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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

DBR knocks it out of the park WRT State, Lowe.

A fantastic game recap/assessment from Duke Basketball Report on the game last night and the State program that gives us this gem:

It must be the most frustrating thing in the world for Lowe, who wore his big-game red jacket to Cameron. If you look back at his stats when he was at State, they were never overwhelming. Yet he was a superb leader for his team who got his guys to be steady and when they were in a close game hell would freeze over before he made a critical mistake. He was not just a good leader, he was an excellent leader.

He sits there and he is bound to see the mistakes coming, and he’s surely told his guys what to do and not to do. And they are effective for most of the game. But at the end, when his knowledge and experience should be most valuable, they simply can’t do what he has tried to teach them. They rush, they dribble too far, they try to make passes that are a stretch, and slowly, his team crumbles under the pressure and fails.

You can think back to any number of reasonable point guards in the past (or contemporaries for that matter), and they don’t have to be great ones, just good ones, and imagine them at State. How much better would they be? What about Terrell McIntyre? Bobby Frasor? T.J. Bannister? Charlie Ward? Keith Gatlin? Larry Drew II? For that matter, Sidney Lowe?

Just one steady guard who knew what to do in the clutch would make this team a viable tournament team. One steady guard and one reliably intelligent small forward could put them deep into the tournament.

I can only imagine how maddening it must be for Sidney Lowe to watch his guards perform the way they do given the type of player he was. You can hear that utter frustration in his voice and read it in the quotes following each game.

There's a disconnect between Sidney and his guards that he's trying desperately to bridge, and that is this: How does a coach instill in his players something that came so easily to him? As coach Lowe has said time and again, the staff is stressing the importance of protecting the ball and staying aggressive while playing within yourself and your abilities. We admire the greats who innately possess this gift, like Tiger, MJ, Jack Nicklaus and others. Julius Hodge had it, and it turned a gangly 6'7" stick into a scoring, steals and assist machine.

Somehow, someway, Sidney, Monte Towe and Pete Strickland must find a way to unlock this in Mays, Degand and Gonzalez. It appears to be coach Lowe's greatest task since taking the State job two years ago.


  1. you can strike Gonzales off that list. He's not an ACC caliber guard. Degand and Mays had stretches of looking like they could get there, but just not yet... but, Duke can make even experienced guards look bad, so maybe these guys can take something away from this game and use it against less talented teams. I hope so, at least. BC would be a good place to start.

  2. Who wrote this article? Did Sid finally hire a PR firm?