Thursday, November 29, 2007

Brady Ball Is Fantastic

LSU is saying 6-8 weeks, but ESPN is reporting Tasmin Mitchell is out for the year. Guess who I think is more reliable source? So, a season in which the Tigers were going to struggle to stay out of the SEC cellar has just gotten worse given the loss of LSU’s best player.

This leaves LSU with fundamentally a seven-man rotation, and a deeply flawed one at that. If the Maui invitational is to be any indication of the sort of team we have, it is this: a hard-working bunch who will fall just short. Anthony Randolph gives LSU a legit presence inside, even though he’s just a freshman. It will be interesting to see how the season progresses if he can hold up under all of the minutes he’s going to play. Speaking of miunutes, Marcus Thornton is going to play a lot of them. He also is going to score a lot points as the whole offense seems to go through him. Brady’s never been a great offensive mind, so expect a lot of Thornton jacking up shots with Randolph trying to get easy put-backs.
Damean Mason is the only senior in the rotation, and Nichols State was only his second game of the season. He’s a decent role player, but this is a very young team that is not going to rely on its senior for anything other than leadership. Randolph is already our best inside player and bo Spencer is already installed as the starting point guard. Our third freshman, Garett Green, is already threatening to getin the rotation and should slowly eat away at Alex Farrer’s minutes.

So where are we? The same place we always are. The freshmen look pretty good so far, but the team does not look like it can play with the top teams in the SEC on anything other than raw athleticism. The one good season in every four of John Brady’s tenure seems to hold, and by the time these guys are juniors, LSU could be really good. Heck, LSU might even be good next year with healthy Mitchell, Thornton, Temple, and Martin all in their senior years. But that’s next year.

This year is going to be ugly. The SEC may be a little down overall, so LSU has a shot at putting things together and making a run at an NCAA bid, but that’s where things look like they tap out. This is an NIT-caliber team. Which is par for the course under John Brady. He’s a year away from needing a tourney run to save his job, which he inevitably gets. When a coach does just enough to keep his job, it’s probably a sign he shouldn’t be the coach anymore, especially not the coach with the second-longest tenure in the conference. This is Brady Ball.


gerry dorsey said...

bama's most crucial player is taking the old medical redshirt this season. i'm just hoping they can finish at .500. like you, i also have high hopes for next year given new recruits. for the time being, let's all suck together shall we??

uberschuck said...

Chris Johnson is going to be important if we win any games of significance. One thing you didn't mention about the new guys is that they shoot the 3-ball like mad.

The SEC West is unpredictable. Don't get your hopes up for this team, but they'll probably be entertaining.

jimherehi said...

I think Chris Johnson has improved a lot from last season. He needs to bulk up so that he won't be shoved around.

IMO, this team plays like a pick-up team. They haven't jelled. Hopefully someone will become a leader. I don't see anyone standing out just yet.

Jeffrey Macloud said...

They won't threaten the top 20, but I bet they pull an entertaining upset or two and could very well compete in the SEC given some luck. If they get hot from the outside, it could get interesting.

Of course, if they don't, they're screwed - no game in the paint.

Anonymous said...

The one consolation to Tasmin's injury and redshirt year, is it will give valuable playing time to Garrett Green. Next year LSU will have Tasmin and Quinton Thornton back. Quinton looked solid in the Canadian exhibition games. Then, with the addition of a promising recruiting class, LSU should be pretty good next year. I sound like a Saints fan, "Wait 'til next year!"