Basketball season

Has anyone saw enough of our team playing have a clue if we will be any good this year??

Haven’t been able to see anything just yet. I will tell you I have an interview request in for Jalen Harris. I will find out as much as I can about him and everyone else.

UPDATE: I’m talking with Jalen tomorrow at 1 p.m. Shoot a few questions my way if you’d like.

How does he see the guard play today and going forward being they are so young experience wise, and does he think they are ready for the physicality of the SEC’s more experienced guards?

Who is the biggest surprise of the new comers?

What did he learn last year going against JB and Lil Daryl in practice on a daily basis?

Is Daniel Gafford teasing when he says he added the three point shot to his arsenal and does he make many or any of them during scrimmage/pick up games

Injury update on Phillips, Embery and Jones.
What does he think of Khalil’s chances?
Is he developing any chemistry with Gafford? Most of his assists should come from dishing it out to Gafford.

and if you don’t mind also ask him what does he think his biggest improvements have been both on and off the court since arriving here from NM

Very young team, with talent and still question marks with guys like Garland. The plus side is Gafford is our centerpiece and we know he can be a dominant player. But still, we’re replacing almost all our offensive production from last year, so it might be tough. Looking forward to playing Texas our first game though!

Comments- that why coaches schedule pre-conference games to prepare his team for conference play

Got around to transcribing my talk with Jalen Harris today. Here’s what he said on the newcomers who have stood out to him:

Reggie Chaney has caught my eye, Desi Sills, Keyshawn Embery and Isaiah Joe. Those four have really caught my eye. Isaiah being the knockdown shooter he is, Keyshawn being a prolific scorer, Desi is relentless on defense and Reggie is a man-child. He grabs boards and just does it effortlessly. I ask about Ibby: I’ll say Ibby has a lot to learn. Once it clicks, though, it’s going to be like … his potential is through the roof. It’s just small things. Once he gets his hands around the ball, though, it’s hard to stop him because he’s so big. He can almost finish through anything. Once he grasps the little things, his potential is through the roof.

On Adrio Bailey, his roommate: Dro has been in the gym trying to improve and come off more as a slasher more so than a 4. He should have a real good year.

Good stuff! Did you get a chance to ask about Daniel’s three point/perimeter game

Daniel, I believe, is serious about extending his range and making teams at least honor his shot. He said as much when we talked to him around a month ago. Doesn’t mean he’s going to live out there by any means. He knows well what his strengths are. Jalen did talk about how much he loves running the floor with Daniel. Jalen said he often yells at Daniel in transition, encouraging him to sprint the floor so he can feed him the ball for an easy score.

Did you inquire about Jordan Philips injury?

I did not. Honestly not sure what kind of update Jalen would provide. That’s more for Mike the next time we meet with him. Hopefully we can have an answer on that very soon.

Who do you think the starting line up would be Scottie?

It’s very hard to truly say without seeing any of them play together. But right now, I might go with:

1 Jalen Harris
2 Isaiah Joe
3 Mason Jones or Keyshawn Embery
4 Reggie Chaney or Adrio Bailey
5 Daniel Gafford

I’ve seen several people mention Embery as playing the 3. Is Embery going to be OK with this? I thought one reason he signed with Arkansas was because Mike told him he was recruiting him as a PG. One reason he transferred to IMG was so he could work on his PG skills against better competition. Has all this fallen by the wayside?

Has Harris improved that much from his year at NM, where his stats were pedestrian, at best? Did Keyshawn flop at IMG as a PG (or did he even play PG at IMG)? I’m just curious, because after Embery signed with Hogs, many people had penciled him in as our starting PG this year, with Harris backing him up.

And, Scottie, I know you haven’t seen these guys play together. I just thought maybe you had heard something from the few who have seen them play, that Harris had taken huge steps forward, or vice-versa for Embery.

As you are aware any position player in Mike’s offense can bring the ball up the court…

The 3 position is basically a G/F who gets as many touches as anyone, Michael Qualls for example…

So no mention of Mason Jones by Harris, I was hoping he would come in a help at Guard.

I think in Scottie’s lineup Joe plays the 3 and both Harris and Embery interchange 1 and 2 and have ball handling duties. That is my guess. Remember Joe is 6-4 to 6-5.

By the way, Khalil Garland tweeted that he has a doctors appointment today.

No reason Isaiah couldn’t handle the ball, too. I just placed him at the 2 because, for me, I’d like to have a 3 guard with some physicality. Joe is 6-4 or 6-5 but wiry. Embery and Jones have bigger bodies (both 200+ pounds) and would fit well there. Just my thoughts. Very eager to watch Monday’s half-hour open practice.