|by Mickey Plyler - Radio Host - Monday, January 5, 2015 9:28 AM||
Struggling in basketball is nothing new to Clemson. Having little hope for better in the future is new.
I don't know many who thought Clemson would upset North Carolina Saturday night in Littlejohn, but I also don't know many who thought the Tigers would be down 20 in the first half.
I have written a few negative blogs about this team and every time I am hopeful that I am wrong.
I really like Brad BrownellBrad Brownell
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I am puzzled by this team. Brownell built his program and I thought it was heading in the right direction. What I thought this program was about was playing hard on the defensive end, but I have not seen that this season.
I thought this program was about grinding out offensive possessions, but that has not happened this season. Instead we just get empty possessions.
I thought this program was about player development, but the only players who have improved since last season are Jaron Blossomgame and Josh Smith. I don't think it is a stretch to say Rod Hall, Demarcus Harrison, Austin Ajukwa, Jordan Roper and Landry Nnoko have not progressed since last season.
Clemson should be underdogs to North Carolina. I thought seven points was about right. However, I did not see this one being over in the first 15 minutes. I didn't see the Tigers shooting 28% from the field, getting out-rebounded 49 to 30 and having only eight bench points. But this is what we have seen for two months now.
This team is a shell of what I thought it would be. I really liked what Brownell had built here. I thought his program was on track. I really liked how tough we were and how hard we played.
However, I don't like this team. I don't see any fire. I don't see passion. I don't see a sense of urgency.
The worst is yet to come. The schedule is about to get more difficult. At this point the conference schedule looks daunting. This looks like a long winter on the hard wood.
I am not sure what can be done to save this season. Brownell needs to inject passion into his program. He needs to get his players to play harder. He needs to add energy back into his program.
Next season the Tigers will play their games in Greenville. This can't be an easy task. They will open a new building the following season and the fan base needs something to get excited about.
Brownell has a tough job. It has always been difficult and it isn't getting any easier. He has to find a way to make us proud of his team once again. His job is difficult but it’s not impossible. I have seen Clemson fans get passionate about basketball in the past. It can be done. Now he has to figure out how to do it again.
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