A successful exhibition in the books, and it truly was an exhibition. The game versus Barry was really just a glorified pick up game. The result was never really in doubt, nor did that really matter. This game was all about getting playing time for everyone, getting players on film, and seeing what still needs work, all while wetting our appetite with some competition. It was enough to leave everyone satisfied and optimistic about the season.
- It was nice to see the offensive tempo so high, and at the same time very strange after having seen it so inept for so long. With this faster pace, there were some mistakes that will need to be corrected, but the foundation seems to be there. The biggest thing to note was the absence of Collins, which isn't a real worry, just an observation. Perry certainly handled the ball well, and other players certainly increased their ball handling as well. This bodes well for an up-tempo offense and adds more dimensions rather than the ol' "Collins dribbling for 30 seconds"
- The depth and athleticism is there. Nearly everyone saw playing times (except Collins and Dre Clayton. With the Exception of Bo Zeigler and Jordan Omagbehin, everyone saw double digit playing time ranging from 14 to 26 minutes. This might be the best news for this program. No longer does Collins have to carry the team for 38 1/2 minutes a game, nor everyone hold their breath whenever he ends up on the floor on a dribble-drive. Replacement cogs sure are nice to have.
- All the new players seem to be having an impact early, particularly John Egbunu, Corey Allen Jr, and Chris Perry. The all played very well tonight. Hopefully they continue to improve, because our long term success this season may rest on these three.
- The two halves seemed to be night and day. Everything we did good in the 1st, wasn't as good in the 2nd. and vice versa. Particularly the shooting which seemed to be all over the place. Couldn't buy a 3 until late in the 2nd half, our FG shooting started off bad but improved, and out FT shooting started great and ended poorly down the stretch.
- The number of fouls was crazy, I haven't seen the whistle blown that many times since....well last Thursday's football game. Hopefully this is just because it was the first game of the season, and that it is not an indication of the type of calls we will be seeing this season. If so, these games will drag on and will hinder a back-and-forth type of game.
tl;dr.... BASKETBALL IS BACK! And we're gonna be good.