Thursday, March 29, 2012

Should Basketball Redshirt Incoming Freshmen?

As everyone knows, the men's basketball team has two incoming freshman this year, despite only losing one contributing bench player to graduation.  BC is a team that is not built to win next year, but looking forward to 2016-2017, it's worth wondering whether or not Steve Donahue will try to hang on to Joe Rahon and Olivier Hanlan for one additional year.

 First, let's consider the case for red-shirting Hanlan.  Hanlan is expected to play PG for BC, although Donahue has been known to mix things up once his recruits step foot on campus.  I don't realistically believe that Hanlan will seriously challenge Daniels for a starting spot.  Although Daniels was plagued by turnovers during his freshman year, he showed the ability to play up to an ACC talent-level and he should be good for a solid ten points per game next season.  He's deceptively quick and his understanding of the offense will be significantly better than Hanlan's next year.

The real question is whether a freshman Hanlan will be better than a junior Gabe Moton.  I think it will be a close call.  For a majority of the year, Gabe was one of the best guards we had, simply because he knew what was going on and didn't get flustered like a lot of the younger guys.  He does not have a good shot, but he isn't afraid to push the ball and is a solid player off the bench.  My gut feeling is that Hanlan will be better than Moton by the end of the year, but it will take time. 

Additionally, it's worth noting that if Hanlan doesn't overtake Daniels for a starting spot, he's likely to get 15 minutes per game at best.  Daniels will easily play 30 minutes, so say Hanlan fills in the extra ten there.  Then, at best, he'll likely get five minutes or so in relief of Humphrey.  But where does that leave Heckmann?  You could only get Heckmann 25 minutes per game if he spells Anderson for 5, Jackson for 15, and Humphrey for 5.  There's only so many minutes to go around...

Rahon faces a similar problem.  With Heckmann and Jackson competing for the SG position, how many minutes will that leave for the freshman?  I think Rahon has a decent, but not good, shot at beating out Jackson for the SG position, in which case this discussion will be frivolous.  If Rahon doesn't beat out Jackson, I simply don't see how Donahue could get him more than 5 minutes per game, baring injuries, without completely writing off either Heckmann or Jackson. 

The bottom line is that it doesn't seem likely that these two will be able to make significant contributions to the team in the coming campaign.  By sacrificing any minimal contributions these guys could make this year, BC could potentially have these guys as returning starters for an additional year.  I have no idea what Donahue's track record is on red-shirts, but it's worth thinking about...


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  2. Redshirting makes a lot less sense in basketball than it does in FB because of the roster sizes, the ability to declare for the draft after year 1, and the transfer culture of the sport.. This team needs healthy competition at every to get better. Its not a soup kitchen where you get served just because you were around last year, this is DI basketball. We are doing our players a disservice if they are just being handed minutes. Reports are good on Hanlan, and it would be sad if he cant push Daniels and Moton because we were trying to preserve a redshirt. As for Rahon, his brother seems to be a good shooter for SDSU, there is no reason he cant come in and push Lonnie for minutes from day 1. Im sure part of our sales pitch to these kids was come to BC and have the chance to play. Hopefully BC can also land a transfer big to take some pressure off our thin frontcourt, and we will be in better shape.

    1. Daniels had a nice year, but he is not yet a complete player, so I don't assume he'll automatically have the starting job for the next 3 years. I think there are two ways Hanlan can take the job away.
      #1 - if he's a great floor leader, including being vocal. No one on the team, Daniels included, has shown huge leadership yet. If Olivier proves to be a "coach on the floor" right away, he'll gain an edge over Jordan.
      #2 - if he's a big threat when driving. Daniels is super fast, gets the ball over half court, knocks down 3s, and gets some decent assists. But he doesn't attack the rim. If Hanlan can attack the rim and be a scoring threat with acrobatic layups, AND also use that threat to dish to Anderson and Clifford for easy dunks, then that is a skill I haven't seen much yet from Jordan.

      It's an interesting idea, especially to space out of scholarships, but more than BC's needs I wonder if the players would be disappointed to be redshirted. I'm sure these guys are dying to play.

  3. If Rahon and Hanlan can't chhallenge for starting minutes, we've probably wasted 2 scholarships because I didn't see anything special from any of our guards this year. Daniels had 1 good game and the rest was blah. What we need is a rebounding machine at forward and starting point guard. A defensive stopper somewhere along the front line would be nice as well. I know they were young, skinny and just not mentally prepared to play ACC ball this year but the lack of defensive and rebounding intensity was obvious all year long and just never seemed to get better.

  4. You obviously don't follow basketball at all. Hanlon is way better than Daniels and will start from Day One. There's a 0% chance that either will redshirt. Go back to covering football or at least get a clue before writing these posts.

    1. "Hanlon is way better..." - he has played as many minutes of college basketball as I have so I don't think its prudent to assume he is WAY better and start from day one. I think its entirely possible Donahue goes with someone who has been in the system for a year already and brings Hanlon along slowly.

      When Mike wrote this article I thought there was a small chance but with Humph leaving that pretty much squashes that idea.

  5. Well, Anthony Davis has played as many minutes in the NBA as I have, but if he gets drafted by the Hornets, it's pretty easy to assume that he's going to be better than whatever hack starts for them now.

    Prudent? Prudence is about making a sound judgment based on the inability to have complete knowledge. If you followed basketball at all you'd know: 1) the reports on Hanlon have been glowing-- bona fide top 20 PG in his class; 2) Coach D loves bigger guards; 3) Daniels played well, better than expected by some, but has extreme limitations, which is why he saw his minutes truncated at different points in the season to Gabe Moton

    Your entire argument rests on the fact that one can't compare college to HS. That's true if it's some high school in a crappy league. Hanlon went up against top talent all season long, because he played in one of the elite leagues in the country. Matched up with 4 and 5 star talent regularly. Unless he gets injured, I'll bet you any amount of money that he plays more than Daniels, and I'll also bet you up to 100:1 that he doesn't redshirt. It will be the easiest money I've ever made.

  6. I haven't seen anything on Humphrey transferring but if we're going to miss a guy who shot 35% from the field and 61% from the line, we've got much bigger problems than I thought.

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