I missed the game in its entirety, first because I was at the Cal-Arizona vball game (wherein we won the Pac10!). And then, also, because I proceeded to not watch the game. However, it looked like an unfortunate first half, insomuch as Cal scored 5 points in the first half. That's not good. We'll have more on vball's big Pac10 championship in the coming week, but CGB mod Kodiak did have some thoughts on the basketball game played today.
After the jump, take a look at those thoughts and add your own in the comments. If you want to discuss today's college football, go here. You can read the official ESPN recap here. GO BEARS!
1. Really sloppy play to start the game on O. At least our D and defensive glass work is fundamentally sound. Monty starts with zone again. I remember he mentioned a while ago that early in the year, many teams don't have their zone offense quite as polished as man...especially in pre-season tourneys where there is limited prep time.
2. Concerted effort to work it to post early. Entry passes are better, but not able to convert yet. Our best low post entry is still using either Kamp or MSF at the middle 3 pt line and passing to the other big in the box. Not as good passing from the wing...we're getting the ball in, but not in a place where Kamp has been most comfortable.
3. ND is cold from the outside, but they already show that they know how to move the ball around better on offense. This is going to challenge our young guys to be awake on D. Really good test facing a team of upper classmen this early.
4. Flat outside shots are hinting at tired legs on both sides. It's a clankfest. Could come down to forcing turnovers and getting transition buckets for a spark.
5. Smith and Solomon have clearly earned Monty's trust. First reserves in the game and relatively early.
6. Nothing easy down low. The ND bigs stay home, play position, and keep their hands up. We're going to need to move the ball and make our foul shots.
7. Refs are calling this one tight. Worried if this drives Jorge/Kamp/MSF off the floor. We're probably not as deep as ND.
8. The cold start affects us more than ND because of our inexperience. The guys look like they're pressing now. Starting to make mistakes from forcing things. Need to trust the offense, make the right passes, and expect the shots to fall. That's what ND is doing and that's why they have a slim lead.
9. They're doing an effective job shutting down our post game without fouling. Big guys haven't made the adjustment to dish it to a cutter or to an outside shooter yet.
10. ND has us out of rhythm offensively. Passing is not crisp. Guys are starting to force things. Over-dribbling. Going into traffic. Going outside the offense. ND is still running their stuff. And slowly pulling away. Experience v. youth.
11. Kamp is having a bad 1st half. No confidence in his outside shot. Forcing passes and running over guys. This is the first time this year I've seen him off his game. And it's affecting the whole offense. We really rely on him to help keep the ball moving.
12. Jorge is also having a rough 1st half. His dependence on drawing fouls is being exposed. ND is too disciplined with their D to let Jorge get easy baskets in transition. He's more of a transition PG, not a half-set PG. Without Kamp and MSF to pick up the slack, our O is really having issues. The lack of a true point guard is getting exposed today.
13. Gotta love Franklin. Starts the 2nd half with an out of control drive and a charge. Then the next possession he knocks down a contested 3. Fearless. Monty's gonna have white hairs by March. Or Xmas. He needs to have the shot selection talk. Cattle prod mandatory.
14. Crabbe can create his own shot and has the length to get it off the dribble...but is still playing within the flow. I love his unselfishness....but damn, man. You're our most talented player on offense. Call. Your. Own. Number. Nice to see Monty running a play for him. Might need to do that more often to get him to put it up.
15. Glass half empty. Our vets rolled snake eyes in this game. Kamp/MSF/Jorge have not been able to score consistently, set the tone, or dictate the offense. Glass half full. This forces some of the young guys to step up. Franklin was not afraid to try...but the percentages were against him. Crabbe showed some signs. And Solomon was mostly solid in his time. Baby steps.
16. Monty is going to make Solomon lots of $$$ one day. The dude is improving game to game. He has athleticism and length that no one else has. When he develops some semblance of an offensive game - look out.
17. Cal is suffering from hero syndrome today. Lots of players looking to be the Man. And forcing things. Need to run the offense and play within the system instead. Lack of depth really exposed with both Kamp and MSF getting into foul trouble.
18. Cal has a chance at run...but Bak blows a point blank layup, we give up a layup on the other end...And Jorge forces a drive that ends in a turnover. Sigh.
19. The young Bears will not quit. An ill-advised Franklin 3 cuts it to 10. Still scrapping. If nothing else, these younglings will battle. The defensive and rebounding effort were good enough to win today. Definitely a learning experience on offense.