Wednesday, December 12, 2007

UW-UWM-thoughts on Rob Jeter

Was only able to listen to the game tonight - no ESPN 360 and I had homework to do, budget time of year - and it didn't seem like I missed much.

Sounds like Marcus Landry had a nice showing - 16 points. At one point Matt LePay made the comment about how Marcus had a good feel for tonight's game, and that was a good illustration of why he's different than Carl or Alando Tucker - Marcus feels the game and figures out his role in it, Carl and 'Do imposed their will on the game.

Hughes seemed to play under control, and Stiemsma was a presence inside. Too many turnovers.

It might sound silly, but I'm concerned about UWM. I've always pulled for them in every game except the one against UW, and was delighted by their runs several years ago. They are just brutally bad right now. Last year's struggles were inevitable - they lost a huge senior class that had won a lot of games. But things should have improved this year. Dismissing Avery Smith obviously hurt, but beyond Torre Johnson and Paige Paulsen, they've got nothing.

I hope they give Rob Jeter time to prove himself in Milwaukee. Bruce Pearl appears to have left the cupboard empty, and it takes time to fill it back up, especially when none of the holdovers were recruited to play in the Swing.

But if the losing continues, it probably eliminates Jeter from the short list of candidates to replace Bo Ryan after he hangs it up. Two years ago the UWM seemed like a great apprenticeship for Rob; now it seems like a land mine, and he can't be considered a viable option right now. He seems like too smart, driven, and well-taught to struggled long-term. Hopefully he gets that program on the right track in the second half of this season and rolls into next year.


ajs said...

Good to see my comparison of Landry to 'Do and Carl has legs...I too don't see either of those two in Marcus. He's certainly his own deal. Played well last night but that could be more a product of the competition (very good to see however)

I thought coming in this would be a good game for JBo to get involved. He still struggled to get his jump shot off. UWM made it a point to pressure the ball high which pretty much takes JBo out of his game.

Not much else to even talk about really- Butch had a nice game but not much D in the blocks. Steamer actually showed a few post moves- that goes to show you the lack of inside D UWM put up.

Kevin Hazaert said...

As the UWM alumus and season-ticket holder here, I guess I should chime in ...

With the exception of Al Hanson (who, for some reason, Jeter has a man-crush on even though he brings very little to the team), ALL of these guys are Jeter's guys, and yet still none of them seemingly know how to work the swing.

His substitution patterns continue to be the most baffling thing about him ... it looks like a hockey game out there at times with all the changes at every dead ball.

Each time a player "screws up" - even if it's minor - there usually is someone to replace him at the next stoppage. The players on the floor almost have a Pavlovian response when they hear the horn on a dead ball ... their heads turn toward the scorer's table to see who is replacing them.

With that said, they can't get into a rhythm when they are constantly rotating in and out like that ... and the players play tentative, almost afraid of not screwing up instead of doing the right things. And that's when the mistakes happen.

It also doesn't help that PT Barnum was replaced by an egg plant. The energy is completely gone from the old Arena ... games are no longer an "event."

I'm not expecting Jeter to be Pearl in the personality dept. ... very few people can be. UWM's head coach needs to be out front in public and the primary marketer for the program, reaching out to the students. Jeter does very little of that .... whether he doesn't want to do it or doesn't feel comfortable, I don't know.

I said this before .... I think Bud Haidet (UWM's AD) made a mistake in breaking from the mold of bringing in a proven winner from the D-2 or D-3 level (Ryan, Pearl) and going for an unproven assistant (Jeter), which didn't work the last time (Cobb).

Mike Dunlap, who won a D-2 title at Metro State and plays an up-tempo style similar to Pearl, was a finalist and would've been a better fit.

Last year's season was disappointing, but expected. However, even with the prized newcomers (T. Johnson, Flowers, Roberts, K. Johnson) they have shown little signs of improvement and I would say have even regressed ... the defense last year wasn't as bad as it is now.

Unfortunately, there are rumors swirling of possible defections at the end of the year or even the semester ... so we may not even see what comes of this recruiting class.

Scott Tappa said...

Good analysis, Haze.

Your hockey substitution pattern analogy was funny, i was thinking the same thing listening to the game the other night - how many friggin' guys do they play?

Someone else can correct me if I'm wrong, but Bo has a short leash for guys who screw up, too, one I think has been unfairly short at times.

I also thought your point about promoting a D2-3 coach is a perfect fit for UWM was spot-on. I'm guessing there are more similarities, from a budget, media, recruiting target standpoint, between Metro State and UWM than between UW and UWM. That's no diss on UWM, just realities of athletic departments, history, and schools' commitment to athletics.

Hoping for the best for your Panthers, buddy.

Kevin Hazaert said...

And now Torre Johnson was arrested:


1997 all over again.

Kevin Hazaert said...

Sorry, here's the link:

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