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October 19, 2009

Dribble Drive Motion: Great Offense or Clever Recruiting Tool?

Calipari is installing his dribble drive offense at the University of Kentucky in case you haven't heard. I'm not sure what is more omnipresent right now, the balloon boy, rumors of possible replacements for Kragthorpe, or talk of the new UK offense.
What I find truly interesting is the discussion of this offense as if it were a revolutionary iteration of basketball philisophy. Is it effective? Yes. Is it a wonderful recruiting tool? Definitely. Is it brain surgery? Definitely not.
At its core, it is basically a motion offense that replaces screens with dribble drive penetration. It uses the same principle of filling a spot on the floor and replacing the vacated position, but it uses dribble penetration in lieu of screens or backdoor passes.
As opposed, to the Princeton offense, which allows smaller, shorter teams the ability to be competitive through good shooting, ball control, and decision-making, the dribble drive offense requires good athletes, great shooters, and especially one great ballhandler (see Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans, and John Wall).
This is where the offense truly excels because it is really organized streetball. It provides incredible freedom and encourages players to show their individual ability by forcing the ball to the basket. Because of this, five star recruits who are trying to make the jump to the pros want to play in this system.
Doing so allows them to demonstrate their skills to the scouts and hone the skills, which will eventually pay the bills. Guards and wing players love it because it puts the ball in their hands driving to the basket or shooting face-up jumpers.
However, if this offense is great for recruiting guards and wing players, it does not afford nearly the same opportunities to the big men who essentially are there for weakside rebounding and to finish alley oops.
Power forwards do just fine, but if you are a center who wants to show that you can play with your back to the basket, you are not going to get many opportunities to do this because you are standing on the block opposite the ball.
But, hey, college basketball is a guards' game, and as long as Calipari keeps getting players like Evans, Rose, and Wall, he would be crazy to not employ an offense that puts the ball in their hands. Or, does he get players like this precisely because his offense puts the ball in their hands?
Its truly a case of the chicken or the egg.


September 23, 2009

Band Boy Immortalized

Many people may have forgotten about Michigan St. sticking their flag in the middle of the field at Notre Dame Stadium following their victory 2 years ago. Apparently Irish WR Golden Tate was not one of these people. I'm not sure which will have the longer legacy, Tate's leap or this dudes face, ha!


Video of the Day

A good friend of mine, we will call him "Robbie," sent me this video. Over time it is inevitable that things will and do change. We used to have console televisions now we have flat panels, we used to have windows on the house now we have windows on our computer. As we grow older we learn to accept these truths. Some change is for the better and some is not depending on who you ask. Now with that said check out this video of how they used to kiss back in the day and let me know better, or worse nowadays?