WALKER: Crawford should use athletic ability

I thought initially when Joe Crawford moved out to the two guard position this season it would be an advantage for him and UK because he had actually been playing out of position at small forward. I thought he would be able to take advantage of his size and maybe post up a little bit. I thought his driving the ball to the basket would be a lot better.

Instead, Joe sometimes settles a little bit too much for his jump shot. When his jump shot is not falling, he is an easy guy to defend because you can play back off of him and give him the shot. I don't think he is as creative in terms of getting his own shot as he was in high school. He has got to learn how to do that on this level.

A player has to try to find your niche within the offense. Obviously, Kentucky does a lot of things through Randolph Morris, so it is going to be hard for guys like him and Ramel to create off the dribble and get that opportunity for shots. What they need to do is concentrate on getting the ball inside to Randolph as much as they possibly can.

Teams will respect that and double team Randolph a lot and let Joe and Ramel find shots on perimeter or cutting to the basket when they are double teaming Randolph. When Joe understands how to play the game that way, it will be a lot easier for him than it is now. It amazes me that he doesn't get more easy baskets off steals, rebounds or fast breaks. That should be one of his strong points.

Coming out of high school the thing you heard about Joe Crawford was that he was explosive scorer and leaper. He has shown that at times, but I don't think he uses his athletic ability enough and more importantly I don't know if he understands how to use it enough. He makes the game more difficult for himself than it should be. Learning to play with Randolph and how to get out on fast breaks or get easy putbacks would make the game easier for him.

Sometimes you can get caught up in thinking about the game too much. Basketball is such a fast paced game that sometimes when you get caught thinking, you are always a step behind. That comes along with confidence. Joe's confidence has been up and down. If he can keep his confidence high, you will see a big difference in his play. But obviously sometimes when your confidence is down, you press too hard and try to do things you can't do. He gets caught up in that sometimes and tries to do too much. Again, trust the coach, trust the system, and try to play within the system and not make it about yourself. If he does that, he'll be fine.

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