Wednesday, November 14, 2012

UGA Basketball: Five Steps to get back on track

1. Don't Panic

Take a page from Mark Richt. After the blow-out loss to South Carolina, Richt said that the one thing that his team was not going to do was panic. Same thing for Coach Fox. Lot of basketball left to be played. Put the Youngstown State loss behind us and focus on starting fast against Southern Miss.

2. Go Young

I guess one of the most disappointing aspects of the first couple of games has been our seniors' performance. I don't know what I was expecting from Vincent Williams, Sherrard Brantley and John Florveus, but we've got to get quality minutes from those guys. Fox should go young. Get Charles Mann, Brandon Morris and Kenny Gaines out there and let them play through the jitters. Have the seniors come in and back them up, instead of the other way around.

3. Go Small

We have a height advantage over a lot of teams, but it doesn't matter if our bigs cannot score and we're being out-rebounded by 12. Put Brandon Morris at the four spot and team him up with Donte Williams in the post. If Donte Williams is still not eligible this next game, then let Nemi or Tim Dixon play the five. See what happens.

4. Don't Rely on Just One Set

The triangle offense is good if you have Trey Thompkins at the top who is a great shooter, Jeremy Price with a big body to post up, and Travis Leslie to catch lobs off of the flex cut. But without those guys, teams will just push us farther and farther from the basket. Fox has to make adjustments and cobble together some offensive sets more conducive to scoring with the personnel we have.

Use the screen and roll, isolate Charles Mann or Kenny Gaines in the post against a weaker guard, use the old UCLA 1-cut (where the point guard passes to the wing and then breaks toward the basket), try to get our shooters the ball at the top of the key, even use a double high-post set at the free throw line, run KCP off of staggered screens along the base-line. After changing things up a bit, the triangle offense will be more effective.

5. Press

If Sherrard and Vincent are not shooting well, then make them defensive superstars. Whenever they're in, go to the press. Put Florveus under the basket during the press and have him stop the opponents' fast breaks. See if our defense can get us some easy baskets.

Bottom Line: A total of 3 buckets in a half, all scored by one player, won't get it done. If UGA plays poorly and is non-competitive against Southern Miss, fans will be up in arms. Let's get Donte back as soon as possible, play the young guys and at least impress the fans with our adjustments and defensive effort. We can right the ship, but we need to start baling now.

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