Handy Johnson

Next Years Starting 5

415 posts in this topic

I understand what you're saying, Scott, but I don't think history supports the fear that players won't increase their stats.

 

Look what happened with Andrew White, for instance.  He was less than a 3 ppg reserve for 2 seasons at KU, then came here and his first year of eligibility, he was knocking down 16 ppg.  Part of the reason Tai's numbers went up so much last year, though, was that Andrew White was no longer around, eating up shot attempts.

 

The attempts that Tai took this past season will now go to someone else.  Probably spread around a good bit.  So, it is inevitable that players on our current roster will see increases in their productivity if for no other reason than that they'll get more attempts than they got a year ago and, in some cases, a ton more attempts.

 

If you watched Jordy toward the end of last season, you can see this kid's potential.  And it's not just homers like me seeing it.  I posted a thing from BTN a couple of weeks ago that predicted him to be one of the Big Ten's "breakout" players this coming season.  I think he could very plausibly put up numbers like 12/8.  And, you'll also notice he wasn't as foul prone toward the end of the season.  He moves his feet very well for a guy that size and he's really a sharp kid with a good mind who absorbs what he sees like a sponge.

 

And while I've been going back and forth between work (ugh) and trying to type this reply, 4 more people have responded with additional points about the other players I was going to cover, so I'll just leave at this:  Fewer shots taken by the guys who are no longer here means more shots available to the guys who will take the floor for us this coming season; therefore, you can't go by what numbers a guy put up last season.

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We will definitely have a talented starting 5 but after that is what worries me. Not a lot of depth coming off the bench. Before it seemed as though every minute was gonna have to be earned. Can't really say that anymore which has me worried about development and progress.

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8 minutes ago, LK1 said:

 

In games where Jordy got 18+ minutes, he averaged double figures.  He'll get 25min a game next year.  

 

In 24 minutes against Michigan St., Jordy scored 15 pts, grabbed 9 boards and only committed 2 fouls.  He followed that up with a 10 pt, 8 rebound performance in 17 minutes against Iowa.

 

In the last 10 games of his freshman season, Jordy averaged 7.5 points, 6.2 bds, 51% shooting from the field, 16.7 minutes and 2.1 fouls.  His minutes will go up by 40% next year.  And his skills and abilities will be improved. 

 

Biggest jump is usually the summer between freshman and sophomore years.  I expect a big jump from Jordy just because he has a great work ethic, a good platform of skills, and he's a sharp kid who wants to learn.

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14 minutes ago, khoock said:

We will definitely have a talented starting 5 but after that is what worries me. Not a lot of depth coming off the bench. Before it seemed as though every minute was gonna have to be earned. Can't really say that anymore which has me worried about development and progress.

 

Where we're lacking depth is inside.  We haven't really lost any depth in the back court.  And, don't forget, we're bringing in a Rivals 150 shooting guard/wing who could very well have an impact right off the bat.

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A 40% increase in minutes for Jordy over the last 10 games of his freshman year would take him to nearly 24 minutes.  I think that's realistic.

 

If he ONLY increases his scoring and rebounding at the same rate as his minutes (in other words, his points per minute played would stay the same) then he's going to be averaging almost 11 points and almost 9 rebounds per game.

 

I think 12/8 is very doable. 

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4 minutes ago, Norm Peterson said:

 

Where we're lacking depth is inside.  We haven't really lost any depth in the back court.  And, don't forget, we're bringing in a Rivals 150 shooting guard/wing who could very well have an impact right off the bat.

 

I keep thinking about Akenten and AWIII... I'm really struggling to see how, if Akenten can shoot at a similar 40% clip, he doesn't end up putting up double figures for us.  He has all the athleticism in the world to guard at the D1 level.  And, like White, he doesn't like to handle the ball, and is a good rebounder for his size.  I just don't see a skill White has that Akenten doesn't already have in his arsenal.  I think there are guys like Roby who have to develop an all around game in order to end up a great one, but Akenten and White have very specific skillsets that don't require a ton of development.  

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Just now, LK1 said:

 

I keep thinking about Akenten and AWIII... I'm really struggling to see how, if Akenten can shoot at a similar 40% clip, he doesn't end up putting up double figures for us.  He has all the athleticism in the world to guard at the D1 level.  And, like White, he doesn't like to handle the ball, and is a good rebounder for his size.  I just don't see a skill White has that Akenten doesn't already have in his arsenal.  I think there are guys like Roby who have to develop an all around game in order to end up a great one, but Akenten and White have very specific skillsets that don't require a ton of development.  

 

I'm curious about who says Akenten doesn't like handling the ball.  I mean, like you, I've seen that stated before.  But I've watched enough film of enough games of his that I can tell you the kid is not without ball skills.  His strength is his shooting, obviously, but he can dribble and chew gum at the same time.  His athleticism is nearly off the charts and I am of the understanding he likes playing tough D. 

 

There might not be enough shot opportunities to go around for him to score in double figures for us, but I don't doubt he'll have at least a chance to have an impact, and I think it's a pretty good chance at that.

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Norm, I agree that more opportunities and more experience will increase the stats for some players. My biggest concern is that, if Tshimanga and Watson put up a combined 25 a night, do we have a third and fourth option, because if someone doubles Jordy there has to be a 45% jump shooter to make them pay. I love Jack's game and think he could make a Tai-like leap, but he shot 37%. Top returning perimeter shooters were Glynn and Evan at 41%, so I double Jordy, and I can because no one else is going to make me pay 3/5 trips down the floor. 

The pressure is on. I keep seeing "NCAA or fired" sentiments, which seems fair after this many years, but may not be reasonable with the roster we are fielding (flooring?) I think we lack the offensive punch to dance.

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Posted (edited)

Here's the thing a lot of people don't think about... we are still going to take shots and get attempts.  Take all the attempts Tai, MJ, Ed and Horne got last year and spread them around.  Now a lot more guys on this years team have higher PPG.

Edited by hskr4life

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18 minutes ago, hhcscott said:

Norm, I agree that more opportunities and more experience will increase the stats for some players. My biggest concern is that, if Tshimanga and Watson put up a combined 25 a night, do we have a third and fourth option, because if someone doubles Jordy there has to be a 45% jump shooter to make them pay. I love Jack's game and think he could make a Tai-like leap, but he shot 37%. Top returning perimeter shooters were Glynn and Evan at 41%, so I double Jordy, and I can because no one else is going to make me pay 3/5 trips down the floor. 

The pressure is on. I keep seeing "NCAA or fired" sentiments, which seems fair after this many years, but may not be reasonable with the roster we are fielding (flooring?) I think we lack the offensive punch to dance.

Doubling Jordy should help some of the perimeter players increase their shooting percentages.  Should.

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3 minutes ago, hhcscott said:

Norm, I agree that more opportunities and more experience will increase the stats for some players. My biggest concern is that, if Tshimanga and Watson put up a combined 25 a night, do we have a third and fourth option, because of someone doubles Jordy there has to be a 45% jump shooter to make them pay. I love Jack's game and think he could make. Tai-like leap, but he shot 37%. Top returning perimeter shooters were Glynn and Evan at 41%, so I double Jordy, and I can because no one else is going to make me pay 3/5 trips down the floor. 

The pressure is on. I keep seeing "NCAA or fired" sentiments, which seems fair after this many years, but may not be reasonable with the roster we are fielding (flooring?) I think we lack the offensive punch to dance.

 

Good post.  Offensively, I'm looking mostly at spacing as the biggest indicator of improvement.  Last year, our starting lineup was usually:

 

Glynn

Tai

Evan

MJ

Morrow

 

Of that lineup, there is literally one player who I'm comfortable kicking the ball out to as a very good 3pt shooter, and that is Glynn (Tai was serviceable though).  Well, that doesn't work, because Glynn is the PG.  He can't kick it out to himself.  Tai was a very good one on one scorer, but he had to get to the rim to do so, and Evan was a liability from 3.  Neither Morrow nor MJ could shoot from anywhere on the court, nor had any one on one scoring ability, so all a defense had to do to stop us was either 1) play zone or 2) pack in m2m.  We couldn't drive, kick out, or throw it into the post.  There were no options except really difficult shots.  

 

Compare that to next year's starting lineup (with a couple of big assumptions):

 

Watson

Akenten

McVeigh

Copeland

Jordy

 

The first glaring difference is that if Watson, Akenten, McVeigh, and Copeland stand outside of the 3pt line, all four of them HAVE to be guarded.  This leaves the possibility of a two-man game or one on one matchups with Watson (hello 18-20ppg) or Jordy (hello 10 free throws a game).  If we swap Roby for McVeigh or Copeland, we can run the same 2 man game through Roby and have Watson camp out from 3.  If they help, we kick to whoever for a 3, if not, we score at the rim.  Suddenly, we're Wisconsin.  

 

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Here are the KenPom Stats from last year

 

bc073ce7a4.png

 

ORtg = Offensive rating. It's a quick and dirty way of comparing player's value based on shooting, rebounding, turnovers, FTs, etc.  Emphasis on quick and dirty because all of these guys are more than just 1 number.

 

Notes:

 

Tai eFG% basically died towards the end of the year.  He was scoring a lot of points for us, but towards the end he was jacking up and missing 3s.  He shot 28.8% from 3!.  Thus, replacing the shot attempts of Tai with most everyone else isn't going to be a downgrade in efficiency. His FT production will be tougher as none of the returners other than Jordy drew contact. 

 

If you're looking at straight offensive rating, Watson and Jack were our best two guys.  The players are grouped by usage (shot attempts when on the floor) though: Watson was highly used and McVeigh was basically a role player when you averaged his minutes.  I think it's reasonable for Watson to keep up his production next year though he'll be the first guy on everyone's scouting report to start the season.  If McVeigh has to carry more offense, can be be more consistent/efficient?  

 

Jordy was/is a WIP.  I'll post his conference vs non-conference stuff later. All the turnovers, fouls, and low shooting percentage is why his offensive rating was so low.  You'll notice he's towards the top of the list. It's because when he was in the game we ran a lot of offense through him.

 

Evan's numbers backup that he's not a great shooter...doesn't necessarily excel at anything. At this point can you really expect some sort of leap?  I think he's a good role player to have on this team but if he's playing 20-30 minutes a game this year I don't think we're winning.

 

With MJ and Ed we have to replace the majority of our rebounding, especially offensive. We'll miss Ed's easy buckets and him in general..we'll need Jordy to step up big time. We'll miss MJ's steady production. Was MJ going to make some shots next year?  His lack of 3s and lack of post moves made him a sub-Taylor shooter

 

That was a lost year for Roby. Tentative on his shot and you could see the reflection in the terrible shooting numbers. Turned the ball over, didn't get to the FT line. He's better than this. The question will be how much better.

 

Gill. Brutal number of a guy who's a better slasher than shooter but couldn't hit a layup if his life depended on it.  You could see he was trying to make shots he had in the past so when he comes back next year will he be healthy enough to be the guy he used to be?

 

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10 minutes ago, hhcdimes said:

Here are the KenPom Stats from last year

 

bc073ce7a4.png

 

ORtg = Offensive rating. It's a quick and dirty way of comparing player's value based on shooting, rebounding, turnovers, FTs, etc.  Emphasis on quick and dirty because all of these guys are more than just 1 number.

 

Notes:

 

Tai eFG% basically died towards the end of the year.  He was scoring a lot of points for us, but towards the end he was jacking up and missing 3s.  He shot 28.8% from 3!.  Thus, replacing the shot attempts of Tai with most everyone else isn't going to be a downgrade in efficiency. His FT production will be tougher as none of the returners other than Jordy drew contact. 

 

If you're looking at straight offensive rating, Watson and Jack were our best two guys.  The players are grouped by usage (shot attempts when on the floor) though: Watson was highly used and McVeigh was basically a role player when you averaged his minutes.  I think it's reasonable for Watson to keep up his production next year though he'll be the first guy on everyone's scouting report to start the season.  If McVeigh has to carry more offense, can be be more consistent/efficient?  

 

Jordy was/is a WIP.  I'll post his conference vs non-conference stuff later. All the turnovers, fouls, and low shooting percentage is why his offensive rating was so low.  You'll notice he's towards the top of the list. It's because when he was in the game we ran a lot of offense through him.

 

Evan's numbers backup that he's not a great shooter...doesn't necessarily excel at anything. At this point can you really expect some sort of leap?  I think he's a good role player to have on this team but if he's playing 20-30 minutes a game this year I don't think we're winning.

 

With MJ and Ed we have to replace the majority of our rebounding, especially offensive. We'll miss Ed's easy buckets and him in general..we'll need Jordy to step up big time. We'll miss MJ's steady production. Was MJ going to make some shots next year?  His lack of 3s and lack of post moves made him a sub-Taylor shooter

 

That was a lost year for Roby. Tentative on his shot and you could see the reflection in the terrible shooting numbers. Turned the ball over, didn't get to the FT line. He's better than this. The question will be how much better.

 

Gill. Brutal number of a guy who's a better slasher than shooter but couldn't hit a layup if his life depended on it.  You could see he was trying to make shots he had in the past so when he comes back next year will he be healthy enough to be the guy he used to be?

 

 

Thanks for this.  Curious if you have Georgetown's 15-16 kenpom stats.. I'd like to see how Copeland shakes out.  

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13 minutes ago, LK1 said:

 

Thanks for this.  Curious if you have Georgetown's 15-16 kenpom stats.. I'd like to see how Copeland shakes out.  

 

 

39b13e1bad.png

 

Looked decent. He shot 38.9% from 3 his freshman year. In conference play his 2nd year (pictured above) he shot 21% which drug him down to 27% overall. If you believe in FT numbers as an indication of shooting ability, it's there. His rebounding numbers are lackluster: is that because that's not his game or because he played with guys like Gowan, Hayes, and Derrickson who ran 250 lbs +?  

 

Even if Copeland can't get that 3pt stroke back he can put up numbers to put in as a starter at the 3 or 4 without missing a beat.  If he can hit a 3 at even 33%?  That's a huge plus from that position. 

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32 minutes ago, hhcdimes said:

Jordy was/is a WIP.  I'll post his conference vs non-conference stuff later. All the turnovers, fouls, and low shooting percentage is why his offensive rating was so low.  You'll notice he's towards the top of the list. It's because when he was in the game we ran a lot of offense through him.

 

6cff36fb86.png

 

Conference only was on the second line. Better (not great) shooting but more turnovers.  Had a game where he coughed it up 4 times in 9 minutes...which is like missing 4 shots without having a chance at an offensive rebound if you think about it in term of a possessions per game.

 

To contrast, here are Nick Ward's numbers. He has the same range as Jordy but shot 15% higher, was an elite shot blocker and elite rebounder.  Jordy could play here for 4 years and potentially never be as good as Ward last year.  Or maybe he could be.  How fast and how much Jordy Tshimanga can develop might be the difference between sinking and swimming next year.  I love the potential and hope he is up to the task.

8e9ef20e7d.png

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2 minutes ago, hhcdimes said:

Looked decent. He shot 38.9% from 3 his freshman year. In conference play his 2nd year (pictured above) he shot 21% which drug him down to 27% overall. If you believe in FT numbers as an indication of shooting ability, it's there. His rebounding numbers are lackluster: is that because that's not his game or because he played with guys like Gowan, Hayes, and Derrickson who ran 250 lbs +?  

 

Even if Copeland can't get that 3pt stroke back he can put up numbers to put in as a starter at the 3 or 4 without missing a beat.  If he can hit a 3 at even 33%?  That's a huge plus from that position. 

 

Thanks.  

 

Yup.  I'm encouraged as well.  He's not far behind Glynn.  Watching the Duke/GTown game on youtube from 15-16, it's pretty clear Copeland has a stretch-4 game.  He doesn't like to bang, but he is tall enough/quick enough create big matchup problems, even for Duke.  He also has a hell of a midrange game with no hesitation at various spots inside the arc, and he runs the court extremely well.  Defensively he's nothing special, but I think he's the kind of player that's almost always going to outscore his matchup.  He's just an infinite difference from MJ/Ed at the 4.  He's a face-the-basket wing first, post player second.  

 

I also think he'll be serviceable from 3.  

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13 minutes ago, LK1 said:

 

Thanks.  

 

Yup.  I'm encouraged as well.  He's not far behind Glynn.  Watching the Duke/GTown game on youtube from 15-16, it's pretty clear Copeland has a stretch-4 game.  He doesn't like to bang, but he is tall enough/quick enough create big matchup problems, even for Duke.  He also has a hell of a midrange game with no hesitation at various spots inside the arc, and he runs the court extremely well.  Defensively he's nothing special, but I think he's the kind of player that's almost always going to outscore his matchup.  He's just an infinite difference from MJ/Ed at the 4.  He's a face-the-basket wing first, post player second.  

 

I also think he'll be serviceable from 3.  

 

Yep... I think Copeland is what Ed wants to be essentially.  

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1 hour ago, hhcscott said:

Norm, I agree that more opportunities and more experience will increase the stats for some players. My biggest concern is that, if Tshimanga and Watson put up a combined 25 a night, do we have a third and fourth option, because if someone doubles Jordy there has to be a 45% jump shooter to make them pay. I love Jack's game and think he could make a Tai-like leap, but he shot 37%. Top returning perimeter shooters were Glynn and Evan at 41%, so I double Jordy, and I can because no one else is going to make me pay 3/5 trips down the floor. 

The pressure is on. I keep seeing "NCAA or fired" sentiments, which seems fair after this many years, but may not be reasonable with the roster we are fielding (flooring?) I think we lack the offensive punch to dance.

 

Here is the thing that I look at.  With the lineup below, if Jordy were to kick it out, I would have no problem with any one of those 4 other starters shooting the three.  I think that the group listed would make any defense think twice about doubling and it only takes that split second hesitation.  Then I look at our subs and think "my goodness."  If we could have 2nd half of season Jack, right before injury Gill, as good as advertised Nana, and Taylor to do what he was doing last year, than I would have no problem with Jordy kicking it out to any of those guys for the 3.  

 

The one glaring hole... No backup for Jordy.  I know it won't happen, but if Jordy goes out of the game... Yoda would say, a more up-tempo type of game we will probably have to play.

 

1. Glynn

2. Palmer

3. Roby

4. Copeland

5. Jordy

 

Subs

 

Jack

Gill

Nana

Taylor

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3 hours ago, basketballjones said:

I'll give you $50 if Jordy averages 12ppg next year. 

Wait...are you saying he will score more than 12 ppg next year :)

 

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2 hours ago, huskercwg said:

Wait...are you saying he will score more than 12 ppg next year :)

 

At this point I think it's best I don't clarify the bet... 

Also, I should admit my response was a bit short-sided. In my head, we have two returning junior 4/5 men that will start and play the majority of the minutes. I think Nebrasketball PTSD kicked in momentarily and pushed away that MJ and EM are gone. 

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2 minutes ago, basketballjones said:

At this point I think it's best I don't clarify the bet... 

Also, I should admit my response was a bit short-sided. In my head, we have two returning junior 4/5 men that will start and play the majority of the minutes. I think Nebrasketball PTSD kicked in momentarily and pushed away that MJ and EM are gone. 

 

That's alright. You can sleep on my couch until you get back on your feet if you lose that $50.

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Think now that there is no expectation of him coming in and being the shooter we so needed that Gill relaxes and makes more shots next year!

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29 minutes ago, colhusker said:

Think now that there is no expectation of him coming in and being the shooter we so needed that Gill relaxes and makes more shots next year!

More worried about his health/quickness and rest of his game then that.  

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To me...right now...assuming everyone is healthy and here...next season comes down to two things.   Nana and Roby.   Watson will get us 14-15.   Same with a healthy Copeland.   I don't think Jordy will be a big time scorer, but will be productive for us.   We need Roby's game to match his potential.  If we can get 12 & 6 out of him consistently and Nana can average 7-8 as a consistent perimeter threat....I think we can do something.   Watson and Copeland, IMO are the known variables to me.   It's Roby and Nana matching their potential as the X-factor to get us over the hump.

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Maybe the more relevant Kenpom numbers are the team's. These are the Miles years, are offensive rankings out of 350+ teams:

2012-13: 181

2013-14: 112

2014-15: 264

2015-16: 87

2016-17: 157

We can play the "he'll score more this year" game or look at the facts: We're losing 3 or our top 5 scorers, so it's not realistic to think this offense his going to make a jump to a quality level when it's coming off such a low base to begin with. Can it be better than 157? Sure, but it's not going to be a strength.

 

I'm basing my hope on the defense. Maybe Copeland's length and Jordy's improvement tighten up the inside, and our youngsters figure out how to defend ball screens and close out on shooters. That is realistic. 

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