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Tennessee Observati...
 
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Tennessee Observations

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(@houseizzorockin)
Posts: 69
Estimable Member
Topic starter
 

I attended the game yesterday and here's some thoughts:

1.  I was happy every time Fears and Carr hit the court.  I haven't seen any +/- stats for the game, but I'd imagine these two would show well.  They brought a sense of urgency that, for example, wasn't all that observable with Hoggard and Akins.  The slow starts to each half, with the starters on the floor, doomed us.  

2. Why does Hall seemingly think it's a prerequisite that he has to spin before shooting?  I wish he'd just go straight and hard to the rim.  He did a lot of good things out there, but (from my nose bleeds) it looked like he also passed on an open three in the waning moments of the game.  I've referred to him as one of our four best players and someone we will refer to as our 'glue guy'.  He'll still likely be that, but it also seems he has further to go to be 'all' he can be.

3. Regarding that previous prediction that we will interchangeably, from game-to-game, refer to Hoggard, Walker, Akins and Hall as our 'best' players, I'm updating that to state more often than not it'll be Walker specifically.  Walker was the only starter that seemed to bring the same urgency as Fears and Carr.

4. Wow on Carr!  It's the first time I've seen him play and, forget the depth, the dude is going to get a lot of minutes.  He's aggressive and makes things happen.  That dunk on the fast break was unbelievable!  He very well may be more athletic than Jason Richardson.  

5. The crowd was super into it for an exhibition game.  The place got loud and got loud quite often.

6. Normand not playing in an exhibition is seemingly an indicator he'll be an odd guy out given the unprecedented depth.  

7. I'll assume the low minutes for Booker were a message being sent.  

8. We miss and need Kohler.  I'll put Izzo's team priorities in the order of a) play tough defense, b) outrebound the opponent, c) have a point guard that plays the Izzo way, and d) establish the low post.  Kohler provides us the best opportunity for accomplishing this last objective.  It's unfortunate he'll be out so long, hopefully, he can be like Akins was last year and round into shape by the time March comes around.  By the way, in addition to minutes at the 5-spot, I think he can also play the 4 provided Carson Cooper is on the court at the same time (that way he and Carson can flip defensive responsibilities so that Kohler is not guarding the 4).  

9. Turnovers hurt and, hopefully, don't become a trend after last year's good work in this area.

10. I would call that end foul on Holloman as the refs wanting to be the stars of the show.  It should've gone to overtime or, given it's an exhibition, have been called a tie.  

Kindness is free.

 
Posted : 30/10/2023 6:07 pm
(@hazelmotes)
Posts: 183
Reputable Member
 

I appreciate your comments. They validate some of my takes.

I have been a little disappointed in Hall. I was hoping he would impose his will a little more. He still seems unsure of his shot. 

I thought many fans were underestimating Holloman coming into the season and I don’t think there should be any doubt that he deserves substantial minutes. He’s a good defender, makes good decisions with the ball in his hands, and his more assertive offensively. I think he will also prove to be a decent rebounder. 

I suspect that Normand did not play because of his sprained ankle. Maybe, though, he will have a hard time getting into the rotation. It might depend on whether someone other than Akins and Walker prove to be a perimeter threat.

The ref may have called that last foul on Holloman because he didn’t want an overtime. 

 

 
Posted : 31/10/2023 12:24 am
(@houseizzorockin)
Posts: 69
Estimable Member
Topic starter
 

I'm likely one of those underestimating Holloman, however, I don't see it so much as me underestimating him as opposed to just complementing the other four guards.  As good as Holloman is, and I do think he's good, I still think he's the fifth best guard on this particular team.  In most years, I'd think he'd be in line for 20+ minutes per game, and I'd be darn happy about it. 

This isn't most years, but it isn't entirely unique either.  A quick lookup and Brograkas played 9 minutes per game on a Final Four team that included Ager (Jr), Brown (So), Neitzel (Fr), Hill (Sr) and Torbert (Sr).  If you hustle, defend and play the 'right way', Izzo will find you minutes, just like he did with Brograkas. 

All six of those guys played every game and minutes that year went:

Ager 26.3
Brown 25.1
Torbert 22.6
Hill 24.1
Neitzel 16.4
Brograkas 9.0

Total = 123.5 

With that number being greater than 120 (or three 40-minute positions), those guys also had to have more than a few moments with 4 or more on the court at the same time.  That reminds me of a couple moments in the Tennessee game where Izzo had all five of this year's guards in for defense two times down the stretch.  

Back to the 2004-05 team, I'm surprised to see they actually had more guard talent than this year's team!  They also had Anderson (Sr as an undersized 4) and Davis (Jr) and both led the team in minutes as there wasn't much talent behind them.  Naymick (So) was still inexperienced and Trannon (Jr) was good for only playing half the year (after football was over), but we needed another frontcourt player (Lorbek?).  Regardless, Anderson getting hurt for that Final Four game was a difference maker.  He was our do-everything and arguably best player in that tournament and then was only able to muster 20 minutes going 0-4.  That forced us to go small more than we should've against a real good UNC front line.  We were up by 5 at the half then UNC took over after the break.  This year's team has plenty more to offer in the frontcourt than the 04-05 team, and I'd sure like to meet up against UNC in this year's tournament!

This post was modified 6 months ago by HouseIzzoRockin

Kindness is free.

 
Posted : 31/10/2023 1:07 pm
(@hazelmotes)
Posts: 183
Reputable Member
 

I have a few reasons for believing Holloman will get minutes. 

1. He brings consistency. Hoggard is unpredictable and Holloman will get some of his minutes as a result.

2. Izzo will want to play fast and guards will be more effective playing between 25-30 minutes rather than more. 

3. They’re enough bad teams in and out of conference that will allow Izzo to get Holloman minutes. 

Possible breakdown of 120 minutes for the 5 guards:

Walker: 30 

Akins: 30

Hoggard: 25

Fears: 20

Holloman: 15

 
Posted : 31/10/2023 7:26 pm
(@houseizzorockin)
Posts: 69
Estimable Member
Topic starter
 

Posted by: @hazelmotes

Possible breakdown of 120 minutes for the 5 guards:

Walker: 30 

Akins: 30

Hoggard: 25

Fears: 20

Holloman: 15

Estimating minutes is just so difficult with this team, but also fun & interesting.  I guess this also highlights a big difference to that 2004-05 team.  That team had only two frontcourt players worthy of minutes on this year's team, Paul Davis and Alan Anderson.  That provided abundant opportunities for those six guards in what was perpetually a small-ball lineup.  

That's not the case with this year's team.  The minutes above are for spots 1 to 3 and I'd guess Carr will likely earn small forward minutes too.  If Walker, Akins and Hoggard average 80 combined minutes, then that'd mean only 40 minutes for Fears, Carr, Holloman, and maybe Normand, and maybe occasionally Hall?  I don't think we'll really know until B10 season as Izzo will surely mix up the minutes and lineups in non-B10 games.  Whatever it becomes, it'll certainly be fun to watch!  

 

Kindness is free.

 
Posted : 01/11/2023 2:33 pm
HazelMotes reacted
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