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Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

Posted on: December 14, 2008 2:29 am
 

I'm not sure what's more amazing -- that John Calipari has taken two different and otherwise pedestrian basketball programs (UMass and Memphis) to the Final Four, or that one of the sport's best recruiters has somehow ended up with a roster featuring exactly zero good point guards and zero good shooters.

I mean, how does that happen?

The man secures one Top 10 recruiting class after another, and yet here he is, in the year after coming this close to a national title, trying to run his celebrated dribble-drive motion offense with no point guard, no shooter and no help in sight. That's the lesson from Saturday's loss to Georgetown, that even though Memphis did well to take the Hoyas to overtime, Calipari's team is fatally flawed because the roster has huge holes.

There are no team-runners.

There are no shot-makers.

Consequently, Memphis is shooting 29.1 percent from 3-point range and trying to get by with Wesley Witherspoon at the point, which is bad for a number of reasons, among them the fact that Witherspoon is not a point guard. In fact, the freshman has never really played point guard, and to anybody who thinks this is going to work, let me ask one question: How often do high school wings become good college point guards?

Answer: Almost never.

So that's why this problem will likely linger, and the worst part for Memphis is that it could linger into next season unless Calipari secures a commitment from John Wall. You see, the Tigers didn't sign any point guards in the early period, which means they will either get Wall late and next season have arguably the nation's best point guard, or not get Wall late and next season again have zero good point guards. There is almost no in-between; Memphis will either be great or terrible at the position, and it pretty much comes down to Wall.

But that's another post for another day.

For now, let's stick to the present, which is that Memphis should still win Conference USA, still win 25-plus games and still comfortably make the NCAA tournament. Don't get it twisted; the team is talented enough to do all that. But a fourth consecutive Elite Eight seems unlikely, another Final Four improbable, because though John Calipari has recruited one elite athlete after another, he's now stuck with a fatally flawed roster featuring zero good point guards and zero good shooters, which is like having a shiny car with no good tires and no good steering wheel.

It looks nice and all.

But sooner or later, it's bound to crash.

Comments
Jamammy3000
Since: May 11, 2009
Posted on: May 14, 2009 2:11 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Dec 23, 2007
Posted on: March 24, 2009 9:30 am
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

once again Gary has proved to be spot on with his analysis ... lol

 

 

when will you guys ever learn that the Tigers are for real and bashing us will end up making you look silly.

 

 




Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: December 17, 2008 2:32 pm
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

well it doesn't have anything to do with buying players at most schools. But memphis is different. Here that analogy works perfectly.

Explain to me how it works perfectly at Memphis. Do you have some proof or knowledge that you could share with the NCAA so they could investigate this? I'm certain they would be more than happy to bust any coach that is paying players as you say Cal is.

Since memphis actually does pay it's players.

Once again, you should contact the authorities with your evidence.

Come on it happened at UMass, we all know coach Cal is doing shady stuff at memphis too.

You must have more insight than anyone I have ever met. He was cleared by the NCAA of any wrongdoing at UMASS by the NCAA. Maybe you should have offered some evidence to them so they could stop him. Since you missed that opportunity, why don't you go ahead and let them know about all this "shady stuff" you say is going on in Memphis?

I'm sure he had nothign nothing to do with the scandal at Umass and i'm sure he had nothign nothing to do with the phone call the CEO of Fedex placed to Gaddy's mother.

So anxiuos to type about this your fingers are getting a little ahead of your brain.

I'm pretty sure almost every school has had to deal with, shall we say, "agressive boosters".




Since: Dec 15, 2008
Posted on: December 15, 2008 1:51 pm
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

Everyone who plays basketball gets a form of payment... Any college ATHLETE gets payment lol. It's called SCHOLLARSHIPS. He's pretty shady for sure.



Since: Jan 15, 2007
Posted on: December 15, 2008 1:15 pm
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

Yeah, Cal's strategy is flawed. He didn't recruit the best point guard in the country like he did last year. Heck, he wasn't even able to recuit a top 5 player ('Reke was #6, according to Rivals.) If he had been, he would have had a shot at two point guards, Jrue Holiday and Brandon Jennings.

Jennings went to Europe. We could've put all our energy into recruiting and signing him for our starting point guard like Arizona did. How's that strategy working out? But, that coach is gone -- retired into the Hall of Fame.

Then there's Holiday, who chose UCLA. He's doing great, averaging 11 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals, a positive assist-to-turnover ratio, playing 26 minutes a game. And, let's see, UCLA is . . . 6-2, lost to Michigan. Howland's another future Hall of Famer. Is his recruiting strategy helping or hurting that cause this year?

Yeah, Cal really should have gone after a point guard. Everybody knew we already had AA, Mack and Robinson coming back at the 2, and he still went after Tyreke anyway. How many shooting guards do you need? But, even though we had Kemp, who started as a freshman and played backup to Rose last year, signed Sallie, took CJ as a gift horse in the point guard category, and knew that Witherspoon was called a "point forward" by many (a somewhat rare term that might make comparisons to previous highschool forwards and their track records as college point guards a bit meaningless), what we really should have done is . . . go after a top point guard. Oh well, that's Calipari. He just doesn't get it . . . like some journalists do.

Hang in there, Gary. Maybe some day you'll be a Hall of Fame sportswriter.




Since: Sep 10, 2007
Posted on: December 14, 2008 12:45 pm
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

show me some proof district.  Cal doesn't pay playeres, he is just a good recruiter, albeit a little help from world wide wes.  Next year we do get our shooter, Xavier, and hopefully our point, John Wall.  Our players won't leave for the NBA this year and next year we will be back to the final four.  I will be happy with a sweet sixteen this year.




Since: Sep 4, 2006
Posted on: December 14, 2008 10:30 am
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

well it doesn't have anything to do with buying players at most schools. But memphis is different. Here that analogy works perfectly. Since memphis actually does pay it's players. Come on it happened at UMass, we all know coach Cal is doing shady stuff at memphis too. He just hasn't been caught yet. At least for anything major. He's smart enough to have deniability. I'm sure he had nothign to do with the scandal at Umass and i'm sure he had nothign to do with the phone call the CEO of Fedex placed to Gaddy's mother. Nothing at all



Since: Apr 2, 2008
Posted on: December 14, 2008 8:37 am
 

Update: Memphis still without PG, shooters

Nice.....reminds me of all the pro teams that try to "buy" a championship. They spend all the money on the best players and have enough talent to win most games, but are missing something to make them champions. Sometimes struggling for a team identity. Angels, Damn Yankees....and of course the Cowboys are recent examples. They seem to have all the talent but either cant play together or are missing some catalist.

Oh wait, I am sorry.....college basketball doesnt have anything to do with "buying" players, does it? My bad. Good points that recruiting isnt like fantasy sports, you are not just going for the best talent available. You also have to determine if that kid can play that position at the next level, just like Abrams being a point guard at Texas. Calipari can put some talent on the floor, though.

 

 

 

 



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