What people think about when we are in an optimistic mood about the 2020-21 season

I love the warriors on this team. Love 'em.

But just as Gach turned it on yesterday and was the key difference in knocking a determined CU out of the BYE group in Vegas, the game of basketball is even more specialized toward length & athleticism, physically. As we painfully watched this year, without those, you can get smothered.

Shooting, passing, rebounding, setting picks, effort, timing, finding the open seam… all those are essential, too. If you can’t put the ball in the basket… you’re a bunch of athletes.

Payton Pritchard may be the PAC POY, but he’ll be smothered at the next level, ala Jimmer. Maybe Rylan Jones can approximate what Pritchard has done, but the level of length and athleticism in the PAC may render him a niche player, though valuable against non-elite teams and in stretches, here & there.

Once there was enough film, Timmy Allen was largely negated by PAC talent and coaching, and Jones ran the offense beautifully… down to less than 5 on the clock, when it too often became desperation heave time.

It was notable that Plummer was the only one not traumatized by opposing defensive pressure, over the course of the season. (Supposedly Brenchley was the best shooter early in camp?)

I’m intrigued by Lohner, Martinez, Larsson. If they have enough size and/or athleticism/length and/or & the ability to score, and Gach stays & finds the hunger consistently, and Allen finds an outside game… we could be good.

IMO the biggest recruit for next year is Gach. Jantenun looks like a keeper, adept at finding creases and creative ways to score. He seems to have figured out the charge/block requirements. Carlson could be pretty good. If he makes a similar jump that Jayce Johnson did with much less talent, he could be really good.

Allen’s J needs a Lonzo Ball makeover, then he could be a consistent threat.

I’m ambivalent on K. If the talent coming in gels with the talent we have, he could survive, but it’s been a painful stretch of seeing players who embody the kind of player LK was, and get clobbered. (I don’t think Larry could make it today’s NBA. The game has changed.)

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I hope he is right, but I don’t see it happening.

Something tells me the our portal is going to be very active…again. Maybe our new crop of “One and Run” will make for a more winning mix. And we’ll still lose to Altman’s team. K has no answers for that guy.

I am glad the kids got a win yesterday to end the conference season. This team is married to playing home court basketball. Had the game been in Boulder their lack of maturity and toughness would’ve seen us run out of the gym. Until we start seeing a “Nasty Boys - Mean Machine” type team, we are going to stay in this “Wash…Rinse…Repeat” mode.

”One and run” made me laugh, sadly.

I think that perhaps the reason Larry always loses to Altman is that Altman always has better athletes. Altman knows that, and he full court presses the Utes every time he plays them. Try as they might, the Ute players can’t handle it. There must also be some coaching issues, because I learned in high school how to beat the press, and Majerus’s teams, with mostly slow white guys, could always do it. But anyway….

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Why? I know that K loses players every year, but does that necessarily mean that we will this year? I sure hope not. If we lose anyone this year I’m on board with showing K the door.

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You have a lot of company.

Two truer statements have never been written! I love Jones’ talent, basketball IQ, work ethic and toughness, but he may turn out to simply be too small and slow to compete at a high level in the PAC - I sincerely hope we are both wrong.

Timmy is still exactly the same Timmy that looked great last year when he was not the number one option, and earlier this year before coaches had enough film and time to focus on stopping him. He needs desperately to improve his outside shot, develop a little floater in the paint (off the wrong foot perhaps a la Hornacek), and improve his free through shooting. Otherwise, as has been proven in the second half of the conference season, he’s just too easy to stop.

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I hope that the coaches (a) have noticed that Timmy can’t go to his left, (b) are able to teach him to overcome that, and that © he’ll work hard on actually accomplishing that.

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I think about adding 3 incoming players to the following in order of importance: Gach, Carlson, Miki, Allen, Jones, Plummer, (Lahat or MVK), Brenchley and Battin. However, recent history tells me that we will be adding 3 incoming players and losing at least 3 of those guys. This season went about the way I expected it to go. The real question mark going into the season for me is what would happen at the end of the season. We are now a week or so away from the window that will tell us about the 20-21 season.

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My fear is that Larry doesn’t let the game be fun. I have a feeling, maybe not justified, that Larry runs the squad more like drill sergeant, and I don’t believe that speaks to most blue chip athletes these days. Take Both for example, pure speculation, but what if his lull in the middle of the season was just burn out. What if all the stress was just too much and he got the ■■■■■ its’ in the mid to late season. Then all of a sudden, he thought ‘oh crap, if I want to be active in the portal, I better show I have something to offer’ and blew up the last couple of games.

Again, I have no idea, pure speculation, but stick with my hypothetical. Now you could say that makes him ‘not bought in’ OR you could say that he is already naturally gifted as an athlete and he is not used to or necessarily wanting to work as hard as Larry wants everyone to work. And Larry clearly has some guys that need the work. But where Both is concerned, you got three choices; either make it fun enough that it doesn’t feel like work (not Larry’s MO I’m guessing), treat him differently (not Larry’s MO I’m guessing), or work him like everyone else and risk him saying F’ this.

I sort of feel like this pattern fits the players that have transferred, even Jayce although he was not a very good player, I heard it rumored that he wasn’t really that into the game in that he didn’t seem to like to put in the work. But then I have to say that there is a formula there, and Big Rick had this one nailed, recruit the guys who are good players but want to be great players, who are willing to give it everything they have to make the absolute most out of their arguably limited natural abilities, then work them like dogs until they are a well oiled machine. That is all well and good, but if that’s your formula you have to be careful in the portal era not to recruit guys that don’t want any part of that system. Secondly realize that unless you are RM basketball savant, you probably have a ceiling as to what you can achieve with that system.

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In addition, get him to stop driving into a two- or three-set defense. He coughs up the ball more times than I can count. He struggles to control the ball in those situtations.

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I think much of that will resolve itself if the offense is improved in general. Timmy has to force things when nothing is working offensively, and that’s where many of his turnovers come from. If we add shooters and a more reliable post presence, I think his turnovers will be less frequent.

Going left would be fine, but I still think adding a decent outside shot (30% or better) is the biggest thing he can do for his game.

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Both had a tendonitis type injury that did not come on suddenly–so he could not jump. It was bothering him before he sat out. That is a big part of his game & now that he feels better he is playing lights out. I know him pesonally–he left home & his twin brother for his senior year of high school to go to a basketball prep school in AZ. He is always in the gym. So it is not a work ethic type thing.

I have been to practices—Tommy Connors runs a large part of the practices. Larry is a no BS type & tells someone if they screw up, but he does not come close to being a drill sergeant.

Someone has to leave at year end because they have 3 coming in & only 2 scholarships open.

It will be interesting to see who it is.?

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Let us not forget that we once again have Donnie Daniels on the staff who legend has it, along with Juddy was a key part of keeping players on the team under the massive stress that came from playing for Majerus. If he could handle Majerus I’m pretty confident he can handle Larry. That is a reason I feel a little better about our retention prospects this season versus previous - I hope I’m not wrong.

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Thank you for that, and to be clear, I don’t look at it as work ethic per se. It’s less about the work and more about the strictness and how much time is spent on what. Some guys love to be in the gym but they love to ball out not run drills until you are dead. Like I said, I worry that Larry doesn’t let them enjoy the game. Maybe its just his RBF that makes me feel that way.

But specifically to Both, sorry to hear about tendonitis, that can really suck. Hope its not chronic like mine, because its a real problem. I do hope he sticks around, he can be a really exciting player.

My uneducated guess is Van Komen since they didn’t redshirt him.

I think Gach will get the point and Jones will backup. Initially, Plummer should start but Martinez get half the minutes and may start somewhere in the year. Jautenen will also start but Lohner will get half the minutes. We may see two 4s play without a center like this year. May see two 3s without a 2. Battin, Ballestadt, Van Komen and Wenzel will be the ones to struggle for minutes. If one or two of these leave to find better minutes we need to be able to roll with that.

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