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Some early WAC MBB Predictions
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NMSUPistolPete Offline
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Post: #41
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
Alessandro Lever just had a Sophomore slump. Although most coaches claim a player develops most between the freshman and sophomore season, in Lever's case it did not translate to the court as well as many expected. I happen to think a player gains most of his confidence between his sophomore and junior season. At any rate, Lever still has two more season to redeem himself as a force in the WAC.
(This post was last modified: 07-29-2019 06:24 AM by NMSUPistolPete.)
07-29-2019 06:12 AM
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gleadley Offline
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Post: #42
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 06:12 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Alessandro Lever just had a Sophomore slump. Although most coaches claim a player develops most between the freshman and sophomore season, in Lever's case it did not translate to the court as well as many expected. I happen to think a player gains most of his confidence between his sophomore and junior season. At any rate, Lever still has two more season to redeem himself as a force in the WAC.

100% agree on wanting/needing to see a jump from sophomore to junior year. It's why my biggest disappointment from 2018-19 was actually Oscar Frayer. I'm more than happy to have the "regressed" conversation about him. In what should've been a breakout year for O, he fell off in nearly every offensive statistical category (e.g. FG%, 3PT%, FT%), including career lows in points and rebounds per game. With the influx of redshirt and transfer talent the Lopes have coming in, I would honestly be stunned if Frayer was anything more than a role player in the 2019-20 season.
07-29-2019 09:55 AM
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RoosHouse Offline
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Post: #43
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-28-2019 06:55 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Obviously, I predict NMSU to win the WAC next season. After NMSU, I think the WAC is a three horse race for second place; Grand Canyon, Cal Baptist, and Seattle U. UTRGV could also join this group but they have question marks in the paint.

I'm not sure about the WAC rankings but I do see tiers...

NMSU is on the top tier. GCU, CBU, and Seattle are on the second tier. UVU, CSUB, and UTRGV are on the third tier. And, UMKC and Chicago State are on the four tier. I'm still unclear on the order of finish or how each tier will play out.

I do think this season's version of the WAC will be a guard driven conference. Guard play will dictate the order of finish; as there are not really that many dominant big men in the WAC.

The stats just speak otherwise. Chicago ST is behind everyone else as much or even more than NMSU is ahead of everyone else.
07-29-2019 11:31 AM
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SoCalBobcat78 Offline
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Post: #44
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 06:12 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Alessandro Lever just had a Sophomore slump. Although most coaches claim a player develops most between the freshman and sophomore season, in Lever's case it did not translate to the court as well as many expected. I happen to think a player gains most of his confidence between his sophomore and junior season. At any rate, Lever still has two more season to redeem himself as a force in the WAC.

Okay, so you feel it was a "sophomore slump." Gleadley thinks he was a "disappointment" or "stagnated, maybe." Whatever. He certainly did not meet expectations. Lever was one of 21 college centers who were named to the watch list for the 2019 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award. A national committee of top college basketball personnel selected the candidates for the honor, which is presented by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

You said that the CBU big men "were serviceable" and I don't necessarily disagree with that assessment. Zach Pirog, their 6'11" big man averaged 14 minutes per game, mainly because he could not stay out of foul trouble. He did get 20 minutes plus twice in conference play:

Against Seattle: 23 minutes, 9 points, 7 rebounds, one block, 4 fouls
Against UVU: 21 minutes, 6 points, 8 rebounds, 5 blocks, 4 fouls.

Those were back-to-back games at home. If they can get 20 minutes a night from Pirog, he has as much value as Lever. If Pirog is serviceable, what is Lever? Lever was 4th in rebounding on GCU at 4.2 per game, just ahead of guard Carlos Johnson at 4.1 per game. Lever was tied for 9th on the team with Michael Finke with two blocks.

Lever is a good three point shooter, but beyond that he is kind of useless. He is a one-trick pony at this point in time. I thought coming off a good offensive performance in conference, which earned him first team All-WAC, he would work on improving his rebounding and shot blocking, while becoming a top three scorer in the WAC. I think the coaches and the media expected that as well when they selected him as the "WAC preseason player of the year." None of that happened last season. He did not meet expectations. He definitely will not be on the watch list for the 2020 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award.
07-29-2019 01:37 PM
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PojoaquePosse Offline
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Post: #45
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 11:31 AM)RoosHouse Wrote:  
(07-28-2019 06:55 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Obviously, I predict NMSU to win the WAC next season. After NMSU, I think the WAC is a three horse race for second place; Grand Canyon, Cal Baptist, and Seattle U. UTRGV could also join this group but they have question marks in the paint.

I'm not sure about the WAC rankings but I do see tiers...

NMSU is on the top tier. GCU, CBU, and Seattle are on the second tier. UVU, CSUB, and UTRGV are on the third tier. And, UMKC and Chicago State are on the four tier. I'm still unclear on the order of finish or how each tier will play out.

I do think this season's version of the WAC will be a guard driven conference. Guard play will dictate the order of finish; as there are not really that many dominant big men in the WAC.

The stats just speak otherwise. Chicago ST is behind everyone else as much or even more than NMSU is ahead of everyone else.

You forget that UMKC is bad AND they have the refs intentionally picking on them. Those 2 things, when put together, equate to a ChiSt level team.
07-29-2019 01:38 PM
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NMSUPistolPete Offline
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Post: #46
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 11:31 AM)RoosHouse Wrote:  
(07-28-2019 06:55 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Obviously, I predict NMSU to win the WAC next season. After NMSU, I think the WAC is a three horse race for second place; Grand Canyon, Cal Baptist, and Seattle U. UTRGV could also join this group but they have question marks in the paint.

I'm not sure about the WAC rankings but I do see tiers...

NMSU is on the top tier. GCU, CBU, and Seattle are on the second tier. UVU, CSUB, and UTRGV are on the third tier. And, UMKC and Chicago State are on the four tier. I'm still unclear on the order of finish or how each tier will play out.

I do think this season's version of the WAC will be a guard driven conference. Guard play will dictate the order of finish; as there are not really that many dominant big men in the WAC.

The stats just speak otherwise. Chicago ST is behind everyone else as much or even more than NMSU is ahead of everyone else.

Well, if you look into Chicago State's recruiting, Irvin did an excellent job closing the talent gap between last season's performance and where much of the WAC teams reside currently. Irvin still needs to coach his young team up but I do think he now has the talent to beat a few WAC teams this season. Irvin brought in two JUCO top 100 players...

Soloman Hunt (6'8, 240-lbs, C) - Ranked #90 in the 2019 JC Top 100. He averaged 10.1 ppg & 8.2 rpg at East Los Angeles CC.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9_lbe0rh6g

KeSean Davis (6'7, 225-lbs, PF) - Ranked #43 in the 2018 JC Top 100. He averaged 13.4 ppg & 6.3 rpg at Seward County CC. Davis originally committed to Utah State a year ago but for whatever reason never enrolled there.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3Ieb277YYg

Also, Ervin brought in an interesting ultra athletic JC recruit from Canada...

Jace Colley (6'7, 205-lbs, SF) - CCAA 2019 National Player of the Year. He averaged 23.5 ppg & 8.0 rpg at Holland College in Canada. Colley's stats were impressive but he was literally a man among boys in the Canadian JC league.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38Fl_qBvfJg

Irvin also added what looks to be a couple solid guard prospects...

Xavier Johnson (5'11, 165-lbs, PG) - He averaged 17.1 ppg & 3.0 apg at Hill Junior College. He knocked down 95 threes last season.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMosi8UYDqU

Andrew Lewis (6'3, 170-lbs, SG) - he averaged 12.6 ppg & 3.7 rpg at Highland CC.

Also, Chicago State returns two starters top rebounder Christian Jacob (10.9 ppg & 5.7 rpg) and top 3-point shooter Travon Bell (9.9 ppg); with 63 threes last season.
(This post was last modified: 07-29-2019 02:42 PM by NMSUPistolPete.)
07-29-2019 01:39 PM
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NMSUPistolPete Offline
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Post: #47
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 01:37 PM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  
(07-29-2019 06:12 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Alessandro Lever just had a Sophomore slump. Although most coaches claim a player develops most between the freshman and sophomore season, in Lever's case it did not translate to the court as well as many expected. I happen to think a player gains most of his confidence between his sophomore and junior season. At any rate, Lever still has two more season to redeem himself as a force in the WAC.

Okay, so you feel it was a "sophomore slump." Gleadley thinks he was a "disappointment" or "stagnated, maybe." Whatever. He certainly did not meet expectations. Lever was one of 21 college centers who were named to the watch list for the 2019 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award. A national committee of top college basketball personnel selected the candidates for the honor, which is presented by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

You said that the CBU big men "were serviceable" and I don't necessarily disagree with that assessment. Zach Pirog, their 6'11" big man averaged 14 minutes per game, mainly because he could not stay out of foul trouble. He did get 20 minutes plus twice in conference play:

Against Seattle: 23 minutes, 9 points, 7 rebounds, one block, 4 fouls
Against UVU: 21 minutes, 6 points, 8 rebounds, 5 blocks, 4 fouls.

Those were back-to-back games at home. If they can get 20 minutes a night from Pirog, he has as much value as Lever. If Pirog is serviceable, what is Lever? Lever was 4th in rebounding on GCU at 4.2 per game, just ahead of guard Carlos Johnson at 4.1 per game. Lever was tied for 9th on the team with Michael Finke with two blocks.

Lever is a good three point shooter, but beyond that he is kind of useless. He is a one-trick pony at this point in time. I thought coming off a good offensive performance in conference, which earned him first team All-WAC, he would work on improving his rebounding and shot blocking, while becoming a top three scorer in the WAC. I think the coaches and the media expected that as well when they selected him as the "WAC preseason player of the year." None of that happened last season. He did not meet expectations. He definitely will not be on the watch list for the 2020 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award.

When I say "serviceable", I mean CBU's big men can get their points feeding off the guard play but none have shown the ability to completely takeover a game; through isolation. Unless 6'9 JC forward Tristan Forsyth adds a low post dimension we haven't seen from the current big men on the roster, Dajon Davis appears to be CBU's best big man; and he gets most of his points off his hustle; being at the right place at the right time.

The most impressive thing about CBU basketball is Rick Croy. I see a thinking man's coach; who gets the most out of his roster. He appears to have a purpose (a plan) for every one of his players. He was the only coach to devise a game plan to stifle NMSU. Four times out of five, NMSU wins the game in Riverside. But that one time he figured out how to shutdown NMSU offense while at the same time pulling out Milan Acquaah's best game. I didn't think it was possible but one player's offense was able to beat NMSU; with the rest of the CBU teams playing their respective roles feeding off Acquaah. But it happened. Rick Croy is the reason I think it is possible for CBU to finish second.

As for Lever, I think he is a much best player than he showed closing out last season. In his case, I think he is capable of taking over a game. He is the most highly skilled big man in the WAC. Lever's main focus for next season should be not to be a defensive and rebounding liability while on the court. That requires more hustle and less crying to the refs..
(This post was last modified: 07-29-2019 02:45 PM by NMSUPistolPete.)
07-29-2019 02:29 PM
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gleadley Offline
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Post: #48
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 02:29 PM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  
(07-29-2019 01:37 PM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  
(07-29-2019 06:12 AM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  Alessandro Lever just had a Sophomore slump. Although most coaches claim a player develops most between the freshman and sophomore season, in Lever's case it did not translate to the court as well as many expected. I happen to think a player gains most of his confidence between his sophomore and junior season. At any rate, Lever still has two more season to redeem himself as a force in the WAC.

Okay, so you feel it was a "sophomore slump." Gleadley thinks he was a "disappointment" or "stagnated, maybe." Whatever. He certainly did not meet expectations. Lever was one of 21 college centers who were named to the watch list for the 2019 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award. A national committee of top college basketball personnel selected the candidates for the honor, which is presented by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

You said that the CBU big men "were serviceable" and I don't necessarily disagree with that assessment. Zach Pirog, their 6'11" big man averaged 14 minutes per game, mainly because he could not stay out of foul trouble. He did get 20 minutes plus twice in conference play:

Against Seattle: 23 minutes, 9 points, 7 rebounds, one block, 4 fouls
Against UVU: 21 minutes, 6 points, 8 rebounds, 5 blocks, 4 fouls.

Those were back-to-back games at home. If they can get 20 minutes a night from Pirog, he has as much value as Lever. If Pirog is serviceable, what is Lever? Lever was 4th in rebounding on GCU at 4.2 per game, just ahead of guard Carlos Johnson at 4.1 per game. Lever was tied for 9th on the team with Michael Finke with two blocks.

Lever is a good three point shooter, but beyond that he is kind of useless. He is a one-trick pony at this point in time. I thought coming off a good offensive performance in conference, which earned him first team All-WAC, he would work on improving his rebounding and shot blocking, while becoming a top three scorer in the WAC. I think the coaches and the media expected that as well when they selected him as the "WAC preseason player of the year." None of that happened last season. He did not meet expectations. He definitely will not be on the watch list for the 2020 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award.

When I say "serviceable", I mean CBU's big men can get their points feeding off the guard play but none have shown the ability to completely takeover a game; through isolation. Unless 6'9 JC forward Tristan Forsyth adds a low post dimension we haven't seen from the current big men on the roster, Dajon Davis appears to be CBU's best big man; and he gets most of his points off his hustle; being at the right place at the right time.

The most impressive thing about CBU basketball is Rick Croy. I see a thinking man's coach; who gets the most out of his roster. He appears to have a purpose (a plan) for every one of his players. He was the only coach to devise a game plan to stifle NMSU. Four times out of five, NMSU wins the game in Riverside. But that one time he figured out how to shutdown NMSU offense while at the same time pulling out Milan Acquaah's best game. I didn't think it was possible but one player's offense was able to beat NMSU; with the rest of the CBU teams playing their respective roles feeding off Acquaah. But it happened. Rick Croy is the reason I think it is possible for CBU to finish second.

As for Lever, I think he is a much best player than he showed closing out last season. In his case, I think he is capable of taking over a game. He is the most highly skilled big man in the WAC. Lever's main focus for next season should be not to be a defensive and rebounding liability while on the court. That requires more hustle and less crying to the refs..

Given the athleticism GCU is adding via transfer and coming out of redshirt eligibility, I'm honestly struggling to see how Lever stays on the floor as much in 2019-20. It would be a disservice to the team and fans if Majerle tries to slow it down and force the game through Ale (like he did with old man Braun), rather than let his run. Unfortunately, given how loyal Majerle has been to longer-term players in his program, I'm afraid that is exactly what will happen.
07-29-2019 03:01 PM
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SoCalBobcat78 Offline
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Post: #49
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 02:29 PM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  When I say "serviceable", I mean CBU's big men can get their points feeding off the guard play but none have shown the ability to completely takeover a game; through isolation. Unless 6'9 JC forward Tristan Forsyth adds a low post dimension we haven't seen from the current big men on the roster, Dajon Davis appears to be CBU's best big man; and he gets most of his points off his hustle; being at the right place at the right time.

The most impressive thing about CBU basketball is Rick Croy. I see a thinking man's coach; who gets the most out of his roster. He appears to have a purpose (a plan) for every one of his players. He was the only coach to devise a game plan to stifle NMSU. Four times out of five, NMSU wins the game in Riverside. But that one time he figured out how to shutdown NMSU offense while at the same time pulling out Milan Acquaah's best game. I didn't think it was possible but one player's offense was able to beat NMSU; with the rest of the CBU teams playing their respective roles feeding off Acquaah. But it happened. Rick Croy is the reason I think it is possible for CBU to finish second.

As for Lever, I think he is a much best player than he showed closing out last season. In his case, I think he is capable of taking over a game. He is the most highly skilled big man in the WAC. Lever's main focus for next season should be not to be a defensive and rebounding liability while on the court. That requires more hustle and less crying to the refs..

I think Pirog is a serviceable player because he can rebound and block shots. He doesn't give the team much offensively, but that is not his role. I think their guard, Ty Rowell, is a serviceable player because he is a good three point shooter. He will hustle, but the rest of his game is limited.

Lever is a good shooter. He needs to get tougher in the low post on both offense and defense. He is too soft and unless he gets tougher and stronger, he is going to be just a serviceable center. Hopefully, Menzies can help develop his overall talents, including his passing skills.

The win over NMSU was a freak thing. CBU took the lead from the start and never gave it back. Acquaah got rolling early and they just kept feeding him. The Aggies guards are not big and it seemed like a good match-up in that game for him. CBU had four players foul out and was outrebounded by 11, but found a way to hang on. It was one of those games when everything went right for CBU.
07-29-2019 08:26 PM
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NMSUPistolPete Offline
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Post: #50
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
(07-29-2019 08:26 PM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  
(07-29-2019 02:29 PM)NMSUPistolPete Wrote:  When I say "serviceable", I mean CBU's big men can get their points feeding off the guard play but none have shown the ability to completely takeover a game; through isolation. Unless 6'9 JC forward Tristan Forsyth adds a low post dimension we haven't seen from the current big men on the roster, Dajon Davis appears to be CBU's best big man; and he gets most of his points off his hustle; being at the right place at the right time.

The most impressive thing about CBU basketball is Rick Croy. I see a thinking man's coach; who gets the most out of his roster. He appears to have a purpose (a plan) for every one of his players. He was the only coach to devise a game plan to stifle NMSU. Four times out of five, NMSU wins the game in Riverside. But that one time he figured out how to shutdown NMSU offense while at the same time pulling out Milan Acquaah's best game. I didn't think it was possible but one player's offense was able to beat NMSU; with the rest of the CBU teams playing their respective roles feeding off Acquaah. But it happened. Rick Croy is the reason I think it is possible for CBU to finish second.

As for Lever, I think he is a much best player than he showed closing out last season. In his case, I think he is capable of taking over a game. He is the most highly skilled big man in the WAC. Lever's main focus for next season should be not to be a defensive and rebounding liability while on the court. That requires more hustle and less crying to the refs..

I think Pirog is a serviceable player because he can rebound and block shots. He doesn't give the team much offensively, but that is not his role. I think their guard, Ty Rowell, is a serviceable player because he is a good three point shooter. He will hustle, but the rest of his game is limited.

Lever is a good shooter. He needs to get tougher in the low post on both offense and defense. He is too soft and unless he gets tougher and stronger, he is going to be just a serviceable center. Hopefully, Menzies can help develop his overall talents, including his passing skills.

The win over NMSU was a freak thing. CBU took the lead from the start and never gave it back. Acquaah got rolling early and they just kept feeding him. The Aggies guards are not big and it seemed like a good match-up in that game for him. CBU had four players foul out and was outrebounded by 11, but found a way to hang on. It was one of those games when everything went right for CBU.

That first NMSU/CBU was a frustrating game to watch for Aggie fans. NMSU put up 29 more shots (shooting only 31%) than CBU. And, out rebounded the Lancers by 11. CBU played a physical style of defense; keeping CBU defenders between the Aggie players and the basket. NMSU couldn't get a clean look at the rim with CBU defenders walling up and bumping our player off balance. CBU was able to hold off NMSU by hitting free-throw after free-throw (32 of 36). NMSU's mistake was coming out flat in the second half and letting CBU build a double digit lead. CBU may not be the most talented team in the WAC but they will not lose a game from the free-throw line.
(This post was last modified: 07-31-2019 04:33 PM by NMSUPistolPete.)
07-31-2019 04:32 PM
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NMSUPistolPete Offline
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Post: #51
RE: Some early WAC MBB Predictions
NMSU getting ready for this season... off season workouts...


(This post was last modified: 08-01-2019 09:37 PM by NMSUPistolPete.)
08-01-2019 09:36 PM
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