Yeah all great points. I guess jury still out for me on whether he’s really really good. Or at least legit around a sort of identity. He’s been all over the map stylistically. Next 3-4 years at Marquette should tilt the table one way or the other.
I think the meta-level question of “Why is Shaka now a darling?” has to do with the relative oddity of not going portaling and also pulling a top-10 offense season out of seemingly nowhere.
I think I heard it alluded to that Shaka didn’t have full control over his roster at Texas for whatever reason. If certain kids wanted to go to Texas, he had to take them for whatever reason, and that often prevented him from taking kids he actually wanted.
No idea if that was true or not, but would explain why his Texas system didn’t remotely resemble his VCU system.
I also felt like Shaka got a little too in love with his next-level recruiting platform that UT provided. Fell into the trap of lusting after Top 50 recruits that he suddenly could get in large numbers, whereas his bread and butter at VCU was hungry, scrappy Top 200 recruits that he could develop over 3-4 years. Rooting for him to find that sweet spot at Marquette; always really liked him as a person, everyone around Richmond had great things to say about him.
Reminds me of Jay Wright talking about how he had to reevaluate recruiting years after their first Final Four run:
Everyone in the program knew something was wrong.
It went back to recruiting and suddenly trying to outgun the established blue bloods for highly ranked prospects.
“The number was the most important thing,” said former assistant Billy Lange, who was with Wright from 2001 to 2004 and 2011 to 2013 and is now an assistant coach with the Philadelphia 76ers. “You win on the court, then you want to win in the rankings.”
“I got sloppy,” Wright said. "After we went to the Final Four, it was easy to get guys. So rather than sit down with them and explain, ‘Look, I know you want to come, but this is what we do,’ I said, ‘All right, good, he’s a great player? All right, good.’
“And then they got here, we start talking about it and they’re like, ‘Whoa, no one told me about that.’ And they were right. We didn’t explain to them what this was. Some of them, when they got here, they got it. Some of them were like, ‘Wait, that’s not what I signed up for.’”
Though by 2017-18, they were striking a good balance where they had highly rated guys who fit well.
Think that may have been what happened with JAR.
If Lange is with the Sixers, who’s coaching St Joes? (never mind, just saw the article was 2018)
“Pull off a Virginia”
Yeah, sure. We had a lottery pick (Dre), a first rounder (Ty), a second rounder (Guy), and three other guys that have been on NBA rosters (Mamadi, Huff, Brax). That’s 6 NBA players on that team.
How many lottery guys on Purdue? 0
How many first rounders? 0
How many draft picks? O/U is probably like 1.5 (Colvin is way off, Kaufman Ren, maybe? Edey, maybe)
This is the time of year when hoops analysts forget how much talent matters…
I think the key for them is that they need their two rising sophomore guards(who’s names have escaped me), to basically turn into Guy and Jerome.
Good Luck with that!
Yeah, true. And just doesn’t seem terribly likely – those guys are top 90-100 guys, and ours were top 30-50ish.
For sure. I agree.
I do think Purdue’s biggest problem will be what ours was until we won.
Hard to win it without a 6’6-6’8 lottery level player who can get a bucket when he needs to.
They don’t have that along with having guards that are similar to Jerome and Guy but probably not as good.
I’m just happy that “pulling a Virginia” is being used to refer to a thing that is only halfway bad
That’s kind of why I think Ivey in his 2nd year was their best chance.
On one hand, I want to root for Purdue out of respect for the elite 8 game. But on the other hand, if they pull it off, it devalues the turn around story…
When did Shedrick’s shoulder run into Disu’s foot?
Didn’t Shed have some sort of procedure in April or so? Wonder if this is that or something else. Real practice starts Monday, I think, fwiw
Yeah I just thought it was a more minor procedure, not something that would cost his whole offseason