Written for your enjoyment by: Raff
Tomorrow Night at this time I'll be at the Blue White Scrimmage getting my first look at this 2010-11 Mt. St. Mary's team and my first look at the change that new coach Robert Burke has brought. Here are somethings that I'll be watching for....
1) Trying to get an idea of the philosophy of game that the Mount is going to play. I get the sense that it is going to focus on shooting the basketball and be somewhat up tempo. But maybe I'm reading into some things a little bit too much. Perhaps tomorrow won't show us everything, but it should give us some sense.
2) Who is going to be the point guard? My guess is that Lamar Trice and Javier Castellanos are locked into a duel in the preseason to win the job. And my guess is that the new coaching staff would like to see Castellanos win the job. Trice hasn't been overly impressive in two years as Jeremy Goode's backup. He hasn't had a lot of opportunity either. But he has shown flashes of brilliance and he was spectacular in this game a year ago. That performance alone gives me some hope that he can handle the job, but we'll wait and see what develops.
3) Has Kristian Krajina regained his shooting touch? During preseason workouts last year, I thought the big Croatian had the best touch on the team, but as the speed of the game picked up and the season wore on we never really saw it. Now a full year off of recovery from the knee surgery has his touch returned and can he be a player who extends the defense for the Mount?
4) The Blue Ribbon Preview on ESPN (for Insiders only - and its not worth the subscription price for this article alone) doesn't have many useful nuggets. But it does say that the Mount plans to play Evan Cleveland away from the basket after he was a post player in high school. I'm interested to see if he can handle that immediately or if he is a possible redshirt candidate?
5) With all the inexperience in the backcourt and most of the returning experience coming in the frontcourt, I'll be intently watching to see how the offense tries to establish guys like Shawn Atupem, Raven Barber and Danny Thompson inside. To me Atupem and Barber are the most polished returning offensive players, but there has to be a way to get them the ball.
6) The one knock on Shawn Atupem is that he isn't the best of rebounders. The departure of Kelly Beidler who was a huge force, particularly on the defensive glass will be a huge loss. I'll be looking for somebody to replace him on the glass.
7) Pierre Brown boasts the best returning three-point percentage. Will they find ways to get him shots in the flow of the offense. And will he be able to get shots coming off screens and make those jumpers?
8) How will Dave Golladay fit in? The little bit I saw from Golladay last year I thought he did a little bit of everything. But I wasn't quite sure how well he shot the ball. Now with a new staff and maybe a new focus on shooting the ball, how will he fit in.