PSU's Devon Branch bugs me because he can do whatever he wants!

  • PSU player Devon Branch bugs me because he can do (and did do) whatever he wants.

    Branch scored 27 point on 9 of 22 shots and 9 of 12 free throws in 31 minutes. Not one KU player could stop him. How does that make sense?

    Some possible explanations I can think of: –He is the next Michael Jordan. –PSU stole a great player who was not recognized by the other two or three places he played. –KU players can’t defend. –Players who are ‘in the zone’ cannot be defended.

    I’m pretty sure all of these are wrong. So is there a better explanation?

    Over many years I have watched games where one opposing player goes nuts and scores far above his average and expectation. I’m not talking about Kevin Durant from Texas dropping 40 or so points since it was no surprise and he is a great player. I don’t think this is the case with PSU’s Branch (no offiense, Devon).

    What should a coach do when an unheralded player is having a career night: –Let him go until he reverts to his average? What if he lasts for 50 points? –Play a box and one? Deny him the ball by putting a lock-down defender on him–or maybe two? –Foul him before he shoots? Better two points than three, maybe. –Just keep playing your game plan and hope for the best?

    All you indightful posters, help me out here.

    Edit: Oops. Make that insightful posters. Is my typing worse or my proofreading?

  • Has there ever been a game where someone on the opposing team didn’t have a career night?

    I guess as long as we keep putting up the " W’s ", so be it.

  • My opinion: The 9/12 free throws is part of the answer. The kid was able to take advantage of our inability to guard without fouling under the new rules. Result was 9 points from the FT line and several buckets where defenders were out of position and trying to avoid the foul.

  • Yah, that is our major point of weakness right now, defending under the new rules. I don’t doubt that Coach Self will have our guys ready to defend at a Div I level soon enough, and for certain by Conference time. I mean, we have the height, length and quickness to defend extremely well but now everyone has to do it differently. Its going to take some adjusting to.
    I hope we can figure it out before Duke can because we’ll have to play then in what, 12 days?

  • Lulu, do you think it will be easier for the freshman to adjust because it’s all new to them anyway? I’m not familiar with how high school games are called. More similar to the new or old college rules? Is there much variation among states?

  • Man, your guess is as good as mine. That sounds plausible though. But, if they have been playing with contact in highschool for 4 years then they could have just as much trouble adjusting as the other guys. At KU, I think it will depend on something like whoever can slide the fastest with out drawing contact and keep their man in front of them will adjust quicker, drawing less fouls. But I’m not certain.
    Variation among states? Same thing. I’ve no idea. I bet the refs will have a bunch of variation early.

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