Self and Flow: Bad Ball Dynamics

  • Self reveals some of what he is doing in Bad Ball, when he talks about what his team needs to do better.

    Self says KU cannot go very far unless it gets more flow, more continuity in the offense.

    Let’s just call it flow.

    What this means is that Self thinks offenses can’t score efficiently without flow, I.e., if their flow is disrupted.

    This means the goal of Self’s offense and defense is to disrupt the opponents flow and achieve KU flow.

    KU used to play disruptive defense aimed at winning the (steals + blocks)/ TOs stat, while at the same time playing a non sticking passing game create greater impact space. Defense started offense with stops flowing into transitions. There was an elegant athletic muscular rhythmn to Self Ball that everyone could distinguish from Roy’s fast breaking ball. Self Ball squirted into and out of transition and half court ball Ina seamless flow, except for occasional grind games.

    What Self has done with Bad Ball is say we can disrupt flow on both ends of the floor. And the essence of disruption is not strip + blocks/TOs , but rather the disruption of their offensive and defensive movement on the floor. Flow is a spatial dynamic, not a TO, or a block, or a strip. Those are nice when they happen, but they are no longer objectives. The objective is us having more flow than them, despite us playing on both ends to disrupt their flow.

    Self is asking his players to disrupt flow on both ends, while trying to maintain their own flow on offense. The team is still struggling with it. It is winning by disrupting the other team’s flow almost completely for long periods of games, and just barely maintaining their own flow enough to draw more fouls and win it at the line. It works but it is not the end goal. The first Texas game is close to what Self envisioned, but but between slumps, creating a stretch 4 Ellis, then losing him, and losing Cliff, and injuries to Traylor, Greene, frank, Devonte, and Oubre, the team is running on about 2/3s of the athleticism it once had, and this ignores Selden’s strange journey back from knee injury and icing of Svi for failure to hit shots and guard over picks, plus the cryogenic action on Hunter, the team feels more like a Marine company half shot to pieces turning disarray into tactics just to take the real estate, not to do it the right way.

    Hence, Self keeps hoping for the dust to settle enough to reorganize some and hope unit reforming bottom up finds its own equilibrium flow somehow. It some what beyond Self’s tight control. The most he can do is ream individuals new ones for not trying to get in a flow, while realizing he is ordering to make so many changes on the fly to disrupt opposing flow that it necessarily will produce some loss of flow among his own players interactions on the floor. Our guys are being asked to think AND play, when most self teams this time of year are cats reacting and impacting in the moment. It is very hard to do it. It is the opposite of what most teams are trained to do. But it is why we are winning so much. Genius often asks the impossible of young men. Lord know Forest Allen did often enough. And then sometimes it is revealed to have been possible all along.

  • @jaybate-1.0 I havent believed it myself until now. But, I think we can beat ISU tomorrow. If Perry is able to hold his own and be ok, not healed, just ok and our trey guns can shoot better. I think we can win. I think KU has a fair chance to win. They will absolutely be underdogs in the vegas odds. Thats cool. I hope KU knows this and hears that everyone thinks they can’t win. It gives them fuel. It makes them mad. An injured opponent that is mad and on the defensive? Bad news bears man.

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