Running 7 Man Rotation

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macdaddybuckeyesupreme's picture

I don't understand the lack of bench depth use.

Justin Ahrens is a scorer, I don't care if he doesn't play the best defense he needs at least 10 minutes per game.

Andre Wesson needs to come off the bench, he was a huge boost to bench production.

Carton seems to be already hitting the freshman wall, and Luther Muhammed apparently is still stuck behind that same wall.

We went from looking like a final four team to a round of 32 and out team.

Holtmann is a great coach but sometimes I just don't understand why he just like Thad Matta, never used their bench. Even Diallo should see 5 minutes a game, even if he fouls out it gives valuable playing experience.

Sure you want to play great defense, but you have to score. You're not holding every team to under 50 points a game.

As I suspected, the defense isn't as lockdown as some thought, especially against teams that can actually shoot

Successful people do what they have to, whether they feel like it or not

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62-39 Biakabutuka Avenged's picture

Amazing analysis...I thought we were all on the same page, with stretching the floor, pro-style, being the key emphasis, and regarding that, Ahrens is the answer to that issue. You have pro wings defensively to cover that up. Carton will be fine, but he's just not in the top 3 in scoring burden, nor should he be. Wings need to get the bombs off all game and things will be fine.

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Blackcoffee's picture

At some point, forget when,last season, Holtmann became so frustrated with his primary rotation, he went deep on the bench for players. But it seems he has to reach that point before letting guys like Diallo see meaningful minutes in conference play.

HS
Buck95's picture

Why do people always think Ahrens is a scorer?  In his entire career, he's had exactly one double digit performance, and he has more games played where he has not scored than games where he's played and scored.  He's averaging about 3 points a game for his career in about 10 minutes per game (35 games played), and I'd have to guess that he's got an overall minus rating.  With Jallow back next year (probably redshirting this season), Sueing being available and the two incoming freshmen, I don't see where Ahrens will get any more PT next year than what he's currently getting, and honestly he probably wouldn't deserve it.

Gaffney should see the court before Ahrens.  He's raw, but is upside is tremendous.

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ANOTHERMICHIGANLOSS's picture

Ahrens is a scorer only when he gets hot.  The problem is he chucks up a couple of threes, and if they don't fall it pretty much says the game is over for him.  I do know he was injured coming into the year, but I think he is just going to be a guy that gets hot in a random game and you ride it for that one game.  If he goes out and misses a couple of shots, you pretty much know how he is going to be in that game, and you pull him.

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SilverBullets_PHX's picture

Hes also a defensive liability.  So he has to overcome his defensive issues with offense to justify a lot of playing time (like Diebler was able to do back in the day).  

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ANOTHERMICHIGANLOSS's picture

Absolutely, Diebler had a freshman year similar to Ahrens, spotty shooting, when he was off he was off.  He made a jump, however, a jump that many of us were expecting Ahrens to make.  The month of January is huge for Ahrens, if he can't put it all together and become a threat, it could mean he stays a situational player for all 4 years at OSU.

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I'm Ron Burgundy's picture

Ahrens has no where near the pedigree Diebler did coming in though, so I don't see that as an apt comparison.  Ahrens ceiling is a 4 year situational player, IMO.

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Buck95's picture

I think Ahrens is a mid-major talent.  I don't think he'll ever play much at OSU.  If Jallow was healthy this year, Ahrens wouldn't have played as much as he's played this year, which is not that much - mostly in blowouts.  Jallow would likely be a part of the regular rotation. 

Per 247, Diebler was a 4 star, #2 in OH, #15 at his position and #50 nationally (surprised at the national rank).  Ahrens was a 3 star, #7 in OH, #54 at his position and #249 nationally.  I know there are other recruiting sites, but this is what I found.

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Buckeye_bob's picture

He can't get hot on the bench!

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wigmon's picture

Ahrens is a shooter, not a scorer.  Hard to say how good of a shooter he is, but when playing in meaningful minutes, he looks rushed.

Diallo just isn't close to being ready mentally.  Gaffney is a little closer, but again, the game is ahead of him at the moment.  Probably should get more of a look with Young and Jallow out.

Our defense has been fine except for the performance by one guard who played over his head.  Struggles with toughness and on offense have been the issues in the losses.

With Young healthy, we have an 8 man rotation which is probably pretty average for a college team.  Its not the number of players in the rotation, but a lack of having guys who can create something.  The shorter the shot clock, the more important that is to have.  Carton has had his issues, but he's the one guy on the team that can create.

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puddy's picture

 I have trust in Holtmann. He knows more about his team than we do. Maybe some of the guys on the bench, Gaffney, Diallo, etc , just are not ready to contribute yet. Remember, defense is the coach's first priority and I'm sure that is the major factor in playing time. I also would like to see  9-10 man rotation, but Holtmann must have his reasons.  We know he would " prefer " to go deeper into the bench

puddy

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Buckeye24's picture

This team just can’t be without Kyle Young. Andre Wesson needs to be coming off the bench. Liddell and Carton being freshman are gonna be up and down. This teams clear flaw is wing play offense and defense. Just not there yet with the program (Hopefully Sueing and Brown can begin to change that narrative in the future?)..... Ahrens and Gaffney need to be better defensively if not they will give up more than they will get. And if they get beat defensively it puts a bigger chance on K.Wesson to pick up fouls....

Artthedart

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HARDDRIVE's picture

Granted I've missed the last couple games, but they've looked and played awfully young. Less than stellar decisions that have led to turnovers and easy buckets kill your momentum. If Ahrens fully gets over his back issue and Kyle Young gets healthy again it will help. It sure seems like they just lack the continuity to let the talented young guys grow up. Really need more consistency out of Luther and Duane since those guys have a years of experience.

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Sanitarian2's picture

Agreed, I know he's a frosh and is severely limited offensively but one would think that you could get by with  Diallo for those five minutes a game to spell the center position, especially with Young out. All those posters thinking that Gaffney and Carton were one and done players ...................

Sani

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Buck95's picture

I never thought Gaffney was one and done - he's way too raw.  I think he'll explode either next year or the year after.  That being said, I'd play him all day every day over Ahrens.

Also never thought Carton was one and done - but I didn't think Conley was one and done either until he blew up in the tournament.

As young as this team is, their REAL run in the tournament will be next year.  I think a sweet sixteen is attainable this year, but the best bet for a really deep run is the 2020-21 season.

HS
Blackcoffee's picture

To be going into Maryland this early in the season and having Deja Vu to last seasons trip to Maryland is just crazy. Sweet 16? Oy while I have confidence that Holtmann can fix things, at the moment, they do not look like a 32 team.

HS
Buck95's picture

Young is not going to be out for too long, and he is a very important part of this team.  With him, I think sweet sixteen is very reasonable.  With him, the rotation is back up to at least 8.

Someone laughed at me six weeks ago when I said having both Walker and Carton was important too - given that Carton was likely going to play like a freshman at times. 

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Blackcoffee's picture

Young guys got to bring the intensity every game. This is new to them, good teams, not so good teams
. Having to go only 7 deep and relying on these frosh in front of a sold out schott, much less a sold out away game vs Maryland might be hoping for too much. All the arguments against using a guy like Ahrens more, or subbing a guy like Diallo or Gaffney, or Hummer, more become luxuries at some point. If Young can return this changes the whole narrative.

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Blackcoffee's picture

And Jallows absence is hurting more than most think.

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I'm Ron Burgundy's picture

It's all about depth really, so yeah I agree.  That is just one less experienced guy Holtmann trusts to go to.  So when at different points of the year are missing - A Wesson, Washington, and now Young.  Not having Jallow hurts.

With the injury/redshirt we can only hope Jallow continues to develop on his path to being a poor man's David Lighty.

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Buckeye_bob's picture

Jalow is bigger than Lighty and a better shooter, I hope he is 100% and don't care if it's next year before he comes back.

Carton is the biggest disappointment to me, we hit solid teams he has been a nonfactor except for his huge amount of turnovers. Kid has no shot at all.

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stxbuck's picture

What!?!? Jallow isn’t in Lighty’s same area code as a scorer or defender.

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bsk33's picture

Did you watch the Kentucky game? Carton was the best player on the floor in the 2nd half.

I play, coach stays. He goes, I go.

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Carpetbagger's picture

There were always going to be some rough patches with so much youth on the team.  They'll figure it out.  Maybe this isn't a for sure top ten team, but they have shown they can play with anyone.  

Don't judge me because I'm quiet. No one plans a murder out loud.

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Keze's picture

Is there anyone below 7 that can win you the game in the BIG? I do not see anyone.

Carton and Liddell are starting to show they are freshmen, think they started to think D! college ball was easy but now they know you have to grind to be good.

Gaffney is just way over rated , even Young looked better his freshman year and I was hard on him but maybe Gaffney can come around like Young has.

HS
I'm Ron Burgundy's picture

I don't know, with Gaffney I simultaneously see the A) athleticism, freakish length, smooth shooting stroke with range and B) complete fundamental lack of awareness to play both offensively and defensively at this level.  Hopefully A can overcome B, but it is not going to be this year. That said, him being rated as a 4 star seems fair given his potential. Holtmann has a very difficult task on his hands though to keep Gaffney engaged and progressing, but most of it is going to be on Gaffney himself.  Otherwise he will go the way of Amir Williams and Marc Loving in Buckeye basketball lore.

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IronPastor's picture

I think when Young is healthy, you will see an 8 man rotation.  Ahrens still isn't 100%, so he won't play unless absolutely necessary.  I think the only other person who could play if they were healthy is Musa.  I think Zo and Diallo just are not court ready yet.  That is why we will see an 8 man rotation for the rest of the season unless Ahrens gets fully healthy.  

GEAUX BUCKEYES

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stxbuck's picture

Ahrens can’t create his own shot to save his life, which is this teams’ problem. They don’t set screens and run plays well, and aren’t good enough to create on their own. Carton is the only one on the team w/ that ability.

HS
Sanitarian2's picture

The offensive sets or lack of is what's bothering me with this team too, figured that the coach would emphasize that since the talent level is not yet where he wants it. They pass the ball around the outside, swing it side to side until the clock runs down and then make a pathetic one on four move and clank the ball off the rim.

Sani

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Blackcoffee's picture

7 man, or 8 man, they need some swagger!

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LowCountryBuckeyeinBluffton's picture

I don't know about swagger, but they do need to hit some open shots.  It's a different ballgame if Washington, Walker, and Muhammad go 5 for 15 from 3 instead of an 0fer.  5 for 15 is still below their averages.

HS
OldColumbusTown's picture

At this point, guys are letting their struggles on the offensive end affect the defensive side.  Washington, especially.  He has struggled to make shots since coming back from the rib injury, and time after time on the defensive end he completely loses his man - sometimes on simple rotations.

Carton finally showed some aggression last night, which was good to see.  The last two games against WV and Wisc, he was WAY too passive and really had no positive impact on the game.  He's just too talented to let that happen.

The key to this team starts with the two PG's, Walker and Carton, and then goes through Washington and Muhammad.  When Walker and Carton are penetrating, beating guys off the dribble and forcing defensive rotations, it opens up so much space for others.  That was the issue with this team last year - no one could create offense for themselves or others.  Then, once CJ and DJ are doing this, Muhammad and Washington have got to make shots once again.  They did early in the season and everything looked great.  When you can't make open shots, everything is a slog.

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740BuckeyeOH's picture

THIS. I liked most of what I saw from Carton last night, he seemed to get back to driving rather than just making the easy pass every single time he touched the ball. If we can get more of that and then the shots start to fall again, this team will get back to what we saw early on in the season. If not, we have a long season ahead of us.

AG

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countrybuckeye's picture

yes, please oh please, get these youngsters driving to the rim, with a chin on the rim 'look', and then show us their athleticism by dishing the ball out (around the defender) or using the rim to thwart the defender's block attempt.

“Save yourself and relax during every game. I recommend a fine bourbon.”

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buckeyedon19's picture

This is an interesting development, as it could show the way forward this spring.

Folks saying final four is still possible but teamrankings has them down by 8% on last week. Winners cut in half to 4.4%

HS