Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by NoPoNeighbor on Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:47 am

This is not a case of a bad head coach who is squandering a talented team that would otherwise be good. Look at the shooting percentages of the individual players and the team as a whole. That is not a coaching failure, it is a player failure.

I don't think that "everything is awful." There is significant evidence that the administration is committed to improving. But I do agree with Jimm that the talent level of our players is well below par for the WCC. I don't blame that on the coaches entirely, because it must be extremely difficult to recruit good players to UP.

But the general consensus on this board that our current talent level is an upgrade from the Reveno years does not seem to be supported by facts. This team is eerily similar to Reveno's last team: two impressive guards (Wintering and Pressley / Shaver and Walker) surrounded by underproducing, inconsistent teammates, many of whom don't really belong on a DI squad. Of course that '15-'16 team won 6 conference games.

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by bullwinkle on Sun Feb 10, 2019 3:45 am

You may be right. You do more analysis of this than I. My response though is the deteriorating shooting percentages may be the result of a predictable and lethargic offense, which I'm pretty sure wasn't designed by the players (and probably not the assistants).

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by Stonehouse on Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:57 am

NoPoNeighbor wrote:This is not a case of a bad head coach who is squandering a talented team that would otherwise be good. Look at the shooting percentages of the individual players and the team as a whole. That is not a coaching failure, it is a player failure.

Totally understand that perspective. But I do think it's fair to look at player development as a reason why the team has taken a step back this year. Other than Shaver, I'm not sure anyone on the roster is better this year than last year. And a team like UP is only going to get where we all want to go through player development... it's not like McDonald's All-Americans are just going to fall into our lap.

And since player development is largely on the coaches (with, of course, player effort playing a big role as well), I'm not so sure it's fair to say that this team's lack of it is all about "player failure."

Sad to say, we are currently ranked #328 out of 353 schools on KenPom. I can't imagine we've ever been close to that low since the Larry Steele era, and the next-lowest WCC team is Pacific at #200. I don't think it's quite right to pin that all on the players.
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by up7587 on Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:22 am

Plenty of blame to go around. The coaches have said, these are D1 players, they need to step up and make plays. But the coaches need to give them the game plan that maximizes opportunities to make those plays, both with respect to the individual players' strengths and weaknesses, and to the overall game strategy against the opponents.

I don't think either group is getting it done.

Offseason player development is a key part of the coaches' plan to be a better team. I wonder what the coaches will be doing to improve their performance.
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by JimmAlacki on Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:57 am

Bullwinkle- I understand your posts defending UP. My jaded experience is based on supporting and attending a school from one of the top 3 conferences in the country. A school that has multiple Elite eight, Final 4 appearances, NBA #1 draft picks, NBA coaches, major conference head coaches etc. A school that has approximately the same enrollment as UP.

I looked at the UP record both conference and non conference over the past 20 years. I'm sorry I don't see an administration that has really been dedicated to basketball (not soccer) success.

This coaching staff has a record of 28-63 overall and 6-41 league and this year has a chance of going winless in league play for the first time in school history. 5 double digit losses at home. It's either the coaches, the players or a combination of both.

I agree that the players have more talent than they have been showing. My alma mater had a coach take over a program that was 11-20 the year before. Within two years, he had them in the Final 4. You need a coaching staff that will maximize their talent and ability. The story goes that one of the first meetings he had with a 11-20 team, he asked the team what players thought they would play in the NBA. All players except one or two raised their hands. One of them actually played in the NBA, won multiple NCAA championships as a coach and is coaching in the NBA.

My argument is that assistant coaches with significant years of assistant coaching experience translates into lack of success where they have been.

UP, I fear, is satisfied with a never changing scenery

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by Dean Murdoch on Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:52 am

So all the Pilots have to do is hire the next Rick Pitino?
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by JimmAlacki on Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:32 pm

Dean Murdoch wrote:So all the Pilots have to do is hire the next Rick Pitino?

He is available unfortunately he is too damaged. Too late his son is at Minnesota

You do hire a young assistant from a winning program like Marquette did a few years ago with Wojo.


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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by VillaGorilla on Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:13 pm

JimmAlacki wrote:
Dean Murdoch wrote:So all the Pilots have to do is hire the next Rick Pitino?

He is available unfortunately he is too damaged. Too late his son is at Minnesota

You do hire a young assistant from a winning program like Marquette did a few years ago with Wojo.


So something like a roughly 40-year old associate head coach at a Power 5 school making consistent tourney appearances?
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by wrv on Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:31 pm

WCC assistants and others with D1 experience should not be disqualified. Power 5 is not everything. Ken Bone at Pepperdine has an intriguing resume, with head coaching experience. He is 60 though.

The comment assumes Porter and his staff depart at year end, and that is not yet entirely clear.

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by JimmAlacki on Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:56 am

VillaGorilla wrote:
JimmAlacki wrote:
Dean Murdoch wrote:So all the Pilots have to do is hire the next Rick Pitino?

He is available unfortunately he is too damaged. Too late his son is at Minnesota

You do hire a young assistant from a winning program like Marquette did a few years ago with Wojo.


So something like a roughly 40-year old associate head coach at a Power 5 school making consistent tourney appearances?

Just keep repeating the same coaching hiring attempts that the school has engaged in over the past 40 years?

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by blacksheep on Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:35 am

Recruiting a coach to Portland is as hard as recruiting players. So many coaches have come here and none has succeeded. What makes a prospective coach think he's going to be any different?

Then, you have the problem of a coach finding success and immediately taking a better job somewhere else. That's one of the reasons I liked the Porter hire, because he's a Portland guy and would be more likely to stick around if he had success. Clearly that hasn't happened yet and doesn't look like it will.

There just isn't a good answer. Unless the athletic department feels they have the right answer for head coach all lined up, I don't see them buying out Porter.
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by Stonehouse on Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:04 am

JimmAlacki wrote:Just keep repeating the same coaching hiring attempts that the school has engaged in over the past 40 years?

That's not quite right... UP has tried all sorts of different approaches to this. Since Avina was let go, UP hired:

Larry Steele (no previous coaching experience, as far as I'm aware of)
Rob Chavez (head coach of Maryland-Eastern Shore for two years, prior to that 5 years head coach at Chemeketa CC)
Michael Holton (seven years assistant at Portland, OSU, and UCLA)
Eric Reveno (several years assistant at Stanford)
Terry Porter (no previous college experience, several years as NBA head and assistant coach)

So that's a mix of people with head coaching experience (at levels from CC to NBA), major conference assistant experience, and a total home run swing in someone with no prior coaching experience in Larry Steele.

My personal preference next time around would be to try to identify someone who is very much into advanced statistics and analytics... that would likely make that person quite young and possibly even someone who was not a college player. Ideally you would surround that person with experience assistants who are good at player development and recruiting.

Why? The way I look at it... we're unlikely to out-recruit, out-athlete, or out-talent the WCC, but it's possible we could out-smart some of the teams. Of course, you still need good players to implement those strategies, but I can't help but think back on a player like Jared Stohl or TJ Campbell... not heavily recruited with "deficiencies" in athleticism and height, but perfect players for an advanced stat-friendly team. (And, not to mention, key cogs in the best Pilot teams of the past 40 years or so outside of - and possibly including - the 1996 WCC title team.)

But what the heck do I know? Something like that could turn into a total disaster as well. Wink
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by DTLegend on Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:41 am

Other places to potentially look:

Lower division head coaches with success
Former Pilots having coaching success (Spoelstra is the obvious one here but most likely an impossible get, the other example is Ben Sullivan With Milwaukee)
A coach with a clear system philosophy. Not sure the logistics o implementing a system but I always thought teams that press heavily (Bob Huggins/Shaka Smart) could cause some havoc (pun intended) in the WCC. Also having a strong system and identity and clear defined roles can make up some of the talent gap

But again, who knows if they would work

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by DoubleDipper on Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:17 pm

DTLegend, welcome back to the board, I hope you will continue to give your reasoned perspective…. we still (mostly) remember your prize-winning shot in Las Vegas a bunch of years ago.

DTLegend and Stonehouse, thank you for bringing some potential solutions to the board instead of just shouting!

Your mention of TJ Campbell (my favorite Pilot, ever) brought back memories of on-court leadership that was also displayed by student-athletes like Pooh Jeter, Ryan Nicholas, Luke Sikma, Bryce Pressley, and Thomas van Der Mars.  Whatever failings and weaknesses may exist among the UP-coaching staff, in my view the lack of floor leadership on the current team is apparent, and regardless of the number of talented players on the floor, without on-court leadership the team will continue to struggle.

Yes, there is also a very evident lack of experience on the current team which won’t get better in the future unless the staff can bring in JUCO players to replace the likely departure of Josh, Crisshawn, Xavier, and Franklin this summer. There is also a great need for a “true” point guard with leadership skills who will quickly earn the respect of his teammates, including those who will be juniors next season, as it's highly likely there will once again be no seniors on the team.
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by blacksheep on Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:34 pm

Stonehouse wrote:
My personal preference next time around would be to try to identify someone who is very much into advanced statistics and analytics... that would likely make that person quite young and possibly even someone who was not a college player. Ideally you would surround that person with experience assistants who are good at player development and recruiting.

Why? The way I look at it... we're unlikely to out-recruit, out-athlete, or out-talent the WCC, but it's possible we could out-smart some of the teams. Of course, you still need good players to implement those strategies, but I can't help but think back on a player like Jared Stohl or TJ Campbell... not heavily recruited with "deficiencies" in athleticism and height, but perfect players for an advanced stat-friendly team. (And, not to mention, key cogs in the best Pilot teams of the past 40 years or so outside of - and possibly including - the 1996 WCC title team.)

But what the heck do I know? Something like that could turn into a total disaster as well.  Wink

As I recall, Reveno was very much into analytics. He often quoted KenPom in his comments about our team or our opponents. I must be old because it always annoyed me when he started talking analytics.

Reveno was able to find players that while not the perfect athlete, fit a type of play that he could exploit. My frustration with the current team is that it seems we have no plan to score. We just pass it around until someone takes a shot.
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by NoPoNeighbor on Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:15 pm

blacksheep wrote:Reveno was able to find players that while not the perfect athlete, fit a type of play that he could exploit.
True for the first half of Reveno's tenure. Very inaccurate for the last few years. Revno's undoing was inability to recruit enough consistent scorers, especially on the heels of the relatively successful '09-'10 and '10-'11 seasons. This was discussed extensively on PilotNation during the spring of 2016.

blacksheep wrote:My frustration with the current team is that it seems we have no plan to score. We just pass it around until someone takes a shot.
This same sentiment was regularly shared on this board during the last few year's of Reveno's tenure. The common element between then and now is a lack of consistent scoring beyond the top 1 or 2 guys on the roster. When no one can execute the offensive plan, it really makes it look like there is no plan.

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by up7587 on Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:40 pm

Cantu is still out there looking for players.
@CybillJackson wrote:Coach Bob Cantu of the University of Portland visited Olathe North to watch some Tymer Jackson ball. Go Eagles!
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by DoubleDipper on Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:58 pm

DoubleDipper wrote: There is also a great need for a “true” point guard with leadership skills who will quickly earn the respect of his teammates....
up7587 wrote:Cantu is still out there looking for players.
@CybillJackson wrote:Coach Bob Cantu of the University of Portland visited Olathe North to watch some Tymer Jackson ball. Go Eagles!
Bingo!

Tymer Jackson, 6’0, PG, 2019, Olathe North "is one of the Kansas City area’s most skilled offensive players and is coming off a strong offseason running with AAU Team KC. He has a well-rounded offensive game and is able to play either guard spot. He can shoot the 3, create off the bounce and get to the basket and uses an array of runners and floaters to score over and around bigger players in the lane."

https://www.facebook.com/SpectrumSportsKC/videos/216173009301086/

From what I gather, virtually all the other prospects the Pilots are looking at for next season are JUCO players....
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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by SoCalPilot on Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:36 pm

This is a style problem. This program keeps looking for a big man who is the answer to all the problems down low. We sign players like Diabate, Tyron and Akwuba but they aren’t cutting it because they aren’t good players. If they were, they wouldn’t be Pilots. There are hundreds of players between 6-0 and 6-7 who would love to play for a coach promising a press, run and shoot game plan. This is the Money Ball for a low D-1 school. Forget the bigs. Go small, fast and talented.

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by deprofundis on Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:10 pm

SoCalPilot wrote:This is a style problem. This program keeps looking for a big man who is the answer to all the problems down low. We sign players like Diabate, Tyron and Akwuba but they aren’t cutting it because they aren’t good players. If they were, they wouldn’t be Pilots. There are hundreds of players between 6-0 and 6-7 who would love to play for a coach promising a press, run and shoot game plan.  This is the Money Ball for a low D-1 school. Forget the bigs. Go small, fast and talented.
Remember when Gonzaga was Guard U? A good number of those early guards was local talent that chose Spokane over Portland. Maybe they weren’t recruited by UP?

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Re: Will Porter be gone if they run the table in conference?

Post by JimmAlacki on Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:27 pm

deprofundis wrote:
SoCalPilot wrote:This is a style problem. This program keeps looking for a big man who is the answer to all the problems down low. We sign players like Diabate, Tyron and Akwuba but they aren’t cutting it because they aren’t good players. If they were, they wouldn’t be Pilots. There are hundreds of players between 6-0 and 6-7 who would love to play for a coach promising a press, run and shoot game plan.  This is the Money Ball for a low D-1 school. Forget the bigs. Go small, fast and talented.
Remember when Gonzaga was Guard U? A good number of those early guards was local talent that chose Spokane over Portland. Maybe they weren’t recruited by UP?

Maybe the bridge was up

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