The Huskies are about to embark upon a foreign tour which will take the team to Europe and Africa. Games will be played in Barcelona, Nice, Monaco, Paris before wrapping up in Aziz N’Diaye’s native country, Senegal. The last few weeks have been very busy at Montlake and this tour will certainly not aid in slowing things down. As the Huskies eye the date of their departure (August 25th), what will make a successful trip?
In a recent interview on KJR’s Mitch in the Morning program, Romar stated that this year’s team may settle into a more defined rotation earlier than in years past. I imagine, barring injury, the starting five are Gaddy, Wilcox, Suggs, Simmons and N’Diaye. They key for the Huskies, long term however, may well be that second rotation – however deep – off the bench. Romar’s shown in the past that minutes are there, but minutes must be earned. Though it’s early, we may see someone emerge from the bench that mandates minutes, even if they remain part of the second rotation.
New High Post Offense
On the heels of the Dawgs hiring former Western Washington University head coach, Brad Jackson, Romar announced the change from a motion offense to a high post offense. The high post offensive set is often attributed to John Wooden, who of course used it to great success at UCLA. Though there are varieties, the basic philosophy is to employ the strengths of each member on the floor, with proper spacing and flexibility in attacking the basket – oh, and a high post!
The reason Romar sited for the change, was that it better fit his personnel. It’s difficult to say what impact the Jackson hiring had on the decision, since he ran the high post successfully at WWU, but it does signal a shift in offensive philosophy, at least. Regardless of the origin and goal of the new offense, the overseas tour allows the Huskies to begin to draw upon its unique characteristics and gain a deeper level of familiarity with its intricacies. With guards who see the floor well, and athletic big men who can knock down perimeter shots – I’m thinking of Jarreau and Simmons – the new offensive set will likely provide the structure that, at times, seemed to lack last year.
This tour, due to NCAA rules, can only be taken every four years. In addition to being a life changing cultural experience and providing some additional exposure for the program, the European/African tour will mark the first step in what is shaping up to be a very intriguing season. Go Dawgs!