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They are no doubt talented, but they lack in alot of FUNDAMENTAL areas.
They are a poor interior defensive team. Sullinger gets exposed by bigger centers on a nightly basis. Amir Williams would help and I see no reason why Matta doesn't experiment with both players in at the same time, moving Sully to the 4.
Their offense is run chaoticly and sloppily.
Most of this is on Craft. He is average to below average as an offensive leader and facilitator (hate to use that word). His passing skills are below average for a PG. I have seen way to many turnovers on entry passes to Sullinger, and that sort of TO is UNACCEPTABLE from the PG position.
Overall, the team does not execute the basic things consistenly on offense. They are rarely in sync, which leads to bad possession, forced and poorly chosen shots.
There was no excuse today for the lack of touches in the post for Sullinger. It seems to be a chore for the team to even get him the ball sometimes.
A basic fundamental entry pass is made to look difficult.
For instance today, with Wisky in early foul trouble in the second half, the team did not pound it to Sullinger.
Alot of criticism has been aimed at Buford and his inconsistencies, but he is the 2nd or 3rd option on this team, and he is not necessarily the type of player who can create his own shot well.
This is where the criticism of Buford on offense should be directed at Craft.
Craft is somewhat overrated as an overall player.
Thoughts on my assessments?
Foul shots killed us.
Bad passes killed us.
Lack of effort by Sullinger. I'm not sure what is wrong, but he isn't the same.
Nobody came off the bench and played well.
You cannot do this against a top 20 team looking for revenge.
It is not a good passing team.
I don't think anyone lacks effort out there, they all play hard.
The only players that get off the bench are Ravenal, Scott and Thompson, and none of them do much of anything.
Would rather it be Williams, Ross and Thompson.
But its far too late for that.
This is what we are rolling into tourney season with.
IT doesn't look to impressive for a deep run.
The Foul Shooting has always been atrocious....its never been great. It kills them in big games cos they cant make them.
I think the back injury to Sully is still there, and he is really playing on pain meds. Wouldnt be surprised to see him have surgery after the season. He played himself out of a top 5 pick.
They dont take care of the ball well. As good as Craft is, he had some really bad passes today.
Just my 2 cents
Worst fundamentally prepared OSU team I can remember. Passing, absolutely horrendous weak side help, ditto for defensive switches ( on and off the ball) I am certain that everyone of those coaches know a hell of a lot more than I do but Damn, they are not a sound team. They are relying on individual talent to win games, Coaching is what is beating them not players talent. Nobody gets any better ( fundamentally) under coach Matta. At least that's what my Miller High Life is telling me..............
thought from the beginning today that Sully wasn't moving well......he was short stepping,
craft may have thrown a few bad passes today(i didn't se the first half) but i have seen no one else close on this team who plays all out on defense, has to handle the ball 90% of the time on offense and try to get it in to sully when he is incapable of moving and getting open. if craft is the main guy you can pick on to criticize you haven't been watching the same games i have been watching. today he played as well or better than he has in quite a while on offense. he was certainly not the main reason we lost today.
This post was edited by bongturk 2 years ago
I'm not saying he doesnt play hard. I'm saying our our disorganization on offense is mainly because we lack a floor leader and a great point guard.
He is average in that aspect of his game, and lacks the great court vision you need in a PG.
He hit a few jumpers today he usually does not take, but he still did not break down the defense consistently at all.
We dont really have any guys on the team who can break down their man off the dribble and set other guys up.
I've watch every game this year, and when we where at our best, Craft was aggressive on offense and setting guys up.
Once the competition got tougher, he has had minimal impact on the game offensively.
I think he burns too much energy on defense behind the 3 point line. he needs to be a little smarter about it.
I'm not even sure its a fatigue factor. In fact I dont think it is at all, he's in great shape.
He is just not where he needs to be as a floor general on offense.
But it IS the toughest position and he IS only a sophomore. With a true freshman backing him up.
I think thats the biggest flaw on the team.
No Senior leadership and poor foul shooting, which we all knew would eventually cost a game or two.
The lack of consistent offensive sets is also disturbing.
The problem with the bucks is...
we have not improved over the course of the season. Calipari, Izzo, Coach K, etc...all have players who have improved over the course of the season. Why have none of our guys improved or stepped up??? This could be a coaching issue or player attitude issue...either way those are both bad things.
Our offensive play is selfish and inconsistant...poor shooting, no ball movement, guys forcing shots
Our defensive play is questionable...we do not impose our will on D, only craft does this, everyone else just does the minimum.
we are not athletic, we play below the rim. The great teams play above the rim and can shoot the ball and are hard nosed defenders. we are none of those.
As with our football team we were all led to believe that the team will be great...fact of the matter is this team is seriously flawed.
Without Craft this team is a middle of the pack team. The problem is Sully not presenting himself in the post. Craft needs to shoot more to open up the lanes. He is a great leader on the floor and I wouldn't trade him for any other point guard in the Big Ten.
When Matta kicked players out of practice on Saturday and you play on Sunday. This team is in trouble. The big issue is maturity, toughness, chemistry and communication. Big deal they have talent but if they lack desire and passion and overall maturity. They won't win very many games right now. Dispatch reporter Baptist is reporting these kids are lackadaisical at times. Bitch at you want at Aaron Craft but the guy has one of the highest assist to turnover ratios in the conference. he can pass the ball.
Buford is an overrated player! He played second and third fiddle to Turner, Lighty and Diebler his three years at OSU. Now he is the secondary scorer and cannot make the shots versus the good teams. He can perform good aginst the poor to mediocre teams and shoots poorly versus the good teams. 15 points on senior day BFD for Buford. Craft had 13 points and he isn't a scorer. Buford is nothing but a streak shooter! He will have a good game versus NU and shoot poorly versus MSU! Bet on it!
Alot of blame on the one guy that hustles on this team,I have never understood this.They all deserve blame,including Craft but as far as the entry passes and not getting Sully enough touches,I see this design of an "offense" as pretty pathetic.Pass the ball around the perimeter until the guy closet to Sully can force something into him and that isn`t always Craft.I see Sully not work very hard to get good position closer to the basket and I see very little effort going to get the ball on some entry passes where his defender reaches around and tips it away because it is so obvious what we are trying to do with our one play in the playbook.I also see him reacting very slow most of the time when he does get the ball,he gets double teamed and still forces it and turns it over.Maybe find where the help is coming from and pass it to the open guy quickly.
Craft is in no way the perfect PG but I think you are way to hard on him and need to spread the blame,maybe starting with the guy that gives the orders on what to do,Matta.
By the way,what kind of production did we get from the shooting guard position?
What court vision do you need when everyone besides Sully is camped around the three point line passing it back and forth till they force it into him or someone throws up a brick?You are generalizing about a real basketball team that runs plays where guys are moving non stop and setting screens,so stop with the court vision.
I think Sully sits there in the low post, not getting the ball, thinking 'I came back for this?' He's the best player on this team, a willing passer. He should get the ball on every possession that isn't a fast break, like MSU does with Green.
Agreed on the overall chemistry issues. Craft gets hammered for only taking a couple of shots a game. He has a good game and he gets hammered again. He was trying to feed the post from the top of the key yesterday. Why isn't the wing doing that? Was it Burford or Smith?
Not a good shooting team. Our best freshmen didn't get himself eligible until Christmas. Now, he's upset he's not playing? Scott and Thompson are good close to the basket this year and that's it. Williams should be getting some minutes to play D on big guys. OSU shows up with a 6-8 post player in the tournament (Dials and Sully) and they get thumped when the other team isn't as good maybe, but has a couple of 7-0 players who are decent.
There's always next year...
+1, although as the OP stated, Craft does make some really poor passes at times, but I wouldn't trade him for any PG in the conference and few if any in the country.
Thomas and Buford have been known throughout their careers as quick triggermen, and while I think both have become more patient, its in their DNA. Not a big deal when you are hitting shots, but big problem when you aren't and you have an AA center wanting the ball.
The mental stuff is definitely key. Did anyone else notice that Buford couldn't buy a bucket after he missed that easy putback layup in the first half? His shot had looked great until that point. It's so clear Sully is getting frustrated and its hurting his game. He is forcing shots, not looking for the open shooter, losing interest on D.
Is Sam Thompson that bad of a shooter or it mental with him? Every game I watch, the opposing team barely even guards him on the perimeter. Scott also can't hit anything. I'm not one to watch HS film of recruits, but knowing the type of player Matta recruits, I have a hard time believing these guys are that bad of shooters.
This team should hardly even practice today, they should just sit down and hash out a plan to right the ship and clear the air. No more perimeter shots until the shot clock is below 15 seconds unless its from a kick-out from the post. Sully needs to look to pass and not try to take on double teams. I think it is telling that Smith only took one shot, that tells me that they aren't being patient enough to get a good look on the perimeter, because he usually won't shoot unless he has a good look. The bench guys need to accept that they may not get a lot of minutes and if they want to play more they need to get better.
This team is still capable to win it all, but they need to get it together ASAP.
Problem with this team is other than Bufford their all freshmen and sophomores playing in the toughest conference in the NCAA's.
Will agree though that we have too many players looking for their own shots instead of letting the game come to them and playing like a team. I'd put money though that if Kentucky was in the Big ten they'd struggle too.
Please, please don't continue to bash one player and act like Craft has a perfect game. He missed 2 critical free throws down the stretch. If Buford had missed those free throws what would you have been saying? In fact I imagine you crucified Buford for missing the 2 at Michigan last week. Craft is a good player but not perfect. The reason he scored 13 yesterday is that for the first time in many weeks he was hitting the open 17 foot jumper that teams give him on the pick and roll. He is not a good, consistant outside shooter and he is not a great creator on offense. He's a helluva defensive player and does a lot of the little things and dirty work that don't make it into the box score. But he's the point guard of a team in disarray so he has to share in the burden of responsibility. also, Matta threw the whole team out of practice on Saturday and the last time I checked Craft was a member of the team so he got thrown out as well. People need to stop with the man-crush with Aaron Craft. He is what he is....a good point guard but not a great one. He will be great when he leads the team to the final four ala Mike Conley, Jr.
This post was edited by shep777 2 years ago
Your first sentence says it all! I would like them to give Buford a brain scan to see if he has one. Charging down court completely out of control usually results in a charge. Craft is beginnng to do this, too! Matta did absolutely NOTHING to improve the team this year and maybe that says quite a bit for his coaching abilities.
I don`t think Craft is a great player or PG but what I do love about the kid that I don`t about everyone else is that he busts it ALL the time.If you remember when all these kids came in,he got the typical "white kid" treatment,you know,wasted scholly,ect. and after last year I remember alot saying that Scott would put him on the bench as a backup,well that hasn`t happened.
They all deserve ragging but Craft gets dogged for not scoring,for not passing enough.My main problem with him is he hasn`t improved his shooting but maybe that has to do with ignoring his own game to get others involved.
I think this is the sole reason OSU sucks this year...they have ZERO leadership. Last year you had Lighty and Diebler and they did a good job with this team. This year the only senior is Buford who has shown his leadership by heaving the ball at every bad shot opportunity. Craft can take some of the blame but did he get worse from last year? The two main shooters last year were Diebler and Lighty. This year we have Buford and Thomas--both who shoot first and think later. On top of that you have a coach like Matta whose idea of coaching during timeouts is to tell the team they need to hit shots. Then he says on Saturday the guys don't practice hard but the freshmen do. Then play the freshmen and sit the people who won't practice hard. If you're going to lose you might as well prove a point. I'm sick of Matta bitching about his players loafing when he facilitates it. Until Matta grows a pair and starts penalizing people for sub-standard effort or atrocious decision-making, you'll have an OSU team that plays like a bunch of selfish brats putting forth lackluster effort.
Why does Buford always take it in on the break? Is he really that selfish? That shit is getting on my nerves bad. It seems as though he always has someone on the break with him in a better position to score but he takes it in every f'n time. I'm over that. If he would pass to the open man this team would be about 10 to 12 points better per game. I think he is one of the best players I have ever seen play but he's pressing this year trying to be a first round pick in a very deep draft IMO. With Sullinger apparently ailing I think Thomas should be working in the post more so bigs can't lean on sullys back all game. Maybe some hi-lo with the two of them switching the post man. I agree with some of the above posters that we haven't gotten better this year I don't know what's up with that tho.
I totally agree and get it regarding the effort part of Craft's game. He's a fan favorite because of his all out style, get floor burns type of play. It's just he gets a pass from the fans when we play bad and he's part of the team so he should share in the blame when we perform poorly. Usually when we win his stat line is not great but we as fans all know he impacted the game more than what the stats say. So generally someone will post what a great game he played. But then when we lose it's always on Buford and his erratic shooting or Thomas and his shot selection or any other number of things. All of these are mostly true by the way. But just as Buford has not shot well and DT is defensively challenged, Craft is not a great shooter and is left open all the time on the pick and roll because of this, he cannot create his own shot off the dribble without the help of a screen and he cannot penetrate to create for others without the help of a screen. When have you ever seen us late in the shot clock go 4 across the baseline and let Craft create from the top of the Key? Never, because to date he has not shown this in his game. He doesn't have the "bounce" factor if you will in his game to be creative. He's an excellent defensive point guard and good within the confines of an offense. Also, he rarely pushes the tempo. Yesterday Lenzelle Smith got a rebound and pushed the tempo. Unfortunately the execution was poor and he missed a wide open Buford. Craft never does this and rarely kicks the ball ahead. Crafts a good player and I look forward to watching him the next 2 years. However, he's not an elite point guard and is not absolved from the downturn this team has taken.
Exactly my point. He is a flawed as a PG.
I don't think I've seen him push the tempo ever. He is always walking the ball up court. As bad as Shannon Scott has been shooting, he is still a better creator than craft and pushes the tempo when given a chance.
I'm not saying Scott is the answer, or that he should start, because he shouldn't, but that is what Craft lacks.
No reason why, with guys like Thompson and Smith and Thomas and even Buford, we should not be an uptempo, full court press team.
Instead, we play offense like Wisconsin, only we are a terrible passing team, we don't shoot the ball well, and we take bad shots too early in the shotclock.
And no doubt the lack of a real 3 pt. threat kills our half court offense and allows teams to harass Sullinger.
The team just got exposed, plain and simple.
craft often pushes the ball but there has to be someone to push it to. craft does create from the top of the key, but not that often because he is trying to set up the others. he is far from perfect and has shot poorly this year but i think he should try to shoot more and should have been shooting more right along since no one else can shoot from the outside on a consistent basis.
sullinger is the big man and a returning all american. as such he as much as buford should have been leading this team by example right from the early part of the season when it was obvious buford was too quiet to be a vocal leader. many of these things go back to matta's coaching or lack thereof.
smith is a virtuasl nonentity most of the time on the court. matta has given him plenty of time to prove himself and i think he has had one or two really good games and many more invisible games. again coaching. get someone in there who can score. keep trying until someone shows up. don't keep playing the same rotation when it isn't working.
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