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  • Teams Biggest Strengths/Weaknesses

    Similar to last post....what do you think are the two or three biggest stregnths and weaknesses for this team with what little we've seen and heard so far?

    Strengths:
    1) Rebounding - Think our frontcourt of PJ/EJ/Reid/Nick can be the best rebounding team Cal has had while here
    2) Depth - going 10 LEGIT players deep? With players of all types who can cause mismatches against virtually any gameplan? Yes please. Going that deep should alleviate a lot of problems...foul trouble (which I think would be a weakness if not we didnt have such depth), fatigue, etc
    3) Offensive diversity - most years were limited...sometimes significantly...in how we can score (ie last year with no relaible deep ball, the Jamal Murray teams lack of post offense, etc). This year we are stacked with dudes of all kinds who can all score in a plethora of ways. Think we'll be reaaaaaally hard to guard.

    Weaknesses:
    1) Shot blocking - unless EJ is better than advertised or Nick has imoroved ten fold, we'll probably foul a lot while trying to guard elite bigs and elite penetrating guards
    2) Passing - this is much less a concern, as well probably be a good passing team. But will we be an elite passing team? Can we have a great assist to turnover ratio? Remains to be seen...
    3) Experience - Probably not a big concern as its much better than last year....but still freshmen and sophomores with a grad transfer as our only upperclassman. Hopefully its enough.

  • #2
    Strengths

    1. Physical Strength. Cal's teams can get pushed around a little because of their youth. That shouldn't happen with this bunch. Obviously Travis and Washington should be as strong as any forwards in the college game, but if Nick Richards has done even a little work to fulfill the potential of that body then he could be an intimidating player.

    2. Versatility. Cal is always going for a kind of mix-and-match thing where he can swing guys in and out of different positions. This is why he's tried to brand "positionless" basketball. In some years guys we thought were going to be positionless turned out not to be; Wenyen comes to mind as a player who everybody thought might play a wing, but who in actuality couldn't dribble well enough to do that. This year we should have guys who can play different spots in different situations. Keldon Johnson can play probably four positions; I think we'll see Travis on the wing a little; EJ Montgomery is probably going to play in the middle a little and also as a stretch. Hagans and Quickley are going to play together a lot. So many combinations, which will make us difficult to scheme for.

    3. Experience...for Cal. This team shouldn't have to throw all its young guys into the fire right away. Last year we had players who weren't ready being asked to play 35 minutes a game. This year if we have players who aren't ready--and we will--they can season a little and work into the fold so that maybe Cal can use them in the second half.

    4. The Bahamas. This upcoming trip to the Bahamas is going to give UK some crucial time to figure out who they are. Even if it's just four games, the pay-off of something like this has the potential to reverberate throughout the entire season.

    Weaknesses

    1. Who's the Shooter? We've discussed this, but there's going to have to be some proving going on from the younger guys for us to hit that magic mark of about 220 threes made on the year. Last year's team only hit 195, which was the second lowest of Cal's tenure. They really weren't great shooters, but they also went games where they wouldn't shoot. You have to make the three in the college game. Guys like Hagans and Quickley and Johnson are going to have to be a little better from outside than they've been billed, and guys like Montgomery and Green are going to have to live up to the hype shooting-wise.

    2. Improvement of the Returners. This isn't a weakness per se, but if you look back at Cal's freshmen who have returned for their sophomore years, you don't see a lot of dramatic improvements. And all the sophomores need to improve dramatically. A lot rests on PJ Washington, but for 75% of last year Washington was a disappointment. He had major effort and consistency issues. If you think about the guys who came back from playing a lot as freshmen and were going to be counted on as sophomores, you come up with guys like Kyle Wiltjer, Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Alex Poythress, Tyler Ulis, Isaiah Briscoe, and Wenyen Gabriel. Of that group, only Lamb and Ulis showed really significant improvement. Washington, Green, and Nick Richards are going to have to be in that group for UK to be the special team we all think they can be.

    3. Rim Protection. BCO mentioned this, but this team really doesn't have the great shot-blocker Cal's teams usually do. Richards should be that guy, but he blocked a pedestrian 33 last year. Washington only blocked 31. Montgomery comes in as more of an offensive threat. So for this not to be an issues, guys are going to have to be stout out on the perimeter and we're going to have to rebound like our hair is on fire to offset some of the at-the-rim baskets this team is likely to give up.

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    • #3
      Weakness: Shooting, until I see guys hit some”N a game” I have to say that. Poor shooting doomed last years team and the 3 best shooters on the team left. Can the new guys hit em, time will tell. Strength, down low, 2 really good power forwards, a promising looking freshman and the wild card Richards. If he improves we will be monsters inside.

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      Teams Biggest Strengths/Weaknesses

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