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'14-15 Preseason Hoops Outlook

Discussion in 'Georgia Tech Basketball' started by orientalnc, Aug 10, 2014.

  1. orientalnc

    orientalnc Helluva Engineer

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    dtm1997-

    I think you posted in another thread that Koumadje has eliminated us. If JB eliminates us (I think the odds are against us right now) we are down to the end of our A list. Dickerson is likely going to Georgetown and Jacob Evans to LSU. We may get someone who will be a solid role player, but do you realistically think anyone else on our list is that good?

    Looking at this year's roster, Here is what I see happening:

    Before the ACC games, Sampson, Cox, and Mitchell will be the regular rotation at the 4/5 slots, with brief help from Lammers. MGH will get a lot of minutes at the three, spelled by Q. Jackson and Bolden will share the 2 with Jorgenson and Heyward getting almost all the minutes at PG. Heath will be the fifth man in the backcourt. Someone else could emerge in camp, but this is the best lineup we have right now.

    I look at this group and agree there some advantages here and there. But let's play a game for a moment. Assume the 4/5 position guys really have a breakout season and gives us 20 ppg and 20 boards. Also that MGH and Q can average 20 ppg between them. That means our guards, who have hardly ever scored in college, will have to average 27 for us to match last year's production. Is that reasonable? Would it be good enough, even if it happened?

    BTW, we lost our best defensive players from last year and no one in that group looks like a stopper. I want to be optimistic, but my glasses are fogged up by the reality I see in front of us.
     
  2. collegeballfan

    collegeballfan Helluva Engineer

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    Interesting discussion guys.

    I have always thought that signing a top SG in the 2015 class is slim because of Tadric. Same with a top 2015 SF with MGH on the roster this season and next (big assumption there!). What high schooler is going to come in and challenge him for a spot? I was really hoping for a quality 4/5 guy but looking at the roster we have five 6/8 - 6/10 guys who can play this year (if Mitchell get his hardship) and 4 guys there next season. Only a kid with a big ego will want to come in and challenge that. So I am looking for quality in the 2016 class.

    On another note, I am struggling with getting a handle on the apparently solid trend of kids transferring. That is an unknown in the recruiting game. For example, will MGH transfer for his senior season? In the past the only thought was turning pro. Now the transfer rears its head.

    Question: Can a coach build a program on transfers?
     
  3. dtm1997

    dtm1997 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    @orientalnc - I think your analysis is generally spot on, although I think our defense will be different, but solid. I also think the scoring will be in the 60-70/game range with a slightly different mix from yours. If you carry that forward to 2015, we have a similar team with additional experience & senior leadership. I think we have good players that can work together to win games as a TEAM. Not saying they'd be world beaters or a Final Four team, but we should see some wins.

    @collegeballfan - you kind of help with my point and answer orientalnc's question. We land JB, he'll demand minutes and we could get them for him across the 2/3/4 positions. He's that versatile. Dickerson would also be good enough to challenge for minutes as a FR, but wouldn't play as much as JB would. Beyond that, our current A-List, which has slimmed down a lot - Evans, Laurent, Tacko (guessing we're still after him), and Koumadje (now very minimal chance, but not eliminated apparently) - are all developmental players or role players.

    To sum up - our current pool consists of a couple of players that are elite talents and would be able to challenge for minutes regardless with the rest being good enough to develop while allowing our existing squad to prove they should remain at the forefront for playing time.
     
  4. orientalnc

    orientalnc Helluva Engineer

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    @dtm1997 We will have to disagree about the defense on this team. Miller and Carter bailed out the lack of dribble defense numerous times last year. Both of these guys are gone and I have seen nothing to indicate competent replacements are present. As much as I loved Golden in the clutch, he was not a competent defensive guard. Heyward is much more so, but Travis is an unknown. Defense begins with pressure outside. If we cannot play the ball 20-25 feet out, Cox and company will have their hands full.
     
  5. McCamish Maniacs

    McCamish Maniacs Helluva Engineer

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    I LOVE this analysis. Hope these guys can prove people wrong. I like a lot of the pieces we have, but we will definitely have to win as a team and not as individuals
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2014
  6. dtm1997

    dtm1997 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    @orientalnc that's fair. I agree that we won't have a stopper like Miller (2.4blk/gm) or, to a lesser degree, Carter (0.8blk/gm), but I don't think we're getting slouches in Cox (0.76blk/gm), Mitchell (0.5blk/gm), & Sampson (1.8blk/gm). Adding in Holsey (0.3blk/gm) for apples to apples we'll have about 3.1blk/gm compared to 3.5blk/gm.

    I think the interior defense will be different, but not the massive drop off you may initially think. I also think our interior rebounding will be pretty stout.

    As far as our perimeter defense goes, I think the unknowns are Travis, depending on his recovery, and Bolden, depending on his sheer desire to improve. Bolden appears to put in effort, but he just seemed really slowed down last season. MGH defended the opposing teams' best players last year, Heyward is solid in defense and I think that's his long term role, and I'll leave the defensive expectations for Tadric to @connell62.

    All in all, I think the team will have to put forth a big effort, but they're positioned ok defensively.

    Honestly, I don't care about us being flashy at this point, I just want more wins. If we play like Clemson and get 20, I'll be fine with it. That's step 1 to turn things around.
     
  7. kg01

    kg01 Get-Bak! Coach Featured Member

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    It's waaay early, but the conversation in the scuttlebutt thread shows that many of us are already looking forward to the Jackets hitting the hardwood (following our upcoming championship season on the gridiron of course (y)).

    Here's a quick little article on the busy summer to set the stage:
    http://www.ramblinwreck.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/073114aab.html

    What are your thoughts on the upcoming season?

    Shout out to @dtm1997 for all the info and insight shared in the scuttlebutt thread. Perchance we can get a mod to slide some of that here?
     
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  8. connell62

    connell62 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    + 1

    Excellent commentary.. Hopefully we can look at the season and the team without discussion going off the deep end. It seems that most here like BG and want him to succeed but understand that improvement (read wins) are needed. We can certainly be realistic, but I prefer to stay away from negative slant. It does nothing for the good of the program.

    As far as next season is concerned, I think that dtm did an excellent job in providing an overview. Personally, I expect these guys to develop a blue collar type approach to the season, and to really come together and play well. I know that they have all been working hard together during the off-season, and I think that they are capable of exceeding everyone's expectations. However, for that to occur, these guys must come together and play as a group. No egos and nothing can be taken for granted. IMO, team chemistry will be a HUGE factor in the success of this team.

    To follow along the lines of the previous discussion, I also expect this squad to be a very good rebounding team and much improved defensively. Look for us to resemble more Gregory's first team here from a hustle and scrappiness level. Hopefully the W/L is much different though..LOL...We did lose one of the best shot blockers in the entire conference in Miller, but I agree with dtm in the dropoff will not be substantial. By all accounts, Sampson is an excellent defender and shot blocker, and Mitchell/Cox are no slouches. Don't forget, the general impression with Lammers was that his defensive abilities were well ahead of his offensive abilities. He'll likely make an impact on D first.

    Without a doubt, the back court has a lot of room for improvement, and I think that you see the entire unit take a step forward this season. As other fonts have mentioned, Heyward flashed potential of being an excellent defender a year ago, and MGH was already receiving praise in this department as well. However, I think that the two keys are: a healthy Jorgensen and the addition of Tadric Jackson. Travis has a very high basketball IQ, so he understands positioning on defense and what the other team is trying to do, and I thought he was solid in limited time last year. As for Tadric, his size and athleticism will allow him to be an excellent defender. He is active defensive and usually ends up steals from the help side. He is also very adept at playing the passing lanes....expect a few breakaway dunks from him this year.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2014
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  9. Peacone36

    Peacone36 ACCBasketballReport.com Contributing Writer

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    My hopes dreams and expectations............

    I hope we beat the teams we are supposed to beat. We shouldn't have lost to Miami St. Johns and Ole Miss last year. We should be able to beat teams like that. Speaking of the St. Johns game brings me to my next hope.......

    I hope that more often than not we play 40 minutes of basketball. Not 32.5 minutes with a 8-9 stretch of Peacone pushing the limits of his cardiovascular system as he paces the living room talking himself out of putting his foot through the television.

    I expect us to be more athletic, better defensively and one of the better rebounding teams in the ACC. I also think we are going to have a bit of......swagger? I guess is the word im looking for. Last years team kind of lacked personality. Daniel was kind of a quiet kid, BBC wasn't very fiery.

    I expect Tadric to start from day 1. Give him the keys. This is probably a 11-14 win team, get him on the court, let him go. I don't know #11 but his body language and demeanor on the court make me think he is better suited to come off the pine. I also think Tadric is going to be a better defender.

    I hope we are working on FT shooting because this team is going to be a brutal FT shooting team.

    I hope Ben Lammers is able to be healthy. The kid is a Daniel Miller clone from everything I have seen. I hope his health provides him the opportunity to develop like DM did

    Lastly I want to see MGH show that he wants to be the man. Get in someones face, demand the ball, LEAD the team. The ability is there I just wonder if its part of his personality.

    I don't think we get to any post season and I think we are going to be pretty bad. But if Lammers can develop and the TJs get some serious minutes playing together that's a pretty good start to getting GT back where it needs to be. But this staff has to close on these targets on the recruiting trail as well which I am not impressed with the results there either, but that's different conversation.
     
  10. kg01

    kg01 Get-Bak! Coach Featured Member

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    If Bolden doesn't perk up he almost has to start. Let Tadric be that offensive spark plug off the bench. Agree I hope we play complete games this year. Those 6-8 minute stretches of nothingness almost cost me a coffee table.

    I don't think we'll be bad but there is potential for our record to be less than stellar. IOW our record may not show the improvement we could be making due to the conference being better, deeper.
     
  11. orientalnc

    orientalnc Helluva Engineer

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    I think we played excellent defense close to the basket except for dribble penetration. We were also a good offensive rebounding team. Of course, we had a lot of missed shots on our end.

    Our new bigs should be good defenders and rebounders. I am not concerned about that aspect of our game. What concerns me is offensive production down low.
    If Cox, Mitchell and Sampson could average what they did during the most recent season they played, we should get 20 points from this trio. All are solid rebounders, but only Sampson has scored much in college.

    If we cannot score in the paint, the outside shots will be contested. We are not good enough shooters to win with outside shooting. That said, I agree completely that MGH and Bolden need to have breakout seasons. With their ability, MGH should be averaging in the upper teens and Bolden in the 12-13 range. I am hoping Jackson can give us 10 a game as well. For some reason Heyward almost refused to score last year, yet he seems like a decent shooter. I hope he and Jorgenson combined can give us 8-10 points and 6-8 assists per game.

    Here are my big questions in pre-season:

    1- Will MGH step up and be the clutch guy Golden was last season? We need a leader who wants the ball in the final minute of close games.

    2- Will Bolden bring his desire and ability to the gym every day? He had some great games in his first two seasons, but huge gaps appeared where he barely shows up in the box score.

    3- Can BG meld the seven new guys into the core group and create a team spirit among these guys? Defense depends on helping and our "pass the ball around for 30 seconds" offense could be helped by trust on that end of the floor.

    4- Can the 3 new big guys (not including Lammers) fill the hole in our offense left by Miller, Carter, and Holsey?

    5- Is Jackson really as good as he seems, and will he have a major impact on our season?
     
  12. connell62

    connell62 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Good points all around, and I agree with you for the most part. I think that you will see more points in the paint by the guards this year off of dribble penetration than in years past. Getting into the lane and either finishing or getting to the free throw line is a big part of Tadric's game. I think that Jorgensen also has shown an ability to drive and finish.

    @orientalnc : Few thoughts on the questions you presented:

    1- Will MGH step up and be the clutch guy Golden was last season? I think that everyone will agree that next seasons success will depend largely on MGH. Reports are that Marcus is in excellent shape over the summer and that he is taking a more active role in leadership. No doubt that Marcus has the ability to do it, but I think that in order for him to be more productive offensively, he has to improve the consistency of his outside shooting.

    2- Will Bolden bring his desire and ability to the gym every day? He had some great games in his first two seasons, but huge gaps appeared where he barely shows up in the box score. This is a big question mark for me as well. My hope is that as a junior, Bolden matures a bit and learns that he has to bring it game in and game out. Chris is a gym rat and he understands what BG is looking for, but consistency with his level of desire and execution will be a key for him.

    3- Can BG meld the seven new guys into the core group and create a team spirit among these guys? Defense depends on helping and our "pass the ball around for 30 seconds" offense could be helped by trust on that end of the floor. As I mentioned before, team chemistry will be a deciding factor for this team. If they come together and mesh well, I think that we have enough talented pieces to have a solid team. Without putting too much pressure on Travis, I think that a lot of our success/failure will hinge on his return. He hasn't been able to participate in some time, but I look for him to help the offense be much more fluid.

    4- Can the 3 new big guys (not including Lammers) fill the hole in our offense left by Miller, Carter, and Holsey? See above

    5- Is Jackson really as good as he seems, and will he have a major impact on our season? I've seen a lot of people with high expectations for Tadric. For those that know me, they know that I am a big Tadric fan and that I have followed his amateur career closely. He has played a lot of high-level basketball for years now, and he is well groomed. He is from my home town and helped my Alma Mata win a state title this year (first one since I was back in T-town), so I feel like I know what to expect from him. He is a very talented player, but we must be willing to be patient with him. Personally, I would project him at somewhere between 8-14 ppg avg. as a freshman. He will have some high scoring games, but he is not one that will shoot lights out every game. With that said, I expect him to be solid offensively as he has the ability to score in many different ways. Look for him to muscle his way into the lane and get to the line where he is a good free-throw shooter. One thing for sure, he stuff's the box score every game, and he affects the games in many ways. He is good defensively and on the boards, and I think that most GT fans will be surprised by how well he passes. He's a tremendously hard worker, so I expect him to be an integral part of the rotation..whether he or Bolden starts, I am not sure.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2014
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  13. Peacone36

    Peacone36 ACCBasketballReport.com Contributing Writer

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    So far the thing that has made me the happiest in this thread is Connell saying

    "Chris is a gym rat"
     
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  14. connell62

    connell62 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    I say that because I always see him tweeting about hoopin and invite people to play. I remember back when he was in high school, he was doing the same thing then. He is always getting up a game or putting up shots. Really pulling for him to have a big season.. I think that having Tadric around will push him a little bit.
     
  15. orientalnc

    orientalnc Helluva Engineer

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    I, too, was a gym rat. That can have its positives, which I thought were a passion about playing. That is the thing that Bolden appears to be missing at times. When he arrived at Tech I thought he would be the star of that threesome. Instead, he disappoints too often. He scored in double figures four times last season after eight times as a freshman, including 20 points at Duke and 21 at Miami. Yet, he has scored three or fewer points 19 times in his two years at Tech. It is very puzzling.
     
  16. CuseJacket

    CuseJacket Administrator Staff Member

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    I moved some of it over. As you can see there are a lot of posts with both preseason predictions and recruiting info, so I used my best judgment. Let me know if you want any specific posts moved either direction.
     
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  17. jeffgt14

    jeffgt14 We Suck

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    Hopefully Bolden sees the light soon. He always shows these (very) short flashes of excellence and then he just disappears or starts making bad mistakes.
     
  18. dtm1997

    dtm1997 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    This ain't your dad's Sampson...

     
  19. connell62

    connell62 Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    I think that is exactly right. One word that I think that applies to Chris is consistency!

    He doesn't have to be great, just be steady, make good decisions and take care of the ball.

    He's does that and doesn't try to do too much, I think that he is a good enough shooter that he will be fine.
     
  20. Peacone36

    Peacone36 ACCBasketballReport.com Contributing Writer

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    Realistically I think if we expect about 17-20 ppg from Tadric and CB combined that should be attainable.

    I think 2-2.5 threes a game is realistic for CB in his junior year. Id like to see him get rid of that floater and just go strong and get himself to the line more often. He shot 68% from the line but only found himself there 19 times last year. Hopefully Tadric can get into the lane and create some space for Travis, Bolden, and MGH to get some good looks.

    Also no one has mentioned QS to this point. The kid is a sniper from the foul line area. We need to find a way to get him that look in our offense consistently.
     

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