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11/15/2023 2:03 pm  #61

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

  Thanks for putting together highlights in such a timely fashion.
On the game, thought it could go either way when they were several points up. Actually
thought we could lose this, after building up a sizable lead and then finding us behind in the second half.
I believe it was the great Max who hit a big 3 to keep us in it.
  He was screwed on the tip-in foul. Hofstra meanwhile went over the top with impunity
several times. Inconsistent refs seemed to call a bunch of touch fouls, then nothing for awhile.
We eventually got a couple of calls, but would be glad not to see that crew again.
   Believe Stretch took the heart out of Hofstra. Don't know what went in the books and
haven't seen the box score. But it seemed like one possession it was 2 or 3 blocks, effectively.
Like Yinka in days past or even Pops on a good day to some extent, think he got in Hofstra's head
when thinking about going to the basket. This is what we though Stretch could contribute.
     Darren made a big difference as well, which we really need. And coming through when we really
needed him. Think this game will be good for him seeing how he fits in best in a new program.
    Garrett has been just a terrific pickup in many ways. What a great story and smart, effective and important player in these games.
    JB played maturely, taking over when needed. We can't and shouldn't count on it all the time this year,
as we really need to develop for the future. But needless to say, JB even while not having his best game at all, was a big difference at the end of the game. This year, JB seems to know he can be a winner and a star, in order of importance.
   In the same vein, good to see Trey and Jacoi getting some important minutes. Jacoi has the tools
to be almost a veteran presence as freshman. The made 3s by Trey were nice and he also had six rebounds.
  Noticed CC spreading his hands wide most emphatically. Sure seems like a smart coach right now, in recruitment and game presence/adjustments. 
   As noted above, this is a game won by CC's team we might well have lost under the most recent coaches.


11/15/2023 2:25 pm  #62

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

Thanks everyone for the kind comments on the previews so far. It means a lot!

That was the best defensive performance I've seen from GW in a very long time. There were a lot of things the team has done poorly on that end in previous years, but one of things that has annoyed me the most (even with all the interior D issues during the JC era) was guys going underneath screens instead of fighting over them. That issue certainly popped up a lot more during the W&M game. While there were still a couple instances (that allowed Thomas to get threes early on) CC did a good job getting the guys to adjust - I actually thought I saw him visibly upset when Thomas was getting the open looks at the beginning. Under previous regimes if there were those issues expecting adjustments in-game would be unrealistic. The timeouts as mentioned above were really good ones and the play to get Trey open from 3 at the end of the shot clock as Hofstra expected JB to get the ball was genius. Overall, the defensive intensity was really good.

Notably, the defense in the last 9.5 minutes was incredible - conceding just seven points against anyone is an impressive feat - not to mention without Max for most of it. Stretch's two blocks/one steal sequence was notable, but really everyone who played D on Thomas did a great job (​I believe he only scored two points in the final quarter of the game). Akingbola clearly worked on his D along the perimeter from Saturday, and during the postgame interview I really appreciated the fact that he referenced a possession where he bobbled the basketball and let it slip to a Hofstra player that could have resulted in an additional GW possession. Overall, he seems like a pretty down to Earth guy that's a great fit for the program. I wish he had more help on the boards though because it feels like he's always trying to box out two guys down low - which makes it harder for GW to come down with the rebound at times especially when Max isn't in the game. There are times I do wish he would go back up with the ball down low when he pulls down an offensive board, but I appreciate that he doesn't force it. Overall, the rebounding was solid last night though. Garrett/Darren helped out there.

I'm surprised our "luck" rating is so high on KenPom after W&M drained 18 threes on us and seemingly the 50-50 balls never go our way (that's something that has continued from previous years lol). Not to mention the fact that opponents are shooting 88% from the FT line (on a small number of attempts, but still noteworthy). I'd imagine these things get better over time. I guess Ken considers the defensive performance yesterday is an anomaly after the past few years.

It was very much a game of runs. When GW fell behind midway through the second half, I thought that the team was playing a bit too much in isolation, passing less, and the spacing was somewhat cramped for whatever reason. Towards the end, that was the same issue that Hofstra ran into. While Hofstra had a bit more bulk inside compared to W&M, I thought they were less balanced which made them easier to guard in some ways. Dubar didn't capitalize on all the attention Thomas was getting and Carlos isn't a good enough shooter to be a primary option. Their freshman Robinson looked very promising, but was erratic at times like any other first-year player. Fritz fouling out was huge, as Sunday is still developing. The Pride were forced to play Plotnikov as a small ball 5 and he was torched time and again by GW.

I thought the offensive execution was overall good despite the less efficient numbers. A number of good looks that didn't go down, and credit Hofstra for trapping in certain areas to make the guards uncomfortable. JB had a pretty efficient shooting day (especially from 3) and his ability to take over games is much appreciated. However, he has coughed up the ball (many of the unforced variety) more than he probably should given his experience. I don't think his assist to turnover ratio has been great so far, but a more balanced team should hopefully alleviate that issue as opponents realize that they can't just hound JB.

Darren has quietly been perhaps the most invaluable piece on the team thus far (is that a hot take? Garrett has been great as well, but I feel DBJ's contributions have been more under the radar). I continue to think Buchanan is Ricky with better ball-handling abilities and prone to making fewer mistakes. He even took a practice shot 3 after a stoppage and made it (good to see even though it didn't count). 10 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists is pretty impressive for a guy that's playing in just his third collegiate game. He was quite the pickup.

Garrett has such beautiful shot mechanics and I thought he picked his shots well. His ability to knife through the lane at his height keeps defenses honest and those drives came at important times in the game to extend GW's lead.

Trey does not play like a freshman. There are plays I'm already seeing where he's doing the right thing giving the ball up instead of launching it as you would expect from the average freshman. The backdoor cut was beautiful and I would expect his three point percentage to go up over the course of the year.

Jacoi may have given back many of the possessions on offense that he created with his defense but I really liked his on-ball defense overall. We heard so much about "Mayhem" the previous few years, but last night was the first time I saw really active hands and pressure along the perimeter. Hofstra isn't that inexperienced of a team, and I thought the team did a great job creating turnovers last night.

Benny as others have mentioned had a rough night, getting beat on defense multiple times but he also forced it on one offensive possession trying to do too much by himself. Not really worried long-term, but I think right now he may be more dangerous as an off-ball piece that cuts to the basket. I could have easily seen him be Trey when GW had that backdoor dunk to put them up 9. It definitely feels that the baskets he's made in the halfcourt have been largely assisted (not including putbacks or any possession that starts in transition). With time he should be more in control when he's trying to create his own shot.

Next up is a game that will be an interesting change of pace, as New Hampshire's best player is in the frontcourt and coming off a monster game against Brown (a team I thought was decent coming into the year). It will also be interesting to see how the team fares away from home after that heading to The Bahamas shortly afterwards.


11/15/2023 2:36 pm  #63

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

Again, the team's FT shooting was remarkable.


11/15/2023 5:44 pm  #64

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

GWRising wrote:

DC Native wrote:

Caputo went ballistic after the refs called a foul on a Max tip in (seemed like a bad call to me too). He pushed a couple assistant coaches trying to keep him away from the ref, but when he got to the ref he seemed to just do some normal arguing. I didn’t see him yell at any players. He did talk to Max, but it seemed to me (I was too far away to hear) that he told him to not get down on himself because it was a good play.

Not exactly what happened. What happened was one of the assistants (I won't name him) got into it with the ref about the call and CC smartly jumped in and said talk to me I'm the head coach. This was tremendously quick and a savy coaching move because I believe the ref was looking for an excuse to whistle a T on the GW bench and CC quickly diffused the whole thing. 

I was not very close, and your explanation makes sense. Even under my misconception of what happened, though, I didn’t see anything out of bounds. I have been nothing but impressed with Caputo so far.


11/15/2023 9:10 pm  #65

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

As I watch the games, and review players' strengths and weaknesses, there is a foreign concept I am trying to get used to: having a good 8 man bench where all can play. any one can get hot, all will contribute, and most are interchangeable.  All that and 2 expected contributors have been out.  This unexpected great situation is true credit to CC and staff.


11/16/2023 12:41 pm  #66


11/16/2023 2:30 pm  #67

Re: GW Beats Hofstra Game

Whomever is writing these.... outstanding work.  Better recaps than any professional writer.

Looks like we have another Jake Sherman on campus

     Thread Starter

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