Hat tip to 10th Year Seniors for the video and the photo that leads the article.
Some quick thoughts
-- Last season the Bearcats were ranked in the top 20 nationally in total blocks, blocks per game, and block percentage. Even with Justin Jackson moving on to Greece top 20 in those three categories is a reasonable goal. The Bearcats are going to be incredibly long in 2014-15. Coreante Deberry and Ocatvius Ellis are both 6'10 with wingspans over 7' so protecting the rim won't be an issue with the starters. The difference this year will be that the rim protection won't sit when the starters do. Gary Clark is 6'7" but his wingspan is hilarious and he will be a demon from the weakside when he catches up to the speed of the game. Jamarree Strickland is another 6'10" off the bench which should help. And the Bearcats guards are going to get in the game too. Troy Caupain had an impressive chasedown block denying an easy layup after sprinting from halfcourt. Then there is DeShaun Morman, easily the most explosive athlete on the team. I wouldn't be shocked to see Morman among the top four or five on the team in blocked shots.
-- Speaking of Morman, he is going to exciting. Play to play you never know if it will be good exciting or bad exciting because he is willing to just try stuff. 20 foot underhand scoop pass down the lane through traffic? sure. Dunk in traffic off an in and out move? Why not. Volatility is a positive thing for a basketball team. Obviously you don't want too much of that, but not having enough of it creates its own set of problems. Just look at what the Bearcats have been the last two years, staid, bland, predictable and good but not great. The last time UC had a player with an approximation of Morman's skill set was Dion Dixon. Dion was polarizing, but there is no way that the Bearcats go to the sweet 16 without him. Morman won't be Dion right away, but he is going to be interesting.
-- I still have no idea what to make of Ge`Lawn Guyn. I hate to be so negative, but there are so many things about his game that bother me. And its not because it's Ge, every player who suffers from the same maladies drives me up the wall. He still has no idea how to use a ball screen, you could easily ride a bike through the gap between his shoulders and the shoulders of the screener which makes it so easy to defend. He still can't make a consistently catchable entry pass to the post. He still struggles to handle the ball under pressure. He still has no ability to control the pace of the game. He slows down when he should be pushing the pace. Often you see him holding the ball in the backcourt waiting for the traffic to clear before advancing the ball. Doing that to calm things down after a particularly frantic stretch of play is fine, doing that on every outlet pass is a waste of time.
All of those are all little things and the devil is in the details. But those are details that a natural point guard would get inherently. The bottom line is that Guyn is not a point guard, not even close. Early on in Ge's career Mick picked Guyn over Jeremiah Davis III as the point guard of the future. He was the pick because he has great size for the position, he defends like a madman and he can hit an open jumper. It wasn't until last year that everyone came to understand that he can't run a team.
So now he is a senior, he will be losing his job to Troy Caupain and will have to fight like hell to win the backup job from Faraad Cobb. Troy is a natural point guard, and he understands the little things in a way that Guyn doesn't seem to, same goes for Cobb (at least as a passer). Guyn will play for this team, his defense alone will get him time on a team with a few serious defensive liabilities. But I have no idea how he will fit in on an offense that will be much more dangerous than last years.
-- Quadri Moore has a very interesting skill set for a center. He is a big bruiser on the block who can bully his way to the hoop from 10 feet in, but he can also step out and knock down perimeter jumpers. Its going to take this season for him to become a good enough defender to log big minutes. But next year and beyond he is an intriguing weapon and a good pairing with Gary Clark who's skill set is focused on the paint.
-- Kevin "White Shoes" Johnson
-- Box Score