Category Archives: Basketball

Thinking once again….

It’s been over two years and I’m once again going to give this blog thing a try. I’m going to try to post a little less often to avoid burnout(Once every 7-9 days), hopefully on Sunday’s for the most part. Looking back at my last posts, this is what I see that has happened since the last time I posted:

  • Bret is still the coach as Arkansas and it did not turn out to be the disaster I predicted [can’t get them all right I guess :)]
  • Gary Andersen is gone from Wisconsin (Thank God!) and Paul Chryst is the coach. Hey, we are off to a very good start….better than Bret 🙂
  • Bo is gone a Wisconsin for basketball and Gard is in. He seemed to over achieve last year with mid-level players.
  • The Brewers ended up taking since the last post thanks to the incompetence of Doug Melvin and we had to blow the whole thing up. Amazing that the Cardinals never have to go into a rebuilding mode (and it is not because of that larger fan base.
  • Bench clearing brawls still happening in MLB even though the solution is SIMPLE. New GM, same idiotic policy (See prior post)
  • The Bucks got new owners and getting a new stadium.
  • Listening to the Dan Patrick show the other day and they mentioned that the NBA will make it a point of emphasis to enforce traveling. I laughed too.
  • A point that is close to me…. The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters of the Northwood’s League won the championship this year. As a 9-pack holder and was at all the playoff games it was truly great following the team including the walk off home run in game 1 of the championship.
  • The Pro Bowl is still as boring is bad as always….. If they would only change it to a future stars with rookies and second year players
  • Now onto soccer, I have really have started following Sacramento Republic FC
  • Carlisle FC having a good season
  • Big Brother has really gone into the toilet. It basically has become repeat comp after repeat comp. It really lacks in game play in recent seasons, as alliances don’t matter and skating through is the new norm
  • What is this with CBS delaying Amazing Race?
  • I bought a drone to fly in the park. Videos are here.
  • Countdown to Battlefield 1 has started
  • House of Cards was great and the following season was good
  • Other Netflix shows I have been watching:
    • Last Man Standing
    • Poirot
    • Family Guy
    • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Season 2 is stupid IMO)
    • Narcos
    • Chopped
    • Cutthroat Kitchen (Is awesome!)
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Thoughts for the week

It has been a while since I have published a meaningful post so here is goes. This week I would just like to do a couple of quick hitters thoughts.

  • A big win for the Badgers on Sunday over Michigan State. A couple of things I noticed with the victory.
    • Traevon Jackson did come up with the big shot, but did do plenty along the way to shoot the team in the foot. When Traevon does not think about the shot is when he comes through.
    • Sam Decker comes out with another below average game. He was only 3-8 from the field with all 3 pointers along with 2 free throws. Decker, who claims that he was going to be more aggressive inside took only 3 shots inside. It appears that Decker let the NBA 1st round pick status go to his head.
    • Bo Ryan has shown that he is unable to learn from his past mistake and truly understand how good coaches play certain situations. The other night Bo did not understand that in a last shot situation with under ten seconds. You should get the ball in the front court and either take the shot or make one quick pass and then shot. Traevon hesitates and the game is lost. Tom Izzo being down 3 at the end of the game, inbounds the ball, makes one quick pass and buries the three. Only the three ball hurts you, but yet he seemed not ready to cover it.
    • Bo Ryan as has the trend to put the final play in the hands of the point guard. This is generally countered by the double team, but this did not occur Sunday. Any team that plays the Badgers should understand this and exploit it in the future.
  • I have been doing a lot Olympic watching and have noticed a couple of things.
    • NBC has to be thanking the television gods for the location of this Olympics and the location in 2018. This time difference between Russia and the United States allows NBC to cut the broadcast/sport down and insert as many additional commercials. There should be no reason that NBC loses money this year. I think that is why some people do not watch, or do not watch as much as they should.
  • On the lighter side of news, I was crowed 1st division champion on Saturday on Smallball.com on the football side.
  • I see that the Brewers are having another go around with K-Rod, any guesses to who will he be traded to?
  • Flappy Birds is a really addictive gam.

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TJMG: Traevon Jackson must go!

The reoccurring theme during this post will be about, after another loss this time to Ohio State, how Wisconsin point guard Traevon Jackson is the reason for the recent Wisconsin struggles on both ends of the floor.

In addition to his recent flub up on the final shot against Ohio State, the Wisconsin offense seems to go or no go based on the fact if Traevon Jackson is on the floor. Whenever Bronson Koenig, take over, the offense seems to take over. For example in the first half when Bronson came into the game, the Badgers, there was a six minute stretch where we were able to move the ball freely inside and outside, but for the final five minutes, when Jackson when back into the game, we went on one of our patiented loooooong field goal droughts that have plagued us the last two seasons.

This is due to Traevon Jackson inability to move the ball or run the offense. Traevon is unable to direct people to move the ball around and run a play. Traevon is only capable of doing a couple of unnecessary cross leg dribbles with a covered shot. This leads to many misses and lower shooting percentage from a position that should be solid. Along with today’s game, Traevon is shooting 27%…. 27%.

Treavon Jackson is not a point guard, per 40 minutes, Treavon averages 3 turnovers which by and far leads the team and something that should not be allowed out of your point guard. This is almost a full turnover more per 40 minutes that Jordon Taylor while playing less minutes than Taylor did. This is an area that should be improving but has not.

While most of this is on Treavon Jackson, a small part of this is on Bo Ryan for not noticing this issue and making the needed changes and allowing Bronson to play more minutes. Bo should know that Jackson was going to be incapable of running the final play.

It is time to send Traevon packing, if he wants to play the dribble through 3 defenders every play, then maybe he should transfer to UW-Superior where they like to do that kind of stuff… or maybe transfer to Ohio State, that way we might have a chance when he is cleared to play.

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Bruce Pearl on ESPN?

Just a short thought today, I was watching Women’s Tournament coverage and who did I see pop on the TV? Bruce Pearl. It appear that in the US we have a double standard when it comes to not following the rules.

Bruce was suspended and hit the the “Show Cause” clause attached to his name which is equivalent to fraud in the criminal world. In the criminal world, you get prison time for fraud (AKA cheating), but in the NCAA world, you just get a job at ESPN (and he is probably making more money).

It is truly sad that no matter what Pearl does short of a felony, someone is gong to pay him and he is going to have a job.

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Wisconsin Basketball End of Season Wrapup

Another year, another season of Badger basketball is in the the books with a loss Friday Ole Miss. The loss to the Rebels was due the same reason that plagued the Badgers this season in most all other losses, long painful scoreless droughts.

You can also see when these droughts are coming, there were some key tips to look for that started the droughts:

  1. We stop throwing the ball inside
  2. We just pass around the perimeter
  3. We only fire up 3-pointers
  4. Ryan Evans starts shoot whenever hes not open

This season was not all bad with two victories over Indiana and Michigan along with a victory over Ohio State. In those game was were able to do the the following:

  1. We throw the ball inside, even if we do not shoot it
  2. Good Defense
  3. Good Rebounding
  4. Ryan Evan does not shoot the ball
  5. Sam Decker plays

I saw people writing that “Bo must go!” after the way this season went and how the offense functioned. I really wonder if these people know how well they really have it with Bo Ryan as a coach. Bo has got the Badgers to the Tournament for the past 12 seasons compared to 7 times in the 103 seasons prior to Bo.

In the end somebody has to win the games and somebody has to lose the games, there is only 1 winner out of 347 Division 1 teams. You never know what you are going to get with a different coach, we might end up like Chelsea. Bo has been able to finish in the top 4 in the Big Ten every season, even this season with a less than stellar senior class plus the issues mentioned above.

This year was a difficult year for the Badgers, but Bo was able to put together a good 20+ win, so its time to give Bo a break since all this guy does is win.

“Bo Must Stay!”

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The NBA All Star Game is a Joke

What if you went to a basketball game and nobody played, but you still had to pay for your ticket? That is what you get with the NBA all star game, the NBA is in trouble, Stern just does not see the slump coming. Given how the game is played today, if I had paid as much as I did, I would ask for a refund.

The All Star game has become a joke, it is like walking into Subway, order a foot long roast beef, and only get one inch, but still pay the 12 inch price. The game is just a bunch of players goofing around for 3 1/2 quarters and then turns into a six or seven minute real game. What is the point of the game? Who would want to watch or pay to a game that nobody takes seriously or professionally? If there is no incentive, the players will not take the chance the size of the contracts today.

The All Star game is a hint of another possible issue in the NBA today, the seriousness of how the game is played in the regular season. The regular season games are starting to become only 8-10 minute games. Players are starting to not take the first three quarters seriously because they know if the score reasonably close, either team can win in the end.

This is starting to be recognized by the fans, nobody gets into the game for the first third quarters. For ticket holders, it is more about the other entertainment around the stadium than the game itself. For people watching on TV, you can turn the game on about two and a half hours after the tipoff just in time for the players to kick it up a notch and watch the ending of a close game. To sum it up, the first three quarters do not counter for anything. If you are only getting 1/4 the product you are expecting, then why go? The regular season game is too long today, four 12 minute quarters is too longer along with the TV and normal timeouts.

The college game excels for three reasons. 1) Two 20 minute half’s, less is more. There is less time to not have your head in the game. 2) Plays that occur in the beginning of the game can affect the end of the game. You can not skip most of the game in college and expect to understand how the game ended up the way it did. 3) Players care about playing from start to finish. Players know if you do not try in the start of the game, you will not be close in the final 5 minutes of the game.

The NBA game has become too different and confusing from the college game. Too many rules that seem to be changing everyday and they seem to favor the “Chosen” teams. Some the rules that are tainting the watch ability of the NBA game are:

  • Mid-Level cap exception, just set a salary cap and the teams can not go over that number
  • Defensive Three Seconds
  • Backcourt Foul Exceptions
  • Clear Path Fouls
  • Lack of Traveling enforcement
  • Too many timeouts
  • No five second guarding rule – This has stopped all kind of passing

In summary, the All Star game is pushing the issues of the league to the front, nobody is taking the NBA game seriously, people rather watch a whole college game rather than a quarter of a NBA game and it will be a matter of time before fans notice and spend their money elsewhere.

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Time to ease up on Bo

First things first, big win against Michigan on Saturday. Second thing, will this be the win that will ease up the grumblings against Bo Ryan? I hope so, because for the past two years I have spent the winter trying to defend Bo Ryan from the “Bo Must Go” (a.k.a “BMG”) groups. These kind of groups are dangerous since they are the kind of people who like to bail at the first sign something does not go right with their team(s).

I agree that the offense in the past two season has been a little sub-par and can be painful to watch from time to time, but nobody is going to be perfect season to season. Bo is still able to win without jumping on every trend in basketball or recruiting players that do not fit the team culture or playing style. Bo Ryan has proven to be a winner season after season pulling out the big wins.

With this being said, people need to lay off Bo Ryan since he has not got Wisconsin to the Final Four. Getting to the Final Four is a difficult task, only 4 teams out of ~347 schools get there every season, and since we have not reached a Final Four to the same amount of time like Dick Bennett, everybody is in a panic. Bo has led the Badgers to the NCAA tournament every season which in itself is quite an accomplishment.

A national championship may never come again to Wisconsin no matter who the coach is, but it should be noted that John Wooden did not win his first national championship until his 16th season coaching the Bruins.

In this era of the quick championship or your out, it is refreshing to see a program like Wisconsin stick with Ryan because first, he wins more than he loses (which always helps) and second, plays by the rules, which you do not see from many national champions lately. It seems that most programs are investigated for some kind of violation years later. You have not heard about any program related violations with Bo Ryan, and I hope it stays that way.

I really hope, when Bo does leave, it is on his own terms. People now a days live in a “Grass is greener on the other side” culture. We are unable to the accept the fact that we can not win it all every year, somebody has to win and somebody has to lose. Bo has won ~72% of all his games as head coach at Wisconsin and I think there is no other coach that could come in at that level for that many years. Sure Bo has not taken us to a Final Four, but what guarantee would you have that Wisconsin would win with somebody else much less get to a Final Four? We could go back to a long hibernation like from 1947-1993 with no tournament appearances.

In conclusion, this is no time to even mention anything about a coaching change, especially after Saturday’s win, Bo has put us in an era of prolonged period of stabilization with consistent winning and I see no reason that Bo must Go.

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