them have to shoot.
    Against Cal, this may not have worked as well, basically because the officials weren't calling a fifth foul on Crabbe regardless of how bad it was. plus he was on fire.
    So sometimes the man to man D is the best way to play.
    One thing that is always gonna bother me, is when Jarrett and Zues bring the ball down and get it stripped away. I have no Idea who is the main Big man skills coach right now, but the difference between Derrick Williams Ball skills and the following year are just ridiculous. If I was Miller, I'd be less worried about Zues holding onto the ball in a game and figure out why he hasn't learned this yet. it can't be his fault if Jarrett brings the ball down too. Someone's not teaching our bigs correctly. I will say that if I was miller, my main focus would be on ours bigs skills with the ball in their hands. Even just a little help from Jarrett and Zues inside would free up our 3 perimeter players. Ashley seems to do ok with this, but he's also 2-4 inches shorter and a lot faster than the other 2.
    anyways, I'm not insulting anyone, but I've been playing ball my whole life and anyone who has ever played knows that on any given day, you can have an off night or vise versa. 20-3 is pretty damn good in the pac12. Shoot, 2 more losses will be just fine in my book. We will be a 1-3 seed in the tourney barring a complete collapse.

  • I watched about 10 minutes of the Duke - Florida State game a week or 2 ago. Duke was up by like four points and they went to a three man press/trapping defense deal for about 3 or 4 series. Then back to a man 2 man 1/2 court D.

    I was told emphatically on this board that Coach K never switches defenses - and that is simply not true. It's also not true of Monty. Of Izzo, Boheim or Lute.

    After the game tonight, Miller's comment to Brian Jeffries was to the effect of it's tough to play Utah with their constantly changing defenses. Yea, no duh.

    My point about switching defenses is not that I think we should run a zone defense all the time or even for more than a few minutes at a time. Tonight is a great example. We closed the gap to 6 points, with enough time to win but we 1. don't push the ball and 2. don't use a press. Our announcers did not say it but they were clearly perplexed. We just lay down and die and hope that their amazing shooting trend against us magically stops and that we magically start hitting shots. It sure seems to me that if you can't stop them with the defense you are running you need to TRY something else. If only for a series or two to throw them off a bit, make them work harder to get the ball into position to shoot etc. etc.

    In deference to me friends here, I tried to write this without any hyperbole.

    "Arizona has no tradition" - Bill Walsh "We have a tradition of kicking Bill Walsh's ass" - Teddy Bruschi

  • Tonight, Arizona pressed and half court trapped in the first half, played zone late in the second half, Angelo Chol played, and on and on and Arizona lost.

    As for any of your "Zone" examples, Duke played exactly 0.0 seconds of zone defense against rival North Carolina the other night. Yes, pretty much every coaching in the country, including Sean Miller (as he proved tonight) will do something different when they absolutely have to, but the overarching argument is the coaches you again have highlighted DO NOT PLAY ZONE, and if they do incorporate a Zone Defense it probably equates to about 2% of their total defensive sets over the course of an entire season. And yet again you list Syracuse in your mix up defenses. Just like Miller, Izzo, Calipari and Montgomery, who play man-to-man 97-98% of the time over the course of their careers, Jim Boeheim has been utilizing a zone defense at Syracuse for over a quarter century.

    WSR Publisher National Basketball Recruiting Analyst Football Writers Association of America U.S. Basketball Writers Association

  • In fairness, wineknow, I didn't read the second half of your post because the coaching examples literally drive me nuts.

    Yes, I don't disagree about throwing a zone out there for a few possessions, particularly coming out of a timeout where the opponent has the basketball, or on under the basket inbound plays.

    To honestly address your concern, I will say that for a man-to-man defense to suddenly play zone, guys have to bust their asses double-time in a zone because the natural tendency is to get lazy because you're only guarding space and not sticking with a man. The trouble for Arizona right now is the players (at least enough on the court at once to make the overall defense inefficient) is being "lazy". Hence, how can you ask an already lazy defense to go into a lazier defense and be effective. Tonight, we saw evidence of that as Arizona went into a 2-3 zone and two passes later Xavier Johnson is knocking down a wide open trey that all but ended the game.

    Arizona's problems right now are much bigger than switching defenses, but I do understand your point about the need to "once in a while" throw monkey wrench into the mix and try and turn the tide.

    WSR Publisher National Basketball Recruiting Analyst Football Writers Association of America U.S. Basketball Writers Association

  • Whether you play man to man or zone, the fundamentals don't change. We are talking about the same thing - people are shooting an absurd percentage against us and have been for many games. You can say someone got hot on any given night, but it happens against us every night. Something is not clicking with the defense we have - and IMO, (where we likely diverge) that means change is necessary. To what, I'm not qualified to say, but Miller should be. I didn't hear the first 1/2 so was unaware of the other things we did. Down the stretch though, it was baffling to me that Miller had nothing in his back pocket other than TO's and player subs.

    "Arizona has no tradition" - Bill Walsh "We have a tradition of kicking Bill Walsh's ass" - Teddy Bruschi

  • I can agree with that. Good post.