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Article on staying patient on coaches, Shaka, followed by CAM


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https://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/30692026/shaka-smart-why-pays-patience-college-basketball-coaches

Decent read

some cutouts from the article, on Shaka

Entering his sixth year, however, the scrutiny from fans has focused on his two NCAA tournament appearances and zero victories. Toward the end of last season, rumors about his future and their connection to an eight-figure buyout prompted a response from Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte....

This season, Smart appears to have a roster that is capable of winning a national championship. Smart recently handed Kansas' Bill Self his worst loss at Allen Fieldhouse, and the Longhorns are currently listed as a No. 1 seed in Joe Lunardi's latest Bracketology....

Yet, if Texas had surrendered to the outside noise and dismissed Smart, it would not have enjoyed this year's success. Sometimes, patience pays off. Athletic directors have never faced more pressure to react to subpar seasons than they do in the age of social media.

On CAM

You have to spend some time on Indiana's campus to understand the devotion, pressure and power of Hoosiers basketball. I once covered a game in Bloomington that was played when Assembly Hall was three-fourths full during an ice storm that included significant power outages elsewhere in the region. Indiana fans didn't care. That's their commitment to this program. The noise around Miller isn't about some ongoing search for Bob Knight's true heir. That's old news. But fans know the program has all the resources a coach needs to build a Big Ten contender....

The Hoosiers have quality wins this season (versus Stanford, Providence, Maryland) and the juice to put together a résumé worthy of the NCAA tournament. Losing Armaan Franklin to injury has already hurt Miller's squad, but Indiana is 8-5, a tally that includes overtime losses to Wisconsin and Florida State. There are some positive signs amid the inconsistency that has bothered Indiana fans throughout Miller's tenure. With the potential return of Trayce Jackson-Davis and the addition of grad transfer Parker Stewart, Indiana could enter next season -- hopefully, a more traditional season -- as a serious threat to win the league.

 

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If Trayce comes back we could have a special season next year. The thing that worries me is that we still don’t have consistent perimeter threat and we don’t have that next “star”. Maybe someone will rise up but I don’t see that next Zeller, Yogi, Jefferies, Gordon, Romeo, Trayce that you can ride to victories. I love the core...but we are going to need that stud for those guys to play off of. Those are the guys that help you get from one class to the next without losing momentum for your program. Who follows Trayce? I don’t see that guy on the team. Is Archie going to land him? We saw Crean couldn’t keep the momentum going. Does Archie have that ability? Get this thing from a slow simmer to a complete sustained boil.

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37 minutes ago, dgambill said:

If Trayce comes back we could have a special season next year. The thing that worries me is that we still don’t have consistent perimeter threat and we don’t have that next “star”. Maybe someone will rise up but I don’t see that next Zeller, Yogi, Jefferies, Gordon, Romeo, Trayce that you can ride to victories. I love the core...but we are going to need that stud for those guys to play off of. Those are the guys that help you get from one class to the next without losing momentum for your program. Who follows Trayce? I don’t see that guy on the team. Is Archie going to land him? We saw Crean couldn’t keep the momentum going. Does Archie have that ability? Get this thing from a slow simmer to a complete sustained boil.

Armaan could develop into that guy, and we haven’t seen Parker Stewart yet. Hard to speak in hypotheticals but I think next year will be better than this year and I’m excited about this year. 

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I never felt for a second that we could remotely be making a mistake separating from Crean but the Archie situation is a different animal.   I think some of his philosophies are actually taking hold.  There were periods that his veteran guards were total duds.  So of course everything looked like crap.  Now he is getting effective play from the guard position, and all of a sudden we look like a decent team.  So, it might very well be a mistake to cut bait when the sample size is small in the sense of being stuck with certain personnel.  

There is no question that in the end he has to actually win at a good clip regardless of liking his philosophy.  

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4 hours ago, BobSaccamanno said:

I never felt for a second that we could remotely be making a mistake separating from Crean but the Archie situation is a different animal.   I think some of his philosophies are actually taking hold.  There were periods that his veteran guards were total duds.  So of course everything looked like crap.  Now he is getting effective play from the guard position, and all of a sudden we look like a decent team.  So, it might very well be a mistake to cut bait when the sample size is small in the sense of being stuck with certain personnel.  

There is no question that in the end he has to actually win at a good clip regardless of liking his philosophy.  

Also isn't Archie's system on offense predicated on a stud point guard?

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I still want to see more out of him in a way of holding players accountable. 

When the freshmen can come in and find Trace yet the older guards don’t, I have an issue with that.

So far he’s been able to recruit pretty well. I think at this point in his career, he is going to have to bank on getting high level talent. I don’t think he’s capable of taking a mixture of rivals 80s-150s and creating a championship caliber squad. He hasn’t proven himself as having that ability.

The B1G is as tough as it gets in college basketball. He has his work cut out for him but I’m pulling for him.

Any random joe that can sell a little and is backed by a brand like Indiana can win big once or twice given enough time or the right players. See Mike Davis and Tom Crean. Instances where players made the coach look better than they might be. 

Can a guy that’s being paid 7 annual figures find a way to win consistently? Not yet at IU. Take TJD out of the picture and where would this team be? How comfortable would this staff be in terms of job security?

When Indiana was a powerhouse, they had a coach that could make things happen with his players. No one doubted that. Now, in my opinion, Indiana has a coach that needs high IQ players.  At least, at the moment. In 20 years, I think Cam is the guy that will be great at IU. Will fans wait that long?

 

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While at Dayton, Coach Miller's players shared the ball, got lots of assists, helped each other with screens and setups, played defense and knew why, went after loose balls and rebounds and valued the ball.  Coach got long basketball players that knew that effort was paramount to consistent winning.  And Dayton had good guards. They refused to lose.

Archie Miller did some things at Dayton that I see no reason why they don't transfer well to Indiana.  So, why isn't Indiana winning more? Or, is that really the right question? Are there things he did at Dayton that won't transfer well to Indiana?

Well, first off, I really do not know the answers.  Heck, I don't even know the right questions to ask.  But, I do love college basketball and watch each and every IU game that I can.  Bosse H.S. in Evansville '69; IU Business '77  UW Engineering '82; Dayton casual fan from then to now. Not an OSU fan at all. And POTFB.  I have posted on this site and on TOS a fair amount of times.  Not satisfied about the state of Indiana University basketball for a long, long time.  Too long.  

I think that Archie Miller should get time to get good guards in place.  They are the key to moving on offense.  I get this feeling that Archie Miller's recruiting is being restrained by something.  Why he and staff haven't gotten that high IQ PG in place in 4 years is my single most issue.  Not saying that RP wasn't or isn't it.  But...it hasn't happened.

Sure, Newton was not ideal. Then Rob Phinesee came in with the usual hype.  Not Coach Miller's hype...he doesn't hype with every breath. Phin was a frosh in Miller's year 2 and players played out of position.  Year 3 had lockerroom issues and concussions.  This year is being played out.

But why does our team take their foot off of the gas at times? Because they are young adults.  It is the Coach's responsibility to keep them engaged.  But it is seldom that a coach can do that.  Why does our point guard not distribute the ball well and quickly? Is this what the coach wants? Is it because defenses know us? The answer is partly that IU needs to speed things.  Galloway does. Franklin does.  Durham is at times.  

Why does it seem that TJD, as great as his play is, seems to go away at times?  Does he get discouraged when double teamed? Or when he misses and gets hammered by the defense?  Or maybe he gets tired...  And Race?  And Al?  And shooting from out? And etc.

I say that Archie Miller has the knowledge, skill, and is gaining the experience to be great at Indiana.  The administration hired him knowing that this could happen and took the long view.  Archie Miller seems to be struggling getting smart, phenomenal well-balanced basketball players.  Maybe that ideal will never happen.  Does it really happen at other universities but the coaches have a longer  bench and more weapons to utilize than at Indiana?

CAM was and is a good hire in my opinion.  He needs time and luck.  He has everything else.  If one thinks that IU can just go out and hire the next Coach K, RMK or Wooden...I say how do we know that we haven't?

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6 minutes ago, Air Ball said:

While at Dayton, Coach Miller's players shared the ball, got lots of assists, helped each other with screens and setups, played defense and knew why, went after loose balls and rebounds and valued the ball. 

If I didn't know any better, I'd think you were talking about Michigan last night...

Go figure...

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49 minutes ago, Air Ball said:

While at Dayton, Coach Miller's players shared the ball, got lots of assists, helped each other with screens and setups, played defense and knew why, went after loose balls and rebounds and valued the ball.  Coach got long basketball players that knew that effort was paramount to consistent winning.  And Dayton had good guards. They refused to lose.

Archie Miller did some things at Dayton that I see no reason why they don't transfer well to Indiana.  So, why isn't Indiana winning more? Or, is that really the right question? Are there things he did at Dayton that won't transfer well to Indiana?

Well, first off, I really do not know the answers.  Heck, I don't even know the right questions to ask.  But, I do love college basketball and watch each and every IU game that I can.  Bosse H.S. in Evansville '69; IU Business '77  UW Engineering '82; Dayton casual fan from then to now. Not an OSU fan at all. And POTFB.  I have posted on this site and on TOS a fair amount of times.  Not satisfied about the state of Indiana University basketball for a long, long time.  Too long.  

I think that Archie Miller should get time to get good guards in place.  They are the key to moving on offense.  I get this feeling that Archie Miller's recruiting is being restrained by something.  Why he and staff haven't gotten that high IQ PG in place in 4 years is my single most issue.  Not saying that RP wasn't or isn't it.  But...it hasn't happened.

Sure, Newton was not ideal. Then Rob Phinesee came in with the usual hype.  Not Coach Miller's hype...he doesn't hype with every breath. Phin was a frosh in Miller's year 2 and players played out of position.  Year 3 had lockerroom issues and concussions.  This year is being played out.

But why does our team take their foot off of the gas at times? Because they are young adults.  It is the Coach's responsibility to keep them engaged.  But it is seldom that a coach can do that.  Why does our point guard not distribute the ball well and quickly? Is this what the coach wants? Is it because defenses know us? The answer is partly that IU needs to speed things.  Galloway does. Franklin does.  Durham is at times.  

Why does it seem that TJD, as great as his play is, seems to go away at times?  Does he get discouraged when double teamed? Or when he misses and gets hammered by the defense?  Or maybe he gets tired...  And Race?  And Al?  And shooting from out? And etc.

I say that Archie Miller has the knowledge, skill, and is gaining the experience to be great at Indiana.  The administration hired him knowing that this could happen and took the long view.  Archie Miller seems to be struggling getting smart, phenomenal well-balanced basketball players.  Maybe that ideal will never happen.  Does it really happen at other universities but the coaches have a longer  bench and more weapons to utilize than at Indiana?

CAM was and is a good hire in my opinion.  He needs time and luck.  He has everything else.  If one thinks that IU can just go out and hire the next Coach K, RMK or Wooden...I say how do we know that we haven't?

In college basketball, everthing starts and ends with recruiting and putting together the correct roster.  There is no doubt he has gone after pgs each year even the same class rob, and after rob committed.  I know he believes in pushing the ball and it is his job to either sign somone that can or develop someone that can.  

Hope things turn around and maybe the new transfer is that kid?  

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6 hours ago, Inequality said:

I still want to see more out of him in a way of holding players accountable. 

When the freshmen can come in and find Trace yet the older guards don’t, I have an issue with that.

So far he’s been able to recruit pretty well. I think at this point in his career, he is going to have to bank on getting high level talent. I don’t think he’s capable of taking a mixture of rivals 80s-150s and creating a championship caliber squad. He hasn’t proven himself as having that ability.

The B1G is as tough as it gets in college basketball. He has his work cut out for him but I’m pulling for him.

Any random joe that can sell a little and is backed by a brand like Indiana can win big once or twice given enough time or the right players. See Mike Davis and Tom Crean. Instances where players made the coach look better than they might be. 

Can a guy that’s being paid 7 annual figures find a way to win consistently? Not yet at IU. Take TJD out of the picture and where would this team be? How comfortable would this staff be in terms of job security?

When Indiana was a powerhouse, they had a coach that could make things happen with his players. No one doubted that. Now, in my opinion, Indiana has a coach that needs high IQ players.  At least, at the moment. In 20 years, I think Cam is the guy that will be great at IU. Will fans wait that long?

 

Overall I agree with what you're saying, but a couple of your statements apply to all teams, not just IU. First, there are very few schools that have recently won a championship with 80-150 ranked recruits. Even Virginia and Villanova's best players were top 50 recruits. Second, if you take the best player off a lot of teams in the country they would look much worse. The key is to keep getting those good players and developing the players you have so when your star leaves, the teams performance doesn't fall off a cliff.

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5 minutes ago, Fiveoutofsix said:

In college basketball, everthing starts and ends with recruiting and putting together the correct roster.  There is no doubt he has gone after pgs each year even the same class rob, and after rob committed.  I know he believes in pushing the ball and it is his job to either sign somone that can or develop someone that can.  

Hope things turn around and maybe the new transfer is that kid?  

I honestly believe Rob can be that kid...

We saw how he shot at the beginning of the Nebraska game...Confident and he hit his shots...He's also good at going to the basket when he puts his mind to it (though I do wish he'd pass off the dribble once in a while)...Every time Stephen Bardo does one of our games, he implores Rob to go to the hoop...

And we know he's an excellent defender...  

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46 minutes ago, Kdug said:

Overall I agree with what you're saying, but a couple of your statements apply to all teams, not just IU. First, there are very few schools that have recently won a championship with 80-150 ranked recruits. Even Virginia and Villanova's best players were top 50 recruits. Second, if you take the best player off a lot of teams in the country they would look much worse. The key is to keep getting those good players and developing the players you have so when your star leaves, the teams performance doesn't fall off a cliff.

Add to this that we have been playing without Franklin, as recognized in the article, and we're good. That also reflects positively on CAM's coaching.

Hunter and Leal have now stepped up, with more run and role in the offense, we are are actually getting better without Franklin, and then will be better when he returns, hopefully tomorrow (and with some time to work him back in).

CAM will have at least next season -- at least -- and, imo, the signs are already here this season, which the article picks up on, that he's rounding into form.

Recruiting will be key, but it's like people have already dismissed Lander. Talk about premature and short-sighted. The kid is a phenomenal point guard, it's just that he's very young and that CAM won't give him real run until his D is up to CAM's standards. I would bet on him running the point well next season.

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2 minutes ago, IUFLA said:

To me hot seat is just saying step up or you’re fired.  Yeah, sure, some wanted him fired after emotional losses (I’m probably guilty) but when the dust settled “most” of us were willing to give him 4 years minimum.  If he misses the tourney this year, that’s not good at all and it’s mostly on him.  Can’t keep making excuses for him much longer, especially if he loses tomorrow.  Again, I love the fire he brings but you gotta show some results or the pitchforks will be out in full force.  Add into that it’s a new AD trying to leave his mark.

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7 minutes ago, Hoosierhoopster said:

Recruiting will be key, but it's like people have already dismissed Lander. Talk about premature and short-sighted. The kid is a phenomenal point guard, it's just that he's very young and that CAM won't give him real run until his D is up to CAM's standards. I would bet on him running the point well next season.

I haven't really seen any poster on this board dismissing Khristian yet...Is he ready for the B1G? No, not physically or mentally...

And while the second bolded is almost certainly true, it's not like he's shown us a great deal on the offensive end either...Yet...

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43 minutes ago, IUwins0708 said:

I honestly think we have been fairly patient.  This is the first year I’ve heard his job in question by “normal” IU fans.  I like the guy, runs good stuff, but time isn’t on his side.  Hope he can make it happen this year and years to come.

I also think fas have, by and large, been pretty patient.  Also, regarding the comparison to Shaka, we nned to acknowledge that he got to tournament twice in 5 years (depending on this season Archie may fall short of that).  It's also noteworthy in that comparison that Texas is a football first program while we traditionally are that with basketball - and Smart was getting criticized there.

Archie will get his full contract honored, IMO.  There are signs we are turning a corner.  We aren't definitively there yet.  If TJD leaves it'll be harder to maintain the advancement in the program

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5 minutes ago, KoB2011 said:

I agree with this. I'm bullish on Archie, but at some point if the results aren't there or close to there after 5 years you do have to make a move. 

How much does that hamstring his recruiting? Especially with the 22 and 23 classes?

His contract runs through March 2024...How can he guarantee a kid he'll be around all 4 years if that's the case...

At least that's what his competitors on the recruiting trail will say...

If it was me, I'd extend him right now, and try to negotiate the buyout down...

I think he's our guy...

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3 minutes ago, IUFLA said:

How much does that hamstring his recruiting? Especially with the 22 and 23 classes?

His contract runs through March 2024...How can he guarantee a kid he'll be around all 4 years if that's the case...

At least that's what his competitors on the recruiting trail will say...

If it was me, I'd extend him right now, and try to negotiate the buyout down...

I think he's our guy...

I think he is our guy, too. I'm honestly not sure how much that type of thing hamstrings recruiting; I know I see fans always talk about that with regard to their own coach, but I just don't know what the actual data says. Intuitively it makes sense that it would impact recruiting, but a lot of times things that make sense on the surface don't play out when you dive deeper into data. 

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1 minute ago, KoB2011 said:

I think he is our guy, too. I'm honestly not sure how much that type of thing hamstrings recruiting; I know I see fans always talk about that with regard to their own coach, but I just don't know what the actual data says. Intuitively it makes sense that it would impact recruiting, but a lot of times things that make sense on the surface don't play out when you dive deeper into data. 

We always talk about the "IU culture" and I think CAM is very into that just by looking at the recruits he's brought in so far...

But somebody (sorry, old and don't remember who or I'd give them credit) said the word "sustainable." That's what we all want, right? Long term success?

I'll be the first to admit, our progress hasn't exactly been meteoric, but there has been progress from year to year, if not in the win/loss column so much as the product on the floor. People can say what they want, but I believe with Joey Brunk available, we're much better than 3-3 in the B1G. That lack of frontcourt depth killed us against Illinois and Wisconsin especially (although I'm sure Joey would have picked up his 4th foul before the under 16 timeout in the first half in Madison).

Like I said, I look at next year and if Trayce stays (which I, personally, think there is a good chance of) see a team that can compete not only for the B1G Championship, but a deep tourney run as well...

If we get Armaan back soon and Joey back before mid February, I don't think a good run in the NCAA is out of the question this year...

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I really really believe Archie can be our long term guy. His style in my opinion almost perfectly embodies what Hoosier fans want in their basketball coach. I’m willing to be really patient with him for a few reasons: 

1) The team Crean left over was a lot worse than people realized (I think worse than Archie realized too). It was a mediocre team that lost 3 guys early to the pros. If Archie brought in McKinley Wright his first year I think the rebuild would be accelerated. Instead his year 1 was essentially year 0 and that set this program back a little bit. 

2) Getting Romeo accelerated expectations to an unreal level. This team was still not very good but everyone thought it would be with a top 5 recruit. If Romeo had shut it down after the wrist injury the fanbase in my opinion would’ve given this season a pass. That being said, this team was literally one win away from making the tournament. 
 

3) This team made the tournament but the fanbase didn’t get to see Archie coach in the tournament. The “fire Archie” crowd that popped up after year 2 uses this season as an example of how Archie has never made the tournament. It’s an unfortunate situation but I think last year’s team could’ve won a game or two and seeing that happen would’ve calmed the fanbase down a bit heading into this season. 
 

4) This season is tough because of so many factors, but  I think through the obstacles this team has gotten better from the start and has a pretty high ceiling. People focus on recruiting misses when it’s really one player that everyone was attached to, but I think getting Duncomb, Stewart, and potentially getting players for an extra season keeps us in a solid position. 
 

5) People who use our conference record as the sole indicator of progress are misguided in my opinion. Archie’s first season was his best conference record, but the Big Ten was pretty darn bad that year. The last 2 seasons before this one have had an incredibly strong conference and this year seems to be even tougher than the previous ones. The advanced metrics show that this team has improved every single year, and the wins will start to come soon. 
 

Overall I think Archie has dealt with a unique set of obstacles, and while he has definitely made mistakes, I think he’s gotten used to coaching in a major conference at a premier program and is on his way to proving that he is our guy. Once progress stops for a couple seasons in a row I’m willing to look for a new option, but I think it would be foolish to fire a guy that is making incremental progress each year. I would hate to see what would be a great 5th, 6th and 7th season under Archie be derailed to another rebuild because we hired a new coach and had to do this all over again. 

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