A Word to the Wise Re: Criticizing Gary's Lineup Management

Gary Williams Career NCAA wins: 600+ and counting


Your Career Wins: 0


Gary Williams Level Of Involvement With the Program: 24/7 Job, Sees Practice, Has a feel for the attitude of each player etc.


Your Level of Involvement: You see the game

I honestly don't mean this to antagonize anyone who wants to make the argument that so and so should play  more.  That's your prerogative.


However, I really don't think any of us have enough information to make a critique of Gary Williams' lineup management.  I kind of grow tired of those out there (not anyone in particular) who say "Cliff Tucker should get more minutes" or "Why is Choi playing" because we just aren't in a position to know who should be out there and if we were, we aren't as talented as an NCAA coach in terms of talent evaluation and management.


That's why I'm a strong adherent to only criticizing a coach's lineup management when the results are consistently bad.  That's the only way that someone with limited information can make a complete argument about lineup management. 

The other problem I have with these lines of attack is that it is always a zero sum game that leads to proponents of one player attacking another player who they feel should is getting minutes at their player's expense.  


But even if I indulge you guys, I can think of several plausible reasons why everyone's favorite pet player didn't get any PT against EKU:


Padgett: He's shown flashes but he clearly has a lot of work to do.  I don't think it would hurt him to ride some serious pine this year and just take in the game, getting minutes only when foul trouble or fatigue dictates.  He's not an immediate impact player but with time, he can be special.  That's why its important to bring him along the right way and not rush him into situations where he is bound to fail and lose his confidence.  It seems to me it would not be good to play a freshman against an extremely  unorthodox team like EKU who wants to make the bigs guard the perimeter--perhaps exposing a weakness that other teams can continue to exploit.   Next year if we play EKU, I'd expect him to play because he'd have a year of learning his perimeter assignment under his belt, but for now it's probably too much to ask him to guard a small quick guy on the perimeter.


JWill: OK he got 9 minutes after a breakout game.  Folks this is vintage Gary's putting the player back down to earth.  JWill has A LOT to learn, and some wonderful skills to work with...but when it comes easy early on, sometimes you don't put the work in to get I can definately see why Gary would want to prevent him from getting on a roll when he's not yet playing his best...especially when we can afford to do so against lesser opponents...more PT doesn't always equal better development and I think Gary is bringing him along like a star prospect should be...slowly and deliberately ,making him aware of where he is at and what he needs to accomplish


Tucker: Folks, he's simply inconsistent...great talent...great kid...I met his parents at one of the tourny games last year...great family too...he's simply got to get more consistent in regards to not turning it over and playing solid defense before Gary Williams will let him on the court on a consistent basis..



As for Choi, I have no clue why some insist on knocking him...he seems to be a decent prospect to me...he's got long arms, a nice jumper (in warm ups at least)...and seems to not be too shy about bangnign around inside...I think Gary realizes taht with two more years, Choi could be a key contributor by the time he leaves, but with him it's all about PT  and confidence because he's a foreign player...I think some on this board will eat their words about Choi but either way he's a terp and lets avoid saying he doesnt deserve his PT

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