Femme…I think we were all surprised to not see both Cam and Knapper on the floor last night. I believe Cam was on the floor for less than 2 minutes, and Knapper didn’t see the floor at all.
I can’t begin to speculate as to what’s in Sendek’s mind as it relates to a rotation, but I truly believe both Cam and Knapper will carve out a significant role this season.
We don’t have a son on the team, so your perspective is going to be quite different and understandably so. To Cam’s credit, I did see him greeting his teammates after every timeout was called and providing support. I realize that’s not always easy to do, especially as a Junior and expecting to see the floor. Cam has high character, and is a good teammate. I know we’ll all be rooting for him this season!!
Not to throw fuel on the fire but Cam’s time wasn’t even 2mins…~40sec and rounded to 1min in the box score.
'femme- I’ll remind you that Cam’s PT was inconsistent and modest the 1st half of last season but he came on strong in WCC play earned more PT and had a significant impact in several games. The same could happen this season…all is not lost, at least not yet.
I have some other thoughts on the matter including Knapper but don’t have time to elaborate this morning…maybe this evening.
This team has all the markings of a great “airport team”, i.e. if you saw this team at the airport, you would think they were a final four contender with the depth of size and athletic bodies on the roster. Last night was a mixed bag but think the team has potential to be much more than they displayed if they can cut down on turnovers and utilize their size more effectively. Thought Bal, Caffaro, Bryan, Marshall and Benjamin all played very well. This would be an interesting 5-man lineup to see get some extended run this season. Caffaro jumps out as a big upgrade over Bediako in terms of defensive versatility, passing ability and hands (ability to catch the ball). Not the scorer that Tilly is and will be, but knocked down free throws pretty well. Kind of perplexing to see O’Neill lead the team in minutes on a night where he not only went 0/7 from deep but didn’t attempt a single 2-point field goal or free throw. For a guy with his size, if the 3 ball isn’t falling you HAVE to try and get something going from within the arc or what are you doing out there. Also hope Ensminger is more of an offensive threat than what he showed last night. For the positives, Bal has some serious ability and could morph into a lock first team all WCC guy this year.
Overall, lots of positives. The team lacked Carlos Marshall for most of the second half and had O’Neil go 0-7 from three (he should make 2-3 of those per game). Tilly had a bad game and tried to force too much. Those three things could have sunk a less talented squad, but the game still felt pretty controlled throughout.
I like Ensminger getting run because I think his size and toughness presents real mismatch opportunities whenever he plays 1-3. But I’m not sure Ensminger at the 4 is the best use of him, even to play small and fast. That’s where you want Cam and O’Neil at the 4/5, I think. Both are fast enough to keep pace with the smaller guys (though really, Benjamin and Knapper are the only “small” guys on the roster).
Caffaro plays much more aggressively than we’ve seen from previous SCU bigs–perhaps the ACC mentality has carried with him. He will probably foul out sometimes but draw a ton of fouls himself. That strikes me as exactly the role he should occupy: make the other team scared to throw the ball inside, draw lots of fouls, and rely on the front court depth down the stretch.
I raised Cam to always take the moral high ground. Loving his continued enthusiasm on the bench.
I can understand your frustration for sure. Hoping this was just a one off, with Herb playing those that are new, trying to understand how they would play in a real game etc. He understands his players from last year.
That said, BballFemme, it is a small world - a colleague of mine out in Mass has a son who played AAU ball with Cam…I’ve seen a photo with some very high level players (NBA) lined up along with Cam when his son was shooting a FT. Clearly, Cam has competed at a high level.
Didn’t watch as much of the game as I’d like but some of my initial thoughts.
Marshall and Benjamin and Caffaro are absolute fighters. They bring a toughness on both ends.
Bal may be our next true nba prospect.
Obviously disappointed in lack of rotation - ie. Tongue - but I think plenty of games left to see the depth of this squad.
O’Neill is someone I’m not too worried about, I remember Justice having really slow starts to the season and he just has to shoot himself out of it.
Ensminger still intrigues me, have no idea what he will bring over the course of the season.
Lots of things stood out to me last night (some good, some bad). Rather than going over everything negative I’ll pick 2 things that were completely controlled by Sendek and made me just scratch my head.
Playing Cam 25 seconds is just nuts. He showed his value last season. Not that he needs to start or play 30 minutes, but he’s a contributor. Get him in the game. The team is better when Cam is involved. To have that known entity and not use him is just poor management. Hopeully last night was just a one off and from here on he’ll be more involved, but geez get a clue Herb.
Herb had Bal running point guard for a couple of multi-minute stretches and it was kind of a disaster. Bal is extremely athletic and I get the desire to have someone with his size, strength, and athleticism at the point, but again it looks like Herb trying to make someone into something he’s not (a la Vrankic and Braun as back to the basket guys when they were really oversized guards). I like Bal a lot and can’t wait to see his development this season (he’s rather explosive), but he’s miles away from running the point. Not strong enough handles, not a great passer, not yet able to see the floor and make make fast decisions on where to go next. Let him be what he is and don’t saddle him with becoming something he’s not. If Benjamin (who I think is a fantastic point) needs a breather, we’ve got 2 guys who are more than capable of filling that role. Basically, don’t ruin what you have in Bal… that kid has a chance to be something super special.
If we’re going to run a guard in the post, I’d rather have Bal than Ensminger taking “small ball” 4 minutes. I’m not proposing that as a good scheme overall, just a better scheme than having Bal at the Point and Ensminger at Forward. Bal at least seems like he has “position-less basketball” potential as a small, slashing 4. Ensminger is a jumbo-sized point guard with rebounding ability.
Thank you. Thank you. Making 20 character limit.
I have a different take: I think Herb knows what he has in Cam (lots of firsthand data points). Given that there are a LOT of new faces on the team, I’m guessing Coach wants to see how the newbies play together in different sets, different situations, etc. There is no substitute for REAL game playing time, so if you only have 40 minutes and 8+ new faces, why spend those precious few minutes to give PT to players like Cam and Knepper when you already know what they can and can’t do? Best to use minutes against inferior opponents to figure out how the new players operate individually and gel collectively. Femme, don’t overreact in a relatively meaningless game. Cam will get plenty of PT starting in late November and going forward, I feel confident in that.
Well. I WISH all you said was true. And yes, I am DEVASTATED for my son.
Yes, I am happy he is getting an education.
Sorry to hear that Femme. I hope Cam stays ready. Just like last year, there will be opportunities. I’m rooting for him. Play of the year last year was Cams back door cut and pass from Podz for a monster dunk vs USF.
Femme - very sorry to hear all of this and can only imagine the frustration. I will be praying for Cam and his continued success. Hopefully an opportunity will present itself to make an impact. And doubly hopefully, that opportunity arises without an injury to anyone else.
I know that Santa Clara was humbling experience athletically for both my wife and I, but it remains a deeply positive impact on my life.
That dunk was epic. lol. He will stay ready and continue to work hard and earn some minutes.
That’s good to hear (the positive impact) and thanks for sharing. He will keep grinding and hopefully earn the trust of the coaching staff that he is capable of doing the job.
'femme- I 2nd (and 3rd) 'nashty and LetsGo…sorry to hear Sendek view/attitude towards Cam.
Obviously I don’t see practices but it’s a bit baffling to me if Sendek and staff indeed don’t think Cam can help this team and contribute through a regular and consistent role. We can debate what that role should be and maybe how much PT is best for the team but IMO he needs and should be in the regular rotation in some fashion…and I don’t count his 40secs as being in the rotation.
The later part of last season, Cam proved what he can do and how he can benefit this team. Cam has a combination of size, strength and athleticism (and puts it to use) that our other posts can’t match. That doesn’t mean he’s necessarily better than Tilly or ONeil and should play more or start ahead of them but it does mean he can provide valuable minutes and bring some energy and effort that can be of great value to a 2nd unit…and again, it’s not speculation or a guess, it has already been proven.
That said, as I and others have mentioned, it is early. Like late last year, things could change and Cam could find himself with a significant role. Hopefully he keeps his head up and continues to work on his game.
And if Sendek doesn’t see the light then frankly Cam should transfer. I would hate to see him leave and I think it is an oversight and mistake by the staff to not take advantage of what he has to offer but I’d hate to see him waste another season on the end of the bench. I’ve always believed in Cam’s potential and said so early his freshmen season. I don’t know if the NBA is in his future or not, that is a high bar and there are ton of great players out there who never quite cracked the NBA. But if Cam loves the game, he can, without question, have a long pro career somewhere, pay the bills, and see parts of the world and enjoy experiences he otherwise wouldn’t have.
I agree 100% with your observations and sentiments. Honestly, that is all I really ask for him.
Yes can not understand that one