Rob Dougherty's picture

Rob Dougherty

Staff

Conshohocken, PA (via Allentown, PA )

Member since 26 September 2016 | Blog

Favorites

  • SPORTS MOMENT: Brad Lidge striking out Eric Hinske to win the 2008 World Series.
  • COLLEGE BASKETBALL PLAYER: $h3p Garner
  • NBA TEAM: Philadelphia 76ers
  • MLB TEAM: Philadelphia Phillies
  • SOCCER TEAM: Tottenham Hotspur

Recent Activity

Comment 16 Mar 2017

I hope you check out our article going up this morning about points scored. I'd be surprised if we had such a low total without Suriano, but stranger things have happened I guess. 

Comment 13 Mar 2017

The big thing that I think people don't understand with college basketball recruiting is that it doesn't follow the same calendar as football. Too many people out there believe that a good 17-18 season would allow Chambers to effectively recruit the class to enroll in the Summer/Fall of 2018. This is incorrect. The early signing period puts kids in a position to get their secure scholarship in place that the university has to honor. That's why summer/AAU recruiting is so critical for basketball. But that's also why a good 17-18 season won't lead to a good 2018 class.

Now, it could lead to a good 2019 and 2020 class, but what are the chances success can be maintained if the 2018 class is sub par to the rest of the Big Ten? It's not likely, right? Recruiting in basketball happens a season ahead, it's not like football where a bunch of kids can be swung in December and January, those kids have already made up their mind, and schools aren't going to release them absent exigent circumstances. 

For instance, Villanova hasn't even seen the recruiting boost from the national title yet. They're bringing in another good class, but they'd been recruiting for the class of 2017 already for a year. While getting Samuels, DCR and Gillespie is a good haul, they still couldn't land someone like Lonnie Walker from Miami. The boost for Nova's recruiting will begin in 2018, and extend out. There's a big difference to approaching a recruit as a national champion when they're freshmen and sophomores from when they're juniors and been recruited for a year+ by other coaches they trust and have developed a relationship with already. 

So let's extend that to Chambers. I think we can all agree that even in the best of circumstances next year, we're not winning a title. So where does that put us? It means we need to be able to hammer home this recruiting class. The point of the extension isn't to reward Chambers for a 15-18 season (duh, no one is happy with our final record this year, including the coaches and players), it's to give Chambers a chance to land more talent so that they can build on the 17-18 season should the team be much more successful. 

Good thing brevity is my best quality. 

Comment 09 Mar 2017

He certainly has that level of capability in his locker. He should win round 1, he's an interesting section with Lizak and Terao, should be interesting if he can get to the QF unscathed without showing signs of an injury. 

Comment 08 Mar 2017

If you are a pro-Chambers supporter, there is always a reason/excuse to wash away why Chambers' teams can't and don't win.

And if you don't believe in Chambers, there is always a reason/excuse to wash away the things Chambers has done.

 If you have had your fill of six season of "wait til' next year"s, then it's all just more of the same lip-service that has existed since Chambers' hire and well before his tenure, back in the Ed DeChellis days.

The problem is it's pretty much universally agreed that the 17-18 season is far and away our most important in recent program history. From the 2018 recruiting class that will be filled or mostly filled by the start of the season to the final buzzer for this team in March, we'll know where this program officially stands at that point. We'll know how the recruiting trends are and we'll have a much better idea of what to expect this team to do going forward. 

You choose to value the belief that a change in "luck" will play a bigger role in Chambers' eventual success than what his six-year lack of results shows. You value that because you want to believe. You prefer to invest in the belief that things like "bad luck", "best talent we've ever had" will outweigh Chambers' consistent lack of results.

No, it's not because "I want to believe," though I do appreciate someone who thinks they know how I think or approach things. I do believe that we have our most talented freshmen class and that they all showed potential. I am not sure that Pat's tenure is filled with "bad luck," we were 9-4 in 2 possessions or less games last season, and I heard plenty of criticism that we can expect to be worse in that category [this season] because that's how close games tend to go. Well, those people were right ultimately, and that's fine, it seems weird to me to reject the possibility that this team will have a better W/L record in close games next season. 

I choose to believe in past performance.

There is nothing wrong with this, of course past performance can be some kind of indicator toward future success. But, we've also not had a team this talented, this young. So, it seems weird to me to think that we should be considering teams where guys like Garner were large contributors, and project that out. Not all past performance can be a good indicator toward future success. 

The fact that the sample size is small just further exemplifies how rare it has been for a power conference school (aside from Northwestern) to continue to invest the future of their basketball program to a head coach who has shown no results which could be considered even minimally successful (wins and losses, final standings, etc.)

Which is why we shouldn't use it as a rule, it's only a collection of data. 

Your assertion that people should "Let's give these young kids a chance to grow, there's no sense in firing Pat now and begin a total rebuild" assumes two things. First that the only opportunity for growth will occur because Chambers stays. Second, that hiring a new head coach would mean a total rebuild.

So you're right and wrong in your assumptions here. I am not assuming that these kids can only grow under Chambers, I never stated anything that would allude to this. 

I am assuming a total rebuild with a coaching change, and that's mainly because that's what happens when coaches change. There's far more instances out there of players leaving than players staying. I'm not sure why you'd ignore that data. These players commit to play for Pat Chambers, they don't commit to Penn State University. There's a reason there's usually so much roster turnover in the 12 months following a coach's hire. 

Finally, I fully expect Carr, Watkins, Stevens and Reaves to improve next season

We have reached common ground here! 

The issue is that is also equally reasonable to believe that virtually every other player returning to the Big Ten will improve as well. The improvement of the core four players doesn't necessarily translate to a significant enough improvement in either the team's record or their standing to move Chambers to that "next level" (despite the pie-in-the-sky beliefs of Eric or occasional contributors like Tim B. from pennstatehoops.com).

The Big Ten as a whole will improve next year. While schools like Wisconsin (senior heavy) and Purdue (Swanigan to the draft?) will likely take a step back, schools like Maryland, Minnesota, Michigan State (if they can keep at least 1 of Ward or Bridges) will likely take steps forward. Then there are schools like Nebraska and Indiana who will be much better in all likelihood. Teams like Northwestern and Iowa could be better, or could stagnate where they are, (1) can Northwestern build itself from here, and (2) how will Iowa deal with losing Jok?

Penn State figures in there somewhere with a team that has no seniors and could theoretically return every single player in their 8 man rotation. That's something no other team in this conference will have going for it. 

The one thing I can count on is that when Chambers fails to make the NCAA Tournament in 2018, the excuses for yet another year lacking success will spew forth along with the cries for #waituntilnextyear

Maybe he will miss the NCAA Tournament, it's not a certainty though, so "when" is not appropriate to use here.