Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Individual Recruiting and Development Grades

One final post about recruiting and development and I’ll shelve those topics for a little bit. A comment on one of the earlier posts mentioned a lack of defensive development overall. Defensive development is a little tougher to gauge, so the grades in general reflect offensive development.

Jackson- Recruiting- B, Development- B- A four star guy recruited all over in high school, Jackson was brought on to run the offense. Has always dished out a lot of assists, he cut down the turnovers a bit this year. Seemingly improved free throw shooter and starting the develop into a decent scorer with a midrange jumper and the development of his driving ability.

McAlarney- Recruiting- B+, Development- A- Undervalued as a prep, he only received offers from St. John’s, Rutgers, and a couple other middle-of-the pack schools. Came on as a point guard, but has become one of the deadliest shooters in college basketball.

Ayers- Recruiting- B-, Development- C- Maryland and Villanova wanted him even as only a three star recruit. A deadly three point shooter, but hasn’t established much more than that. Can also be inconsistent with his aggressiveness.

Hillesland- Recruiting- C, Development- C- A three star guy who never became dominant in any facet of the game. Adds a lot in a bunch of categories and is a good glue guy, but wouldn’t make the rotation for some other top 15 teams.

Harangody- Recruiting- A, Development- A+- Exhibit A for anyone wishing to make a case that Mike Brey is an excellent recruiter and developer of talent. Indiana, Ohio State, and Purdue wanted him, but he didn’t catch the eye of any other national programs. Big East Player of the Year in his sophomore season. Has outperformed even the wildest expectations.

Zeller- Recruiting- C+, Development- D- A good steal keeping this McDonald’s All-American in his home state, but it should have been known he was never going to be a collegiate post player. We were hoping he would be a 6’11” Luke Harangody but it never worked out. He has improved some in his senior year to contribute in the paint, but much more was expected.

Peoples- Recruiting- C, Development- D- Was brought on to be a backup point guard. Has never developed beyond that original expectation. Not a bad recruit, given what has been asked of him, but he should be able to give 10-15 consistent minutes. It’s hasn’t been happening lately.

Add your thoughts if you’d like. Tomorrow, I’ll move on to different topics.


Golden Monkey said...

How about Harden - Profitt - Nash - Scott @ Abromitis? Development Grades F F D D F

As for Harden and Profitt, one saw the hand writing on the wall, the other didn't belong at this level to begin with.

I find it strange that Brey cannot recruit two four star plays per year? That would give you eight at all times. hypothetically

Anonymous said...

Abromitis will definitely contribute next year - probably in a Kurz like position. He's a quality player with an excellent 3 point stroke and a nose for the ball.

BlackandGreen said...

I do have some hope for Abromaitis. He's really young (just turned 19 this schoolyear), but could develop nicely. Brother played for Yale and dad played for UCONN. We'll need a three point threat with Mac and Ayers graduating and Abro could be the guy.

Again, it was smart to redshirt Abromaitis and Scott. If both go five years with Scott Martin, the 2012 class could be very solid considering we didn't sign any recruits last winter.

Anonymous said...

The thing I really like about Abro as well, is that unlike Ayers, he's a very active player. While Ayers' length makes him an adequate defensive player, he doesn't crash boards or go after loose balls - nor does he ever get to the line. Whenever I see Abro play, he does all of the above.

I agree, I think that could be a very effective 'freshman' class.

I also just have something a bit OT to say... I'm getting a little flustered hanging around the ND Blogs/boards. I mean look, I try to look optimistically at things because I really like these guys and I've come around to liking Brey & I want to see their continued success. I just get frustrated by all of the negativity. Yeah - there are warts to this team & there are issues with Brey's coaching, but these guys are good & bordering on being elite [though they're not there yet]. I think Brey's strategy is really interesting given the recruiting opportunities he has - especially after the abysmal failure of Thomas, Francis and now Zeller to develop into the players they were touted to be coming out of high school. He's consciously decided to go after players who are smart, coach-able and have the drive to become better than what everyone else thinks they can be. I think he has a fantastic class coming in. I think he has a potential excellent 'freshman' class this year. His junior class has two of the top players in the toughest league in the country. He was still more in the 'go after big recruits' mode when he brought in the seniors - and the least touted of them is now a star. I guess I'm just tired of seeing the continued negative sentiments towards the kids, Brey's recruiting, Brey's coaching. He brought this program back from over a decade of irrelevance and he has what I think is a brilliant strategy to keep the program at least on the edge of greatness every year.

The team needs our support. They play their hearts out and they win against elite teams without MacDonald's all-americans. I love watching them play. And while I was pulling my hair out during the last 4 minutes of the Louisville game... you know what, that's what college basketball is all about - and it's why I love the college game as opposed to the pro's, and it's why I've come around to really liking where Brey is going with this program.

BlackandGreen said...

Great comments. A lot of the negativity this week was the result of a loss. Had we pulled out the win in Louisville, there would be some chest pounding and talk about how Coach Brey gets the most out of his players. With a win Saturday, the talk with most likely swing in that direction. That's fine, fans are allowed to do that. The players and coaches have to focus on the next game and not dwell in the past.

As always, the truth is somewhere in the middle. We're a very good team with flaws that could win or lose against anyone any night. Mike Brey is a very good coach who is an excellent fit. Are there better coaches out there? Absolutely. It drives me nuts that we can't suit up five McDonalds All-Americans, play Louisville-style defense, or go more than seven deep, but I appreciate all that Coach Brey has done for this program. We've come a hell of a long way from the John MacLeod years.

Every other team goes through this. Read the Carolina boards after they lost to BC. I'd kill to have a team as good as UNC and a coach like Roy Williams, but Tar Heel fans were in therapy after losing one game. You'd think Syracuse was up in flames with all the venting on their Scout boards tonight.

College basketball is a hell of a ride. Every team has its highs and lows. With this conference, we could lose four more games and still be top four. Lose six more, and we're still on the good side of the bubble. No other league is this difficult night in and night out. And you know what? I wouldn't change a thing about it.

So let's enjoy this. We have a very good team, one of the best players in the country, and a basketball coach who (for all of faults) has put the program square on the national map. In the end, this season is going to be judged by how we do in March, so we have plenty of basketball to watch until then.

Anonymous said...

Is there an html smiley for 'thumbs up'?