Thoughts on last night's game

Discussion in 'MinerDigs' started by MinerManiac, Dec 4, 2019.

  1. MinerManiac

    MinerManiac MI Hall of Famer
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    Just a few random thoughts on last night's game, based on what I saw and on some of the comments I've read:

    Williams was the only starter to show up last night. He was 9-13 from the field. The rest of the team? A blistering 9-33, 27.3%.

    We can now stop talking about having a bench. In big games Terry plays his starters for well over 30 minutes a game. Odigie gets significant time, and Hawkins gets a few minutes. Everyone else either sits or only gets spot minutes. This, in my opinion, is a mistake. The one good thing about all of the Div II schools we've played this year is that it's given the bench a chance to play. Hawkins was excellent in the last game. Tarke started out slowly this year, but has improved in each game where he has received time, and played really well against East Central. Stroud has shown flashes. Verhoeven, while not our most talented big man, plays smart, only taking shots he can make, and defends the rim well. Yet last night, when every starter not named Bryson Williams was struggling, Efe plays 12 minutes, Hawkins 7, Archie 2, and Verhoeven a few seconds. Meanwhile all starters play at least 33 minutes. Boum, who hasn't been able to throw it in the ocean all season, played 37 minutes. Terry has used these cupcake games to develop a bench. But that's worthless if he doesn't use them in real games.

    Against Pine Bluff, I hope to see a heavy dose of Efe, Hawkins, Tarke, Stroud, and Archie. Efe has been up and down this season, he needs to calm down and start playing better. Hawkins apparently needs to prove himself to the coaching staff yet again. Tarke earned minutes that he didn't receive after the East Central game, he needs to show that his effort there wasn't a fluke. Stroud needs to learn shot selection. If he starts to play within his game he can make some good contributions to the team. And Archie apparently needs to knock the rust off; those rumors about him being the best player on the team so far haven't come close to fruition. Among the starters, Lathon needs to get significant time in order to get his mojo back, he hasn't had it these last couple of games. Williams doesn't need to play a lot unless we need him in there. The bench players that prove themselves on Saturday need receive the minutes they earned in real games. I don't need to see 33 minutes of Vila or 37 minutes of Boum when they're struggling so bad.

    Hawkins had a steal for a layup in the first half last night. He's done that a lot so far this season, despite playing limited minutes.

    Boum reminds me of a young Randy Culpepper in a way, as he's never seen a shot that he didn't like. The huge difference is that while his poor shot selection often got the young Culpepper in trouble, he sometimes would have a huge game. So far, Boum's shot selection has only hurt us. Yet he still plays monster minutes.

    Isn't Vila supposed to be a shooter? On our last possession, he received the ball behind the arc with a great look at the basket, yet passed it to Lathon, who was much further out, and had to put up a contested three. I know that Vila hasn't set the world on fire so far this year, be he had a great look. I wanted to scream "SHOOT THE DAMN BALL!", but my wife wouldn't have appreciated it.

    We play pretty good defense, but all too often give up an offensive rebound. We have to stop doing that. We've got size, strength, and quickness, but lack fundamentals on rebounding. Despite what Fili says, we need to learn to block out.

    I've seen a couple of posters pointing out that a lot of fans didn't see us sweeping the Aggies before the season started, and that everyone should calm down. There's more to this loss than failing to sweep what has been a pretty good Aggie team for the last several years. There's every starter but Williams playing poorly. There's the poor defensive rebounding that's been an issue all year. There's the coaching staff not trusting the bench, even when the starters are stinking up the joint. If we had played well and lost to an Aggie team that played better I would still be pissed and disappointed, but not so frustrated. However, the only person on the team or coaching staff who did their job well last night was Bryson. That's frustrating.

    We have a huge break after Pine Bluff, then play Dec. 16, 17, 19, 22, 23, and 25. If we don't start using our bench, we are going to be exhausted at the end of that run, and it will show on the court.
     
  2. FanatiCoog

    FanatiCoog MI Hall of Famer
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    Well said, Maniac.
     
  3. utep2step

    utep2step MI Miner Maniac
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    Thanks maniac. I couldn't even watch the game due to prior commitment. I would just peek at ESPN app for score.
     
  4. FanatiCoog

    FanatiCoog MI Hall of Famer
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    What baffles me is how even these DII teams have a guard or two who can light it up, yet we struggle from deep (or point blank range) year in and year out. I feel like Polk was our last really good shooter. That’s almost 10 years ago. Morris was decent but very inconsistent.
     
  5. TxRdKiller

    TxRdKiller All Star
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    Yes, yes, and yes. Spot on analysis, MM.

    I don't know much about Coach Terry but not using more of the bench last night gives me pause. He has talent sitting there ready to play and he didn't call on them when we needed them. We are right to criticize Boum and Vila and even Efi for his lack of an inside presence despite his size. But we also need to call out Coach Terry.

    The loss last night is on Coach Terry as much as it is on any of the players. He did not use his bench strength -- at all. Can't even say "enough" or "poorly." He simply did not use them and we desperately needed a spark off the bench last night. A 3 point loss that could have -- and I believe *should* have -- been a win.
     
  6. Lil_Train

    Lil_Train MI VIP
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    The Aggies offensive game plan was pretty clear: Attack Vila. On the interior, McCants dominated Vila by simply backing him down. Super soft defense by Vila. Then, when McCants took a break, Bobbitt attacked Vila off the dribble, or simply shot over Vila for big threes. Obviously, this is going to be a tactic used by teams down the line. Like others, I can't see playing Vila all those minutes. To me, he is a guy who should be playing 15-20 minutes depending on the matchup. The only bench options I see are Verhoeven and Tarke. Clearly, Terry has no confidence in these guys. Tarke is an undersized 4, and I thought he could match up well with Bobbitt; and I think Verhoeven could provide better interior defense on McCants. I hope Terry starts giving these guys some meaningful minutes.
     
  7. Voice of the Mosquito

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    The Aggies executed their game plan better than the Miners. I think Terry made a miscalculation when he refused to double team their inside players for fear their guards would kill us with threes, the opposite occurred the Aggies inside players got way too far inside and were better at finishing than he expected. CJ Bobbit for the Aggies is such a wild card, he can dominate a game or he will totally disappear, last night he was on and the Miners failed to recognize this and got burned.
     
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  8. unihorn

    unihorn MI Miner Maniac
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    One game doesn’t mean we don’t have a bench and won’t use it. CRT will adjust.
     
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  9. kickballpro

    kickballpro MI Miner Maniac
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  10. unihorn

    unihorn MI Miner Maniac
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    Let’s go win it!
     
  11. MinerManiac

    MinerManiac MI Hall of Famer
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    Actually, the numbers don't bear this out. We've played three games against Division 1 opponents: NMSU twice and UNM. In those three games here are the average minutes played by player:

    Boum: 38.3
    Edwards: 37.3
    Vila: 34.3
    Lathon: 32
    Williams: 24
    Odigie: 17.7
    Hawkins: 10
    Verhoeven: 4.3
    Stroud: 1.7
    Archie: 2
    Tarke: 0

    Williams' numbers are only as low as they are due to foul trouble, and Odigie's are inflated due to Williams' foul trouble. This is not the distribution of minutes that you would expect for a coaching staff that trusts its bench.
     
  12. jdubb66

    jdubb66 MI Hall of Famer
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    Yep, CRT needs to trust his bench more. Especially in rebounding the basketball. I haven't checked the stats but seems like we were outrebounded again.

    Miners haven't learned to play as a team yet. They play lots of individual basketball but not much in the way of a team although there have been flashes of that.

    We just couldn't throw it in the ocean last night. Wide open shots were well off target.

    Very bad charging call against Edwards cost us 3 points and maybe a tie last night. Seems like the refs were a bit one-sided but that may be the homer talking. Had a chance at the end. Haskins used to say that's all you can really ask on the road.

    Tough game against a quality opponent. Will help us later in the year.

    Miners played well defensively.
     
  13. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    Maniac! Great analysis as always and great responses from others.
    I am particularly on board with the fact that Terry is stuck in "neutral" with his starters. Can't he see that Vila is too soft, doesn't score and doesn't board? Boum: Can't he see that with all his "reputation and potential", we can't afford to have him on the floor for 37 minutes per game until he finally finds himself? Tarke, Archie and Stroud can't get their games together by riding the bench.
    I wish someone could or would post these questions directly to Terry and hopefully get some concrete answers. My only experience with him is pregame and postgame with Teicher and his questions are carefully posed; not those that we would ask. BTW; to me Terry's interviews seem to be full of programmed responses.
    If we can't do anything else, we can sure shoot free throws.
     
    13 miner1liner, Dec 4, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2019
  14. JCorona

    JCorona MI Miner Maniac
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    I don’t think Terry is hiding talent on the bench. Sometimes the jump up to higher competition doesn’t work out. Some put up impressive stats at their previous lower level teams but can’t do shit at this level. I believe he’s giving minutes to the players he knows will help us win.
     
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  15. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    The transfers that are not getting playing time; Tarke, Archie, Verhoeven all played and had impressive stats at the college level(Archie didn't get much PT at TCU) On the other hand look at the PT that Boum and Vila are getting and they certainly aren't showing their worthyness.
     
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  16. FanatiCoog

    FanatiCoog MI Hall of Famer
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    For sure. I agree with that. But perhaps CRT has got a stubborn streak because it would be tough to play any more lousy than Vila and Boum yet they have garnered all star level minutes. They have been terrible on the offensive end so far, and Vila on the defensive end too. Next man up. Why not see what we’ve got when whatever you’re doing isn’t working? Tarke looked really explosive and comfortable with the ball the other night...and I haven’t even been much of a Tarke enthusiast until very recently.
     
  17. unihorn

    unihorn MI Miner Maniac
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    The honeymoon is over hahaha.
     
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  18. minerfan_14

    minerfan_14 MI Regular
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    You don't say!
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Lil_Train

    Lil_Train MI VIP
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    I agree as well. Terry is going to play the guys he thinks will give us the best chance to win based on what he sees in practice on a daily basis. That said, depth wise, right now, we are not nearly as strong as I anticipated before the season. Hopefully a few of those bench guys can make a move as the season moves forward.
     
  20. Pony10

    Pony10 All Star
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    I’m always amused by overreactions to a single game- not specific to UTEP, just sports fans, in general.
     
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  21. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    But they can't make any moves on the bench!
     
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  22. USAFminersfan

    USAFminersfan MI Regular
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    Im also confused by the distribution of minutes.

    - Efe needs more floor time, even if it's with Williams. He's one of our only reliable scoring and rebounding threats.

    - Tarke should be getting minutes. He can't be any worse than Vila. We should really be exploring our depth, especially when the starters (other than Williams) aren't showing up.

    - we play some sloppy ball on offense. Again, other than Williams, it looks ugly out there, and has for the majority of the season

    - defensive rebounding is not close to where it should be


    We better figure out who can score, and quick. We're consistently going long stretches in every game where we can't hit a shot, or we turn it over.

    Our defense is good, and so is our ft shooting. That's however not enough to make up for the complete lack of execution in all other areas of our game. I'm still hoping this is part of the growth and familiarization processes that comes with a new team. I really hope this isn't an inherent problem due to player skill and coaching strategy...
     
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  23. DBminer

    DBminer All Star
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    What’s with utep and problems with offense ??
     
  24. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    Physically speaking; Bobbit and Mc Cants were the primary boarders and I'm convinced that we have some physical specimens of our own that could hold their own with them...Tarke, Archie, Verhoeven, Stroud and more of Efe. Vila other than being 6-11 is just a mannequin.
     
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  25. minerfan_14

    minerfan_14 MI Regular
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    Seen more overreacting here than at some EPL pubs. Goes with the territory either way.
     
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  26. JCorona

    JCorona MI Miner Maniac
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    Imo we overhyped some of the transfers. I remember reading comments saying our backups could start on any CUSA team. We’re realizing that Terry doesn’t see it that way.

    We will see more of the bench get minutes as we play easier teams and they will develop and become contributors. I don’t fault Terry for not experimenting with players he has question marks about during what is considered some of the toughest games on the schedule. Not that many top 100 teams during conference play that are as good as the nm twins.
     
  27. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    So Corona...you think Boum and Vila don't present question marks? There's no question about their contributions. I know what you mean, but it ain't working.
     
  28. nattybry

    nattybry MI Hall of Famer
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    Agree totally with playing the bench more. Even think Hawkins should start over Boum at this point. With that said, still think we have a good chance to go into conference with no more than 3 losses and good wins against UNM, NMSU, Kent St/UCIrvine and either Houston or a couple wins in Hawaii Tourney. We should go into conference play with a top 50 RPI
     
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  29. MinerManiac

    MinerManiac MI Hall of Famer
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    I agree that we overhyped some of the transfers. I was particularly worried about Tarke and Verhoeven after listening to the Tech scrimmage, and watching the Highlands game. Stroud looked like a freshman with a lot of rust. But I believe that all have shown enough improvement to earn minutes now. And I really don't get why Boum is not only starting over Hawkins, but leading the team with over 38 minutes per game. While I do love his 100% free throw shooting, his .310 from the field and .179 from three are hard to swallow. He also has an assist to turnover ratio of 1.14 to 1. Hawkins' is 5.5 to 1.

    Against the Aggies last night, I don't think that Hawkins would have done worse than Boum's 2 of 10 from the field. I stand by my belief that Hawkins should be starting, and receiving many more minutes.

    Also, in 33 minutes last night, Vila didn't score, was abused defensively, and pulled down 6 boards. Does playing him so much increase our chance to win, or should Tarke and Verhoeven receive some of thoss minutes?

    I am well familiar with sports fans' penchant for overreacting after each game, and consciously try to avoid that. If anything, I'm overreacting after six games, three of them against good teams. I don't think that keeping a short bench is helping, and that some players are receiving way more minutes than their play indicates they deserve.

    This does not mean that I've given up on Terry or the team. Far from it. I just think that there are some starters who are receiving a disproportionate number of minutes that they don't deserve.

    I agree completely.
     
  30. utep2step

    utep2step MI Miner Maniac
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    Tarke was the offense at NJIT.

    I missed the game but it sounds like McCants did to Vila what Williams did to him the first game. McCants is big boy but he's not NBA material and Williams is IMO and his stats are proof that he plays above and beyond against bigger opponents and just shoves everyone around inside. He reminds so much of Caracter who was a beast in the paint back from 2010.
     
  31. miner1liner

    miner1liner MI Hall of Famer
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    Congrats Maniac! You got it right again. None of us are getting the big bucks that Terry is to recruit, coach, select those that play and those that don't and his standing is on the line, but it's just hard to figure out what's going on right now with his short rotation. He must see something that we don't to explain why all that potential is just collecting dust.
     
  32. NY/NJminer

    NY/NJminer All Star
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    Last year there was a Fresno St fan that made some some comments on this board regarding CRT's abilities as an X's and O's coach. Seemed like sour grapes at the time. Hopefully there isn't some truth in it.
     
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  33. axingfools1

    axingfools1 MI Hall of Famer
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    Just a few more thoughts without watching the game.

    Williams is a top player in CUSA. I can't help but think of Paul Millsap.

    Edward's is by far our best shooter, but is also tabbed to defend the other teams best player. He did an excellent job on Queen. If he sticks to his percentage and hits 1 more 3-pointer last night, the outcome may have been different.

    Lathon is just so inconsistent right now. We know what he is capable offensively against big teams and crunch time, so it's frustrating that he doesn't take over more.

    If Vila were hitting 3's, rebounding and attacking the rim, I think most of us could swallow his defensive weaknesses. Until then he needs his minutes cut. Although I'm not as high on Efe as some, but I think he helps us more in regards to what we need right now. Having Efe at the 5 will also allow Williams to play more help defensive where he excels.

    McCants is athletic, but he is NOT a banger. No way he should be backing us down with Williams, Efe or Tydus out there.

    Boum handles the ball better than Lathon, but needs to re-focus his offensive approach. He needs to go inside-out and facilitate. Drive to the rim, draw fouls and use mid range. That's his game. He is an excellent free throw shooter and good defender.

    We are still missing that all important SF right now. Put Hawkins at the 3 or have him spell the guards for a spark. I thought he would have a tough time this year based on perceived competition, but I think he has earned playing time based on game performances. I hope Archie turns out, but I wouldn't mind seeing some more of Stroud/Tarke.

    I'm ok with 7 deep if that's what Terry wants, but I hope he doesnt play favorites and push others away. I would like him to concentrate players on their strengths and mix the lineups better based on in game matchups/adjustments.
     

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