August 30, 2004

Frischilla stumps for change.: Former Red Storm coach and current ESPN college basketball analyst Fran Frischilla offers up some possible remedies to U.S. basketball's general malaise.

posted by lilnemo to basketball at 09:23 PM - 8 comments

Talking points: 1. Creating a Hoops think tank composed of former coaches to isolate difference between US & International hoop, and scout other teams. Isn't this what USA Basketball is supposed to be doing? I know it takes time away from their meetings with Phil from Marketing, but seriously, are you telling me that all that USA Basketball is accountable for is the team's selection? 2. Hire a full time coach with international experience. I have no qualms with this. 3. Implement a new selection system. 5 "automatic" slots, everyone else must try-out. Try-outs? With Professionals involved? Good luck with that. 4. Adopt international rules. I think it's time for this to happen. The game needs to evolve, as it is obviously stagnant in it's current isolate/2-man game form. The last season that "used-to-be fans" cite as their last hurrah is usually '96, the year that the 3-pt line was moved in. This needs to happen. Shooters will no longer be relegated to spot up, zone will be spread out by the trapezoid key, rebounding oppurtunities will rise with the "live-ball" rim rule. Who's with me?! 5. Play more exhibitions against international teams during preseason. This will only happen if it means no additional preseason exhibitions, owners will not want to increase the risk of injury in preseason especially if the exhibition is held on the other teams floor, where they don't get the majority of the receipts. 6. Teach the "true game"... at all levels. Easier said than done. This is too far out of reach, better to implement rules that reward skill and therefore drive up interest in players who have that skillset. Kids will do it if they know they'll get paid for it. Each practice will now end with a rousing rendition of Kumbaya.

posted by lilnemo at 09:40 PM on August 30, 2004

Lots of people are reacting. DBR (my old favorite haunt) has some excellent summaries, and tons of links (scroll down) here and here.

posted by tieguy at 08:41 AM on August 31, 2004 alternative is for the US to basically abandon men's Olympic basketball. Heresy, maybe, but it seems that that's what's happened with baseball. It's like an old car when expensive parts start breaking: you can fix it, or you have the choice to walk away. It will never happen, though, because of this organization called USA Basketball, which has a tough time justifying its existence without an Olympic presence. Institutions exist to perpetuate themselves, and all that.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 09:23 AM on August 31, 2004

2 and 4 sound good to me.

posted by eckeric at 11:14 AM on August 31, 2004 alternative is for the US to basically abandon men's Olympic basketball. Why in the world would the US consider abandoning basketball? Because they didn't win? Because they put together a flawed team? Because they weren't prepared for international rules and play? Because Carmelo and Lebron played 5 combined minutes a game? Or because they steal the spotlight from the other half of USA Basketball? it seems that that's what's happened with baseball Actually they didn't qualify. But it's certainly a valid reason to abandon that as well. Be careful what you wish for the US needs to make room for Ballroom Dancing and Men's synchronized swimming.

posted by YukonGold at 12:05 PM on August 31, 2004

Thoughts on non-rocket science remedies... 1) DBR's site is entertaining, but it should probably stick to the latest Duke-NCSU game if the 8/30/04 entry is any indication. 2) Even with the big guns saying no thanks, USA Basketball had many of the players necessary to win the gold at its disposal. The organization chose to leave experienced players at home in favor for young players who have their best years (and knowledge) ahead of them. Under those circumstances, I wonder how one outfit's screw-up justifies a state of emergency for the whole nation. 3) To paraphrase Pepe Sanchez: If you have an open jumper and you miss it, what rule is that? It's cool to change NBA and college rules to improve the American game for fans. But it's stupid to do this for fewer than 20 games over four years. 4) One tough part of teaching the true game is that there are usually too many cooks in the kitchen these days -- high school coach, AAU coach, and the possible parent who has high-level coaching or playing basketball. I don't think it's a bad thing, but it does complicate telling a player what he should be doing to get better. 5) People have to nut up and realize that even if American basketball did everything right, this day was coming at some point. I thought it funny that there would be a smug player from the '84 team (Jeff Turner) when that team's only threat boycotted the Games.

posted by jackhererra at 03:45 PM on August 31, 2004 alternative is for the US to basically abandon men's Olympic basketball. Why in the world would the US consider abandoning basketball? Hey, I didn't say it was a good solution. I said it was a solution. The problem of winning or not winning goes away. I mean, I think you've basically got three possible ways to go here: keep losing, change your game, or decide not to play. Frankly, I think it's going to be door number one by default for a while yet to come, since I don't think USA Basketball has the oomph to take option 2, and I'm sure they don't have the institutional cojones to even suggestion option 3.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:14 PM on August 31, 2004

So if you can't win...why bother. Makes sense. How have the Cubs and Red Sox ever survived so long?

posted by YukonGold at 05:11 PM on September 01, 2004

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