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Who would you take if you could only have one for the rest of the season?

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acBuckeye's picture

I'm in the minority, but i went with Scott not b/c i think he's a much better player than Craft, but b/c i really feel like Craft has actually regressed as an offensive player this year. I mean, he's flat out awful on offense, minus the 2nd half of the Purdue game. I really hope that helps him turn the corner b/c he's a major liability when we have the ball.
Scott isn't a bad defensive player himself, and i'm willing to give up a little D for a little more offensive production since we struggle so much in that area. Scott is a better playmaker, and i just feel more confident with the ball in his hands up against intense defensive pressure. He's faster down the court in transition too.

yrro's picture

They're both natural facilitators. Craft has been trying to push himself out of that zone because he doesn't have anyone on the team he can consistently facilitate this year... and he just doesn't have the offensive skill to do it.

Doc's picture

This is really a question?  Aaron Craft!  Hands down.  He might be in a slump at the moment, but no one has more heart than AC.  He gives you 110% and is smart as a whip.

"Say my name."

acBuckeye's picture

Craft has reached his absolute ceiling as a developing player. His offensive ineptitude this year has proven that. Scott has much more potential to get better IMO.

741's picture

Gotta go with Craft based on his history as an all around player, but it sure does seem that of late the offense is operating better and scoring more often when he's not in the game. Scott deserves the additional minutes he is getting, and maybe more.

Killer nuts's picture

Craft is the proven commodity. Fact is, I'm glad we've got em both

LadyBuck's picture

I don't care who starts, but I know that I want Craft with the ball late in games. I love watching both Craft and Scott together, and this is a fantastic problem to have.

acBuckeye's picture

But when they are in together, Scott runs the point. There's a reason for that. He's better at it.

LadyBuck's picture

You also notice that Scott isn't in during late-game situations unless he needs to be. There's a reason for that, too.

Killer nuts's picture

Maybe he runs the point when they're both in because Craft is better at running the 2? Or maybe because Craft knows both positions and Scott doesn't? There's many more explanations to Scott running the 1 when they're both in than Scott being better at it

Oakland Buckeye's picture

Agreed Killer & Lady.... The reason Scott handles the ball is Craft is (by far) the lesser of 2 evils at the 2. As inconsistent as Carft is from the perimeter, Scott may be the worst perimeter shooter for a guard I have seen at the D I level. Scott could never play off the ball. Scott is a bit faster down court, but not laterally quiicker that Craft, Ball handling equal, slighty better passer,lesser (although good) defender, and a horrid shooter.  Craft is also much better at drawing fouls than Scott - think he drew 3 or 4 at Purdue. I think if Craft can better monitor his shot selection (he looks really good when he squares & shoots from the Ts). but mostly the intangible of a coach on the floor and his leadership that Scott does not have.
I believe history will show when Scott is a brick laying senior, people will be clamoring for Aaron Craft. That being said, I like when they are in their together - WHY IS LENZELLE GETTING A PASS THIS SEASON? He is as inconsistent as Craft....

mclovin's picture

History will show that Scott will go to the league and excel and Craft will be a future assistant coach for the Buckeyes if the whole Dr. thing doesn't pan out.
I like Craft but if you've got to choose, especially based on Craft's season to this point, I will take Scott's athleticism, talent, and potential over Craft's hustle, grit, and leadership.  Scott is not a finished product yet, but he can get to the basket at will.  He just needs to learn how to finish. That will come in time; so will the shot.  I would rather wait and see greatness than see a guy who is constantly giving everything he's got just to be a little bit better than everyone else. 
Agreed on Smith.  He has disappeared the past couple weeks. 

acBuckeye's picture

Yes, b/c Craft isn't a brick-layer?? Scott shouldn't have to play the 2 if he doesn't have to. I said he's better at the point b/c he's a better playmaker than Craft and faster with the ball too. So naturally Craft will slide over to the 2 by default. But it's by no means b/c Craft is a better outside "shooter." Craft has hit his apex, Scott is still developing and has more potential at this point. I love Craft as much as anyone, but defenses are purposely allowing him open jumpers b/c they know he likely will miss. We need offense right now, and I feel that generally the offense is better with Scott running the show. He at least gives us more options. 

mclovin's picture

I agree.  Our offense was functioning at a fairly high level in the first half against Purdue.  Craft was on the bench for practically all of that.  Granted, he stepped it up in the second half but that was partly because the offense is in slow motion when he runs the point and someone has to drive the action.  I give him credit for making things happen there, because I think Matta is slightly to blame for not running an offense that includes more motion, more backcuts, maybe even more dribble drive.  Because let's face it -- we're not going to outshoot anybody this year (unless we get real lucky).  Our offensive scheme at this point just involves a lot of picking to get guys open for outside shots or drives to the basket that end up getting kicked back out.  That is not going to be a winning combination for this team.   

LadyBuck's picture

I agree with the points ACBuckeye and McLoving are making, and if Matta choses to start Scott over Craft at the one (and Craft over Zelle at the two wouldn't be a bad idea at times), I can surely understand why. However, in late game situations, if Matta can only put in one of the two, he's going to go with Craft every time, and I can't fault that logic either. He's been clutch is breaking the press since he was a frosh, and tends to have excellent late game poise no matter the situations. There are games where you can say "Yeah, Craft left that on the floor" (last year in Bloomington as an example), but, for the most part, when the game gets tight, Craft is the one I want handling the bal for multiple reasons. First of all, he is much better at not only drawing fouls, but making his foul shots. Second, he tends to make better late game decisions than Scott does (granted, Scott is getting much, much better with this, too).
I like both of the players, and I agree that Scott has a faster first step and excellent north-south speed, however I still want Craft with the ball at the end of a tight game.

RedStorm45's picture

Oakland...craft is shooting 39% and 33% from distance.  Scott is at 43/38% and smith is a 44% shooter overall and from 3.

rickyu22's picture

I went with Craft but I think Scott is great too. It was a toss up for me. Craft has been proven in the Madness of March and hands down is a ball hawk. But being at the Purdue game I saw a whole different team when Scott was in...not bad but more of a push offensivley. Both are great players.

dbit's picture

Q. What does our team struggle with?  A. Scoring (outside of Thomas the Tank)
Therefore, I want the guy who can give his teammates higher percentage shots.  That, to me, is Scott.
 
I do love the rosey cheeks of Craft though.

Bolt's picture

When Craft is on offensively he is killer to other teams though. The way he played in the 2nd half against Purdue, I wouldn't take anyone else in the country at PG. Problem is we've found that we can't count on that night in and night out. So, I do agree with you, Shannon has consistently been a spark on offense this year with a ridiculous assist/turnover ratio and still defends as well or better than any PG in the league/country not named Aaron Craft.

BucksfanXC's picture

Craft had an off night against Kansas and has since regained a lot of confidence. He has increased his scoring steadily every game. He is still the best defender and on the court leader/example for the team. Lenzelle Smith and Shannon Scott have to compete for the 2 in my mind and the higher scorer should win. This team's problem is that they have too many outside guys and not enough inside/drive it to the hoop guys.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

mclovin's picture

Craft has had an off season, not just one night.  And if you look at things from a statistical level, Craft and Scott are equal.  Craft scores 2 more points, gets 1 more assist, and gets 1 more steal in 10 more minutes than Scott.  And Scott also has a better FG shooting percentage and 3 point shooting percentage than Craft.  If you think this team's problem is getting the ball to the hoop (I completely agree w you), it stands to reason that Scott should never leave the floor because he is easily the best on the team at doing that.

BucksfanXC's picture

I'm just saying season stats don't tell the whole story. Look at the change in the stats over the season. Craft's scoring is trending up. He will never be enough of a scorer to be our #2 weapon, but he shouldn't have to be. We need the 3-4 spots to be our 1 and 2 scoring weapons. Thomas needs a guy on the other side of the court that can also be a threat deep, that's what opens up lanes and spreads out opponents defense. I was hoping Ross could be that guy, and it's clear so far he's not. He can't play D, he makes mistakes (that often lead to fast break layups for the other team), and I'd be willing to bet he's a pain in Matta's ass at practice because he's one of those "I've never had to try hard at basketball so why should I start now" kids (just speculating there).

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

I want Craft/Smith/Tank/Ross/amir on the court. I'm also realizing that this is probably a year too early for this. If Ross gets whatever is keeping him off the court down and Amir works on fixing those butter fingers, i think this lineup would be fantastic. Now i know that this leaves Thompson out, but i see him more as a firestarter off the bench and playmaker, not a starter.

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

Ross is just too slow and terrible on defense to be a starter, and he has terrible shot selection (at least what I saw at Illinois). 
And I don't know who the lesser of two evils are between Williams and Ravenel. 

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!

LadyBuck's picture

Ross is on and off in his shot selection quality. There are times when he's quite good, and plays well within the system (ie: 1st half @ Duke; 1st half @ Purdue). The one thing I've always said is that he'll see more playing time as soon as he becomes servicable on D.
My opinion on the Amir/Rav debate is that Rav is the more energetic player, and it shows. I don't mind that he's less athletic and less likely to make amazing plays, because he more fundamentally sound on D, understands the O better, and is aggressive. Every shooting foul against him is well worth it, in my opinion. I just like the way he plays.

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

I tend to agree with you about Ravenel.  I have never been a fan of Amir.  He has so many holes in his game and has no strengths (including hand strength).

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

You and me, man.  We're the only people in the world who see his lack of speed.  I've been posting stuff similar to you for a while now and it's refreshing to see someone with similar opinion of Ross.  I won't deny his potential, but he's not developed yet.  Then again, it's a valid point that he needs the PT to develop.  But he's not the second coming of Christ this year.

rgarrett22's picture

I currently prefer Scott but recognize I'm in the minority. Advanced stats suggest he has actually played better than Craft defensively (best on the team in defensive rating) and offensively (2nd best PER on the team after DT). Based on this and "the eye test", I don't think we lose anything defensively with him on the floor compared to Craft. On offense, how is there any denying that he creates better (and more frequent) scoring opportunities for his teammates? He is the best player on the roster at doing so.  Our offense just has better balance and looks more fluid with him on the court.

Craft did have a great 2nd half against Purdue though and does bring all the intangibles. It's a tough call. If Craft picks it up on the offensive end of the floor, I would stick with him over Scott, but as of today give me Shannon.

Bolt's picture

The real narrative is that this is much closer than even the hardcore Craft supporters would've ever thought. If this was who would you rather have for the rest of their career (or even next two years) I'd probably have to take Shannon. The amount he's improved since last year is remarkable, while Craft really hasn't much improved since his freshman year. Both are great to have and definitely the best defensive 1-2 punch at the PG position in the country.

Oakland Buckeye's picture

I would contend that Craft had a quantam leap from a solid freshman year to an exceptional soph year. Scott is (as MOST soophs do) seeing similar leap - its clear that is the one off season that makes the biggest difference. More importantly - what Craft did today should but this argument to bed. He was averaging double figures first 5 games, then hit a horrible cold spell.. clear now that B1G is rolling so is he. Michigan got back in when Craft went to the bench with #2 and Thad brought him back to finish the 3rd to quiet the team.

NoVA Buckeye's picture

I'd take Scott with crafts ft shooting

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

acBuckeye's picture

Who's the troll that keeps downvoting my completely legitimate opinions? Perhaps a refresher course is in order on how to downvote.

GoBucks713's picture

I upvoted all of your posts on here. Actually, I upvoted everyone on here. I think i'm just going to upvote everyone from now on. If there's a chronic downvoter, why can't I be a chronic upvoter?

-The Aristocrats!

Northbrook's picture

It isn't me but why do you care?
 

acBuckeye's picture

I usually wouldn't care at all. The only reason I bring it up is b/c I was just under the impression that someone shouldn't do it just b/c they disagree with you. There was a post published by this very site on that topic.

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

I didn't downvote your original post, but I did downvote your post asking about the downvote because you would have never posted that before the voting system was put in place.  The voting system has been a major distraction to everyone here.  People aren't posting as much content anymore.  For every thoughtful, developed post (which I upvote) there are 2 posts of pictures and gifs that are made to try and get upvotes and 5 posts talking about the stupid voting system and who's voting one way or another.  To find good discussion anymore, you have to sift through 8 comments to find one good one and now I ignore threads with over 50 posts because I don't feel like searching that much.  I have been trying not to downvote the gifs and pics as much now, but will continue to downvote the posts that only contain information about how someone voted.  I do not think your original should have been downvoted, but please, for the love of God, when you get downvoted (and it will happen), don't make more posts about it.
The first rule about the voting system is that you do not talk about the voting system

acBuckeye's picture

I actually agree with everything you just said. I only brought it up b/c Jason took the time to write a post about it. I would think he took that time b/c he, and the other writers for the site, would like us users of this great free site to follow those general guidelines. It's not a difficult concept to follow. But i'm done with this topic. It created a stir in the community that wasn't my original intention, so never mind. Back to talking about the Buckeyes.