1992-1993, Scotty was a 6’6" freshman shooting guard that could shoot lights out from the perimeter. He wasn’t exactly the best defender. He wasn’t heavily recruited. He started game #1 vs. #8 Memphis. He went 1-8, 0-3 from 3, scored 2 pts. Hogs won. Game #2 vs Tenn-Martin, 4-14, 3-7 from 3, 13 pts. Game #3 @ #9 Arizona, 11-22, 6-10 from 3, 28 pts. Hogs won.
C.J. Jones, 6’6" freshman shooting guard that shoots lights out, rides the bench. That’s the difference between Nolan and Anderson. Mike likes to play his veterans. We saw it last year with Whitt. Nolan started Thurman every game, even though he had other veteran players with more experience. He let Thurman work through poor shooting games, stuck with him, continued to start him; and let him gain confidence because his size on the perimeter, and his pure shot was needed.
Thurman started from the outset, and averaged 28.4 minutes, and 17.4 pts to lead the team. Remember, from above, he was 5-22 from the field in his first two starts.
C.J. is a Thurman type of player, yet he rides the bench.
Yea, I watched him closely yesterday and that is something he is struggling with right now. He’ll be alright in the future, had this been last year, CMA would have let him play through it, but this year he has 5 veteran guards ahead of him. I look for him to have a big role next year. He’s just gotta keep working hard at practice and stay ready.
I’m not saying C.J. is at the level Scotty was 17 games into his freshman season. I’m saying he, and Bailey for that matter, weren’t allowed to develop with game time in the non-conference games, like Scotty was allowed to do. Had these two been given 10-15 minutes per game in the non-conference, we’d be much better now. Both provide size and skills that we desperately need.
C.J. was our leading scorer in the Spain trip. Scored 23 in the final game; 18 in the game before. Bailey was described as “a human highlight reel,” a “freak athlete.” He was 7-8, for 15 pts in the final game.
You can’t judge anything off of those Spain games, that level of competition is probably equivalent to D2 teams. Everybody playing at a D1 level should look good against them. Those exhibition games were basically glorified practice games.
And with Bailey and Jones they’ve had opportunities and really haven’t done much. Bailey has played in 14/17 games and Jones has played in 12/17. Right now Bailey is an undersized 4, he’s gotta work on his ball handling, shooting, and learn how to play against competition that’s just as or more athletic than him. He’s played in the last 4 out of 5 games for a total of 16 minutes and scored 0 points and grabbed just 2 rebounds. You can’t really justify playing a guy major minutes, if you give him some minutes and he doesn’t really do anything with them.
Jones on the other hand, while he can spot up and shoot a 3 pointer, he’s gotta be able to bring something else to the table. Watch the Missouri game around 7:40 left in the first half, Beard has to go up to him and literally push him into position because he’s just sagging off and really doesn’t know where he needs to be. You can’t afford a guy being lost like that in a game, that’s something you have to learn in practice. Game time isn’t the place to learn where you need to be on defense. Jones also has to work on his ball handling.
With all that said, I think both have a very bright future, there are just going through typical freshman woes right now and learning to play at a higher level. Not all freshman are ready to play significant minutes right away. There are freshman right now that were rated much higher than both Jones and Bailey going through the same thing right now. I think this year and upcoming off-season is going to be huge for them. I’d actually be shocked if both weren’t solid in the rotation next year.
In Jones defense, Beard did that to several people, including Thomas. In the Miss St game he did it to Barford, and Barford turned argued with him, and the guy Beard was pushing him toward shot an open three. Last night I saw several guys get pushed by Beard, and most went where he said.
I didn’t see those, maybe cause I was just watching Jones when he was in and wasn’t paying attention. Thanks for bringing it up though. That may just be Beard’s thing. But regardless, Jones hasn’t looked good on defense from what I’ve seen, I also seen Macon arguing with him last night for being out of position. He’ll get there though. Seems like everyone gets enamored by him shooting 3 pointers and forget there’s a lot more to the game than just shooting 3s.
1st time I noticed Beard doing that was against Miss St. would be interested if anyone has noticed him doing it before that game. Honestly when I saw the issue between him and Barford, I thought Beard was being lazy and not wanting to chase his guy. Last night I realized he was putting players in the right positions. Maybe CMA noticed the miscommunications and has Beard correcting it on the court.
When you have a guy with the gift for shooting, you develop him as quickly as you can. Play him off and on as much as possible and let him learn the ropes in defense. Shooters can win you games. Bring on CJ Jones.
^ Thanks. That’s my point. Plus, our other guards are 6’ (maybe 5’11") to 6’2". Against MO, we had 4 short guards, plus Moses out there much of the game. CJ is 6’5" with long arms. With more game experience and development, his length should help us defend on the perimeter, and help in the press.
Dudley, glad to know he’s happy here! Thanks for sharing!
That was kinda our philosophy last year with Hannahs and Bell, we could shoot with the best of them, but couldn’t stop anyone. That’s how you get a 16-16 record. You gotta be able to play defense at this level to have any type of success. The games we’ve lost have not been because of shooting but because of defense. Miss State loss was because our defensive rebounding was horrible and we didn’t guard the 3 point line well. Nothing we’ve seen from CJ suggests that his 3 point defense and rebounding would have changed the results of that game.
And I’m not trying to knock CJ, I think he’s going to be a great player, maybe even a future pro player, but he’s gotta keep working to get better and make it where the coaches have no reason to not put him on the floor.