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TOPIC: What did we expect?

What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280444

  • RedmanMike
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It occurs to me that the roster churn we have experienced these part two off-seasons is becoming very common, and should be expected at all but the upper-echelon programs. In retrospect it was predictable and not at all surprising.

There is very little stability - and a premium is placed on immediate gratification and not long-term commitment and growth.

Players routinely change high schools and AAU programs multiple times. Several years ago, that would have been a red flag - today it is expected. It is standard operating procedure.

How many high schools did Lovett go to? He moved from one to the other year to year. Are we surprised that he moved on from St. John's in less than two years? He's probably making a mistake by leaving St. John's, but he's left everywhere else he's been.

Owens just transferred - for the second time. Are we at all surprised that - after he didn't find Tennessee to his liking - that he (and his dad) came to the same conclusion about St. John's? So now he'll try his luck at a third school in a third major conference. We'll see how it goes. I suspect he will have a marginal impact - and that he would have done better to stay with us. I have no idea how many high schools Owens went to, but I bet it was more than one...

We discuss the possibility of Trimble transferring. I have no idea if there is any validity to it, but none of us should be surprised if he does move on. Remember, he came to us after reneging on a commitment to Florida State.

The Euro kids were never going to be here for four years - it's a business deal for them. They are working on their game in the US until they can get picked up by a better pro team back in Europe. Mussini left after two years and the German kid after one. Neither is a surprise.

Yakwe is a different story. He came here and was loyal, but ultimately he was a mid-major player whose flaws were exposed over time. I feel badly for him and hope he catches on somewhere in the MAAC or the America East and has a great year.

We took chances on these kids - and we had to know that based on their history, many of them were not going to stick it out if they faced even a little adversity. The fact is that these kids basically act like free agents on one year contracts - if the situation they are in doesn't seem to be working out, then they go somewhere else.

So we and many other programs - even good ones - experience roster churn basically every year. It didn't used to be that way, but it is that way now. Until we improve dramatically we need to play the game, and that means taking chances on some kids who are moving on from somewhere else. When we do that, we need to realize that at some point they may choose to move on from us as well.
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What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280446

  • Jack Williams
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Just because Tariq left a school as they changed coaches, I don't think that means he had a reputation where he was bound to bail on us. And i didn't think he would, he got a lot of playing time here, and was a given an opportunity to succeed.

I guess I understand his decision to leave, I just wish he was not so disrespectful on his way out
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Last Edit: by Jack Williams.

What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280447

  • Mike Zaun
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RedmanMike wrote: It occurs to me that the roster churn we have experienced these part two off-seasons is becoming very common, and should be expected at all but the upper-echelon programs. In retrospect it was predictable and not at all surprising.

There is very little stability - and a premium is placed on immediate gratification and not long-term commitment and growth.

Players routinely change high schools and AAU programs multiple times. Several years ago, that would have been a red flag - today it is expected. It is standard operating procedure.

How many high schools did Lovett go to? He moved from one to the other year to year. Are we surprised that he moved on from St. John's in less than two years? He's probably making a mistake by leaving St. John's, but he's left everywhere else he's been.

Owens just transferred - for the second time. Are we at all surprised that - after he didn't find Tennessee to his liking - that he (and his dad) came to the same conclusion about St. John's? So now he'll try his luck at a third school in a third major conference. We'll see how it goes. I suspect he will have a marginal impact - and that he would have done better to stay with us. I have no idea how many high schools Owens went to, but I bet it was more than one...

We discuss the possibility of Trimble transferring. I have no idea if there is any validity to it, but none of us should be surprised if he does move on. Remember, he came to us after reneging on a commitment to Florida State.

The Euro kids were never going to be here for four years - it's a business deal for them. They are working on their game in the US until they can get picked up by a better pro team back in Europe. Mussini left after two years and the German kid after one. Neither is a surprise.

Yakwe is a different story. He came here and was loyal, but ultimately he was a mid-major player whose flaws were exposed over time. I feel badly for him and hope he catches on somewhere in the MAAC or the America East and has a great year.

We took chances on these kids - and we had to know that based on their history, many of them were not going to stick it out if they faced even a little adversity. The fact is that these kids basically act like free agents on one year contracts - if the situation they are in doesn't seem to be working out, then they go somewhere else.

So we and many other programs - even good ones - experience roster churn basically every year. It didn't used to be that way, but it is that way now. Until we improve dramatically we need to play the game, and that means taking chances on some kids who are moving on from somewhere else. When we do that, we need to realize that at some point they may choose to move on from us as well.


Agree to an extent, but I think our situation is different. Players are leaving because they don't have faith in the staff as coaches or developers and because we don't win. If you're constantly promised tomorrow but tomorrow never comes, you're going to get tired of it, especially seeing that other programs actually follow through on the hype and succeed. I think our coaches really try hard but it's crystal clear it's not working in the current configuration. It says a lot about the incompetency of a program when it's clear changes must (not possibly) be made and they are not.

Is there more roster turnover overall in hoops? Yes. Are kids acting more like free agents now? Yes. But IMO it's about our inability to coach, develop, and win...not kids just packing up and leaving just to leave. If we were a winning program in and out of the top 25 and making tourneys regularly and developing players, we would 100% not be losing all these guys. I can try as hard as I can and train my entire life to beat Usain Bolt in the 100m dash, but I will not win. Not for a lack of effort, but because I don't have his abilities. Our coaching staff just does not have the ability to win consistently, plain and simple. Yet, we keep them and sounds like no changes will be made...again.
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What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280451

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Redman Mike is right on with his comments re transferring. I would just add one thing about to his points. If you recruit a player like Williams who has risen to a four rating recently and don't play him for say ten minutes a game he will leave next year.
I hope the staff takes this in consideration if it signs any transfers it now brings in.
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What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280458

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Jack Williams wrote: Just because Tariq left a school as they changed coaches, I don't think that means he had a reputation where he was bound to bail on us. And i didn't think he would, he got a lot of playing time here, and was a given an opportunity to succeed.

I guess I understand his decision to leave, I just wish he was not so disrespectful on his way out


Jack, you always write well thought out, balanced posts. Good to see you posting here a little more regularly. I doubted you would actually ever come to St. John's, happy you did, and hope it is working out for you.
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What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280463

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I think one of the problems stems from their recruitment. They've been told their whole lives how special they are and how they fit in our system and will immediately get plenty of playing time. Then, they get here and don't measure up, or work hard enough to improve their games and their playing time or involvement in plays diminishes. Their development slows or ends and they point the finger at the coaches, rightly or not.

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What did we expect? 2 weeks 1 day ago #280495

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We expect players to leave. No brainer. But we expect competent evaluation of replacements and active recruitment on the part of coaches and not some used car salesman approach of following the tweets of dissatisfied players without having had a relationship with that player before.
Mullin’s management style is more hands off than Lavin and his insecurity of being outcoached by a real experienced assistant is a possible reason for his intransigent attitude. The three amigos running the show came in knowing nada about coaching or recruiting and a strong A.D. would have had a few conversations with him by now. I don't think for a second that Slice still being on payroll has any influence in the matter. If that were the case and President Bobby Bean Counter rather gamble on 6 years of mediocrity rather than a profitable basketball program he should precede Mullin out the door.

At St. John's nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!
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At St. John's nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!

What did we expect? 2 weeks 21 hours ago #280568

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It almost felt like we got ahead of ourselves at the end of last year and were quick to nudge guys out assuming better was coming in.

One example, and I know he was infuriating at times, was Malik Ellison. I think we could have found minutes for him this year, even with Lovett playing. Think he would have been a nice piece as an upperclassman.
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Last Edit: by JohnnyFan.

What did we expect? 2 weeks 19 hours ago #280594

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JohnnyFan wrote: It almost felt like we got ahead of ourselves at the end of last year and were quick to nudge guys out assuming better was coming in.

One example, and I know he was infuriating at times, was Malik Ellison. I think we could have found minutes for him this year, even with Lovett playing. Think he would have been a nice piece as an upperclassman.

Think he might agree with you in retrospect.
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What did we expect? 2 weeks 18 hours ago #280600

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Players will transfer every year as they should. Schools invest very little in them and it's important for players to try to monetize their value as much as possible. The difference is every other program seems to realize there will be transfers and recruit accordingly.

We seem to run players out of the program with no thought on how to replace them until it is too late.
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