Tag:Tyler Hansbrough
Posted on: March 10, 2009 4:11 pm

My rebuttal to Doyel (and some other stuff)

Obviously, I disagree with Gregg Doyel's column .

I love Gregg.

I wish I was as muscular as him.

But I disagree with the idea that Tyler Hansbrough has to be a first-team All-American. That's why I made him a second-team All-American. And if you understand my criteria -- which Gregg does, and I appreciated him acknowledging it -- then you know that this decision came down to me selecting DeJuan Blair or Tyler Hansbrough, because I'll put no more than two bigs on any All-America team, and I wasn't leaving off Blake Griffin.

So really, that's the debate: Hansbrough or Blair.

Gregg thinks it should be Hansbrough.

That's a reasonable opinion.

But to me, Hansbrough has not had a better season this season than Blair has had this season.


Sure, Hansbrough is averaging more points per game (21.1 to 15.6). But Blair is averaging more rebounds (12.4 to 8.1), and he's doing it while playing 3.3 fewer minutes per game than Hansbrough (30.0 to 26.7). Also worth noting is that Blair simply doesn't get the opportunities Hansbrough gets on the offensive end, which is why his points aren't comparable despite the fact that Blair actually has a higher field goal percentage (59.6 to 52.5).

Understand, Hansbrough takes 12.96 shots per game and shoots 8.42 free throws to get his 21.1 points. Blair takes 10.90 shots per game and shoots 4.23 free throws to get his 15.6 points, which means Blair takes roughly two fewer shots and four fewer free throws than Hansbrough per game, and if you consider Blair's percentages from both the field (59.6) and free throw line (69.2) it's clear he'd average more points than Hansbrough if he had the same opportunities.

(Please, just stay with me; this is going to be good.)

If Blair took the same number of shots (12.96) and free throws (8.42) per game as Hansbrough, and if Blair made those attempts at the same rate he currently makes his attempts, then Blair would make 7.72 field goals and 5.83 free throws per game. Multiply the 7.72 field goals by two (for two-point baskets) and the 5.83 free throws by one (for one-point baskets), and what you'll find is that if Blair took as many shots and free throws as Hansbrough he'd average 21.27 points per game, which is slightly better than the 21.12 points Hansbrough is averaging.

(Jesus, my head is hurting.)

So that's that.

I think Blair has been just as dominant as Hansbrough, but he's done it more efficiently and for a team that has accomplished just as much. Basically, that's why I went with Blair, but I did feel sick about it, because I love Hansbrough and think all the anti-Hansbrough talk is insane. If you hate Tyler Hansbrough, something is wrong with you, not him. But for these purposes, I had to look for the two bigs who are having the best seasons in this particular season, and in my opinion -- with apologies to Gregg Doyel -- that's Blake Griffin and DeJuan Blair.

As for some other controversial decisions, I'll address them quickly.

Right now.

Where's Jodie Meeks?

If you look at my All-America teams you'll see that every guy I have listed is projected by Jerry Palm to play in the NCAA tournament, except for Davidson's Stephen Curry. That should show you how much emphasis I put on winning, and how much I disregard players posting big numbers for bad teams. I mean, lots of guys post big numbers on bad teams (UCF's Jermaine Taylor comes to mind). So while I do think Meeks is great and one of the most fun guys to watch in college, the reality is that he's posting big numbers for a bad team, one that is especially bad by Kentucky standards.

For that same reason, I left off Notre Dame's Luke Harangody, too.

Simply put, I like impact players on successful teams.

Let the world be warned.

So how do you justify Stephen Curry?

I don't think Curry was on a bad team. I think he was on a conference champion that got caught in the semifinals of the Southern Conference tournament, and now he'll pay the price for that. Is Davidson as good as a good Big East or ACC team? Of course not. But relative to Southern Conference teams, the Wildcats are very good, which means Curry was succesful by any reasonable measuring stick, just not when you have to be in a one-bid league, unfortunately.

And why can't you have three bigs on the same team again?

Think of an All-Pro football team.

They don't just take eight quarterbacks when they do those.

They take a quarterback, a few receivers, a kicker, a couple of safeties, so on and so forth. I like that because it better resembles an actual team , and that's my thought process on not having three traditional bigs (like Griffin, Blair and Hansbrough) on the same team, because there's no way those three would ever actually get on the court together at the same time, I don't think.

If you want to know the truth, I believe there are eight players worthy of first-team All-America status.

They are ...

  • Ty Lawson
  • Stephen Curry
  • James Harden
  • Blake Griffin
  • DeJuan Blair
  • Tyler Hansbrough
  • Hasheem Thabeet
  • Sherron Collins

That's my top eight, regardless of position. So what I did was take a point guard (Lawson), a shooting guard (Curry), a wing (Harden) and two bigs (Griffin and Blair) from that list, and I called it a day. It really was that simple. And I hope that makes some sense, though I'm sure it won't to some.

Posted on: March 8, 2009 4:04 pm

Lawson going through final warmups

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- The Senior Day festivities here at the Dean Smith Center just concluded.

Predictably, Tyler Hansbrough received the loudest ovation.

As for Ty Lawson, he jogged onto the floor about 15 minutes before tip-off to a huge round of applause.

If he doesn't play, I'll be shocked.

He's in the layup line right now.

Posted on: February 12, 2009 3:11 pm

Griffin leading straw poll for Player of the Year

Blake Griffin is running away with the National Player of the Year award.

That's what the results of a straw poll conducted by Michael Rothstein show. The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette writer reached out to 55 media members from across the country (myself included), and 51 of them placed Griffin at the top of their ballot (myself included).

The top three in order were ...

1. Blake Griffin (Oklahoma)

2. Stephen Curry (Davidson)

3. Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina)

Click this link to see the full results.

Posted on: December 18, 2008 11:41 pm
Edited on: December 18, 2008 11:41 pm

It was an ugly (and perfect) record-setting shot

It was an ugly and goofy shot that Tyler Hansbrough used to become North Carolina's all-time leading scorer.

In other words, it was perfect.

Anything besides ugly and goofy would've been inappropriate given the subject at hand. So count me among those who smiled when Hansbrough's patented muscle-through-a-double-team-and-th
row-an-awkward-shot-at-the-rim move banked in, because a large portion of his 2,302 career points have come in a similar way, which is just one of the reasons so many fans are turned off by his game.

You see, Hansbrough doesn't shoot like Stephen Curry.

Or dribble like James Harden.

Or jump like Blake Griffin.

And that's too bad.

But the North Carolina senior is one of the best in the history of college basketball at simply putting the ball through the rim by any means necessary. Low on style points, high on actual points. And in a bottom-line business, shouldn't that be all that matters?

Answer: Yes, I think so.

So congratulations to Tyler Hansbrough.

His UNC scoring record is now 2,302 ... and counting.

Posted on: November 26, 2008 4:22 pm
Edited on: November 26, 2008 4:24 pm

Less than six hours till UNC-Notre Dame

If you don't think Luke Harangody is looking forward to tonight's match-up with Tyler Hansbrough, well, you must not have read my column from a couple of months ago, the one where Harangody openly discussed being overshadowed by Hansbrough despite having similar numbers.

"People say maybe I don't get as much respect as he does, that he's the player everyone is talking about," Harangody told me when I visited Notre Dame in September. "But that's just another thing that motivates me to do more."

Honestly, I can't wait for tonight.

Again, tip-off is scheduled for 10 p.m. ET.

It's as close to must-see TV as you can get for November basketball.

Posted on: November 22, 2008 1:35 am

Tyler's back and you're gonna be in trouble

All is right in the college basketball world.

Tyler Hansbrough is playing again.

The consensus preseason Player of the Year made his debut Friday night at UC Santa Barbara of all places. He posted numbers (13 points and seven rebounds in 25 minutes) but finished just 2-of-8 from the field, which was very un-Hansbrough-like considering the senior shot 54.3 percent from the field through three years of college.

Either way, the Tar Heels rolled.

Final score: UNC 84, UC Santa Barbara 67.

And the best news is that now we can stop wondering whether Hansbrough will be available for the Maui Invitational because barring some setback he'll be on the court when the Tar Heels open the event with Chaminade on Monday. Tuesday will be a game with either Alabama or Oregon. And if there's a basketball god in the Pacific Ocean the tournament will culminate Wednesday with a North Carolina-Notre Dame showdown that'll pit Hansbrough against fellow first team All-American Luke Harangody, which really would be a joy and the best possible way to spend Thanksgiving Eve.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

The news of the day: Psycho T is back in action.

And now he just has to get that shooting percentage up to snuff.

Posted on: November 15, 2008 10:30 pm
Edited on: November 15, 2008 10:35 pm

The other Tyler is pretty good, too

No Tyler?

No problem.

You know, because there was another Tyler ready to step in.

That's the storyline from North Carolina's opener, that even though the top-ranked Tar Heels weren't exceptional or overwhelming they still cruised to an 86-71 victory over Penn sans Tyler Hansbrough and his stress reaction. In his place was Tyler Zeller, a McDonald's All-American who got a team-high 18 points while proving that stockpiling talent regardless of your needs is the absolute best way for a coach to run a program, which is why Roy Williams has been running one of the nation's best programs (first at Kansas, now at North Carolina) for the past two decades.

Did North Carolina need frontcourt help?

No, not really.

But Williams still went out and signed a pair of McDonald's All-American frontcourt players in Zeller and Ed Davis, meaning UNC now has two of the best first-year forwards (Zeller and Davis) and two of the best veteran forwards (Hansbrough and Deon Thompson) in the entire nation. And that's why the Tar Heels would almost certainly remain a national title contender even if Hansbrough never played again, because the talent from top to bottom is unmatched, proof being how the second-best Tyler on the team got 18 in his opener.

Posted on: November 3, 2008 1:01 pm

That All-American team looks familiar

The AP All-American team looks exactly like the CBSSports.com All-American team.

But that doesn't mean there shouldn't be some debate.

The reality is that when I put together my team the only must-have-players were Tyler Hansbrough, Stephen Curry and Luke Harangody. I can't understand why any ballot wouldn't include those three names, but I can't understand a lot of what happens on AP ballots. So whatever. As for Blake Griffin and Darren Collison, yes, I also featured both. But I considered teams without those names and actually almost went one of the following:

G: Darren Collison (UCLA)
G: Stephen Curry (Davidson)
G: James Harden (Arizona State)
F: Luke Harangody (Notre Dame)
F: Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina)

Or ...

G: Stephen Curry (Davidson)
G: James Harden (Arizona State)
F: Tyler Smith (Tennessee)
F: Luke Harangody (Notre Dame)
F: Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina)

To be clear, I love Griffin and Collison. But Collison's dreadful Final Four appearance is something I nearly couldn't get out of my head, and though Griffin was dominant as a freshman his numbers weren't quite as good as Hansbrough's or Harangody's. So that's why I considered dropping one or both for Harden and/or Smith. But in the end, I think I got it right. And I think the AP voters got it right, too.

So good for me.

And good for them.

And we'll just have to argue some other day.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com