Mike Strange: In many ways, things seem same after Cunozo Martin's second season

Mike Strange
ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL
Tennessee coach Cuonzo Martin calls to his players during the first round of the NIT against Mercer on Wednesday at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Photo by Adam Brimer

ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL Tennessee coach Cuonzo Martin calls to his players during the first round of the NIT against Mercer on Wednesday at Thompson-Boling Arena.

The benchmark of a successful season in sports is that you’re either playing for championships or gaining ground on doing so.

Tennessee’s men didn’t contend for the SEC championship in 2012-13. They finished fifth in the regular season and went out in the conference tournament quarterfinals.

It’s hard to make a convincing case that they gained ground either.

However the Vols and coach Cuonzo Martin are judged in his second season, it is in the context of losing Jeronne Maymon to a season-ending knee injury. In short, the senior who was arguably Tennessee’s best player and indisputably its best leader didn’t play a second.

So in the big picture, maybe the whole season gets a pass. At least an asterisk.

Still, 33 games got completed, a dozen other players toiled for five months and another class of recruits got signed.

Is the state of the program better than it was a year ago? That’s a fair debate.

In many ways, things seem about the same.

Martin’s second team went 20-13, a slight improvement over his first team’s 19-15.

His second team finished 11-7 in an expanded SEC schedule, compared to 10-6 a year ago.

One improvement: there were no bad mid-major losses as was the case in 2011-12 with Austin Peay and College of Charleston.

There was Martin’s first win over Kentucky and another upset of Florida — if beating Florida is still considered an upset. On the down side, the Vols were swept by both Georgia and Ole Miss.

Both of Martin’s seasons have had similarly distasteful endings: too-early SEC tournament exits, snubs from the NCAA selection committee and uninspired NIT losses.

Player development, statistically at least, was a mixed bag. Some improved, others retreated.

Jordan McRae was clearly UT’s most improved player, from erratic role player as a sophomore to All-SEC as a junior. Josh Richardson made a solid jump in his second season.

After a slow start, Jarnell Stokes rallied to improve his scoring and rebounding averages. His shooting percentages remained remarkably close to his freshman season.

For whatever reasons, Trae Golden, Skylar McBee, Kenny Hall and Yemi Makanjuola experienced slight drops in production.

Nagging injuries no doubt affected Golden’s and McBee’s shooting touch. A four-guard rotation reduced the roles of big men Hall and Makanjuola.

None of Martin’s four recruits made significant statistical contributions, despite Armani Moore’s 16 starts.

What matters now is how much ground the Vols can gain in 2013-14.

Maymon’s return is a good place to start. In a best-case scenario, McRae and Stokes return for another year and Golden has an epiphany about consistent point-guard leadership.

Five-star signee Robert Hubbs is a great addition by Martin. However, six SEC teams are among Rivals.com’s top 30 recruiting classes for 2013 and Tennessee is not one of them.

Florida, Ole Miss and Missouri — the SEC’s three NCAA tournament teams —will be hard hit by graduation.

Other underclassmen will move on. If Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is one of them, a Georgia sweep is less a threat.

Kentucky is reloading in a big way, but we now know that’s not a sure thing.

Gaining ground is mandatory for the Vols in 2013-14. In that best-case scenario, competing for a championship should be the goal.

Mike Strange may be reached at strangem@knoxnews.com. Follow him on Twitter at Strangemike44.

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Comments » 49

JimmyJoe writes:

Your on the nose here Mike. This is a trend. Biggest problem is they can get up for big games...but not important games. And they can't win in tournaments. Tough to make much hay when you can't do that.

BillsBrother writes:

Ho Hum. No off court trouble...team is slightly above average. Vol BB is now a nice distraction between the end of football season and spring football practice.

johnlg00 writes:

Pretty fair summary of the current state of the program. If everybody comes in healthy and stays that way, the Vols should be pretty good next year. If anything, the conference might be even weaker next year with all of the top three teams having to reload. No team that finished in the upper half of the conference will have anywhere near the Vols' overall experience. The Vols themselves will have major losses after next season. The ideal scenario for Martin is to have a great run next season and a great recruiting class for 2014. If the Vols are great in 2013-4, the recruits should come; if the Vols stumble again, the pickings could be lean. In the latter case, Martin will be on EXTREMELY thin ice. The chances of the team doing really well this year seriously suffered without Maymon, so this season was just status-quo at best. It will be a positive if the guys not only get a year older but also become wiser in the ways of winning basketball. This period is what sailors call "slack water"; the tide is neither coming in nor going out. What they all do, players and coaches both, in the offseason will determine which way it flows in the future.

OwensboroVol writes:

As far as I know, and can observe, Basketball is a team sport. That said injuries, while unfortunate, are part of any college "TEAM" sport and to say that losing one player gives you a pass on a whole season is ridiculous. Our previous Coach (I won't mention his name because it gets some of our fans with jesus complexes, they think they are perfect and he should have been also, going looney tunes)won a game against the number 1 team in the country with practically his whole team out. He made something like 6 straight NCAA tournaments. When Coach Martin came I felt his first recruiting class was taking care of players he had offered while at his previous school and that at least some of them were not up to SEC standards. Our Fans, I previously mentioned, went berserk calling me everything except a fine southern gentlemen. Well Guys, this is more or less proving that the players he signed were not up to SEC standards. How many from those first 2 or 3 he signed are making significant contributions to this team? All of the Starters, this year, except for Jarnell Stokes were signed by our Previous Coach (no name see reason above). I do believe that Coach Martin is now up to speed on the type of players it takes to win at this level but those first signees are holding the team back. If they do not make the NCAA next year then I believe that We must start taking a serious look at the Basketball Program and what it is going to take to return it to the levels it was at while the Previous Coach (no name-see reason above) was here.

bobbyutvol writes:

Not the man for the job his style of play reminds me of the Ivy league Martin needs to go or we will never get any better jmo

UTKin1992 writes:

Get ready...more blah basketball to come.

Cunozo, and his goofy name, need, to go elsewhere.

FeelVol writes:

Team chemistry is always important and I think ours has a chance to be very good next year.Stokes will definitely benefit with the return of Maymon and I saw enough last year to say that Richardson,and Golden will play well with them as well,I'm wondering if McRae will find his place with these four and I hope he does.Its all about enjoying playing the game with one another.I like Moores' energy and toughness.Reese showed us that he could be a nice player as well.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

I wasn't excited to hear Cuonzo's named mentioned when the announcement was made after BP's dismissal..However, he's done an adequate job (not outstanding) in the meantime, but even if he totally loses control of the program, he's not going anywhere until his contract is up..Anyone that thinks UT will buyout another contract right now is crazy. He's in place unless Hart decides not to extend his current deal or renegotiates a totally different deal..Just the way it is.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

Come on man .....If you expect to be called journalists or writers- spelling a coach's name correctly should be job 1.

JimmyJoe writes:

We will learn a lot about Dave Hart from this offseason... The very smart move on his part is to publicly brag on CCM..which he has done... but offer no raise or contract extension... Which he hasn't done to this point. We are stuck with our coach at least thru this next season... But if it ends like all of the other seasons that CCM has coached... With a close but no cigar.... Then it will be much easier to make a move...and hey maybe he leaves on his own because he doesn't feel he is greeting in love money wise. I think he is the second lowest paid coach in the conference.

pingkr62 writes:

I say give CCM another two seasons, and time to sign more players. If things improve, then keep him, if not.......

BigOrangeSmoker writes:

Martin aint no SEC coach,ive been saying that ever since he was hired,heck a NIT invite was a good thing for martin before he came here...he cant recuit...he cant coach its time to move on but hart will probably give him yet another year.But wait oh wait Pearl can coach after next season...Bring Bruce Back,he knows how to Git R Done!

jt45 writes:

Its hard to criticize coach Martin after some of the great wins this group had, on the other hand it made some of those early and late season losses that much harder to accept and post season play was a complete bust. Right now im off the fence and disappointed with his first two seasons. However Im optimistic that next season will turn out well and will continue to support CCM for at least another season.

GrandCanyonVol writes:

When I was growing up and watching UT play BB, I could guess pretty good who they would beat, and who they would lose to. But not anymore. The team is very inconsistent from game to game. They seem to play hard one game and then not show up the next game. Why?? Why would you not come out every game and be prepared and play hard for everyone who is counting on you. If you are going to play the game, then play the game. Maybe the coach is not preparing you the way he should. I will be honest with you, I like the coach a whole lot. I think he has something good about him. He is not a weasel like the Kentucky coach, and some of these other coaches. I think he actually cares about his players and what happens to them. I think he cares about the fans and what they think. There is something good there. I hope his players will play hard for him next year. I think they will. I may be wrong, but I don't think I am. Time will tell!!!!!!!!!

rb4346 writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

As far as I know, and can observe, Basketball is a team sport. That said injuries, while unfortunate, are part of any college "TEAM" sport and to say that losing one player gives you a pass on a whole season is ridiculous. Our previous Coach (I won't mention his name because it gets some of our fans with jesus complexes, they think they are perfect and he should have been also, going looney tunes)won a game against the number 1 team in the country with practically his whole team out. He made something like 6 straight NCAA tournaments. When Coach Martin came I felt his first recruiting class was taking care of players he had offered while at his previous school and that at least some of them were not up to SEC standards. Our Fans, I previously mentioned, went berserk calling me everything except a fine southern gentlemen. Well Guys, this is more or less proving that the players he signed were not up to SEC standards. How many from those first 2 or 3 he signed are making significant contributions to this team? All of the Starters, this year, except for Jarnell Stokes were signed by our Previous Coach (no name see reason above). I do believe that Coach Martin is now up to speed on the type of players it takes to win at this level but those first signees are holding the team back. If they do not make the NCAA next year then I believe that We must start taking a serious look at the Basketball Program and what it is going to take to return it to the levels it was at while the Previous Coach (no name-see reason above) was here.

Great post. Let he who has not made a mistake or 2 in their life throw the first stone or post. I say bring back CBP, now let the stones or posts throwing begin. GBO

pcorange writes:

I supported CCM throughout this season. However, I was really disappointed in him focusing his energy toward blasting the NCAA in the media for not selecting Tennessee to the big dance. What he should have done is to have kept his mouth shut and got his team ready to make a statement on the floor in the NIT. So now he has put a big spotlight on Tennessee as the team that cried about being "dissed" by the NCAA, then got their butts spanked by Mercer at home in the first round of the NIT. I am definitely NOT in favor of firing him this year, but I hope he does a better job coaching next year.

laraccoon writes:

in response to rb4346:

Great post. Let he who has not made a mistake or 2 in their life throw the first stone or post. I say bring back CBP, now let the stones or posts throwing begin. GBO

bring Pearl back next year with another year of his show cause penalty still hanging over his head ? geez dude your dumber then i tell people !

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to laraccoon:

bring Pearl back next year with another year of his show cause penalty still hanging over his head ? geez dude your dumber then i tell people !

Especially after UT just got another solid PG that de-committed from Vandy today..

CoverOrange writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

Especially after UT just got another solid PG that de-committed from Vandy today..

Saw that on the twit feeds...wondering who is going to be let go to make room. Wondering if Maymon is really going to be back.

peerless1 writes:

hey editor-spell his name right, lol(Mike Strange: In many ways, things seem same after Cunozo Martin's second season) 11:39pm 3-23-13.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to CoverOrange:

Saw that on the twit feeds...wondering who is going to be let go to make room. Wondering if Maymon is really going to be back.

McRae or Stokes will test the waters of the NBA..

Vols4Ever writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

McRae or Stokes will test the waters of the NBA..

McRae might go because doubt his stock will be higher.

Key is Maymon. Severity and debilitation of his injury is mystery. If Jarnell thinks he can't come back full force, he also might leave.

If all are back with Hobbs, high times on Rocky Top.

Giverny writes:

next

claiborneh writes:

What solid program's season hinges on one single player?
Martin so far lacks the charisma, energy, smarts, and recruiting prowness that Pearl. Pearl never made a final four in his limited seasons. Why on earth would anyone expect Martin to do as well, much less any better. The program is not trending up.

slambob2#228938 writes:

CCM is a class act and has brought a lot of great wins to Knoxville. He picked up a program that was vaporized in it's last game under Pearl and was definitely tourney-worthy this year.

I'm proud to have Coach Martin representing the Orange. And I'm excited about seeing Stokes/Maymon/Hubbs next year. It should be a lot of fun.

bigdisbig writes:

UT men's sports will never raise to meet the cream of the SEC until the clowns in charge are willing to spend the money it takes to bring in coaches who know how to compete. You get what you pay for. Cuonzo kept complaining about the NCAA snub instead of preparing his guys for the NIT. His team is a reflection of his attitude and coaching ability plain and simple.

manoffewwords writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

As far as I know, and can observe, Basketball is a team sport. That said injuries, while unfortunate, are part of any college "TEAM" sport and to say that losing one player gives you a pass on a whole season is ridiculous. Our previous Coach (I won't mention his name because it gets some of our fans with jesus complexes, they think they are perfect and he should have been also, going looney tunes)won a game against the number 1 team in the country with practically his whole team out. He made something like 6 straight NCAA tournaments. When Coach Martin came I felt his first recruiting class was taking care of players he had offered while at his previous school and that at least some of them were not up to SEC standards. Our Fans, I previously mentioned, went berserk calling me everything except a fine southern gentlemen. Well Guys, this is more or less proving that the players he signed were not up to SEC standards. How many from those first 2 or 3 he signed are making significant contributions to this team? All of the Starters, this year, except for Jarnell Stokes were signed by our Previous Coach (no name see reason above). I do believe that Coach Martin is now up to speed on the type of players it takes to win at this level but those first signees are holding the team back. If they do not make the NCAA next year then I believe that We must start taking a serious look at the Basketball Program and what it is going to take to return it to the levels it was at while the Previous Coach (no name-see reason above) was here.

Agree. Your reference to Jesus complexes well
Jesus the reason for forgiveness It's time to forgive and Bring Bruce Back !

DwayneElizondoMountainDewHerbertCamacho writes:

Would a healthy Maymon have started for any other top 25 program in the country? Top 10? Is Martin getting the job done if he loses a single top 25 player (I think the answer to that one is definitely "yes") and then the entire season implodes?

It's basketball so I think Martin gets another two years, but I'm officially off the Cuonzo Martin bandwagon. I like the guy, but I just don't see UT advancing past a mediocre SEC team that occasionally pulls off the odd upset.

Hope I'm wrong.

SevenT writes:

Martin would be wise to take a page from Pearl and start cheating like mad to get players to Tennessee. Otherwise he will be fired.

Funny thing is the only thing worse than Tennessee Basketball these days is UT Football.

Just Saying

crmcm44#321757 writes:

Inability to make scheme changes during the game by Coach Martin defines him as an also ran. May be a great person but not why he's getting the big bucks.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

in response to SevenT:

Martin would be wise to take a page from Pearl and start cheating like mad to get players to Tennessee. Otherwise he will be fired.

Funny thing is the only thing worse than Tennessee Basketball these days is UT Football.

Just Saying

You referring to the team that beat Wichita St, Florida, Missouri, and had Ky by 38 until subs were put in? just sayin

TheFuj writes:

Seems to be going the same road as Dooley. Lot of talk, but not any progress. First year no big wins and lost 2nd round of the little tournament. Dooley had no big wins and lost in a little bowl. Second year, had 1 big win, or maybe two (MO,FL both at home), and lost in FIRST round of little tournament. Dooley had no big wins and did not make a bowl.
Now, the third year we expect to make the big tournament and would to contend for SEC championship. No reason not to. Return experienced players and now two years of his recruits.
Watching these games last two days. You definitely see the Vols did not belong in the big dance. Free throw shooting to turnovers and we probably would have been blown out.
Would love to see Martin more intense in the games. Show some emotion and fire. Work the officials. It is part of the game.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

in response to TheFuj:

Seems to be going the same road as Dooley. Lot of talk, but not any progress. First year no big wins and lost 2nd round of the little tournament. Dooley had no big wins and lost in a little bowl. Second year, had 1 big win, or maybe two (MO,FL both at home), and lost in FIRST round of little tournament. Dooley had no big wins and did not make a bowl.
Now, the third year we expect to make the big tournament and would to contend for SEC championship. No reason not to. Return experienced players and now two years of his recruits.
Watching these games last two days. You definitely see the Vols did not belong in the big dance. Free throw shooting to turnovers and we probably would have been blown out.
Would love to see Martin more intense in the games. Show some emotion and fire. Work the officials. It is part of the game.

(1)You left out a Wichita St win (which is proving to be a really good win).(2) which team on the schedule did UT need to beat to qualify as a big win for you? (3)Why would you think UT would get "blown out" since they were in 95% of games this yr? (4) Did you ever see John Wooden coach? I've talked with him about his famous Pyramid of Success-and how he used it in coaching. He said he did all of his coaching in practice and it was up to his players to perform in games. He never was"intense" and stalked the sideline during the games showing "emotion". There's obviously different ways to be successful.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to SevenT:

Martin would be wise to take a page from Pearl and start cheating like mad to get players to Tennessee. Otherwise he will be fired.

Funny thing is the only thing worse than Tennessee Basketball these days is UT Football.

Just Saying

No, UT beat tucky in both sports rather easily..I guess that makes tucky the worst in both sports, AH!

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to Vols4Ever:

McRae might go because doubt his stock will be higher.

Key is Maymon. Severity and debilitation of his injury is mystery. If Jarnell thinks he can't come back full force, he also might leave.

If all are back with Hobbs, high times on Rocky Top.

Well, with Thompson signing at the last minute it's almost certain one or two will be leaving. I know Stokes isn't ready, but McRae was really starting to get his game into high gear. I would hate to see any of them leave especially with Landry and Thompson (true PG's) coming in next season.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER:

(1)You left out a Wichita St win (which is proving to be a really good win).(2) which team on the schedule did UT need to beat to qualify as a big win for you? (3)Why would you think UT would get "blown out" since they were in 95% of games this yr? (4) Did you ever see John Wooden coach? I've talked with him about his famous Pyramid of Success-and how he used it in coaching. He said he did all of his coaching in practice and it was up to his players to perform in games. He never was"intense" and stalked the sideline during the games showing "emotion". There's obviously different ways to be successful.

Excellent point. I never had the privilege of meeting Coach Wooden, but his book, "Practical Modern Basketball" was my favorite basketball book of all time. As I said on an earlier thread, I would like for CCM to read that book. If he has already done so, he should read it again. All the negativity on the board lately reflects lots more frustration than it does much real knowledge of how basketball teams work. I definitely see some areas in which CCM must improve, just as I see areas in which each of the players must improve. There are also areas in which some of the posters need to improve if their arguments are to be taken seriously.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

Well, with Thompson signing at the last minute it's almost certain one or two will be leaving. I know Stokes isn't ready, but McRae was really starting to get his game into high gear. I would hate to see any of them leave especially with Landry and Thompson (true PG's) coming in next season.

I would worry a lot more about McRae leaving after this season if he had torn it up right to the end. The way he was playing during most of the late-season streak, he showed NBA quality, but once opponents started concentrating on him, he seemed to get frustrated and it showed. He has made great strides in developing a winning demeanor on the court, but he still has a good way to go on that. I don't know anything about his family situation or how that might affect his decision, but I don't think he would be drafted as high or make as much money over his whole career as he might if he could put together a whole season when he played at his full potential. With Hubbs coming in, I guess the Vols could survive or even thrive without McRae, but I hope they don't have to try.

As for the numbers on the squad, it may well be that Landry doesn't come here at all, now that Thompson is. It would appear that Thompson has more upside potential. He seems at least to have a body type more like the rest of the squad than Landry does.

cheetah-vol writes:

in response to johnlg00:

I would worry a lot more about McRae leaving after this season if he had torn it up right to the end. The way he was playing during most of the late-season streak, he showed NBA quality, but once opponents started concentrating on him, he seemed to get frustrated and it showed. He has made great strides in developing a winning demeanor on the court, but he still has a good way to go on that. I don't know anything about his family situation or how that might affect his decision, but I don't think he would be drafted as high or make as much money over his whole career as he might if he could put together a whole season when he played at his full potential. With Hubbs coming in, I guess the Vols could survive or even thrive without McRae, but I hope they don't have to try.

As for the numbers on the squad, it may well be that Landry doesn't come here at all, now that Thompson is. It would appear that Thompson has more upside potential. He seems at least to have a body type more like the rest of the squad than Landry does.

Hope Landry does come, because it would be great to have two quality PGs fighting it out for the position rather than having to put all of our eggs in one basket (sorry, it IS almost Easter) with just one.

sly_stone99#434111 writes:

Wow, not a lotta love for a Coach, although has yet to get his team into the big dance, has had a winning record his first two seasons. Not a lotta love in here.

volforeverandever writes:

in response to SevenT:

Martin would be wise to take a page from Pearl and start cheating like mad to get players to Tennessee. Otherwise he will be fired.

Funny thing is the only thing worse than Tennessee Basketball these days is UT Football.

Just Saying

At least our team improved slightly ky. went down like a rock.Things must be pretty sad in ky.getting their butts kicked by the terrible Vol football and basketball teams then watching Pitino bring Louisville to rupp and put on a clinic on their home court.Rick then says in a post game interview it was like playing at home.Hillarious,Louisville has to come to rupp so the people can see winning basketball.

alfrizzle097 writes:

in response to sly_stone99#434111:

Wow, not a lotta love for a Coach, although has yet to get his team into the big dance, has had a winning record his first two seasons. Not a lotta love in here.

winning record means less in college basketball than it does football. 20 wins is the standard for a decent season unless you just play a murderous schedule.

By that standard they did ok this year. just... the way they lost some leaves a bad taste. they were so erratic

TheFuj writes:

in response to ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER:

(1)You left out a Wichita St win (which is proving to be a really good win).(2) which team on the schedule did UT need to beat to qualify as a big win for you? (3)Why would you think UT would get "blown out" since they were in 95% of games this yr? (4) Did you ever see John Wooden coach? I've talked with him about his famous Pyramid of Success-and how he used it in coaching. He said he did all of his coaching in practice and it was up to his players to perform in games. He never was"intense" and stalked the sideline during the games showing "emotion". There's obviously different ways to be successful.

Yes, did leave out WS win.
I would say the Georgetown game, as well as Alabama in the SEC tournament with their backs to the wall, and beating Ole Miss after they destroyed us at home, and could add Ok St, and or Virginia.
I think the committee people were saying we really had no good on the road or neutral site wins.
Yes, I did see Wooden coach. Different time and much different game now. He was a great coach, but now the game is so much more physical, and there has to be intensity or just loaded with great 3 pt shooters.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to cheetah-vol:

Hope Landry does come, because it would be great to have two quality PGs fighting it out for the position rather than having to put all of our eggs in one basket (sorry, it IS almost Easter) with just one.

It might be an issue with scholarship numbers if both come. Of course, as I and others have said, it would certainly not be the first time if some current member of the squad were encouraged to seek other opportunities elsewhere. I certainly can't argue with the idea of having two more prospective PGs to develop for the future, and either Landry or Thompson might be more viable prospects than Lopez from what I have seen of him so far. However, since he is a walk-on, it wouldn't have any effect on the scholarship numbers either way.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to TheFuj:

Yes, did leave out WS win.
I would say the Georgetown game, as well as Alabama in the SEC tournament with their backs to the wall, and beating Ole Miss after they destroyed us at home, and could add Ok St, and or Virginia.
I think the committee people were saying we really had no good on the road or neutral site wins.
Yes, I did see Wooden coach. Different time and much different game now. He was a great coach, but now the game is so much more physical, and there has to be intensity or just loaded with great 3 pt shooters.

Yes, but "intensity" is not necessarily the same thing as "yelling and stomping". I would agree that there may be times when a coach might have to visibly climb all over a ref or a player, but those should be rare, IMHO. If a coach does that all the time, both refs and players will eventually tune him out. There is something to be said for a coach keeping his cool when things aren't going well, just as you would hope the players would keep theirs. There are many different types of demeanor for a successful coach, and not every type works for every particular team. I would welcome a LITTLE more outward display of emotion from Martin when necessary, but that is just not who he is and trying too hard to go that way would look insincere, IMHO.

TheFuj writes:

in response to johnlg00:

Yes, but "intensity" is not necessarily the same thing as "yelling and stomping". I would agree that there may be times when a coach might have to visibly climb all over a ref or a player, but those should be rare, IMHO. If a coach does that all the time, both refs and players will eventually tune him out. There is something to be said for a coach keeping his cool when things aren't going well, just as you would hope the players would keep theirs. There are many different types of demeanor for a successful coach, and not every type works for every particular team. I would welcome a LITTLE more outward display of emotion from Martin when necessary, but that is just not who he is and trying too hard to go that way would look insincere, IMHO.

Agree. Also, different players respond to coaches differently.
Like Coach K. He shows his emotion and works the officials constantly. Also, he has a "good" reputation so he gets the calls more times than not. In our own world, take Pat Summitt. She knew how to show her displeasure with her own players and officials and usually got positive results
Next year is a big year for CM, just like year 3 was for Dooley.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to TheFuj:

Agree. Also, different players respond to coaches differently.
Like Coach K. He shows his emotion and works the officials constantly. Also, he has a "good" reputation so he gets the calls more times than not. In our own world, take Pat Summitt. She knew how to show her displeasure with her own players and officials and usually got positive results
Next year is a big year for CM, just like year 3 was for Dooley.

Good post; agree with all. I think the consensus of this board is that Martin needs to take it up a notch in strategy, tactics, and player development in this offseason and the Vols need to finish up really strong next year if he expects to be around after that. I don't expect--would in fact be somewhat alarmed by--a complete personality transplant, but a LITTLE dose of Bob Knight/Coach K/Pat Summit feistiness would do him good.

OwensboroVol writes:

in response to Vols4Ever:

McRae might go because doubt his stock will be higher.

Key is Maymon. Severity and debilitation of his injury is mystery. If Jarnell thinks he can't come back full force, he also might leave.

If all are back with Hobbs, high times on Rocky Top.

I agree 100%. Maymon makes Stokes a much better player. One thing I was watching during the Alabama and Mercer losses is that Stokes is terrible at getting out of position on defense or He is flat being coached wrong. He needs to stay close to the basket. The men he guards are not going to throw up a bunch of 3 point shots and if they do they are not going to make them. Time after time he was out beyond the free throw line while the Alabama and Mercer players were getting offensive rebounds and scoring. I think with maymon's talent and leadership on the floor Stokes will be a lot more effective. If Bruce was to come back I don't believe that as good as Stokes is that he could play Bruce's style. I don't believe he could get up and down the court that fast.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

I agree 100%. Maymon makes Stokes a much better player. One thing I was watching during the Alabama and Mercer losses is that Stokes is terrible at getting out of position on defense or He is flat being coached wrong. He needs to stay close to the basket. The men he guards are not going to throw up a bunch of 3 point shots and if they do they are not going to make them. Time after time he was out beyond the free throw line while the Alabama and Mercer players were getting offensive rebounds and scoring. I think with maymon's talent and leadership on the floor Stokes will be a lot more effective. If Bruce was to come back I don't believe that as good as Stokes is that he could play Bruce's style. I don't believe he could get up and down the court that fast.

Where Stokes gets in the most trouble on defense is when the opponents run the high ball screen with their big man setting the screen at the foul line or above. If Stokes isn't there, the opponent's ball-handler only has to contend with the UT guard defending him with his own big man setting a screen that he can work either way, for the outside shot if the defender goes under the screen or for the drive if he goes over it. In the latter case, there is a potential two-on-one down the lane at Stokes. If another Vol defender drops down to help, a potential shooter is open on the wing. That action is very hard to defend out of a man-to-man defense as long as the ball-handler is clever and quick enough to work it.

I think it will help to have Maymon on the floor with Stokes. Then any time the opponent's big man sets set the high screen, either Stokes or Maymon can likely stay under the basket while the other goes out to defend that action. Of course, if the opponents go small, the way the Vols did later in the season, that means Maymon may have to guard a quicker man on the perimeter.

In THAT case, Maymon may WANT to get the experience of covering a smaller man, since he will almost inevitably have to be a small forward in the pros, but he may not then be available to defend down low and rebound. To avoid having to play two big men themselves, the opponents may play zone all the time. That has killed the Vols in the past, but with the potential of having Golden, McRae, and Hubbs on the floor at the same time, it may not be as effective.

voldoll73 writes:

in response to UTKin1992:

Get ready...more blah basketball to come.

Cunozo, and his goofy name, need, to go elsewhere.

UTKin:
Is the best you can do is to go after someone for the name his parents gave him at birth?? How CHILDISH can you be??

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