Current state of the program

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by Another Pilot Fan on Fri Jan 04, 2013 6:27 am

DoubleDipper wrote:
An_Undergrad wrote:Back on topic... I am not lying when I say that it is getting very hard to want to support this team. Although, I am thinking that it is just because of the last few games that I feel this way, but it seems that the next few away games and home games will not help me feel better. I will be continue to be at every game regardless.
So you "will continue to be at every game regardless," but "it is getting very hard to want to support this team."

I won't question your mixed message, but can only offer some advice:

I attended the women's game tonight, and watched the menís game on tape....both teams lost, but the reason I would never consider withdrawing my support of each individual and each team as a whole is because of the effort they give game after game and practice after practice....day in, and day out.

Both teams have excellent cohesiveness and camaraderie....something that was not apparent last season, and the players work long hours to play to the best of their ability....it may not always look like they are playing well, but they sure as hell are trying their hardest to play their best.....

Think of them as the warriors defending your school's honor....if they weren't doing it, who would? Could any of us do as well?

Itís quite easy to support a team at the top; the real test is continuing your support during tough times. I'm old!

Your commitment is admirable, but this supporting when we're bad is not something the student body is that into. Face it, the UP student body is just like any other potential sports watching crowd: they like winning and will support them if they do. As a student, it's pretty easy to see that. It's easy to support the women's soccer team because we have a tradition of winning and continue to win; however, the men's basketball team doesn't have or do that. Who wants to go and watch our team go out and stink it up? No one. UP basketball is a product, and we'd rather spend our time doing something else than watch a team lose/be mediocre. Furthermore, the team isn't that interesting to watch. As a whole, we can't shoot, we aren't aggressive, and half the team seems to be a bunch of scrubs trying to refill the roles of players we had a few years ago (like Reveno keeps trying to find that Stohl type of shooter so we get Riley and Carr, but they can't consistently shoot threes for the life of them anyway). It doesn't matter if these guys are "hard working" or have "good character". I mean, that's great and all, but if these guys can't play, then it's not going to mean anything because no one will want to watch them. That's why the Chiles Center has an atmosphere comparable to a wet sponge, and why it's hard to want to support this team.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by DTLegend on Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:12 am

Last year, around the trade deadline of the NBA season, one of the moderators at a blazers blog wrote about how each NBA team is trying to sell one of two things. For the teams contending they are trying to sell winning. For the teams not contending they are selling hope.

In college basketball, selling hope is much more difficult for a team like Portland. College athletics have always been the rich stay rich, and to "pick yourself up by your bootstraps" metaphorically that is, is quite difficult. There are teams once in a great while who emerge from the ranks of the lowly to reach a certain pedestal, but itís rare and often for a short period of time. And for those teams that have spent a majority of their existence as more of a formality than a challenge, it can be extremely difficult to sell hope, but not impossible.

In terms of the program as a whole, what do we have to be hopeful about? In my opinion there are some highlights currently that give me hope:

-Alec Wintering. More on expectations later but there is reason to hope.
-Connection with the Canarias Basketball Academy. Both Thomas and Oskar have been bright spots. If we can continue to recruit from there and produce successful experiences for those student athletes I think that can be a key component to achieve success.
-Staff's ability to get the most out of some players. While the track record isn't unblemished, this staff has seen something in certain players and turned them into contributors in their later years. I look at Jasonn, Nem, and Korey in some respects. There were moments in all of their careers where I saw them and thought "why are these players here" and they all surprised me with their progress over 4 years.
-Only one senior. I would feel a lot better if for some reason we could keep Rodgers, solely as a backup next year. I think that his role has always been the backup PG, in there to manage rather than make big plays, but what can you do. We have some great pieces. What I am expecting the rest of this season/next season is for Ryan to stay consistent. Hopefully he works on his 3 point shot and learns when to take those shots. We can't have him going 0-6. I expect Oskar and Bryce to play more minutes and progress as freshman do. I expect Kevin to improve his decision making. I expect Barker and Thomas to challenge each other every day and grow into a formidable duo in the post. I really like when they are in there together. I expect a lot from Alec Wintering. I expect him to come in with a level head. I expect him to facilitate for our slashers, I expect him to distribute to our posts, and I expect him to make a play every now and then to keep the defense honest. I know this is a lot to expect out of someone I've only seen on a 4 minute highlight real but this is what we need. I expect to see some strong leadership come from within this team somewhere. There have been times when Ryan has stepped up, as well as Korey, but we need that constant calming presence. We need someone who makes a solid play when things start to slip, and I think itís there it just needs to be consistent.
-UP's "commitment" to growing the program. I'm not sure how successful I would say it has been but it seems like they talk about it a lot. I think they are saying the right things, and I think that men's basketball is a major priority within the athletic department, but I'm not sure if their efforts at this point have had a major impact. My scope of UP basketball is too small to really know what things were like before 2006 and if progress has been made in the past 7 years or so.
-the coaching staff's work ethic. I really do believe that Rev wants to get better every day, and I think that they work hard at that. One aspect that I'm not sure of is identifying failures. I do feel sometimes that Rev and his staff have failed to identify failures which then leads to those failures continuing. I.e. inbounding the ball.

So to recap I'm hopeful for the following:
-Wintering
-Staff (work ethic, ability to get most out of players, connection to Canarias)
-Core going forward (Alec, Oskar, Bryce, Kevin, Ryan, Thomas, Riley, Korey, David, plus seeing Jake develop)
-UP's commitment

I know that this may seem like a bunch of rambling bull, but it's all been boiling up since last week, as I'm sure all of you understand. A few more thoughts, just on where we are now.

I really think that early on, the staff didn't really miss at all when it came to players. Rev's first four-five years every piece they added worked out on some level and added to the equation. Obviously the past couple years haven't worked out as well. I think Nem was considerably better being the 1B/2 option rather than the go to guy, and with such a young team and no one really to take any pressure off he really struggled in his role. The tough schedule last season crippled all confidence and the environment just wasn't what it had been. Then with Tim Douglas transferring left the staff scrambling to reassess their recruiting strategy late in the game. Despite picking up solid pieces in Pressely and Oskar the gap left by Timmy D (remember his freshman year how exciting he was) was too big.

I would also like to bring something else here. There have been many discussions about the fans/environment over the years since I've been coming here. Talks about what "we" or "I" or "students" or "administration" can do to improve this aspect of the program. It always boils down to the same ďbuild it and they will comeĒ and consistency arguments. And I fully understand all of that and I fully understand that winning is the easiest/fastest way to build a strong, loyal, consistent fan base. The question I have is: Is it possible to build a strong, loyal, consistent fan base for a losing program? If you canít sell winning, and you canít sell hope, could the environment ever be enough to sell? I really believe that it could be and I have my ideas that Iíve let people know, but Iíd like to hear some thoughts on building a fan base in a losing environment.

Again, Iím sorry for all of that rambling, hopefully some of this nonsense makes sense.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by dholcombe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 10:37 am

Perspective: A year like this used to be a normal year. Now it's considered a bad year. And in a bad year where we've lost some bad games we were still competitive against a good UNLV squad. Am I happy with this year. Not particularly. Are we making progress...I think so. Slowly.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by newpilotfan on Fri Jan 04, 2013 10:54 am

Wow! I'm really discouraged reading these posts. The expectations for this team and this staff are really low... And you guys are the diehards. It's clear from reading this thread that the reason the program underachieves each year is that there is NO accountability.

"I have every reason to believe we have the right staff" - Really?? It's been 7 years. Are we on the 20 year turn around plan?

"Tim transferring has left a huge hole" - The staff didn't play a role in that? 2 highly touted recruits leave the program after 1 year and no one questions what the heck is going on.

"I expect Thomas and Riley to grow into a formidable duo" - Riley's been here 3 years already. Thomas was playing semi-pro ball when we got him. When is this transformation expected to happen.

"Wintering" - What programs did we beat out for Wintering? He's an undersized, shoot first guard. We see how well that worked out for the last offensive minded guard we had. If anybody should be excited about Wintering its PSU.

"Staff's ability to get the most out of players" - Still living in the past. Stolh and Sikma are gone. We have guys heading into the meat of their 2nd and 3rd years and you guys are talking about "when they figure it out". This is the biggest problem. We're a D1 program trying to compete in a competitive conference. It's okay to have one player on your team that "needs time to mature" but when that's your starting 5 you have a problem.

"Staff's work ethic" - There are 100's of coaches "working hard" to get recruits. The winning programs are working smart. There seems to be a 'bottom of the barrel' mentality when it comes to recruiting at UP. If you believe that you have to attract the players that need to develop because the 'good' kids are unattainable, you end up with John Bailey's and Jake Elhers's. It then becomes hard to sell top prospects on your program when they look at your roster and realize there's no one there to work with. I suspect Kevin Bailey was swayed because of Sikma, etc and assumed that the program was on the rise. They probably wouldn't land him today with what they have to offer.

"Canarias Basketball" - So far we have two prospects from this program that haven't hit the ground running. When other programs snag overseas prospects its because they can contribute immediately. If Barker doesn't get hurt last season, Thomas probably doesn't see the court. Already this season Riley is out playing him. I wouldn't be surprised to see a line up change in the near future. Oskars was supposed to be the mature point guard that was going to fill the Douglas hole. Now we're hoping he develops into a reliable 2?

I'm not buying the academic challenges, or facilities, or any of the other excuses I see thrown around here. LMU, Santa Clara and Pepperdine get quality recruits. They also part ways with guys that aren't developing according to expectations. Our guys know that they can take the first couple of years off and they'll be rewarded with significant minutes when they decide to turn it on in their junior (Korey) or senior (Jasonn) years.

We have to recruit guys with a winning mentality, not guys that need a couple of years to "gain confidence". And I put all of the above on the coaches and administration that claims that basketball is a priority but accepts mediocrity year after year after year.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by PilotNut on Fri Jan 04, 2013 12:52 pm

A question: Would this level of performance for this long be acceptable elsewhere in the University?

For example, would the University accept a Math department that was consistently (over 30+ years) ranked in the bottom 3rd in the country? And consistently near the bottom of the Math programs when compared to the other schools that make up the WCC?

Granted this is apples and oranges, but...

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by pilotram on Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:20 pm

PilotNut wrote:A question: Would this level of performance for this long be acceptable elsewhere in the University?
WBB maybe? Stats guys got an answer here?

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by wrv on Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:53 pm

In my experience math equations are more predictable than basketball, errors more readily resolved . . .you're right it is apples and oranges. . . that stated the level of accomplishment might be low but it is not for want of trying by our beloved alma mater. School size, facilities, financial issues, lack of a fan base, whatever the reason, every coach we have hired here since the 70s, with the sole exception of Jack Avina, have left the coaching profession on leaving the U because they could not make it a success and were left with a dent on their resume. On the bright side, however, it is this staff, this hard working, upbeat, personable, handsome, moral, insightful, motivated, adaptable, caring staff that recently brought winning teams to the U. Frustration aside, I think they can bring it back to some level of success; more importantly, I think they are worth betting on, rather than hiring a whole new set.

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Tired of this

Post by bctigard on Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:59 pm

I'm a 4th year season ticket holder, and I am not professing to have great perspective regarding Pilot basketball. We can all see that there are problems on the court. This is obvious.

Yes. Accountability is an issue, but we fans are not exempt! Go to any other "fan" website in the WCC or Pac-12, and the supporters will far outweigh posts delineating the shortcomings of players, staff, and administration. I look to the Pilots as a source of entertainment, a game that I can bring my family to. Without exception I can point to any individual out there and tell my son that the Pilot he sees is giving it his all. Disappointment is a part of athletics. Losing is a part of basketball. What is NOT FUN is sitting there with your 8 year old son and being surrounded by pilot fans that moan and complain about every mistake. Often times, the effort is there, the game is great, but we unfortunately came up a little short.

In this thread support has been mentioned/discussed repeatedly, and I have to say from a new fan's perspective that I am absolutely floored by the lack of support this teams receives from its fans! I'm not sure how many remember, but last year there was a recruit who took the time to log on to pilotnation and express his excitement to pay ball for us: Oskar. So there's one big question that we have to ask: does this thread really help anything? For every recruit that we know has been on the site, I can guarantee that there have been more that pass through anonymously. I'll bet they're sure excited to sign on the dotted line. Sad

I am inclined to bash paid athletes that don't make the grade, not student athletes working to get better, juggling the demands of 2 full time jobs--basketball and the books. Coaching is different, but let's lay off the players and try to ENJOY watching the struggle.

If we had beaten UNLV, would this thread have even have made it to the board?

I apologize for the rant, but this has been hard to read. I'd much rather watch us lose a game, all our games, than have to read through a thread like this again. Go Pilots! Basketball


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Re: Current state of the program

Post by Guest on Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:16 pm

Everything since my last post is the deeper digging I was getting at.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by up7587 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:07 am

Is it purely coincidence that this is today's offering?


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Re: Current state of the program

Post by Guest on Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:40 pm

newpilotfan wrote:"Wintering" - What programs did we beat out for Wintering? He's an undersized, shoot first guard. We see how well that worked out for the last offensive minded guard we had. If anybody should be excited about Wintering its PSU.

Your post just seems overly negative. Yeah obviously there's been a couple of crappy losses this season, no one here is denying that.

Regarding the staff, Reveno and crew took two years to put together a conference record over .500 - something that hadn't been done since 1994-95. And then Reveno and staff did it again the next year. The best seasons in decades have been with this staff running things. Obviously no one wants to see down years like last year and (so far) this year and as you mentioned the transfers are discouraging, but in my opinion they sure as hell have earned the right to get this program back to where they had it two short years ago.

Prefer to focus on how to improve moving forward, thus I take particular offence with the section of your post that I quoted above. To answer your question, Iona - which would be an upper-tier WCC team - was one of the teams that the Pilots beat out for Wintering. Regarding him as a "shoot first guard" - tell me more about him based on what you've seen of him during what is obviously multiple viewings of the kid. Because to me, his 68% clip from the field and average of seven assists per game indicates that he's anything BUT a "shoot first guard" and has the potential to bring a much needed element to the Bluff.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by PilotNut on Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:25 pm

I am stealing this quote from another thread:
DoubleDipper wrote:During the last two games I've turned off the TV/video stream with 10 minutes go....I'm afraid it's really the best way to enjoy the Pilots games right now.
I absolutely understand the sentiment, but this is a sign of problems with the program right now. If you step back and look, this is a concerning statement by someone who I know is a long-term, diehard fan.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by DoubleDipper on Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:39 pm

PilotNut wrote:I am stealing this quote from another thread:
DoubleDipper wrote:During the last two games I've turned off the TV/video stream with 10 minutes go....I'm afraid it's really the best way to enjoy the Pilots games right now.
I absolutely understand the sentiment, but this is a sign of problems with the program right now. If you step back and look, this is a concerning statement by someone who I know is a long-term, diehard fan.
Ugh, yea, but it's really to save wear and tear on my TV brought about by spasmodic releases of frustration.

I do watch recordings of the game after I know the final score.... Neutral

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by newpilotfan on Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:06 pm

Your post just seems overly negative. Yeah obviously there's been a couple of crappy losses this season, no one here is denying that.

I'm not being negative. Just asking the question. How many WCC schools are we competing with for players? Because right now all of the WCC schools are beating us. If we're going after the same guys and not getting them, you have to ask yourself why? If we're not even going after the same guys then that poses a bigger question.

Don't get me wrong. I'm as excited as anyone to see what Wintering can bring but to believe that a 5'9" guard that is used to scoring the basketball is the answer to our problems is to ignore our most recent history. It's hard for an undersized player to have the same success at this level that he did in HS, ask Tim Douglas. And when asked to become a facilitator 1st, scorer 2nd, how will Wintering handle that transition. Tim left to go somewhere that would allow him to be "himself".

Not saying that Wintering can't develop into a TJ Campbell, but in his freshman year??? Sophomore year? If that's the goal then I stand corrected. I'll just shut up and wait for the success that 2015 will bring. Go Pilots!

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by PilotNut on Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:20 pm

I decided to research WCC regular-season records of recent coaches. I want to make it clear that I am not advocating for a coaching staff change; I am looking for progress/growth in the program, relative to the rest of the WCC:

Larry Steele (7 seasons): 25-73, 0.255
Rob Chavez (7 seasons): 39-59, 0.398
Michael Holton (5 seasons): 20-50, 0.286
Eric Reveno (7th season): 36-55, 0.396 (through the 1/5/12 game @Pepp)

So, currently, we are doing better than Holton & Steele, but slightly worse than Chavez (who also had a WCC tourney championship). I cant imagine that the 0.396 will improve this season, in fact the trend is significantly down the past 2.5 seasons or so.

Just food for thought... are we growing/improving?


Last edited by PilotNut on Sun Jan 06, 2013 3:08 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by DoubleDipper on Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:56 pm

PilotNut wrote:
Larry Steele (7 seasons): 25-73, 0.255
Rob Chavez (7 seasons): 39-59, 0.398
Michael Holton (5 seasons): 20-50, 0.286
Eric Reveno (7th season): 36-55, 0.396 (through the 1/5/12 game @Pepp)
IMO Larry was a good recruiter who was not a good coach, and Rob was a really good coach who really disliked recruiting and spending long days on the road.

When Rob took over Larry's 13-17 team he immediately turned it into a 21-8 team the following year finishing 2nd in the WCC with a 21-8 record. Unfortunately each year after that showed a decline, including Ď95-Ď96 when the Pilots went to the Dance (I've still got the shirt) by winning the WCC Tournament.

I'm only pointing this out because based upon what I've observed, and I believe the record, Coach Reveno is the best combo recruiter/coach I've seen at UP.

(I donít want to get into the Jack Avina discussion in this post as I believe we are looking at two different eras between the Al Negratti /Jack Avina era and the new era that included higher academic standards at UP that began while Larry Steel was at the helm).

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by PilotNut on Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:30 pm

DoubleDipper wrote:And once again, I'd like to remind all PN readers who have suggestions on how to improve the UP Athletics experience, yes even the state of play, to write or call the AD....he wants to hear from you!

Absolutely. We all need to be in contact with the AD, and let them know how we feel, good or bad.... the worst thing we can do is sit back, not say anything, and just hope things change.

AD Scott Leykam's contact information from the UP site can be found here.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by wrv on Sun Jan 06, 2013 3:39 pm

Avina was coach when the Chiles center was opened and continued as coach into the early eighties, which properly places him with more recent coaches: he had the same or similar facilities, at least at the end, and he competed in the WCC(then WCAC). In fact, he made something of a program on the brink of returning to the NAIA.

Whatever a particular coach did may not ultimately be the relevant inquiry, however, particularly after so many losing years notwithstanding different coaches. It is the difficulty of a small school competing in the NCAA, an unwelcome point but one which bears stating again. I think Reveno is qualified and motivated . . .whether the fans are disappointed or not, Reveno has had success before and may well enjoy it again soon enough. If you want great success in athletics, well you should look to a larger school.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by newpilotfan on Sun Jan 06, 2013 4:42 pm

wrv wrote:Avina was coach when the Chiles center was opened and continued as coach into the early eighties, which properly places him with more recent coaches: he had the same or similar facilities, at least at the end, and he competed in the WCC(then WCAC). In fact, he made something of a program on the brink of returning to the NAIA.

Whatever a particular coach did may not ultimately be the relevant inquiry, however, particularly after so many losing years notwithstanding different coaches. It is the difficulty of a small school competing in the NCAA, an unwelcome point but one which bears stating again. I think Reveno is qualified and motivated . . .whether the fans are disappointed or not, Reveno has had success before and may well enjoy it again soon enough. If you want great success in athletics, well you should look to a larger school.

Well there you have it... UP isn't capable of success. Too small. I wonder if Coach Rev uses that bit when he's out recruiting? I wonder if that what he sold Bailey, Pressley and Wintering on? I can almost envision him entering the livingrooms across the country with his "UP cant win! Too small" cap on and convincing the D1 athletes that inspite of the fact that there's no chance for success here at UP, they should commit here anyway because the weather is so great and the sun is always shining.

Tell that to George Mason, VCU, Murray State, Creighton, Davidson and Iona just to name a few. These programs recruit players with winning mentality. Guys that want to win now, not in a few years once the "gain confidence".

Not meaning to sound like the Debbie Downer here but if the alumni and fan base don't believe there's success to be had then who?

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by wrv on Sun Jan 06, 2013 5:10 pm

You generalize to an absurd degree regarding the universities you cite: George Mason has 32,500 students, VCU more than 31,000, Murray State nearly 11,000, Creighton just under 8,000. You might as well suggest that neither UCLA, Michigan, nor Washington let size impair their ability to compete.

Some character in Animal House sought to rally the spirit of his fellow pledges by reminding them that the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor: your citations are similarly inappropriate. I do not think Davidson College has done anything to write home about athletically, not the last couple years.

The affect of size does not prevent us from having periodic success but sustained success may well be a tall order, though I personally hope we do.

Try and keep it real.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by newpilotfan on Sun Jan 06, 2013 6:16 pm

wrv wrote:You generalize to an absurd degree regarding the universities you cite: George Mason has 32,500 students, VCU more than 31,000, Murray State nearly 11,000, Creighton just under 8,000. You might as well suggest that neither UCLA, Michigan, nor Washington let size impair their ability to compete.

Some character in Animal House sought to rally the spirit of his fellow pledges by reminding them that the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor: your citations are similarly inappropriate. I do not think Davidson College has done anything to write home about athletically, not the last couple years.

The affect of size does not prevent us from having periodic success but sustained success may well be a tall order, though I personally hope we do.

Try and keep it real.


The point that I've been trying to make, which seems to be getting lost, is that we can't have success here at UP unless collectively we believe that success is attainable. Alumni and fans have to demand that coaches recruit smarter and not just settle for guys because they're willing to come here. The AD has to demand that the coaches are doing their absolute best and provide them with the tools to be successful. (one example is the NCAA authorized $2000 stipend that Rev as advocated for but has been rejected by the university)

I don't doubt that the challenges are different at UP than at some of the other programs I mentioned but that doesn't mean they're greater. Each school has its unique something they're trying to overcome. Academics, geography, finances, reputation, etc. but it's the role of the athletic dept to find the way to success.

By your logic we should be challenged to sustain academic success as well due to our size, etc. yet UP manages to position itself amongst the countries top universities despite the multi-billion dollar endowments that we're up against. Why? Because anything less would be unacceptable.

It's evident from the many comments to this thread that we don't demand the same of our athletics. We might not get the NBA ready athletes that choose television exposure and 40,000 seat arenas but there's also no excuse to field guys with low basketball IQ, that lack confidence or can't cut it in the weight room let alone the court. I'm not saying that all of our guys fit that bill. Certainly most of our guys are ready to get after it each and every night. But there are also a few that wouldn't get a sniff from San Diego or Pepperdine yet we expect to go out and compete with Gonzaga and BYU. Hats off to all of our guys for leaving it all on the court each night though. Despite their limitations they do play hard. It just seems that some nights they're outmatched, no matter who we play.

Maybe I'm off base. I'm not a coach, just a fan. I'll sign off now and keep my opinions to myself the rest of the way. Go Pilots!!!

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by PilotNut on Sun Jan 06, 2013 9:26 pm

newpilotfan wrote:The point that I've been trying to make, which seems to be getting lost, is that we can't have success here at UP unless collectively we believe that success is attainable. Alumni and fans have to demand that coaches recruit smarter and not just settle for guys because they're willing to come here. The AD has to demand that the coaches are doing their absolute best and provide them with the tools to be successful. (one example is the NCAA authorized $2000 stipend that Rev as advocated for but has been rejected by the university)

I don't doubt that the challenges are different at UP than at some of the other programs I mentioned but that doesn't mean they're greater. Each school has its unique something they're trying to overcome. Academics, geography, finances, reputation, etc. but it's the role of the athletic dept to find the way to success.

By your logic we should be challenged to sustain academic success as well due to our size, etc. yet UP manages to position itself amongst the countries top universities despite the multi-billion dollar endowments that we're up against. Why? Because anything less would be unacceptable.

It's evident from the many comments to this thread that we don't demand the same of our athletics. We might not get the NBA ready athletes that choose television exposure and 40,000 seat arenas but there's also no excuse to field guys with low basketball IQ, that lack confidence or can't cut it in the weight room let alone the court. I'm not saying that all of our guys fit that bill. Certainly most of our guys are ready to get after it each and every night. But there are also a few that wouldn't get a sniff from San Diego or Pepperdine yet we expect to go out and compete with Gonzaga and BYU. Hats off to all of our guys for leaving it all on the court each night though. Despite their limitations they do play hard. It just seems that some nights they're outmatched, no matter who we play.

Maybe I'm off base. I'm not a coach, just a fan. I'll sign off now and keep my opinions to myself the rest of the way. Go Pilots!!!

Please don't keep your opinions silent. I think you have hit a key issue here... the basketball program has floundered for decades because it has been acceptable to do so. Not enough people have expected more or said this needs to change. I really hope that alums, administrators, students, fans, etc. really start to let their disappointment known to the university.

Yes, wrv, we face a steep challenge due to our relative small size... but Gonzaga, SMC, Providence, Wake Forest, Valparaiso and Xavier are all similarly small schools that have had success, some in less desirable locales (there are more, these were off the top of my head).

The university can do it--there needs to be commitment and buy-in to do it. The decades-old excuses need to stop... this all starts with us. Expect the same excellence that is required elsewhere on campus. Do not settle for old excuses or the status quo.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by wrv on Mon Jan 07, 2013 12:41 am

And those that preceded today's proclamations at the U are what, not trying? Apathetic? Low IQs?

Create straw men as much as you like, but the facts regarding our men's basketball program speak for themselves.

Good luck.

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by DoubleDipper on Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:50 am

PilotNut wrote:
Yes, wrv, we face a steep challenge due to our relative small size... but Gonzaga, SMC, Providence, Wake Forest, Valparaiso and Xavier are all similarly small schools that have had success, some in less desirable locales (there are more, these were off the top of my head).
I really donít believe the size of the school matters when it comes to building a program or attracting recruits, but I do believe most high school kids would like to go to successful program with name recognition and TV exposure. Iíve spoken with very, very few athletes who consider how a degree from one institution vs. another might affect their career opportunities.

If you look at the admission applications to UP, or most small schools for that matter, they go up dramatically when there is national sports recognitionÖÖso recognition matters.

Of course another thing that matters is money. Money spent wisely can go a long ways towards expanding a schools travel/recruiting budget, and upgrading facilities. Some schools, due to their geography, donít need to spend much money to recruit as they are already in the big city with a ton of potential recruits.

The numbers below are 2011 numbersÖ.and as there are so many variables in reporting and spending, I think the numbers should be considered just part of the overall picture of how money is spent, and in what proportion at a university.

To add a little perspective to the school debate, I took a very quick glance at the schools mentioned by PilotNut. In order, Pomeroy ranking; school name; and from Basketball StateÖnumber of students; money spent on menís basketball; and the percentage of the athletic budget spent on menís basketball:

#13 Gonzaga 4,661 $5.3mil (31%)
#239 Portland 3,209 $2.0 mil (17%)
#53 St. Maryís 2,559 $2.1 mil (17%)
#156 Wake Forest 4,587 $4.7 mil (11%) (also has Football)
#94 Valparaiso 2,670 $1.6 mil (14%) (Football)
#107 Xavier 3,827 $1.6 mil (11%)

And one other school that gives another perspective:
#9 Kentucky 18,260 $12.4 mil (15%) (Football)

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Re: Current state of the program

Post by DoubleDipper on Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:57 am

PilotNut wrote:Please don't keep your opinions silent. I think you have hit a key issue here... the basketball program has floundered for decades because it has been acceptable to do so. Not enough people have expected more or said this needs to change. I really hope that alums, administrators, students, fans, etc. really start to let their disappointment known to the university.

The university can do it--there needs to be commitment and buy-in to do it. The decades-old excuses need to stop... this all starts with us. Expect the same excellence that is required elsewhere on campus. Do not settle for old excuses or the status quo.
Yes, I totally agree, donít keep silent, post all you like on PN, but remember that unless those who post their concerns on PN write or talk to those in charge at UP, from Fr. Beauchamp down through the coaching staff, your concerns will not be known by those who should know, and it's possible nothing will change.

Those who lead large organizations believe it is vital to hear from those outside the ďinner circleĒ to gain a true perspective of their performance and respond to the need for change.

Some of us write or talk to various university staff members weekly because we see it as our obligation to provide those in charge a perspective from outside the program(s).

I personally would not forward anything written by others on PN to the staff as this is simply an open forum frequented by anonymous writers, but I would be greatly disappointed if those who express their views here don't share them with the university while leaving and email address or phone number for a response and clarity.

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