Monday, November 28, 2011

A Solution to Our Ails

All five of our loyal readers please tell me your thoughts on this. Am I just crazy or does this not make perfect sense?

Starting Lineup: Kedren Johnson, John Jenkins, Jeff Taylor, Lance Goulbourne, Steve Tchiengang (obviously Fez upon return)

Rotation players: Brad Tinsley, Dai-Jon Parker, Rod Odom, Josh Henderson

Bring Brad in as 6th man to spell Kedren/Jenkins, but only if Kedren/Dai-Jon is on the floor and Taylor is as well. Taylor/Goulbourne gets spelled by Odom, but only when JJ is on the floor. Steve starts until Fez returns, at which point Steve goes to Fez's primary backup and Henderson enters 9th man slot for his ability to score and pass out of the post.

Tell me how that DOESN'T play to our strengths? I would love to know.


VandyImport said...

Kedren is the PG of the future, and the future is now. Time to let him start and see what he can do with the first team, because I've had about enough of the patented Brad Tinsley End Of Game Aimless Dribble Offense.

At no point should this team ever have less than three seniors/Jenkins on the floor. Our advantage is age and experience, so why you would sit that and take your chances with freshmen and sophs is bewildering.

Anonymous said...

Just wait until you play Kentucky! We might get beat by 40 @ Rupp & 20 @ our ass-backward gym!

Anonymous said...

I don't know. The only time Vandy seems to give a $#*t about playing with passion at home is when they see Kentucky blue. And the funny thing is Kentucky faces that type of passion from every team they play. Kentucky usually gets an opponents best shot. If Vandy wants to be considered a good team, they need to be able to handle having a target on their back... and I don't think they can deal with it night in and night out. At this rate, Vandy will never earn the respect they seek.

AspenVU said...

To state the obvious really need fes back - Jenkins is a reliable 20 points but his turnovers while shooting really hurt last night. The 10 turnaround in 6o seconds was on CKS - half court offense is abysmal - last 3 min we got stuck on 66 and offense results in really poor shots. Agree we need SRs in there more - punt on fuller. Don't understand turnovers in open court.

DRW said...

What ever happened to the VSL Live Blogger during the games?

Haven't seen one yet. They've always been very helpful in allowing me to deal with the everyday woes that come with being a fan of Vanderbilt sports.

Owen said...

I'm not sure if i'm ready to sit Tinsley. But, I think kedren needs to play a lot more right now. He is far and away the best person off the bench and he only played 9 minutes last night. Fuller has no business playing at all. I can't stand seeing him on the floor. I think he actually makes others on the team look bad (Odom). I like Henderson too and I think he definitely brings something impactful to Vanderbilt. He needs to put on some weight though.

I totally agree that we can't sub out Lance, JJ, JTaylor and Tinsley all at once. At all times, at least 2 of them need to be on the floor.

Anonymous said...

Having the seniors out on the court isn't enough, one of them needs to step up and be the vocal leader of this team. None of them seem to be willing to accept that role.

Stanimal said...

Let me clarify my comment re: KJ and Tinsley. I'm not advocating a complete switch in minutes between the two. Frankly, in order for this team to have success, Brad needs to get a substantial number of minutes. I'm simply saying that KJ needs to start with Jenkins, and that Brad needs to come off the bench as a 6th man. I'm thinking more along the lines of a 20-20 split between the two in minutes played. Brad can spell JJ at the two, and can play the one for KJ so that we can put Dai-Jon on the floor at the two. while keeping Taylor on the floor. In the second scenario, we sacrifice JJ's offensive pop, but we gain defensive presence on the team's best perimeter player while allowing Brad to try and carry some scoring load. This seems to be a good give and take when we absolutely have to have a defensive stop.

Brad is a skilled combo guard but he's a defensive liability with Jenkins on the floor. KJ is more of a "true point". Sure he makes freshman mistakes, but what the positives have vastly outweighed the negatives. Placing him in the primary distribution role and moving Tinsley to backcourt support could really have a positive effect, assuming Tinsley buys into it.

festivus said...

First off, any rotation that gets Kyle off the court has my vote.

I think I like the idea of brad as the 6th man, at least for a time to light a fire under him again. I think he is a solid PG...but only when he can avoid getting lazy. Sitting for a bit may just do the trick.

I generally like the rest of the rotation, and I love getting Kedren as much time as possible. I'm not so sure yet about upping Dai-Jon's minutes... he definitely looked lost a lot last night.

Anonymous said...

Interesting point, Stanimal, but we have to keep developing Odom, too. Rod becomes our next Lance if he can continue to toughen up. Maybe you start like this:

1. Kendren
2. Jenkins
3. Taylor
4. Lance
5. Stevie Thunder

And rotate out Kendren for Brad, Odom for Lance (when Lance needs a breather), and then rotate Henderson in when Kendren and Lance are back in. Seems like 3/5 original starts should ALWAYS be in at the same time. Unless these guys aren't in shape, shouldn't Jenkins and Taylor be playing every single minute of these games? Even if Jenkins is "catching his breath" on the court, the defense will still shift more of its attention to him and consequently open up spots for Odom, Lance, Taylor to drive inside.

Stanimal said...

We certainly can't have 4 reserves and one starter in. That's for sure.

I'm not forgetting about Odom either. I actually think Odom should be getting minutes at the 3/4 spot as a rotation player there. Shouldn't get as many minutes as Brad gets, but should certainly be used to give Taylor and Lance breathers. He should NEVER be in without 3 starters, however.

DoreinTX said...

Fire Stallings. This game was ours and we coached ourselves out of it.

Anything but Gatorade said...

Brad might be frustrating on offense, but watching Johnson try to handle the point last night was even worse. He needs minutes and experience, yes, but his plus/minus last night was godawful.

I can't recall Rod Odom having any positive impact on the game last night other than maybe a rebound. He can't shoot and needs to work on setting screens. I know he's got talent, but I haven't seen it show up in a game yet.

Josh Henderson is developing nicely, though. He needs to spend more time at SATCo, but otherwise he's going to be a very good player in a year or two.

Anonymous said...

We (along with Coach Stallings and the team itself) need to recognize what Tinsley is, and what he isn't. He is a stabilizing influence. He lacks the talent (and though I don't know him personally, so this might be a reach) the competitive will / fire to win games on his own, at least at this level. AND THAT'S PERFECTLY FINE! If anything, his stabilizing influence to team chemistry is crucial, and we absolutely need him on the court.

But, if he is ever the reason we win a game, it's because the real winners (JJ, JT, whoever) isn't asserting himself. Enter the freshmen... they may have what it takes, we just don't know yet. I'm sure they think they do.

And by the way, if a player (especially a point guard) does not provide a stabilizing influence, nor light a competitive fire under his teammates... he shouldn't see the court any more than the walkons do. And yes, Fuller, I am looking at you.

Anonymous said...

What are the positives people are seeing out of Henderson. All I see is a guy who clearly is not ready for prime time and once Festus gets back, I honestly hope never sees the court. A lot of Xavier's runs were made while he was in the game. I realize that we had no choice with Steve in foul trouble, but on defense, he was getting absolutely abused. He cannot rebound to save his life and is so weak in the post it's almost embarrassing to watch him. Maybe he can beef up, but I want to win now this year, and he's not going to help us do that.

Anonymous said...

disagree with the Brad/Kendren switch. The logic is very sound though. We have to keep a consistent dose the starting rotation on the floor. Not sure why everyone but coach seems to feel that way. Hopefully he has some method to his madness.

Stanimal said...

Very surprised to hear that AbG. All Kedren did was dish 3 assists in 9 minutes of play. He had one absolutely horrible turnover, but that was it. Meanwhile Brad turned the ball over four times and had 7 assists in three times as many minutes while shooting an abysmal 2-9 from the field.

Once again, I'm not advocating a complete benching of Tinsley. I'm simply saying that he has greater value as a 6th man combo guard than as a true point right now. I just don't see the point in him getting 32 minutes per game and giving Kedren just 9.

Odom has not been playing well for sure, but actually he's a very good shooter (hit over 40% from 3 last year). Part of the reason why I'd like to see him get some time at the 3 as well to get him outside and use some of that shooting ability.

Henderson is raw, but he gets after it, has good touch inside the paint, and has proven to be a solid post passer. Still, absolutely right that he's not there yet. Not enough bulk on the guy to bang when it counts.

Greg M said...


Anonymous said...

Stallings needs to go.

Why don't we play zone!?!?!?

Andrew VU '04 said...

I couldn't agree more with the post, especially the silent omission of Kyle Fuller. He's an offensive suck-hole and a turnover machine with no redeeming qualities (on the basketball court... I don't pretend to know the man personally). When Stallings put Fuller and the 4 benchies in up 10 in the second half (in one of his predictable "before the tv timeout" subs), the game was lost within 2 minutes. Went from 10 up to 1 down... in under 2 minutes. End the madness!

RHjr said...

I agree Kedren needs to be promoted over Tinsley. We need a PG capable of handling pressure, creating off the dribble, and playing decent perimeter defense.

I was impressed by Jenkins' defense last night for most of the game on Holloway.

I'd like to see Dai-Jon get more comfortable on the court. I think he could be a dynamite 6th man if he could calm down and knock down open shots without turning the ball over. He's also our most capable defender.

We really need to come out firing Friday against Louisville. This is a win-able game if we can score, Louisville seems anemic on the offensive end.

AspenVU said...

Who knows if Fes will solve the problems - I doubt he is the answer, but he will draw fouls (which would have helped get us to the line late against XU) and without him VU is too one dimensional. I'm thinking he plays this Friday.

AD said...

Agree with AspenVU that Festus alone does not solve our problems. Stanimal, like the idea to shake things up, like the notion that sitting Brad may fire him up. Something different needs to happen with this team. Much has been made of VU returning so many starters. We saw what this team could achieve last year. Playing like they are now, it seems that we'll be lucky to get back to that point without shaking things up somehow.

I fear we're placing much too large a load of expectations on Festus' shoulders.