I would say that Ed's ideal type of team is a fast paced team that gets many points in transition and one that also is tough on D and likes to play defense. Why we aren't seeing this type of basketball program is dissapointing and it isn't quite clear whose more at fault, Penn State's basketball program (left in shambles, no tradition etc..) or ED.
I’d say that Uconn is a team that fits Ed’s vision, very good on defense and a Jim Calhoun offense that stresses transition and fast break points.
I’d argue at Michigan State is a better example as to the style ED wants to get to. They play great D, rebound like crazy, and transition better than any team in the B-10. I don’t think we defend or rebound nearly as well, but we don’t go 2-deep with 4 star athletes like they do, either. ED can’t go 100% MSU on anybody so he has to adjust his style a bit for what he can put on the floor, but I think if you asked him what his ideal team looked like, it would look a lot like an Izzo team.
However, if you look as Izzo teams, their 1/2 court sets are not that impressive. If you can get them into a tracor pull, you have a chance. Unless you’re UNC… MSU tried to run with them and it looked llike Carl Lewis vs Barbaro. I swear, that ACC challenge game was something. You could see the UNC kids just light up like “OK, so you wanna run… let’s go” and they just ran 'em right out of the gym.
I think you’re right. I just don’t understand why teams that run can’t have good 1/2 court sets, and visa versa. Wisky can’t run, but has good 1/2 court sets. Look what they did to Duke. I remember Carmody at Princeton saying, “we don’t run”. They did 3’s and layups, usually back doors, always in the 1/2 court set. Not sure why PSU can’t do that in the 1/2 court. It’s like they limit themselves to perimeter passing for a 3. Someone pointed out that going inside to the bigs risks an errant pass, which may be true. But what about a back door run? No better way to beat high pressure D at the arc. Back doors nullify high pressure D and work vs. more athletic teams, which is why NW uses them, as they’re always less athletic than their opponent. Key to back door passing is the passer getting closer to the runner prior to the pass, by closing the spacing gap, then the bounce pass is short and quick, giving defender less time to recover. Plus, the runner’s cover gets more concerned with the passer as he gets closer, making it easier for the runner to go backdoor.
Pete Carrill wrote a book entitled, “The Smart Take From the Strong”, which is what Princeton sometimes did, why they got upsets. If you think about it, PSU doesn’t really do this. When we’re stronger, faster, etc., we win, like last night, SHU, Davidson, etc. Watching Indiana last night, they played smart, and kind of made it look easy. That zone of theirs is going to be trouble for PSU. Indiana was not faster nor stronger than Pitt, though they easily handled them.