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  • It's the staying in front of offensive players issue that was mentioned above that worries me most.

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    • Looks like this break couldn't come at a better time for the Hilltoppers.

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      • I wonder if WLU really has the capacity to get better than they are at any given point. I mean, we are going 10 deep with two bench players apparently as our garbage time subs so short of burning one or two of our three redshirts, not a lot to be gained there...Ben could monkey around with the starting five but our MPG are really homogenous among the top 10 players so that really wouldn't have much in-game effect. Can't ramp up practice intensity because WLU practices are among the most intense and competitive in the nation.. We dam sure aren't going to change anything about the style we play. Maybe some benefit could be had by reducing second five minutes?

        Really, the only thing we can hope for is that we just play our way out of our various slumps and hope our opponents aren't as good as the last four.

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        • Originally posted by boatcapt View Post

          Really, the only thing we can hope for is that we just play our way out of our various slumps and hope our opponents aren't as good as the last four.
          Well, if you have any hope of playing meaningful basketball after February, you better figure out how to beat good opponents.

          Things seem dire right now after two subpar defensive performances. But I trust that they'll come out of the break ready to play. Time to stop worrying about hosting regionals (or any other extracurricular crap like that)--time to just get back to playing quality Hilltopper basketball.

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          • Wlu played much better against angelo. In the world of the transfer portal, blending 7 new players has its own timeline, given it is a unique style. Much faster passing this game. We hit the boards hard against a bigger team.

            angelo had 5 ex d1 players including a 4* who began at arkansas, who hit 7-10 from three. They hit 64% from three.

            These two teams have contested our threes by putting taller athletic players on our guards. In 2nd half, we were starting to wear them down. As a result, Rasile was getting open looks and almost led us back to victory.

            Much too early to write us off.
            imho, we may need to get another hot 3 pt shooter on the floor with rasile and montague.

            I am hoping fergus gets comfortable with the
            style. When teams are selling out on the three, he can take them to the rim. Just like rasile did against angelo.

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            • How did Angelo look against WL.

              LSC will most likely comes down to Angelo or West Texas. WT and Angelo have dominated the RMAC.

              So, let me know your takes on Angelo.

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              • Originally posted by BuffaloChip View Post
                How did Angelo look against WL.

                LSC will most likely comes down to Angelo or West Texas. WT and Angelo have dominated the RMAC.

                So, let me know your takes on Angelo.
                Dominican and angelo state had similar profiles, which can give many teams trouble.

                angelo state:
                - very athletic.
                - 6-10 athletic ex d1 big
                - 5 ex d1 players
                - everyone can handle the ball and attack the rim
                - 40% from three as a team. 40% for an individual is elite level. All the more impressive for a team.
                - three players over 40%, with % climbing when given wide open looks.
                ‚Äč
                imho, teams have to stop 1-on-1 dribble drive and cover the kickout pass for three. If help defense is needed, then one is vulnerable.
                Force them into turnaround jumpers. They do have a tendency to attempt difficult shots in the paint if kickout is covered. Control the boards.
                Historically, wtam has had quick, talented athletes, so they should match up well with them if they are similar to past teams.

                Of course, if they hit 64% from three as a team, winning is problematic.

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                • Originally posted by Columbuseer View Post
                  Wlu played much better against angelo. In the world of the transfer portal, blending 7 new players has its own timeline, given it is a unique style. Much faster passing this game. We hit the boards hard against a bigger team.

                  angelo had 5 ex d1 players including a 4* who began at arkansas, who hit 7-10 from three. They hit 64% from three.

                  These two teams have contested our threes by putting taller athletic players on our guards. In 2nd half, we were starting to wear them down. As a result, Rasile was getting open looks and almost led us back to victory.

                  Much too early to write us off.
                  imho, we may need to get another hot 3 pt shooter on the floor with rasile and montague.

                  I am hoping fergus gets comfortable with the
                  style. When teams are selling out on the three, he can take them to the rim. Just like rasile did against angelo.
                  How do other DIIs find athletic bigs but we seem unable (or uninterested) to do so? I was lead to believe that these cats were all sucked up by D1's. Yet we seem to be playing against a bunch of them!!

                  Not giving up, but the trend line is certainly not headed in the right direction. Before the season all we heard was how this team was actually better than last and how the transfer ins were better than the transfer outs. The reality is, they aren't...MAYBE they become as good, but right now, not even close.

                  This team is starting to look like a five or six loss team. Maybe good enough to get into the playoffs but an early exit if they do.

                  But it is also possible that they right the ship as they have in seasons past, cruise through the rest of the season, benefit from a good draw in the playoffs and again appear in the NC game.

                  As for Fegus, his actual stats tell the story. You can say his advanced stats point to hidden untapped performance, but sad to say, advanced stats don't put points on the board. He played 4 min against Dom and zero against ASU. Potential and performance elsewhere aside, it seems that Ben has either made a decision on him or is very close to doing so.
                  Last edited by boatcapt; 12-20-2023, 08:43 AM.

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                  • Originally posted by Scrub View Post

                    Well, if you have any hope of playing meaningful basketball after February, you better figure out how to beat good opponents.

                    Things seem dire right now after two subpar defensive performances. But I trust that they'll come out of the break ready to play. Time to stop worrying about hosting regionals (or any other extracurricular crap like that)--time to just get back to playing quality Hilltopper basketball.
                    I think we'll benefit from playing some lesser teams in conference and then roll the dice against UC, WV State and Fairmont. If we go 3-3 on the season against them, that will put us at 5 losses headed into the Conf Tourney with NCAA seeding based on how we do there. Could be as high as 4 or as low as 7. Buuuuttt...A crazy Ivan loss to anyone else OR finish 2-4 against UC/WVS/Fmt...all bets are off.

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                    • FYI
                      coach howlett's comments on the three 2024 signees.
                      wlu is extending its recruiting reach.

                      https://hilltoppersports.com/news/20...5-signees.aspx

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                      • I am going to be patient with this team. We lost many games of experience as well as leadership with the graduation of Butler, McKinney and Cannady. It is going to take some time to fill that void. Butler played 4 years and graduated so I do not consider him a transfer. He lived up to his commitment.

                        Regarding transfers:

                        Transfers out:
                        Webb - 1.7 pts and 4 mins a game.
                        Sampson - gave up basketball 3.7 pts and 11 mins a game
                        Dronjak - redshirt. Returned to serbia

                        Transfers in:
                        Shuler - leading scorer on his team
                        Korte - all mec, adapting well to totally new style
                        Fergus- mvp of conference, all region, leading scorer, still adjusting to radically different style of play. Still needs to click for him.
                        riesbeck - injured

                        I like the long term upside of the transfer in group.

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                        • Good time to point out last year's WLU team gave up 114 points in a loss to a 6-win Wheeling team. Two months later, that same WLU team was playing for a national championship. Not a prediction. Just a reminder. Lot of basketball yet to be played.

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                          • Fyi
                            24 signee jp dragas scored 46 in 82-76 win over rival Geneva in OT.

                            https://www.sportsdeskmagazine.com/m...on-next-night/

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                            • Originally posted by timbertopper View Post
                              Good time to point out last year's WLU team gave up 114 points in a loss to a 6-win Wheeling team. Two months later, that same WLU team was playing for a national championship. Not a prediction. Just a reminder. Lot of basketball yet to be played.
                              Hosting may be complicated at this stage. Gannon, at most, may lose a game or two (if that). Same with California. They'll play each other at least twice before NCAAs (likely three times).

                              Funny thing is if Gannon hosts ... no idea where they'd actually play. Their gym is closed and their temporary home hosts all sorts of high school PIAA State games.

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                              • Unless the process has changed, a school must submit a proposal to host regional. If one does not submit a proposal well in advance, one does not host even if ranked #1 in region.
                                don't know evaluation criteria for proposals.

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