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  1. #1
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    My take on ISU basketball

    Larry Eustachy went 72-26 (.735) through his first three seasons, which, as we all know, included two Big 12 titles.

    In his FOURTH season, he went 12-19 (.387). Many people see the Eustachy era as the pinnacle of Iowa State basketball, and attribute this success to coaching. But what happened in year four? The answer is obvious: talent. Where was the talent in year four? After taking over a program (and players) from a close friend, and then experiencing the highest of highs, you would think that recruiting would have been at an all-time high. Iowa State should have been filling voids and reloading instead of rebuilding. We all know what happened over the next couple of years.

    Fastforward through the most tumultuous years of Iowa State basketball, and here we are. Some want to believe that all we're left with at this point is excuses. What many forget is that Floyd, Eustachy, and Morgan were (in one way or another) essentially endorsed by their predecessor. McDermott and Morgan were not friends- not even close. This was the only "hostile" coaching transition of my lifetime.

    When it was all said and done, Mac was left with 4 scholarship players. That's the equivalent of being left with 26 scholarship players after a football coaching change. What sort of coaching skill would it take to rectify that situation in less than 3 years? It isn't apples to apples, but it doesn't diminish the difficulty of the situation, especially after you consider APR sanctions, shortened recruiting timelines, unexpected player attrition, etc.

    Some feel that this should all be rectified by now. The demons should have been exercised and we should be on our way to the NCAA tournament. Unfortunately we're not there yet, but I see a solid foundation finally being built. I see 11 of 13 scholarship players in the frosh and soph classes. I see that our only upperclassmen (save VDB) are current or former walk-ons. I see recruiting starting to pick up steam, especially with the signing of Colvin (thanks to a recent commitment to improve b-ball facilities).

    I've sat in Hilton and watched basketball for my entire life, literally. My parents, loyal season ticket holders for 3 decades, brought me to games as a baby. I have clear memories of Orr, Floyd, Eustachy, and Morgan. I've sat through hundreds of games spanning these coaching eras. While my opinion will certainly be controversial at this point, I believe that McDermott is one of the most well-rounded coaches of my lifetime.

    Some Cyclone fans will laugh at that statement, but it's my honest opinion after growing up on Iowa State basketball. It hasn't been pretty (and nothing excuses a loss like SDSU- that was tough to sit through), but no coach in my lifetime has had to deal with what Greg has in his short tenure. I'm not saying my opinion is right, but it's my own perspective after watching many years of ISU basketball.

    Regardless of what happens, I'll continue to donate money and buy season tickets. It's not fun to drive to Ames and watch a game like last Tuesday's, but that doesn't change the fact that I love Iowa State basketball and I love spending time in Hilton. Soon we'll all get what we deserve.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by psychlone99 View Post
    Larry Eustachy went 72-26 (.735) through his first three seasons, which, as we all know, included two Big 12 titles.

    In his FOURTH season, he went 12-19 (.387). Many people see the Eustachy era as the pinnacle of Iowa State basketball, and attribute this success to coaching. But what happened in year four? The answer is obvious: talent. Where was the talent in year four? After taking over a program (and players) from a close friend, and then experiencing the highest of highs, you would think that recruiting would have been at an all-time high. Iowa State should have been filling voids and reloading instead of rebuilding. We all know what happened over the next couple of years.

    Fastforward through the most tumultuous years of Iowa State basketball, and here we are. Some want to believe that all we're left with at this point is excuses. What many forget is that Floyd, Eustachy, and Morgan were (in one way or another) essentially endorsed by their predecessor. McDermott and Morgan were not friends- not even close. This was the only "hostile" coaching transition of my lifetime.

    When it was all said and done, Mac was left with 4 scholarship players. That's the equivalent of being left with 26 scholarship players after a football coaching change. What sort of coaching skill would it take to rectify that situation in less than 3 years? It isn't apples to apples, but it doesn't diminish the difficulty of the situation, especially after you consider APR sanctions, shortened recruiting timelines, unexpected player attrition, etc.

    Some feel that this should all be rectified by now. The demons should have been exercised and we should be on our way to the NCAA tournament. Unfortunately we're not there yet, but I see a solid foundation finally being built. I see 11 of 13 scholarship players in the frosh and soph classes. I see that our only upperclassmen (save VDB) are current or former walk-ons. I see recruiting starting to pick up steam, especially with the signing of Colvin (thanks to a recent commitment to improve b-ball facilities).

    I've sat in Hilton and watched basketball for my entire life, literally. My parents, loyal season ticket holders for 3 decades, brought me to games as a baby. I have clear memories of Orr, Floyd, Eustachy, and Morgan. I've sat through hundreds of games spanning these coaching eras. While my opinion will certainly be controversial at this point, I believe that McDermott is one of the most well-rounded coaches of my lifetime.

    Some Cyclone fans will laugh at that statement, but it's my honest opinion after growing up on Iowa State basketball. It hasn't been pretty (and nothing excuses a loss like SDSU- that was tough to sit through), but no coach in my lifetime has had to deal with what Greg has in his short tenure. I'm not saying my opinion is right, but it's my own perspective after watching many years of ISU basketball.

    Regardless of what happens, I'll continue to donate money and buy season tickets. It's not fun to drive to Ames and watch a game like last Tuesday's, but that doesn't change the fact that I love Iowa State basketball and I love spending time in Hilton. Soon we'll all get what we deserve.
    Great post! Thanks for putting it up here. I'll spend my time laughing with you as we see the fruit of Coach's labor start to appear


    Since we are an elite team now, let's go get that One Cyclone Moment.
    Make this one for the ages!




    http://rememberingdoria.wordpress.com/

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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    we need an up tempo offense, and recruit more guys like dg, cb, cc, and db, we just need to get some really athletic guys then run the fast break like crazy



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Comparing the percentage of scholarship players left isn't even close to apples to apples when you compare basketball to football. You can scrape by with a .500 record with 4 scholarship players returning plus recruits in basketball. You're lucky to win one game if that was the case with football.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    This fan base needs more posts/fans like you...I also will always be a Cyclone fan.


    Scott L., Yokosuka, Japan

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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by sclotz View Post
    This fan base needs more posts/fans like you...I also will always be a Cyclone fan.
    You're right. Sometimes the inmates run the asylum around here...


    I, too, am behind Coach Mac, and any ISU coach and player...100%.



  7. #7
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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    I couldn't agree more with this. Though it won't be too popular on this board.
    Alex Thompson is the only player on the team that has been there 3 years.
    Thats it. I don't care who the coach is, if you have an entire team of first and second year players, you are going to have some struggles. No matter how talented your youngsters are.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Great post Psy, I completely see your point, but still cannot believe the amount our program has regressed the last 3 years. I know he had all of the cards in the deck stacked against him, but this is no excuse for our failures of the end of last year into the beginning of this year. No matter how barren the ISU basketball landscape was, we are a D1 Big 12 school with a rich and proud tradition, and just on that alone I think we should be able to bring in the type of people to compete. But the fact that our players coupled with our system have given us loses to the likes of Hawaii and SDSU, and created some close calls with many other inferior schools. In three years he should have had time to install some quality players and more importantly install his system. This much I have not seen. I also have not seen any individual progress in any of the players. I can handle losing...but we should have seen progress somewhere along the line. Right now, I would take the team he had in year 1 against the team we have now anyday...and that fact alarms me.

    Again I loved your post and respect your point of view. It is well thought out and I think it is that type of optimism this team and program needs. Unfortunately I find it hard to be optimistic, but offer my support all the same.


    Last edited by Clonefan32; 12-26-2008 at 09:51 PM.

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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Yup, not one player has played at ISU for more than one year. That has to be taken into account.

    Attrition is always partially the coaches fault. That has to be taken into account.

    Recruiting is apparently on the upswing. That has to be taken into account.

    SDSU is one of the worst losses for ISU in a long time. That has to be taken into account.

    I've never been accused of being a Mac apologist. I don't think he's the right coach for Iowa State. That being said, I have always maintained, as much as it pains me, that he has to get the length of his contract to prove something.

    Yes, it was a ****** situation coming in, but after three years, there should be some tangible improvement, not regression.

    So yeah, it's a tough situation.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by Clonefan32 View Post
    Great post Psy, I completely see your point, but still cannot believe the amount our program has regressed the last 3 years. I know he had all of the cards in the deck stacked against him, but this is no excuse for our failures of the end of last year into the beginning of this year. No matter how barren the ISU basketball landscape was, we are a D1 Big 12 school with a rich and proud tradition, and just on that alone I think we should be able to bring in the type of people to compete. But the fact that our players coupled with our system have given us loses to the likes of Hawaii and SDSU, and created some close calls with many other inferior schools. In three years he should have had time to install some quality players and more importantly install his system. This much I have not seen. I also have not seen any individual progress in any of the players. I can handle losing...but we should have seen progress somewhere along the line. Right now, I would take the team he had in year 1 against the team we have now anyday...and that fact alarms me.

    Again I loved your post and respect your point of view. It is well thought out and I think it is that type of optimism this team and program needs. Unfortunately I find it hard to be optimistic, but offer my support all the same.
    I would probably take that first year team as well. But, keep in mind, that team had NBA player Mike Taylor, Jiri Hubalek (junior), Rahshon Clark (junior) and Wesley Johnson. Taylor's athleticism alone made that team more competitive. McDermott and the Clones were totally screwed by the classless move by Wesley Johnson. Put an athletic, 6'7" wingman with Johnson's skills on this team and they are much, much better. A line-up with Brackins, Johnson, Staiger, Garrett and Petersen.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    That is the major concern - we have regressed. The team in Year One or Two could beat the team in Year Three. We may have plenty of young talent coming in but if we have to allow them one or two years to fit in, it may be Year Five before we get back to where we were with Wayne. That is what has gathered the attention. It should not be a five year project to get back what you had with Wayne. That may have been helter skelter but the team was rough and tough and showed lots of emotion and did not wait for tomorrow. Live and die by the sword was called crappy basketball as we lost games in the eighties. Now we lose games in the fifties.


    If you lose, this styl of basketball puts Hilton magic top sleep. You feel like 38 per cent shooting with few free throws did not give you your money's worth. The slow style will not get Hilton hopping.


    Last edited by Wesley; 12-26-2008 at 10:02 PM.
    CFH HMagic bball season next year.
    Let my Fred's Four Horsemen ride: Georges, Hogue, Nader, and McKay.

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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Does anyone think this team would be better with Cory Johnson this year as an option in the paint? He was essentially told that Mann would replace him, and Mann has appeared overmatched.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Our offense consists of guys chucking up long 3's and occasionally looking for the one somewhat capable big man that we have down on the block. We aren't going to win many games with offense like that no matter what kind of defense we're playing on the other end of the court.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by CrossCyed View Post
    Does anyone think this team would be better with Cory Johnson this year as an option in the paint? He was essentially told that Mann would replace him, and Mann has appeared overmatched.
    We would be better. He was one of the players that added hustle and scrappiness. I wish he would have stayed.



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    Re: My take on ISU basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by CrossCyed View Post
    Does anyone think this team would be better with Cory Johnson this year as an option in the paint? He was essentially told that Mann would replace him, and Mann has appeared overmatched.
    I had wondered this as well. CJ would definitely be beating both AT and Mann out for PT right now.



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