Fridays are days for buffalo wings and fake-out practices.
Kansas is about to embark on another post conference season. March Madness is the time of year where teams let it all hang out. Often, Kansas has been victimized by teams with players that hit game-winning shots and no one can pronounce their name. “Ali Farokhmanesh”… are you kidding me? We got beat by the next Volkswagen model name? The “Farokhmanesh!”
Those days are over. In fact… this is our year to be the sleeper. Jayhawk fans are already prepared to go underground. Enough of being the “blue blood institution” playing “institutional basketball.” What team in America even needs to scout us? “Hi/lo… hi/lo… it’s off to work we go… (whistle) hi/lo… hi/lo…”
It’s time Kansas has a new image. “Bad boys!”
This won’t be a team matching the dirty play of the old Detroit Pistons. This team will be experts at BAD BALL!
Our entire goal is to disrupt the flow of our opponents, while we have become the “masters of disruptive flow” or MdF!
We don’t need a lot of points to win… because our foes will not score many points.
@jaybate-1.0 and I have been working on the formula. Something between “Smokin Joe” Frazier and “Sting like a Bee” Muhammad Ali.
Every Jayhawk fan and their logos from around the world know by now that I have been preaching the need for shot fakes for months now. Actually… it was the Kentucky beat down that got me going in this direction. No team, regardless of height or athleticism, should ever suffer with double-digit blocked shots put upon them.
Starting today, Kansas will begin a new practice theme to be used on every Friday, from now until we collect the NCAA championship trophy in April.
Thank God It’s Fake-Out Friday!
Friday practices will be completely dedicated to the fake. Shot fakes, ball fakes, body fakes, no-look fakes, penetration fakes, shoulder fakes, head fakes, stutter fakes, jump fakes, pump fakes… even fake fakes. Also play for the charge calls on defense. The idea is we want the FT line to become our bread and butter.
And to go along with our focus on fakes, every Jayhawk will be put on the FT line to polish up our new main scoring avenue. Forget the “fool’s gold” 3s and low-percentage mid range and post attempts. This team will be earning a ticket to the Final Four at the charity stripe. What a fitting logo above. Stripes!
Since our coaching staff is obviously unfamiliar with teaching the fake, I am more than happy to help them along. The biggest key to a successful fake (in most cases) is the proper use of footwork. Ali could have never “stung like a bee” if he didn’t do proper footwork to position him to pummel his opponents. He may have been one of the weakest punching heavyweight champions the world had ever known. But the guy understood footwork better than any heavyweight ever to fight. In fact, few lightweight fighters could match his footwork.
The best time to use a shot fake is when your opponent is lunging out to contest your shot. This is an automatic foul, even if the shooter lunges into the defender. It may look ugly… but ugly is one of the key definitions of BAD BALL. Footwork, running sets, quick passing… this is the way to create scoring space within a team concept. From an individual execution, footwork and the ability to create scoring space will be just as effective.
Every team approaching March is thinking the same thing: how do we beat Kentucky? Proper use of fakes should be a major part of any team’s strategy to defeat the “ogre in the room.”
Kentucky’s strategy is to overwhelm teams with their height. A big part of that is to block a lot of shots. They constantly lunge in order to do so, or they swat at balls. None of their trees have the artfulness of a Withey to keep blocks in bounds. They all strive to make the SportsCenter Top 10. Kentucky should be one of the easier teams to beat in March. Play their egos against themselves. Push them to be aggressive. Push them to overplay. The twins do not play under control, especially in March. They should have 3 fouls each half way through the first half. Remove the twins from this team and you have cut the head off of the ogre.
Even teams like Kentucky, with their mega-depth, will lose if getting into deep foul trouble. We should be in the double-bonus half way through each half. Teams in foul trouble can no longer play aggressive defense. Teams in foul trouble can no longer play aggressive offense. Brannen Greene should be shooting 3 foul shots several times in a game. He is our biggest weapon on this. Teach the guy to bend his knees and fake the jump from the 3pt line, then jump into a lunging defender. After a few of those, he will have uncontested 3s.
If we are willing to dedicate Fridays for this strategy, we have enough time to really execute it down the stretch.
I can see another trophy in AFH!