Xavier basketball 2019/2020

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
This looks like a very interesting year for X -- 4 returning core players combined with (supposedly but we'll see) a great recruiting class. Expectations seem to be pretty high. For me, it's a matter of how X progresses as the season moves along.
Anyway, for any Xavier fans out there, I would love to have some discussions as the season continues.
The Jacksonville game has its good and bad. Siena is tonight (should be a little bit tougher).
Thoughts anybody?
 

Bballer05

Active member
This team has the makings of a 2nd weekend NCAA team. 4 core guys are back - Naji, Ryq, Scruggs, Q. Ryq looks unstoppable in their first two games but let's wait until X faces a team with some real "bigs".

Carter is a nice addition and once he's 100% healthy, will be a great starter at the 4.

finally have some depth that can contribute off the bench in Bishop, Freemantle, B Moore (grad transfer), and KyKy (not healthy yet but when he is, i believe will play the most minutes out of these 4)

this team will live and die by how hard it defends and rebounds. they look dialed into it these first two games but once again, the opponents aren't a great measuring stick. tonite vs. Mizzou will be first real test.

how the season goes, whether they beat some teams that maybe they shouldn't, will depend on Naji and Q. if those 2 (and Steele) can figure out that shooting 3's is not their first option nor should it be the first option in X's offense, X will be fine. when those 2 end up taking more 3's than 2's or end up shooting more than 4 3's combined in a game, we will be in trouble. it's that simple - they AREN'T good 3 pt shooters. the guys who should be taking the more are Bishop, Moore, KyKy, Scruggs, and maybe Carter when gets back to full health. If Naji and Q can figure out that their best strength is driving to the basket and either finishing or dishing, then X should be fine. they'll be in trouble in games when those 2 try to do too much, try to jack early 3's in the offense, etc. (and BTW - i know Schrand has started two games but i believe that his minutes will diminish to almost nothing once we hit some better opponents, like tonite)

it will be fun to see this team when fully healthy - maybe KyKy will be back for Charleston Classic which would be huge as X could see some great competition if they win that first game.

either way, should be a fun season to watch. i predict:

26-8 (i didn't look at how many total games they play. just guessing)
3rd in the Big East.
NCAA Tourney
lose in the 2nd round.

let's go X
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
Good to rack up an OT win last night against Mizzou. I'll try to get through this without piling on negatives (although I certainly could).
After frittering away a first-half 15 point lead, X managed a comeback of their own -- finally tying the game on Naji Marshall's 3 with 27 seconds left.

It was nice to see X play with poise in the last few minutes as well as in OT. The big problem, of course, is that they couldn't make many shots. Too many 3s as usual (3 for 21 :eek:).
Top performer -- Jason Carter (12 pts., 11 rebounds)
Player with room to improve -- Quentin Goodin (1 assist, 6 turnovers).

A win is better than a loss, right? We'll take it.
 

Bballer05

Active member
this team just can't shoot and KyKy Tandy isn't going to save their 3 pt shooting woes. Naji and Q need to figure out how to take LESS of them while Scruggs, Bishop, Moore, and Carter need to figure out how to make their OPEN ones, because they had good looks.

either way, what was nice to see was that even though shots weren't falling, they didn't let that affect their defensive/rebounding effort. 58 points in an OT game is Virginia-esque.

the D will carry this team to 20+ wins. the shooting woes will plague them and give them a couple losses that they probably shouldn't have, but that's ok.

this is a tourney team with sweet 16 potential once everyone is healthy.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
This is certainly looking like a tough, in-your-face defensive team. You're right that this will carry X pretty far this year.
I do expect the offense to improve as the year goes by.
The key, though, for my money is the quality of point guard play that Xavier gets. I didn't think much at all of Gooden as a point guard last year; and certainly he has been awful at PG so far this year.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
Another narrow, down to the buzzer win over a pretty good team. Missouri State is actually picked to win the MVC, so they were a good test.
As usual, Xavier couldn't make even the wide open 3's (5-23 after 3-21 against Missouri). I think that will get corrected, but I'm wondering if the new distance is affecting everyone like this.
Otherwise X played OK. In fact, the defense was downright nasty.
Gotta keep getting better, though. Looking forward to seeing Kyky -- hopefully in Charleston.
 

Bballer05

Active member
probably not going to see KyKy in Ctown but ya never know. not looking good for it. i thought the defense was pretty stellar as well vs MSU but Steele thought otherwise so i'm sure there were several possessions where he felt guys weren't "getting it done" the way he thinks they can so i'm sure they'll work to correct those this week. i'll take 56 points given up, though.

the 3's, at some point, are going to fall.

let's hope sooner rather than later.

GO MUSKIES!
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
God bless ya, Bballer05.....I'm like you about the 3s. They have to fall eventually, cuz if they don't we're in for a long season.
I read on another board where someone posted that -- for having 4 returning starters -- this is the least skilled X team he has seen in the last 20 years.
I have to admit that this has me thinking. After all, with this group (along with Hankins and Welage) only brought X to the 2nd round of the NIT.

Like you, I'm hoping!
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
Perhaps the "real" Xavier team started to come out of its cocoon last night against a decent Towson team. The defense was absolutely stifling. X actually worked the ball well on offense, ending up with 19 assists for a change.
X was still far from perfect, but it was nice to see a needed step in the right direction.
Tonight X gets UConn in the semis. Should be an interesting match up.
 

Bballer05

Active member
hard fought game vs UConn. no idea how we won with that lineup in the 2nd OT but they found a way to get it done.

Florida game......different story. not sure if we were gassed from the double OT game but came out flat, not focused, not dialed in and Florida made us pay. Lazy with the ball, bad passes, terrible on ball defense as we couldn't keep anyone in front of us. put ourselves in too deep of a hole with the turnovers and lack of urgency on defense, but somehow managed to have a wide open, game tying 3 with under 10 seconds that just missed.

need a full 40 minutes to beat teams like Florida, who will easily be a tourney team come March. man, they were just quicker than us at times.

proud of the boys for not giving up. that's a great sign for the rest of the season. i think Scruggs is going to use that missed 3 as motivation. he is clearly our best player and it's not even close. you could tell he took it hard, missing that shot.

Xavier gonna be just fine.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
Nice summary, Bballer.
As a whole, Xavier definitely progressed as the tournament unfolded. Against better competition (UConn & Fla) X showed their strengths as well as weaknesses. Above all though, they showed that -- no matter the situation -- these guys will NEVER quit. Not only that, but when crunch time comes, they approach things with intensity and -- more important -- maturity.
X is definitely offensively challenged. Hopefully the addition of Tandy will help as the season moves along. His strengths are shooting and scoring -- just what the doctor ordered. Defensively, though, he's probably a work in progress.
I agree that X will be fine. The game with Lipscomb should be interesting.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
X is good but they will always be the Mousekateers
I started this thread as a place for knowledgeable, mature people to post their thoughts and opinions about XU basketball. Agree with someone; disagree with someone; it's all good.
If you would like to continue to participate the same way that middle-school or junior high kids do, then you will be treated just as those kids are when they misbehave. Hopefully you won't continue to represent yourself that way.
If you want to participate in a mature manner discussing XU basketball, you are quite welcome.
 

Arrogate

Well-known member
Is Xavier the best mid major?

(Monclova this is an old joke running on the forum. We used to have a poster Master of Reality who was behind this joke)
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
X takes on Lipscomb tonight, in a game that should be a comfortable win. Somehow, though, I doubt that it will happen that way as this team has the propensity to play down to the competition.
On the bright side, both Tandy and Ramsey are expected to make their debuts. Of course, a lot of X fans are excitedly hoping for flashes of brilliance from both -- especially Tandy. I'm just looking for them to get their feet wet, not to set the place on fire. Both guys should get better as the season goes along.
Ramsey should provide some depth at the C/PF positions. Tandy, though, has the potential to truly fill a weakness with his ability to shoot and score from the guard position.
 

Bballer05

Active member
Shootout Week!

Love that there's a game on Wednesday and not a whole week off leading up to it. a good game to get KyKy and Ramsey's some more experience. hopefully a full 100% healthy squad to take on the Bearkittens.

should be fun.

let's go X
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
Kyky's skills offensively could be a real shot in the arm to shore up this team's big weakness -- shooting. I'm not expecting miracles, but as the rust wears off and the timing and conditioning improve he could be fun to watch!
On a possibly related note, I saw that Quentin Goodin only played 26 minutes against Lipscomb....no foul trouble or injury, just coach's decision.
 

Bballer05

Active member
Kyky's skills offensively could be a real shot in the arm to shore up this team's big weakness -- shooting. I'm not expecting miracles, but as the rust wears off and the timing and conditioning improve he could be fun to watch!
On a possibly related note, I saw that Quentin Goodin only played 26 minutes against Lipscomb....no foul trouble or injury, just coach's decision.
if he doesn't get any better and KyKy keeps improving, you may see that decrease even more. we shall see.

what it should allow him to do is play even harder/more aggressive defense because he shouldn't be as tired having to 32+ minutes. if he buys into that mentality, that could help him. he's really struggling when trying to get to the rim because the lane is always clogged - no one cares to go out on anyone because no one is a threat from 3. 2 years ago he was better because when he drove, guys were worried about Trevon and JP. don't have them now. hopefully he adjusts.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
My fervent hope is that Kyky gets better and better; and Q's minutes become fewer and fewer. I'm not saying he's horrible, but isn't a point guard supposed to be capable of seeing the same things that you have? My gosh, this guy is a senior. At least Dee Davis finally caught on after 3 years. The problem is that right now he's the only option X has there.
C'mon Kyky! :unsure:
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
X of course played flat as hell in the 1st half. This stuff is beginning to concern me with the most senior guys. Unless they lead the way, X is faced with having a year similar to last year -- maybe a little better, but not much. I just don't see much imagination in this offense. I see players looking for their own shot instead of working to get somebody open for a good/better one. The talent is there, but Steele doesn't seem to have much offensive skill. That observation could prove to me to be way off, but I'm concerned.
With UC coming up, if X fails to improve at the offensive end, excellent defensive teams like the Bearcats will expose them.
Having said that, Go X!
 

Bballer05

Active member
9-1. impressive performance from Naji and loved Freemantle minutes off the bench. Q had 8 assists and 2 turnovers. i'll take that every night from him. just please: take less 3's. :)

back in the top 25 at #23. 4 BE teams in the top 25. league is looking as strong as ever.
 

Monclova Steve

Well-known member
As I had hoped, this team seems to be evolving. X still has issues (3-pt. shooting, point guard play even though Q was much better against UC, FT shooting). However, this seems like a nice step forward. Tandy needs to keep getting better, though, but Bryce Moore and Freemantle are giving them great minutes off the bench for depth.
I see that with both CBS & ESPN Xavier has moved into their Power Ratings for the first time. Don't get me wrong....I don't care much about ratings, but it shows that others besides me are recognizing that X is becoming a team to be reckoned with. The schedule keeps getting tougher, so we'll learn more about this team in the next couple of weeks.
 
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