Dec 28 Headlines: Who are KU's best passers to Ellis and Embiid?

  • Embiid dunks

    ###Newell: Who are KU’s best passers to Ellis and Embiid?###

    One Bill Self quote stood out to me following Kansas’ 86-64 victory over Georgetown last week. “We need to play through our bigs,” the KU coach said. “That’s the strength of our team.” Statistically speaking, Self is correct, but…

    Wiggins Bros.

    ####In the family: Wiggins brothers support shared love of basketball####

    The three precocious Wiggins boys, bound by brotherhood and basketball, already have pushed each other a long way from those simpler days at the rec center just down the street.

    ####Jayhawks finalists for prep shooting guards####

    Rashad Vaughn, a 6-foot-5 senior shooting guard from Findlay Prep High in Henderson, Nev., on Friday sliced his list of prospective colleges to five. KU also is recruiting a shooting guard in JaQuan Lyle, a 6-5 senior from Huntington (W.Va.) Prep, who is ranked No. 22 nationally.

  • Jesse, Once again you have written a nice piece backed up by solid data. It is always a pleasure to read your articles because they allow the reader to evaluate the game with concrete data.

  • 3 revealing articles. The Wiggins brothers share their love of basketball, but the article points out they like other things too.

    Tharpe has more assists than our other guards.

    We’re finalists for several players who we’ve known we’re in the running for a long time.

    How about a couple of other ‘revealing’ articles? I’ll make a few suggestions:

    Missouri moving to HS gym so games appear fuller.

    Kentucky basketball players get lost on campus, only know where Rupp Arena is.

    Billy Tubbs wishes it were Billy and the Miracles.

    John Calipari reveals maybe he should have called the timeout in 08.

    Many OAD’s are indeed done.

    Charlie Weiss envies Bill Self, asks coach if he needs another assistant.

    KState thinking of changing mascot to WildJayhawks.

    Top recruits like the ‘benefits’ Kentucky offers.

    ESPN says “There’s no need to cover teams west of Interstate 95.”

    Billy Packer’s wife reveals he still mopes around the house after Mario’s Miracle.

    @Jaybate nominated for Pulitzer in special category. In a separate piece, it’s revealed his daddy is John Wooden.

    @HEM reveals he’s really Jaybates adopted son.

    @Dragonslayr asked to coach Missouri. Says he’s too busy writing on KUBuckets.

    @Approxinfinity claims it was he, not Al Gore who invented the internet.

  • @bskeet I do appreciate the implied age discrepancy with jaybate. He is certainly much older and wiser … and did I say older?

    @approxinfinity - thanks for the fix. Much appreciated, as is your work on this site.

    Regarding Jesse’s article, very interesting to see that Wiggins has a sum total of 3 assists to Ellis and Embiid.

    Against UNM, Brannen Greene had two assists feeding the post, and a third pass to the post that did not result in an assist (the post player caught it, made a move or two, and thus no assist was credited).

    So in one 16 minutes stretch, Greene had two-thirds the post-feed assists that Wiggins had to Ellis and Embiid all season.

    Below is a link to an article done by Jesse Newell last season (on December 11, 2012 vs. Deceember 28 this year). At that time, Ben McLemore had 5 post assists to Withey, and Releford had 6. Again, this season, Wiggins has just 3 to Ellis and Embiid combined.

    Makes me wonder … how important is feeding the post to Self?

    That all being said, simply because Wiggins doesn’t have assists doesn’t mean he’s not feeding the post, right? Like the Georgetown game, in the first couple of minutes, he got the ball inside nicely but there wasn’t a score. Good passes don’t always equate to assists. Probably just something to keep an eye on.

  • It is truly incredible how fast Embiid’s stock has risen. We are talking about a kid who started playing the game only a few years ago, is unranked as a Junior, then all the way up to a top 10 recruit by the end of his Senior year and now is potentially the #1 pick in the NBA draft. I have read quite a few articles and comments about how Bill Self is not great with OAD’s and how Wiggins has had an average year so far (which I agree with considering the hype) but Embiid is yet another example of what Bill and his coaching staff can do with talented big men. It took T Rob a few years, The Morris Twins a couple of years , Withey an entire college career and now Embiid 1/2 a season to be considered NBA ready. I am really excited to see what Embiid can do moving into Big 12 play. His attention may even take some of the pressure off Wiggins.

  • @HighEliteMajor Hey, if we don’t loose Greene to transfer, he’s going to be a true site to behold. At this point, would almost see anyone BUT Greene head out. IMO he’s the full package once he plays def the way Self requires.

  • It can be a risky pass from the 3 to the 4 or 5 if your 3 is close to the baseline. The angle on the post defender shrinks because they can hedge better on the incoming pass. Also, 3s often get pinched by the defense when positioned near the corners. It’s definitely a tougher pass into the post from the corners.

    Most of our post feeds should generate from the 1 and 2… and it does (when looking at Jesse’s graphs).

    I don’t know that now is the right time to question Self on whether or not he really wants to feed the post. The stats are from all our games this year, most of which involved a disjointed offense.

    I think we can ask this question as we move forward, because after the long Christmas break involving all that practice, we will see what this team emphasizes after being tuned.

    The last couple of games definitely involved feeding the post more. Part of that is related to the increased effectiveness of Embiid and Black. Are they more effective now or is it just the product of receiving more and better timed passes in the post?

    From the type of offense we run… there are not so many ways to get Wiggins more involved. One of those ways is to feed the post early in the possession, and by doing so it disrupts the defense and creates shifting that can expose gaps, holes and open perimeter spaces… Wiggins needs to see the defensive shifts and react to the opportunities they present. Then our post players have to maintain one eye on the basket (and other post player) and one eye on our perimeter players. Once the ball arrives in the post, someone, somewhere, is open (or the post player is).

    What we need to avoid is a stagnant offense where our 3 perimeter players spread across the 3-pt line and just throw the ball back and forth until the shot clock burns down to nothing. We have to attack. It is crucial that our big men put out enough energy to create opportunities for themselves to receive the ball. That is absolutely crucial. Our perimeter players are trained to not let the ball stick. So if a wing receives the ball and we don’t have an open post player, the ball feeds back to the PG immediately to prevent the ball from sticking.

    Our bigs have to have their mindset shift to the concept that they will (for sure) receive the pass into the post quickly in the shot clock. They have to learn timing… so their motions are choreographed with the movement of the ball on the perimeter. When everything is in sync our hi/lo is a thing of beauty! …and it must be one of the most-effective offenses in D1.

    We witnessed how good it can be when we faced Georgetown, and we exploited the slow feet of Josh Smith. Problem is… we won’t face many post defenders this year as slow as him. But there is no reason why we can’t dominate quicker defenders if our bigs just work a little harder.

    I think Perry needs to spend a little less time working on what he does after he gets the ball (something he is extremely polished in now) and get to work on developing his position quicker in the post to help allow the ball to come in. His game is finesse, but he is capable of playing stronger ball if he sets his mind to it. It’s more the size of the fight in the dog, then the size of the dog in the fight. I’m starting to think Perry wants to be a 3 more than a 4, but that requires a completely different skill set. I thought with the addition of muscle he added over summer he would be less of a tweener and more of a 4.

  • @drgnslayr You make very good points (as usual).

    I would say that post feeds are based on angles. And the best angle, most of the time, is at the wing. Meaning appx. at or just below the free throw line extended. So I guess I wouldn’t totally agree that it is more likely the 1 or 2. The 3 isn’t camping in the corner, of course. With our system, the 1, 2, and 3 all rotate through the wing spots (appx. free throw line or a bit lower, extended).

    Remember Brady? He was the post feeding machine from the 3. That was his bread and butter. I have never bought into the claims that this is some genetic predisposition – I think it is definitely a skill that most high level players can learn. EJ was good at it.

    Self has made it clear this season (as with every season) that playing through his post players is his preference. Thus a guy like Wiggins needs to be able to initiate that.

    Heck, a guy like Wiggins could dish multiple assists with his driving ability and the attention he gets. But we do need him to score the ball first and foremost.

    @globaljaybird - I see Greene, and I see Rush. But I think Greene is more naturally aggressive than Rush. I value Greene higher than any other perimeter player right now … based on his longevity (likely 3 seasons at the least) and his skill set. So I am right there with you.

  • I agree, HEM… if the wing is in the position you state. I just know we often shift our 3 into the corner. Wiggins has been there several times, and we often put BMac in the corner. But from the angle you mention, it’s a perfect shot into the post!

    Maybe we should try to work our 3s less in the corners.

    Brady definitely knew how to feed the post!

  • Tharpe is the better passer and Mason the better penetrator; not that Tharpe cannot penetrate, he definitely can, but he plays as Coach Self wants him to play, feeding the bigs inside; Jesse’s graphs certainly validate this point. With the new rules and the prevalence of zone defenses, Tharpe role will continue to increase. With man to man defenses, Mason will get increased playing time since he can penetrate and either score or draw the foul.

  • The last couple of games have been fun to watch, and those games give me confidence in Tharpe again. Hopefully, we won’t ever return to playing like we did in Florida.

    I’m thinking all of the Christmas break practices will show these guys how to play together.

    I’m still optimistic we are going to land B12 #10!

    I’m with you guys… Greene is a must-keep! I can see the connection to B.Rush. I just think Greene will end up with a higher basketball IQ. I see some sneaky stuff in this guy, and it will come out eventually. I mean that as a positive. Like, maybe (eventually) he’ll throw sneaky passes like Larry Bird. I just sense “sneaky.”

  • @wissoxfan83 Howling!

    But real truth is that I put myself up for adoption, no one would take me, so I adopted myself, and am writing a tell all book “Daddy Dearest: The Pitfalls of Self-Adoption.”

    End note: HEM is in fact vastly older than me, as he has been reincarnated 12 times and myself only 9. John Wooden’s only involvement with the both of us is that Wooden was once the driver of the wagon that bore Arjuna and Lord Krishna to war in the Bhagavad Gita.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Great points. Regarding Greene, I am 100 % sold that he will be a great Jayhawk when all is said and done and that he will not transfer. But are we really comparing him to B Rush? Rush struggled to take over games when he could have but let’s be honest…Rush was the leading scorer his Freshman year, was a lock down defender and was probably the best player on our national title team and was a 1st round NBA pick. That is a lot to live up to as far as comparisons for Greene.

  • Travis Releford fed the post pretty well, too…as did Brady.

    Andrew Wiggins is asked to score. That’s his “role” that everyone keeps talking about. He is expected to do MORE than BStar did. If Releford was relentlessly aggressive like Langford, that would have been a bonus. But it is expected of Wiggybaby…

  • If Wiggins can consistently score 20+ points per game, I don’t care how many assist he has.

  • Just want to second the observations that Wiggins feeds the paint fairly well, but they haven’t been converted.

  • If Wiggins can consistently score 20+ points per game, I don’t care how many assist he has.

    I think Wiggins has Oscar Robinson potential. 30pts 12reb 11assists per. Teammates have to make shots for the assists, but the rest is in his hands.

    Just dreaming here…

  • @dylans

    Oscar Robertson Potential? This is a tall order considering that the big “O” is perhaps the best basketball player ever.

  • @JayHawkFanToo

    Potential unrealized at this point.

    Potential I hope is realized in crimson and blue.

    Potential to win a national championship.

    Potential to dash our hopes?

    Potential to immortalize.

  • @JayHawkFanToo Im showing my bias here but Wilt Chamberlain is the G.O.A.T

  • @JayHawkFanToo - with all due respect - I’m sure you meant the big “O” is perhaps the best basketball player ever - not named Wilt Chamberlain. lol

  • @Lulufulu85 - great minds think alike, huh? Sorry, I didn’t see your post before I commented.

  • having said that, I will state that both Wilt and Robertson would be in my list of 5 top all time players.

    Would you put Jordan and Abdul-Jabar in the top 5 as well?

    If so, who is #5?

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