The Barn Burning Edition

The Bootleg's "Expert Analyst - Guards," former lights-out shooting guard "roscoemaynard" (1984-89) offers up to the Stanford Hoops faithful a review and commentary of the Cardinal's guards following their wins on the road against the Oregon Ducks and Oregon State Beavers.

Cue up some good old fashioned Amish music and let's just burn the old barns down, Hootenanny style.  We'll even fry up some spotted owl to go with the varmint stew, duck gizzards, and Siuslaw County arugula.  Whooo Wheee!  The Pit, adios.  But grebe fans will turn the shiny new Knight Center (pronounce Knight like the French dude in Monty Python's Searchfor the Holy Grail, and it sounds better) into a new Pit.  What?  The Resers don't have $200,000,000 in pocket cabbage to tear Gill Coliseum (calling that rodent trap a coliseum is delusional)?  Oh, yea, I forgot.  It's an academic thing for the nutria.  At OSU you can get an engineering degree in retrofit studies, which includes about 100 unit hours in applying duck tape to the rusty pipes and spackle to cracks in the walls of old Gill.  That type of degree comes in handy when you return home for the summers to Klamath Falls or Redmond, 'cuz you can go help fix the local Kiwanis or the gas station or the local jail.

But enough about the menu items.  And man do the pintails have issues.  They really suck.  Tajuan Porter, nice regression dude.  Have you checked out the job market back home in Michigan lately dude.  Hey, let's just tell the truth here.  You got owned by Drew Shiller, straight up.  But at least the basketball team isn't on weight training furlough from the local jail like the football team, yet...

Speaking of which…Drew Shiller, you sexy bastard you.  The coaching staff figured out before the rest of us did, that Drew gets a lot of drink stirring done on the floor.  The great help defense, solid ball handling and ball movement, the settling hand, and the floor stretching really matter to this team.  I counted five crucial hustle plays in last 10 minutes against the grebes and at least that many against the vermin.
And that was a loud 7-13 from deep in the Douglas Firs this weekend.  75 quality minutes (Landry played all 80 for crying out loud), crucial to our sweeping the last roadie of the year.

Speaking of crucial minutes, welcome back to the party Jarrett Mann.  It was some famous dead honky who once said, "Necessity is the mother of invention" or some drivel like that, as though it wouldn't have been better to just say "necessity is a mother," but I get lost in the permutations, so the point is that Jarrett played harder on defense and with more consistent aggression on offense throughout this trip.
Sometimes body language, being more bent in the knees, playing tighter in the gaps and seams, as he did this weekend, makes the other team work harder on defense.  When you are constantly poised like that it just works out more that you get more done, and the defense breaks down.  I'd rather have him missing a contested layin than benignly shuffling at 20 feet out.  His defense against UO in particular was fantastic - three steals to go with six defensive rebounds.  And that was 14 points and 10 assists for the weekend.  He easily could have had 11 points against the muskrats, with a little kinder rim.  I loved the three against the mallards, the key being he stepped in and took it without hesitation - almost a bit of arrogance to it.

Gabe Harris, welcome back and way to play.  Solid minutes in the Pit and very solid minutes at the pile of sticks and mud in the mill pond. Iggy, Da'Veed, and Gabe all went 1-1 on Saturday.  Nice work, good defense by all.  Good sense of urgency off the bench.

Jeremy Green.  Give him Casey Jake's record right now for single season made threes.  He is taking the mark over 90 this season and it will be the only year he does that.  Next year no one lets him even put on a jock strap without a double team.  I don't know who in our conference has made 90 threes in a season, but that is lofty company no matter what.  But against the bath toys it was turning the corner and attacking their crappy footwork that got him his points when we needed them.  He punished UO at the line, pointing out to them in painful detail, as Landry has done all season, that they aren't good defenders.  They were helpless.  The varmints were a different story, but he really locked up early that he was going to be open and he was going to shoot.  Volume shooting, but we need him to take those shots, even if he goes 5-15, because who else is going to take them.  And they were good shots.  He was tired on the pull up jumpers.  He played with great effort against the swamp gerbils, getting to the glass for six rebounds.  Sometimes the most important thing for a shooter is to play with energy and swagger, and he brought that the whole roadie.

Coach Dawkins deserves some mention here.  He and his staff saw this weekend as an opportunity to go beat two teams that they ought to have felt we were better than.  They really worked their own energy on the sidelines this weekend.  We are better than them.  We continue to play inspired team basketball, which is the only way we get any wins at all.  Our staff is just doing a great job of not letting the team accept their "fate."  Watching the UA-ASU game yesterday, Don MacLean said it very well when he pointed out that Stanford is absolutely not a given for ASU on Thursday, that we just swept the Oregons and are playing good ball.

Final Thoughts: We have absolutely owned the grebes since 1986, flat owned them, no matter how many hobbitses they had.  And you can't trick me by shaving their heads either, they still have hobbitses.  I remember the epic the Brevin Knight vs. Kenya Wilkins battles in the Pit.  And I remember Rich Kelley getting like 23 rebounds against Greg Ballard in the Pit back in Carter administration.  What is French for Lob the Holy Cow at the kanigits?

Final Final Thoughts: The difference between Seth Tarver, the best defender for the marmots, and Landry Fields is that Landry developed skills and didn't settle for being one dimensional.  No overwhelming injury reasons here to overcome.  Its gym time.

Really, This Is It: I cannot emphasize this strongly enough, these next two games are winnable.  If we guard Ty Abbott, we can hold ASU down because they just aren't that good.  And our schedule works out that we just played OSU's zone in the prior game.  If we rebound a bit better, we can beat UA.  But, will any students show up?  Nothing I hate more than a bunch of front running dorks.  Front running dorks belong across the bay standing in line for organic, sustainably farmed, non-rain forest cleared, micro-loan farmed lattes on Telegraph.  Mrs. Roscoe, Addy Ahlstrom, the Coach of Goats and I are coming in full throttle, but will the artists formerly known as the 6th Man?  Someone pull a fire alarm.  The bell tolls.  The long winter of your discontent is over.  Walk the walk.  Get some gym time.  Don't bandwagon.  Show us your Hernandezes, boys and girls.  Give us a couple of hours, you can still get in to med school, I promise.

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