Monday, December 7, 2009

It's game week!

It has been three weeks since we embarked on our 2009-2010 basketball season. There is no question the boys have worked hard. I give them a tremendous amount of credit, it is not easy to practice 18 out of 21 days with great effort and energy...they have done it. I mentioned in my previous post that when you have to "beg" a team for effort, that makes it tough. With this team, there is no begging, they understand, they get it. We have great senior leadership with kids who have been there before....Rob Feeman, Matt Cawley, Garrett Matthews and Dominic Davis. I'm proud of what they have done already. Great character kids are easy to coach, and those four have character that is second to done.

Today (Monday, December 7, 2009) begins a very important week. We open our season with a conference game right out of the gate - Wednesday, December 9 at home against Marine City. We split with Marine City last season...1 win, 1 loss. Marine City has a reputation for physicality and toughness, so we will need to be prepared for that Wednesday. Fortunately for us, they open their season tonight, so I will be in their gym to scout/tape them so our kids will be as prepared as possible. There is nothing like showing the kids tape....when they see it on film, they believe it. Both for ourselves and for our opponents. We will scout/tape each team we play at least once so we will have our kids as prepared as they can be for each game...that's my job! We should have a slight leg up on Wednesday in terms of preparedness, because Wednesday is our first game and Marine City will not be able to scout us. That will help. We then go to Warren Mott on Friday night. I'll send someone out to scout/tape them Wednesday so we can see what they will do. Last season Mott won their conference and finished 18-2 and they return everybody! They are anticipating a big season, I'm sure. They start seniors 6-7 and 6-6 that are both good players. We're anxious to take another shot at them!

We have scrimmaged three different teams in these past three weeks: Bloomfield Hills Roeper, Allen Park Cabrini and Royal Oak High School. Scrimmages are great and not great. They are great to see what things you need to work on but they aren't so great because they aren't always true. By that I mean, your substitution patterns aren't normal and you're preparation isn't there for the other team, among other things. With that said, we have to do it so we can see our weaknesses and improve upon them. I love these kids, but we have plenty of weaknesses, based on our scrimmages. We did "OK" against Roeper and Cabrini (3 way scrimmage at Roeper day after Thanksgiving). We did win 6 out of 7 quarters that we played, but that isn't a good gauge. One thing that we are obviously missing this season is that senior leadership and size in the middle. We lost three senior post players in Mike Spring, Anthony Banules and Mike Forsythe. They rebounded hard and did everything they could in the paint. Now our experience is on the perimeter, so we are a bit undersized and vulnerable under the basket. What we will have to do is use the advantages we have on the perimeter to counterbalance that. We will not be big, but we will be tough outside and we will play to that strength. With Joe, Dominic, Rob and Garrett, they all can score and have to be guarded, which is rare in our league. In order to be successful, we have to rely on our bench as well. I have been very pleasantly surprised by the effort and good play of Matt Cawley and Steve O'connell. I tell the kids all the time, I don't care if you can shoot or dunk or look cool doing it...if you give me great effort and toughness, I'll find you minutes. Those two are doing just that. They come to play hard everyday and are doing what they need to do to help our team.

So, I'll be updating this blog each weekend so you have a snapshot of the previous and upcoming week and how we are doing. Thanks for following us and we'll see you in the gym

Go Trojans!

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