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  • Originally posted by boatcapt View Post

    Sure, and they would probably say that is the goal but are they really willing to change how they do things and, perhaps score a little less (for example) or even win a game or two less if it makes them stronger come NCAA Tourney time?
    And he's talking out of both sides of his mouth now. He's the one who consistently beats the drum for NOT scheduling (and potentially losing) early season games against tough opponents because he sees no evidence that it strengthens the team come tourney time.

    The fact that he wrote this line either means he's had a serious change of heart (possible, I suppose), or he doesn't even know what he's saying.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by IUPbigINDIANS View Post

      Call the Frog Brothers.
      Who are they? Is that the new nickname the Whippens are using now? ; )

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Scrub View Post

        Who are they? Is that the new nickname the Whippens are using now? ; )
        Well, I'm not sure if you're really asking or not, but, regardless, the Frog Brothers were in the movie The Lost Boys.


        As for the Whippen Brothers ... who knows, they could be coming to a campus near you. That said, they probably won't stay very long.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by IUPbigINDIANS View Post

          Well, I'm not sure if you're really asking or not, but, regardless, the Frog Brothers were in the movie The Lost Boys.


          As for the Whippen Brothers ... who knows, they could be coming to a campus near you. That said, they probably won't stay very long.
          (It was meant to be a joke at the expense of the "well traveled" Whippens)

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Scrub View Post

            And he's talking out of both sides of his mouth now. He's the one who consistently beats the drum for NOT scheduling (and potentially losing) early season games against tough opponents because he sees no evidence that it strengthens the team come tourney time.

            The fact that he wrote this line either means he's had a serious change of heart (possible, I suppose), or he doesn't even know what he's saying.
            Not talking out of both sides of my mouth at all. I've been very consistent in my belief that scheduling tough early season games does not make you a stronger team come NCAA tourney time which is the reason some people advocate for doing it. In my opinion, you get next to zero benefit with a ton of risk. What I'm advocating here is that if we modify how we recruit and perhaps the style we play to make us a more rounded and capable team in the NCAA tourney and IF those changes result in a loss or two more in the regular season, I'm OK with it. The goal should be to win a NC and not to look pretty and fill the trophy case with statistical award trophies.

            We've been running effectively the same system now for going on 19 years, collected a LOT of regular season awards and recognition and a modicum of post season success. But we've never been able to get over the NC hump so to speak. Over the last five years we have attempted to get over hump by improving the athletic ability of our players. While they do look prettier playing, that has not gotten us any closer. After 18 years, maybe it's time to admit that there are limitations to how far the WLU style can take a team. That's not an indictment on the team, the style or the coaches. EVERY style has it's strengths and weaknesses and the WLU style has shown the ability to get us VERY close to a NC...BUUUTTT...after 18 years of trying, I don't think it is out of order to say that maybe we need to tweak the style just a bit to get us over the hump...even if that tweaking results in a couple more regular season losses or some lower statistical achievements.
            Last edited by boatcapt; 05-11-2022, 11:08 AM.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by boatcapt View Post

              Not talking out of both sides of my mouth at all. I've been very consistent in my belief that scheduling tough early season games does not make you a stronger team come NCAA tourney time which is the reason some people advocate for doing it. In my opinion, you get next to zero benefit with a ton of risk. What I'm advocating here is that if we modify how we recruit and perhaps the style we play to make us a more rounded and capable team in the NCAA tourney and IF those changes result in a loss or two more in the regular season, I'm OK with it. The goal should be to win a NC and not to look pretty and fill the trophy case with statistical award trophies.

              We've been running effectively the same system now for going on 19 years, collected a LOT of regular season awards and recognition and a modicum of post season success. But we've never been able to get over the NC hump so to speak. Over the last five years we have attempted to get over hump by improving the athletic ability of our players. While they do look prettier playing, that has not gotten us any closer. After 18 years, maybe it's time to admit that there are limitations to how far the WLU style can take a team. That's not an indictment on the team, the style or the coaches. EVERY style has it's strengths and weaknesses and the WLU style has shown the ability to get us VERY close to a NC...BUUUTTT...after 18 years of trying, I don't think it is out of order to say that maybe we need to tweak the style just a bit to get us over the hump...even if that tweaking results in a couple more regular season losses or some lower statistical achievements.
              That actually makes a lot of sense, Boat. I'm not sure how feasible it is, but it makes sense.

              I suspect Crutch originally started a non-traditional system because of the difficulty of recruiting high-class athletes to an isolated hilltop in WV. So his path to building a respectable program was to find motivated kids who weren't getting chances elsewhere, and the system he built reflects that. But the rest of the region has adjusted. Howlett punched back by using the program's history of success to get better athletes who are willing to run the system. So far, that hasn't brought significant postseason success. That doesn't mean it can't, but it hasn't.

              But let's also make a nod to the fact that it's REALLY HARD to have enough go right in a season to hoist that NC trophy (don't let McCollum fool you--it's REALLY HARD). So hard that no team from this very deep and strong Atlantic Region has done it. Not perennial power IUP; not Dustin Sleva's Ship team; not even the seemingly unstoppable Matt Bingaya Fairmont team (who fell to McCollum's first NC team).

              So while Howlett's more athletic version of the Crutch system hasn't yielded results yet, that doesn't mean it won't. But you're correct, Boat, that there will come a time (perhaps in the near future) when WLU will need to look very hard in the mirror and decide what it wants to be heading into the future.

              Comment


              • I think there are pros and cons to the hard non-conference schedule.

                Realistically, there's only a couple schools that enter each year with an actual shot of hosting the Regional. Throw out the coach speak ... Clarion isn't hosting the 22-23 Regional.

                How many losses can you take and still host it? Million dollar question a year in advance. Normal year how many losses does the host have ... 2 or 3 ... somewhere in that range.

                Looking at this through the Hilltopper black and yellow sunglasses ... I wouldn't want to schedule any elite Atlantic Region teams in the non-conference. I say that because the thing that makes WL so difficult in the actual Regional (my opinion) is the surprise factor. It's not a 'surprise' in that you don't know what's coming ... but it's a 'surprise' in that you can't simulate it in practice. Seeing that chaos for the first time in a win or go home game adds a lot more stress and pressure. Playing West Virginia State this past year was just a horrible draw. Not only do they see it twice a year but they seem to know how to deal with it pretty well.

                But, we also seem to have a revolving equation of criteria from year to year. Cal had (9) losses, finished FOURTH in the West, and got the No. 2 seed. They played an incredible schedule and got rewarded for it. Not long ago IUP lost 8 games, played an incredibly tough non-conference schedule, and didn't even make the field.

                Switching gears to the IUP view, the approach can vary greatly from year to year based on the (5) mandatory PSAC East crossover games. Some years you get the East basement dwellers - Bloom, Lock Haven, Mansfield, etc. Others years you get Ship, East Stoudsburg and West Chester. In the latter set, you don't need to schedule too tough in the non-conf. Playing those three in crossover is enough to boost your SOS.

                Joe went crazy for a stretch there playing arguably some of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country. It often backfired. He relaxed that a bit and has hosted the last three Regionals (aside from the Covid year they sat out). What's helped is the West has become very strong. Even last year he scheduled Virginia State and Le Moyne. They both had rare down years but that wasn't his fault. Normally those are marquee non-conference games.

                I think you have to at least schedule one big non-conference game. In November, you can't be thinking about it helping you in March, but it will help you for the conference games quickly approaching. Some of the IUP powerhouse teams of the 90s would play creampuff after creampuff in November, start 10-0 and then struggle with the first couple West games.

                Comment


                • Obviously, garlic, mirrors and holy water were ineffective against the emergence of the "alternate style" proselytizing.

                  We know factual bullet points bounce off harmlessly. Deductive and inductive reasoning have no effect.
                  Maybe reciting Aesop' s "The Goose That Laid the Golden Eggs" will work. :-)

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Scrub View Post

                    That actually makes a lot of sense, Boat. I'm not sure how feasible it is, but it makes sense.

                    I suspect Crutch originally started a non-traditional system because of the difficulty of recruiting high-class athletes to an isolated hilltop in WV. So his path to building a respectable program was to find motivated kids who weren't getting chances elsewhere, and the system he built reflects that. But the rest of the region has adjusted. Howlett punched back by using the program's history of success to get better athletes who are willing to run the system. So far, that hasn't brought significant postseason success. That doesn't mean it can't, but it hasn't.

                    But let's also make a nod to the fact that it's REALLY HARD to have enough go right in a season to hoist that NC trophy (don't let McCollum fool you--it's REALLY HARD). So hard that no team from this very deep and strong Atlantic Region has done it. Not perennial power IUP; not Dustin Sleva's Ship team; not even the seemingly unstoppable Matt Bingaya Fairmont team (who fell to McCollum's first NC team).

                    So while Howlett's more athletic version of the Crutch system hasn't yielded results yet, that doesn't mean it won't. But you're correct, Boat, that there will come a time (perhaps in the near future) when WLU will need to look very hard in the mirror and decide what it wants to be heading into the future.
                    I agree with your observations about why Crutch created the style, how Ben has responded to the general improvement in the MEC and across the Atlantic and the difficulty of winning NC's. It's a pretty rare "problem"...most programs are going to be happy with a conf or team tourney championship ever couple of seasons and get an NCAA invite every now and again.

                    Comment


                    • 6’8 Juco commit https://twitter.com/chaz_hinds/statu...m-yZt-2ew3Az4g

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Layton View Post
                        Far from juco stereotype. For example, 4.0 GPA.
                        Has the skill set to play positionless basketball.
                        Also very strong physically.
                        Last edited by Columbuseer; 05-17-2022, 05:30 AM.

                        Comment


                        • Total speculation on 22-23 platoons
                          Thoughts, ideas?

                          Alpha platoon
                          1. Butler
                          2. McKinney
                          3. Montague
                          Positions 4 and 5 are harder to predict.
                          One guess:
                          4. Sarson
                          5. West or Cannady, depending on matchups.

                          Bravo platoon
                          1. Rasile
                          2. Webb
                          3. Spadafora
                          4. West or Cannady
                          5. Woodard or Hinds

                          Possible redshirt:
                          Barnhart?
                          Woodard?

                          Redshirting may depend on progress of players and availability of meaningful minutes.

                          Comment


                          • Chaz Hinds listed variably as 6-8 or 6-9 and 210 to 225. If he's at the upper end, that would make him the biggest big we've had in quite a while. Much will depend on how we use him...will he be a talk guard or will we use his size? Looks like he's improved his 3 point stroke since his season at UPike. If he wants to see minutes, he better continue to take and make 3s or his minutes will fall to single digits/mopup duty.

                            Comment


                            • Chaz Hinds season average based on 27 mins per game

                              2 pt fg. 60%
                              3pt fg. 35% avg 2.5 attempts per game
                              Offensive efficiency 58%
                              Scoring avg 15; 22 pts per 40 min
                              Rebounds 7
                              Assists 3
                              Steals 1.5

                              He is a typical wlu recruit who can do a bit of everything. Just happens to be 6-8 with very muscular frame. Big difference from a skinny 6-7 freshman.

                              His 60% 2 pt fg % and 7 rebounds indicate he is comfortable inside. IMHO Much better footwork and handles compared to prior bigs that have transferred out of wlu in the past.
                              Last edited by Columbuseer; 05-20-2022, 07:57 AM.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Columbuseer View Post
                                Chaz Hinds season average based on 27 mins per game

                                2 pt fg. 60%
                                3pt fg. 35% avg 2.5 attempts per game
                                Offensive efficiency 58%
                                Scoring avg 15; 22 pts per 40 min
                                Rebounds 7
                                Assists 3
                                Steals 1.5

                                He is a typical wlu recruit who can do a bit of everything. Just happens to be 6-8 with very muscular frame. Big difference from a skinny 6-7 freshman.

                                His 60% 2 pt fg % and 7 rebounds indicate he is comfortable inside. IMHO Much better footwork and handles compared to prior bigs that have transferred out of wlu in the past.
                                There's the rub. He has things in his skill set that we haven't had in a big in quite a while. Will we take advantage of those "different" skills or will we use him as nothing more than a really big guard?

                                Comment

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