Ben Johnson is a Disaster

TwistingMyMelon

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Now....if next year's non-con schedule is as weak as this year's......I think we've got a problem. Because next year they absolutely should be contending for an at-large bid. Nobody thought we would be this year.

I can't imagine it would be.

Fran McCaffrey did something similar (although not quite as bad) in his 3rd season at Iowa. He had a fairly young team with a number of freshmen (including the starting point guard) and sophs playing significant roles so he had a pretty easy nonconference. They finished 9-9 in the conference but were leap frogged by Minnesota (Tubby's last team) and Illinois for the tournament and had to go to the NIT (where they finished as runner up). Likely, that nonconference schedule kept them out of the tournament. They had a more challenging nonconference the next season. They even pulled out of an underwhelming holiday tournament to get into a better one.

Like McCaffrey in his 3rd Iowa season, Ben in his 3rd season probably didn't expect the team to grow as quickly as it did. If he retains all or most of the critical performers from this team, he'll realize that he has to assume more risk in scheduling next season.
 

Gophers7633

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The San Francisco game was only 20 days into the season and only 10 days after losing to Missouri. Absolutely needed time to mesh and get some of the new guys comfortable. For example.....Hawkins in those first eight games of the season.....had ONE game (New Orleans) with an assist to turnover ratio over 2. One. And that's despite the super weak schedule that you love to whine about. In the 12 games since (starting with Nebraska).....he hasn't had a single game with an assist to turnover ratio at or below 2. That's a significant, game changing difference....especially from the point guard....who plays all but a handful of minutes each game.

I mean.....if you cannot see how much better the team has been since the start of the season.....you aren't trying at all. Which actually makes sense from one of the boards leading haters.

Yeah, we are better. Never said we weren't. You don't suddenly go from playing your worse game of the season and then play your best game of the season 10 days later. And then in our next game(in conference) barely get by a really bad Michigan team. All that crap is just an excuse for a bad OOC schedule.

And why am I one of the boards leading haters? Because I said SF wouldn't sniff the tournament and IU, MD and Missouri are bad teams? That seems to be where I've taken the most shit from everyone, and all those have kind of happened.
 

MUgopher32

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Could it be 3. No NCAA hopeful team wanted to schedule us because they didn't feel a win would help their NET and a loss would be a bad (Q3 or 4) loss.

Teams are almost always looking for home and homes. May not get who you want but they are there. Doesn’t have to be an MTE.

But that’s only part of the issue. It’s not the lack of “high major” is the lack of anything with a pulse.

We scheduled the absolute bottom of the barrel for like every cupcake. There’s an art to scheduling teams more in the St Thomas range(no it doesn’t have to be them specifically just an example). That alone helps metrics.

BYU especially and a handful of Big12 teams are good examples of teams that “cooked the books”. Their metrics looked great, but most of them didn’t challenge themselves much in non con. They just beat the ever living hell outta cupcakes, properly scheduled ones.
 

TwistingMyMelon

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One way or another, though, the thing this reasonably talented roster needed was some testing and seasoning, and they didn't get it. It was the exact wrong non-conference schedule they needed to optimize their development.

I'm surprised that a "Man of Science" would say that with such certainty. We'll never know the counter factual and we can't put the early season team in a laboratory and run simulations with a tougher nonconference schedule.

Now, if you said that this was exactly the kind of schedule that would make getting a post-season bid a real struggle, I would agree without reservations.
 

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Teams are almost always looking for home and homes. May not get who you want but they are there. Doesn’t have to be an MTE.

But that’s only part of the issue. It’s not the lack of “high major” is the lack of anything with a pulse.

We scheduled the absolute bottom of the barrel for like every cupcake. There’s an art to scheduling teams more in the St Thomas range(no it doesn’t have to be them specifically just an example). That alone helps metrics.

BYU especially and a handful of Big12 teams are good examples of teams that “cooked the books”. Their metrics looked great, but most of them didn’t challenge themselves much in non con. They just beat the ever living hell outta cupcakes, properly scheduled ones.
Couple things stand out to me about BYU's noncon schedule, as an illustration.
1) They have a home win over San Diego State; that one pretty much speaks for itself.
2) They annihilated teams like #135 Arizona State and #219 Fresno State on neutral courts, and #160 Wyoming and #184 Evansville at home (all those wins were by *at least* 26 points). None of those teams are good! But they're all better than Minnesota's best noncon win, #228 Maine (by "only" 18 points). BYU played 4 teams that are currently 250th or worse in the NET; Minnesota played 7.
 


MUgopher32

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Couple things stand out to me about BYU's noncon schedule, as an illustration.
1) They have a home win over San Diego State; that one pretty much speaks for itself.
2) They annihilated teams like #135 Arizona State and #219 Fresno State on neutral courts, and #160 Wyoming and #184 Evansville at home (all those wins were by *at least* 26 points). None of those teams are good! But they're all better than Minnesota's best noncon win, #228 Maine (by "only" 18 points). BYU played 4 teams that are currently 250th or worse in the NET; Minnesota played 7.

Yup. It’s all about strategically scheduling ccupcakes and laying the hammer.

Now of course it’s not flawless. You could schedule a preseason low major that’s Kenpom 220ish and they end up sucking and finishing 320. But still, the idea is more often than not. It works. So smartly putting 4 teams in the 220-280 range will work.

I don’t buy the “team needs to develop” bs. No team with any worthwhile goals benefits playing 5 games in a row vs sub 300ish teams
 

stocker08

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Yeah, we are better. Never said we weren't. You don't suddenly go from playing your worse game of the season and then play your best game of the season 10 days later. And then in our next game(in conference) barely get by a really bad Michigan team. All that crap is just an excuse for a bad OOC schedule.

And why am I one of the boards leading haters? Because I said SF wouldn't sniff the tournament and IU, MD and Missouri are bad teams? That seems to be where I've taken the most shit from everyone, and all those have kind of happened.

See.....I don't think that Nebraska at home was necessarily our "best game of the season". The team has had several impressive showings since then that would be in the discussion. Fact is that early on the season, the team wasn't playing very well and San Francisco was their first game away from home.

Stats don't lie. Hawkins is playing far and away better than those first few weeks of the season. One game with an assist to turnover ratio over 2 in the first eight games....and that was against a trash team. Hasn't been at or below 2 since then.....often going way above. Did he get way better over the course of a few weeks? Or did it take time for Hawkins and the rest of the team to get comfortable playing together? Certainly helps when your point guard knows where his teammates are going to be on the floor. It takes time.

Anyways, you can keep ignoring the obvious while being one of the boards biggest pessimists. Most people can see that this team is playing way better than at the beginning of the year.
 

Gophers7633

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See.....I don't think that Nebraska at home was necessarily our "best game of the season". The team has had several impressive showings since then that would be in the discussion. Fact is that early on the season, the team wasn't playing very well and San Francisco was their first game away from home.

Stats don't lie. Hawkins is playing far and away better than those first few weeks of the season. One game with an assist to turnover ratio over 2 in the first eight games....and that was against a trash team. Hasn't been at or below 2 since then.....often going way above. Did he get way better over the course of a few weeks? Or did it take time for Hawkins and the rest of the team to get comfortable playing together? Certainly helps when your point guard knows where his teammates are going to be on the floor. It takes time.

Anyways, you can keep ignoring the obvious while being one of the boards biggest pessimists. Most people can see that this team is playing way better than at the beginning of the year.

I'm genuinely curious what you think our best performance would be then? Not only is Nebraska our best win by every metric, we also won by double digits.

Yeah, we are playing better. Have you just ignored that when im saying it to you? I even said it in the response that you just quoted.

I'm not a pessimist. We are playing better. We've had some good performances this year, and some bad ones. We're sitting at 90 in the NET for a reason.
 

stocker08

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I don’t buy the “team needs to develop” bs. No team with any worthwhile goals benefits playing 5 games in a row vs sub 300ish teams

I agree. Would have liked to see a few better mid majors on the schedule. But there's little doubt that this isn't the same Gophers team that played Missouri earlier in the year. Stacking up wins against scrubs doesn't look good on a tournament resume.....but nobody thought the Gophers were a tournament team this year. Building confidence and chemistry is important.

Doesn't matter now. Johnson and Coyle will have no excuse for a non-con like this next year.

I'm genuinely curious what you think our best performance would be then? Not only is Nebraska our best win by every metric, we also won by double digits.

Yeah, we are playing better. Have you just ignored that when im saying it to you? I even said it in the response that you just quoted.

I'm not a pessimist. We are playing better. We've had some good performances this year, and some bad ones. We're sitting at 90 in the NET for a reason.

At Penn State.....Northwestern.....Maryland are all in that mix. Wisconsin at home was a good performance despite the loss. You're splitting hairs in a super lame attempt to discount the fact that the Gophers are playing quite a bit better than they were at the beginning of the year. When Hawkins is in the game.....this team looks far more competent. It wasn't that way early on in the season.
 



Gophers7633

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I agree. Would have liked to see a few better mid majors on the schedule. But there's little doubt that this isn't the same Gophers team that played Missouri earlier in the year. Stacking up wins against scrubs doesn't look good on a tournament resume.....but nobody thought the Gophers were a tournament team this year. Building confidence and chemistry is important.

Doesn't matter now. Johnson and Coyle will have no excuse for a non-con like this next year.



At Penn State.....Northwestern.....Maryland are all in that mix. Wisconsin at home was a good performance despite the loss. You're splitting hairs in a super lame attempt to discount the fact that the Gophers are playing quite a bit better than they were at the beginning of the year. When Hawkins is in the game.....this team looks far more competent. It wasn't that way early on in the season.

I'm actually not. I'm saying that we didn't need to mesh or gel, and that's bs because we played our worst and best game 10 days apart.

Please comprehend: we are playing better now than we were at the beginning of the year. I don't buy the bs that we magically got so much better in a span of 10 days that it makes up for the awful OOC schedule.
 
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stocker08

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I'm actually not. I'm saying that we didn't to mesh or gel, and that's bs because we played our worst and best game 10 days apart.

Please comprehend: we are playing better now than we were at the beginning of the year. I don't buy the bs that we magically got so much better in a span of 10 days that it makes up for the awful OOC schedule.

We played our worst games at the beginning of the season. As for your lame argument that Nebraska was our best game of the year.....in order to downplay the fact that the team has improved significantly from the beginning of the year until now.....Nebraska still hasn't won a Big Ten road game.

But keep ignoring that stats I have shared on Hawkins. Despite playing an incredibly weak non-con.....his stats were still nowhere near what they have been the past couple of months. That's despite playing Big Ten competition. Is that a coincidence? Maybe to someone with an agenda. But most people are able to admit that the team has improved a ton since he's become more comfortable.
 

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Being a person of science, I know that time can only go forward. Anyone who doesn't believe that this program can achieve that level of success again isn't a true fan.

The Big Ten forced the Gophers to vacate their 1997 conference title, as well as all regular season games dating to 1993–94. As a result, Minnesota's official record from 1993–94 to 1998–99 is 0–0.

That really is something to aspire to. Well done Mr. Science.
 

Gophers7633

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We played our worst games at the beginning of the season. As for your lame argument that Nebraska was our best game of the year.....in order to downplay the fact that the team has improved significantly from the beginning of the year until now.....Nebraska still hasn't won a Big Ten road game.

But keep ignoring that stats I have shared on Hawkins. Despite playing an incredibly weak non-con.....his stats were still nowhere near what they have been the past couple of months. That's despite playing Big Ten competition. Is that a coincidence? Maybe to someone with an agenda. But most people are able to admit that the team has improved a ton since he's become more comfortable.

Christ. I'm not ignoring your Hawkins information. I AGREE!! He's been better as has the team than at the beginning of the year. Are you able to comprehend that?

I'm saying, we didn't have to schedule, literally, the worst OOC schedule in the country because of needing to gel or mesh or whatever bs you want to say to defend the worst OOC schedule in the country. That's it. We could have challenged ourselves a little more. Outside of the last 10 minutes against Missouri and the SF game, we've been, what I would consider a top 70ish team. Those games are dragging our metrics down, and it's almost impossible to improve them since our OOC is so awful.
 



MUgopher32

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I agree. Would have liked to see a few better mid majors on the schedule. But there's little doubt that this isn't the same Gophers team that played Missouri earlier in the year. Stacking up wins against scrubs doesn't look good on a tournament resume.....but nobody thought the Gophers were a tournament team this year. Building confidence and chemistry is important.

Doesn't matter now. Johnson and Coyle will have no excuse for a non-con like this next year.
Completely agree that next year is the one where there is no excuse. My initial post today was of that thought, I just do think that if Ben does get credit for the roster being much improved he can be dinged a little for not believing in it early. For whatever reason it might be.

Because even if there were no expectations by fans and/or coyle and/or Ben. We still could have been a little more strategic.

The issue with that schedule is it gave no room for error for us to even make NIT this year. There are still multiple teams who imo we are better than in this league that we need to jump to get a auto invite. So Im hopeful he at least learns from this and finds ways to exploit the system in the future

And of course I think we all hope he gets involved in MTE's strictly from a fan enjoyment perspective.
 

stocker08

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Christ. I'm not ignoring your Hawkins information. I AGREE!! He's been better as has the team than at the beginning of the year. Are you able to comprehend that?

I'm saying, we didn't have to schedule, literally, the worst OOC schedule in the country because of needing to gel or mesh or whatever bs you want to say to defend the worst OOC schedule in the country. That's it. We could have challenged ourselves a little more. Outside of the last 10 minutes against Missouri and the SF game, we've been, what I would consider a top 70ish team. Those games are dragging our metrics down, and it's almost impossible to improve them since our OOC is so awful.

Never said that we had to schedule the "worst" OOC schedule in the country. I said that the Gophers needed time to mesh. That isn't an opinion. Hawkins is a perfect example of that.

b27P3ET.png


Yet you've continued to beat this drum trying to downplay the improvement over the course of the year. And then to top things off.....you get defensive when I rightly call you one of the board pessimists. Again.....facts don't lie on that point either.
 

Gophers7633

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Never said that we had to schedule the "worst" OOC schedule in the country. I said that the Gophers needed time to mesh. That isn't an opinion. Hawkins is a perfect example of that.

b27P3ET.png


Yet you've continued to beat this drum trying to downplay the improvement over the course of the year. And then to top things off.....you get defensive when I rightly call you one of the board pessimists. Again.....facts don't lie on that point either.

Wow. I guess you really can't comprehend what I've been saying.
 


Gophers7633

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Sorry that the opinion of one of the boards biggest pessimists doesn't hold a lot of weight. I've made my case using facts and you've ignored it. What's new?

Lmao. I've admitted we are improved, as is Hawkins. Do you understand that?

I am not a pessimist, but I'm also not a homer either. I'm allowed to be critical of the OOC schedule. It was awful. Given how much better we are(again admitting we are better) we should have challenged ourselves more. You are able to gel and mesh or whatever without playing the worst OOC schedule.

What else have I been pessimistic about. The only other arguments I've been in are with people who were giving me crap about saying Missouri, IU, and MD are bad teams and SF won't sniff the tournament. What exactly is pessimistic about that?
 


stocker08

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Lmao. I've admitted we are improved, as is Hawkins. Do you understand that?

I am not a pessimist, but I'm also not a homer either. I'm allowed to be critical of the OOC schedule. It was awful. Given how much better we are(again admitting we are better) we should have challenged ourselves more. You are able to gel and mesh or whatever without playing the worst OOC schedule.

What else have I been pessimistic about. The only other arguments I've been in are with people who were giving me crap about saying Missouri, IU, and MD are bad teams and SF won't sniff the tournament. What exactly is pessimistic about that?

I never argued that the non-con schedule was anywhere near good.

Remember.....you quoted ME and disagreed when I said that the team needed time to mesh, as proven by the Mizzou and San Francisco games. There's not much to be subjective about here. Hawkins has developed into quite possibly our most important player. At the beginning of the year....his assist numbers were quite a bit lower.....and his turnover rates higher. Quite a few people were rightly critical of his play. So what happened? I mean.....it doesn't take a great basketball mind to figure this riddle out.
 

Gophers7633

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I never argued that the non-con schedule was anywhere near good.

Remember.....you quoted ME and disagreed when I said that the team needed time to mesh, as proven by the Mizzou and San Francisco games. There's not much to be subjective about here. Hawkins has developed into quite possibly our most important player. At the beginning of the year....his assist numbers were quite a bit lower.....and his turnover rates higher. Quite a few people were rightly critical of his play. So what happened? I mean.....it doesn't take a great basketball mind to figure this riddle out.

No, but you excused it based on them needing to mesh or whatever, which is what I took exception with. It's whatever, the game is about to begin.
 

stocker08

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No, but you excused it based on them needing to mesh or whatever, which is what I took exception with. It's whatever, the game is about to begin.

Considering the way the Gophers looked at the start of the year....to where they were a month later....I don't have a problem with the non-conference schedule and I'm not going to lose any sleep over it.
 


bc2211

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Considering the way the Gophers looked at the start of the year....to where they were a month later....I don't have a problem with the non-conference schedule and I'm not going to lose any sleep over it.
I actually got more sleep, because I fell asleep during those games.
 




MNVCGUY

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Seriously?? Now we're obsessing over the non-conference schedule??

That's even worse than obsessing over Ben's first 2 years.
Gotta obsess about something. Coming into the season the assumption was we would be in the cellar of the conference and the coach would be fired. Now we are firmly in the middle of the pack so can't complain about the coach....the schedule is the obvious next target :)
 


MNVCGUY

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Not even remotely obsessing over it. Just disappointed is all because we have a team that is worthy of playing a better one.
Maybe, maybe not. Coming into this season we were at an extreme low point so putting together a challenging non conference schedule could have led to early season losses and a lack of confidence from the players.

It took them a while to hit their stride. Would love a rematch with Missouri and San Franscisco right now because THIS version of the Gophers probably wins both of those game.
 




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