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The Wright Stuff

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I've never been so excited about a player who missed 11 out of 13 shots.

 

In Monday's 67-58 win over Vanderbilt, freshman Cashmere Wright had a case of "Hrycaniuk-itis" at times as he repeatedly missed shots from close range.

 

But after watching the Bearcats struggle to dribble-drive with no true point guard on the roster last year, it was great to see Wright repeatedly take the ball to the basket against the Commodores.

 

"He missed a lot of his shots, but his drives broke their defense down," Coach Cronin said.  "That's why we got so many offensive rebounds - because we were driving the ball to the basket."

 

Cincinnati outrebounded Vandy 53 to 32, and 23 of the Bearcats' rebounds came on the offense end.  That led to 20 second-chance points against a Vanderbilt team with three players 6'7"-or-taller in the starting lineup.

 

Wright did not face high-level competition at Urban Christian Academy, so when he drove past his defender he had a clear path to the hoop for easy baskets.  At Cincinnati, he'll need to think pass when he beats his man and collapses the defense near the basket.

 

"That's what we talked about when we recruited him," Cronin said.  "When you have a guy like Cashmere who is super-quick, you have to do two things:  Number one, you have to try to teach him how to use his quickness and number two, you've got to know that he's going to make mistakes.  You can't tell him not to drive the ball - then why did you recruit him?  We'll reap the benefits if we let him play through it and learn on the run.  He just got going so fast against Vandy that he was diving away from the basket instead of jumping up at the rim." 

 

It was exciting to watch his relentless attacks on the basket on Monday.

 

Imagine how fun it will be when he actually makes a shot.

 

I'd love to hear from you.  The address is dhoard@pawsox.com.

 

And if you Twitter, you can follow my tweets at http://twitter.com/Dan_Hoard

 

I thought you might enjoy a couple of photos from the team hotel in  Maui.

 

pool.jpg

 

sunset.jpg

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