My analysis of the season opener is pretty simple.
Sean Kilpatrick was great. Yancy Gates was good. And the starting backcourt of Cashmere Wright and Dion Dixon was very disappointing.
"He's playing to his strengths - last year he settled for too many 3-point shots," Coach Cronin told me before the game. "He's always been a guy with talent, but I think he's matured enough to know what he's good at, what he needs to improve, and he's put a lot of time in. He's put in more time than any guy on our team in terms of ball drills, shooting drills, trying to play against older guys. He's been a pleasure to be around every day."
Wright started the game solidly by taking care of the ball and making some good passes, but once he made a couple of mistakes it all went downhill. His decision-making on the fast break was especially troubling.
"Your point guard has got to be a leader," Cronin said. "He doesn't have to be your best player, but he has to run the team, get the ball where it's supposed to go, he's got to play with confidence, and he has to give other guys confidence.
Mick told reporters after the game that "
"Jeremiah Davis is a big point guard, although he can play the two if you need him to," Coach Cronin said. "He's a legitimate 6'2" and his size is an advantage for him. The game comes easily to Jeremiah. He knows when to shoot and has great vision as a passer - stuff you can't teach. He's very calm with the basketball and makes other people better. He's going to have a great year at Huntington Prep playing with several Division 1 players. I'm really excited about him because whenever you get a guy who has the feel to make other people better - those guys are hard to find. We've been after him for three years, so we're excited to sign him."
UC still has one scholarship to give and since 6'11" Ibrahima Thomas and 7'1" Biggie McClain are seniors, the remaining target is a big guy.
"Absolutely," Mick said. "We've been going hard after a lot of targets - some junior college guys in particular because of the balance of the class (five high school seniors). We'd love to get an older big guy since Justin Jackson and Kelvin Gaines are so young, so that's definitely our focus in the April signing period.
"It's definitely the best early signing period that we've had. We still need to get a big guy, but we signed some really good players and all of them are four-year players. Our best players right now are probably our freshman, sophomores, and juniors, so it bodes well for next year."
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Enjoy this week's photo of the handsome lad.
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