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  1. #136
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    What do you think of Whalen and her coaching staff so far?

    She has good instincts. She seem to be a quick learner and a great teacher. She knows how maximize her players' potential and use their strengths to the team's advantage.

    I love the change in Defense over last year.
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  2. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by hungan1 View Post
    What do you think of Whalen and her coaching staff so far?

    She has good instincts. She seem to be a quick learner and a great teacher. She knows how maximize her players' potential and use their strengths to the team's advantage.

    I love the change in Defense over last year.
    I like what they are doing on both ends of the floor. She hasn't coached much but has been involved in 1000s of games. She is a consummate professional and the players really seem to like her. Doesn't get rattled, seems to understand the flow of the game and doesn't interrupt it. She'll only get better as she gains experience.

    Really though it comes down to recruiting. If she is an excellent recruiter the team will be excellent. If she is a bad recruiter the team will not be good

  3. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by UpAndUnder43 View Post
    I like what they are doing on both ends of the floor. She hasn't coached much but has been involved in 1000s of games. She is a consummate professional and the players really seem to like her. Doesn't get rattled, seems to understand the flow of the game and doesn't interrupt it. She'll only get better as she gains experience.

    Really though it comes down to recruiting. If she is an excellent recruiter the team will be excellent. If she is a bad recruiter the team will not be good
    This.
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  4. #139

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    Way too early to tell if Whalen will succeed as a coach. (I say this as someone who for years suggested that the Gophers hire her when her playing days were over.) I like what I've seen so far in the team's new interest in playing defense. I like the fact that they have re-incorporated post players into the offense. And I like the fact that this team seems to have some toughness to it. I don't like the flow of the offense so far. A lot of that may be due to personnel with the graduation of Wagner and the injury to Hubbard. But even when Hubbard returns, this team is going to have to get into a better flow offensively. I think Whalen is right when she says the offense is trailing the defense at this point in the season and hopefully that will correct itself. Whalen's success as a coach will probably not be determined by X's and O's. As UpAndUnder pointed it, it will probably be determined by how well she recruits. She has what appears to be a good group of recruits coming in next year, but she is going to have to do even better if she wants to take this program to national prominence. As much as I criticized the previous Gopher coach, she was able to recruit some impact players such as Pitts, Bello, and Hubbard. Although it's interesting to note that none of those players was from Minnesota and it seemed that Stollings hadn't established a lot of connections with Minnesota high school players. Time will tell for Whalen...I wouldn't yet anoint her the the Coaching Hall of Fame, but I also wouldn't bet against her.

  5. #140
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    She has yet to go through her first grind in the Big Ten. But, we need to take it one game at a time. Their next test is Boston College on the road. Then the rest of the non-conference and on to the Big Ten.

    If she does make it into the NCAA tournament, that will be a big step into attracting better recruits and hope to be better in succeeding years.

    The important thing is, she needs to establish her reputation among her peers by winning and winning more often. Make the NCAA Tournament every year. Recruiting won't come easy. She has a good trajectory career-wise and has great basketball savvy and knowledge. She has that quiet charisma and rapport with the young players. It could very well be that she will be on a fast track at attracting better recruits and subsequently be in the conversation of Final Four and National Championship appearances sooner. Gopherholer standard expectations.

    She has to earn it.

    The reality is, it will take some time. That is, making a national title aspiration a reality as I have said in Post #39.

    Worth repeating: In summary, here are the number of years it took the most prominent coaches in D1 Women's Basketball to win their first national championship:

    Muffet McGraw, Notre Dame - 14 years
    Gino Auriema, Connecticut - 10 years
    Pat Summit, Tennessee - 13 years
    Brenda Frese, Maryland - 4 years
    Kim Mulkey, Baylor - 5 years
    Dawn Staley, South Carolina - 9 years

    The younger coaches seem to get there faster.

    Lindsay Whalen brings a lot of hope and promise.
    Last edited by hungan1; 12-07-2018 at 12:19 AM.
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  6. #141

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    Thanks for posting this review of the time it took previous coaches to succeed at the highest level. It's a good reminder of the reality of building a program. Also, 5 of these 6 coaches are still with the same teams and have well established records .

  7. #142
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    Quote Originally Posted by GringaGopher View Post
    Thanks for posting this review of the time it took previous coaches to succeed at the highest level. It's a good reminder of the reality of building a program. Also, 5 of these 6 coaches are still with the same teams and have well established records .
    We hope that Lindsay Whalen stays with the Gophers for the long haul with the hope of building a dynasty some day.
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  8. #143
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    So, I think it boils down to how well this season goes for Whalen and the Gophers.

    The real questions is does her star power and what she has shown coaching her first translate into high level recruiting?

    If the Gophers can get Lauren Ware from North Dakota and some of the top players in Minnesota in addition to other nationally rated recruits, they can approach elite level basketball. I hope the Gophers have a real shot at Ware.

    We may be witness to the first Gophers National Champion in our lifetime. It is good to dream.
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  9. #144

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    Quote Originally Posted by hungan1 View Post
    The real questions is does her star power and what she has shown coaching her first translate into high level recruiting?
    Hasnít really translated yet. I believe Whalenís highest ranked prospect is Powell, and sheís coming more for Pitts than Whalen, so I hesitate to give Whalen credit for that one. It was most likely Stollings that gave her the initial offer, Stollings brought in Pitts, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by hungan1 View Post
    If the Gophers can get Lauren Ware from North Dakota and some of the top players in Minnesota in addition to other nationally rated recruits, they can approach elite level basketball. I hope the Gophers have a real shot at Ware.
    How high is Ware ranked?

    Now if Whalen can land Bueckers, that can really get the recruiting ball rolling. There could be some elite players that want to play on the same team as Bueckers. So assuming she loves Minnesota, Bueckers should think about what she could do for basketball in Minnesota.... sorta like the next chapter in what Whalen did for basketball in Minnesota. If youíre good enough, you donít have to go to UConn to reach all your goals. Look at Elena Della Donne. She bailed out on UConn and went to her home state Delaware. Didnít win a national championship for them but that program went higher than it has before. Della Donne did manage to reach #2 draft pick, MVP of the WNBA, and joining the national team despite her going to Delaware.

    South Carolina might be the better case. Hereís a club coached by an ex-WNBA PG. They werenít doing much until Aja Wilson turned down UConn to stay in her home state. A couple prominent players transferred to South Carolina to play with Wilson. They ended winning a championship, putting South Carolina on the womenís basketball map. Itís a down year for them this year, but I believe they just had the #1 recruiting class for 2019. I believe Wilson is getting a statue erected in her honor. Can you imagine a statue of Bueckers mingling with Mary Tyler Mooreís statue? Letís make this happen.
    Last edited by Shades; 12-22-2018 at 12:45 PM.

  10. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by EaganGopher22 View Post
    For what is worth, this is from Sid Hartman in his column today:

    Jottings
    • For the entire 2017-18 season, the Gophers women’s basketball team drew an announced 46,956 fans for 15 games at Williams Arena. So far this season, in 10 games, they have already drawn 57,977 fans.
    At first, I thought it was a typo error. It is the Whalen Effect.
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  11. #146

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    I think sheís Muff cabbage. She falls back behind me and Joe Mauer as great Minnesota athletes. From the 82 83 year

  12. #147

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    Defense this year is so much fun to watch. They are well coached on that end of the floor and have a defensive mindset that we haven't seen from this team in a couple years.

    Having said that, I don't see the same strengths on the other end of the floor. Offensively, they have struggled against any of the better teams on their schedule. The shots they do get are often contested jumpers at the end of the shot clock or prayers in the pain often bailed out by foul calls. The offense has zero rhythm to it, zero plan, and if Kenisha doesn't get going early, it all goes downhill quickly as she presses and so, too, do her teammates.

    Say what you will about the previous regime, but those teams scored points no matter who they were up against. Part of me wishes the past staff could coach O, the current staff could coach D, and we could all get to watch the results!

  13. #148

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    Part of the differences in defenses is that it takes more energy to play man-to-man, so that’s likely to take energy away from offensive side. Maybe this team in its current state is not deep enough to run man-to-man, but I’d sure hate to go back to a 2-3 zone. I wanna stick with this defense and just play smarter basically, that includes Whalen. Let’s get Perez involved. Tell Bell what she needs to do. She’s obviously not the highest IQ player. For instance, if the game situation is that the team needs to get a stop, don’t go for a steal leaving yourself vulnerable for that player getting by you for a drive to the lane.

  14. #149

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    To preface these comments, I suspected a year ago or so that the previous coach was gong to get fired, and then opined that Whalen should be enticed to take the job, then the team caught fire and made the tourney. I am pretty sure Mark Coyle was looking to hire Whalen all along and it was a great decision that will pay off for years,

    but,

    but it looks like they are not shooting as many threes as they used to and may not be pushing the tempo as much as they could with a talent like Bell on the roster.

    On a secondary note, Whalen is starting to look a little worn out, visibly heavier, and stressed as if the pressure of coaching is getting to her. It also possible that she is missing the physical aspect of playing basketball/ training for several hours every day, and losing the physical edge part can start to wear someone down in unexpected ways. Changes in activity are a hard thing to deal with, and this could be impacting the coach.

    I hope Whalen can make the physical and mental adjustment to her new reality., She needs to be herself and not some mini version of Cheryl Reeve, also.
    Last edited by oak_street1981; 01-10-2019 at 09:59 PM.

  15. #150
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    Welcome to the Big Ten. Whalen does appear worn out, and she needs to get into shape. She should go running with PJ Fleck in the morning. She will get into shape in no time.

    She was prophetic earlier that the true measure of where the Gophers team is at is the start of Big Ten play. The Gophers starters are showing signs of wearing down. They have a short bench and they don't have a reliable game changer outside shooter like Carlie Wagner.

    This is baptism by fire into coaching for Lindsay Whalen. I sure hope that they figure it out with what they have team-wise and hope that they make it into the NIT or NCAA this year. It may be time for her to give some minutes to the bench players especially ones who will be back next year.
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