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3/05/2021 1:20 pm  #1


Who do we want back?

Let's be honest and not try to spare feelings.

Last edited by duq81 (3/05/2021 3:27 pm)

 

3/05/2021 1:33 pm  #2


Re: Who do we want back?

I think TDM, Hughes, and Weathers would be great to have back. Not really the big guys fault that we cannot shoot from the outside. Chad baker puts more muscle on and he’s going to be hard to defend. Acuff looks better every game he plays along with Harris and Okani. I am not too sure about Maceo and Rotroff they might need to explore different options neither good enough to play D1 hoops. Most importantly we need a deadly shooter whether that be a grad transfer or true freshman. Also, wouldn’t mind adding a real tall big for rebounds and put backs.

 

3/05/2021 3:31 pm  #3


Re: Who do we want back?

Dukes412 wrote:

I think TDM, Hughes, and Weathers would be great to have back. Not really the big guys fault that we cannot shoot from the outside. Chad baker puts more muscle on and he’s going to be hard to defend. Acuff looks better every game he plays along with Harris and Okani. I am not too sure about Maceo and Rotroff they might need to explore different options neither good enough to play D1 hoops. Most importantly we need a deadly shooter whether that be a grad transfer or true freshman. Also, wouldn’t mind adding a real tall big for rebounds and put backs.

Obviously Hughes, and Weathers, but not TDM. We need a better option than him. Maceo has been a huge disappointment. I don't know what to do there.

     Thread Starter
 

3/05/2021 3:35 pm  #4


Re: Who do we want back?

I'd take the original 3 back. They missed half a season and last years post season. Not sure how that would play out with future recruiting and some of the other guys on this years team. They came here and are the main reason (along with KD) that we have some winning basketball finally.

 

3/05/2021 3:57 pm  #5


Re: Who do we want back?

I want to be respectful, but I have to be honest. Dambrot has brought this team from a bottom feeder to a middle of the pack team in four years.  No question this year is a mulligan year, however, when you look at the talent brought in by other teams it is hard to see the Dukes moving up with what we have even if Hughes and Weathers return.  My honest opinion is that Dambrot has just not recruited good enough players. In four years he has brought only two players (Weathers and Hughes) who had stayed with the team capable of competing with the best players in the league at their position (I call them difference makers). His recruiting record over the last four years has been below average.  Again just trying to keep it honest.  This year he has brought in four decent freshmen, and clearly Baker has exhibited the most upside. The the others may develop into good to very good team players, but at this point I don't see any of them (except for Baker) being real difference makers to get us to the top of the league. 

Bottom line is that the next recruiting class needs to be exceptional, not average, if we are going to compete for a league championship,  My hope is that Weathers and Hughes return, and that Dambrot hits the transfer market hard to rebuild with quality players (especially PG, SG and PF/C) and give the for freshman time to hopefully mature into difference makers. 

 

 

3/05/2021 4:09 pm  #6


Re: Who do we want back?

This is a great topic and CLK and Dennis 91 have commented on the other thread about next year's roster as well, but let's take it away here fellas.  As I stated, the biggest void and thus the most important senior to return would be Hughes.  Dre can blossom if he doesn't have to sit behind Marcus 25 to 30 min a game, but I can live with Marcus coming back.  TDM's positives don't outweigh his negatives enough unless you want to stay in the middle of the pack.  Remember KD stated, "I am here to win championships", well look collectively at the talent level of the Bonnies starting 5 and who we put out there - even if SC and Norman don't leave - and they have more talent, period.  Talent level is the key and we need to recruit more talent or hopefully get it through the portal as many have mentioned.  KD said the facilities will help with that well we'll see.  Also remember what I said about shaking up the coaching staff a bit to get some new blood and recruiting pipelines open.  That is how UMass got Tre Mitchell and another of their better players and why not.  All you need is one highly connected AAU coach who can bring a couple highly rated players with him.  Anyway, I digress so back to the question of who we want to come back I would say that other than what I've said about the seniors the only 4 guys that I think are crucial are Baker, Okani, Acuff and Dre.  Maceo is a conundrum and I don't know if he can ever get over the hump emotionally/psychologically, but I would give him the summer, a regular schedule and 1 more year - unless some more talented wing player/shooter becomes available.  Kelly is serviceable and has shown enough promise to be a good off the bench contributor who just needs to play more given his prior injury.  Other than those two I want to see what HIma is all about and that is it.  You came here to "win championships" KD, well the other guys on the roster are not even close talent wise to climb that mountain.  Again, the critical guys coming back would be the 4 freshman I mentioned and MHughes.  As Professor 1099 says....time will tell.  .   

 

3/05/2021 4:13 pm  #7


Re: Who do we want back?

CLK, I just read your post after I finished mine and once again you are just providing an honest assessment of our talent level and recruiting to date and you hit the nail on the head, no question.  We'll see what KD does about the talent gap between where we are and "championship level"................

 

3/05/2021 4:17 pm  #8


Re: Who do we want back?

CLK wrote:

I want to be respectful, but I have to be honest. Dambrot has brought this team from a bottom feeder to a middle of the pack team in four years.  No question this year is a mulligan year, however, when you look at the talent brought in by other teams it is hard to see the Dukes moving up with what we have even if Hughes and Weathers return.  My honest opinion is that Dambrot has just not recruited good enough players. In four years he has brought only two players (Weathers and Hughes) who had stayed with the team capable of competing with the best players in the league at their position (I call them difference makers). His recruiting record over the last four years has been below average.  Again just trying to keep it honest.  This year he has brought in four decent freshmen, and clearly Baker has exhibited the most upside. The the others may develop into good to very good team players, but at this point I don't see any of them (except for Baker) being real difference makers to get us to the top of the league. 

Bottom line is that the next recruiting class needs to be exceptional, not average, if we are going to compete for a league championship,  My hope is that Weathers and Hughes return, and that Dambrot hits the transfer market hard to rebuild with quality players (especially PG, SG and PF/C) and give the for freshman time to hopefully mature into difference makers. 

 

That makes sense but I have also attributed departures and average players to poor facilities. How hard was it to recruit players when we were at the Palimbo center. Which my friend who ran track said the weight room was pitiful. I think now that you have a winning coach, new gym, and great weight room it’ll be hard to look past playing on the Bluff. Next we just need to get a home court advantage by having a packed house. Those are factors which draw in players and I think it will really improve our recruiting this year.

 

3/05/2021 4:47 pm  #9


Re: Who do we want back?

I just watched KD's post game and he talked about "connectiveness" or lack thereof as a problem basically and finally the guy from the PG didn't ask a softball question.  He asked Keith how do you "guarantee" the lack of emotional connectiveness won't happen next year and Dambrot said he just said it, but he went on to say that he will have players who play together in good and bad times (paraphrasing here), who only care about winning and who practice consistently.  He went on to say he likes the freshman and answering a question about what will the freshman be like next year if the seniors come back, he said we only need 1 or 2 more pieces (no kidding Coach), but what I didn't like is when he said he liked the freshman he mentioned Acuff, Baker and Okani specifically and with some detail and also mentioned Belecheck, but DID NOT EVEN MENTION DRE.  This is a concern for me on two fronts.  One, if anyone thinks that Bekelja is a A-10 level guard I say you need to take off the 2' thick rose colored glasses!!!  Good Lord, please KD the kid seems like a solid kid who works hard, but he is no where near A-10 level.  Secondly, given comments made by KD in the past about Dre and his attitude and his Mom stepping in to apparently straighten him out I am now concerned about his future given KD's failure to mention him in the post game.  That wasn't unintentional in my opinion.  Well getting players on your page is one of the challenges of a Coach and I would not like to see another talented player go elsewhere like EW and SC did.  Hopefully I am reading too much into it, but I see Dre as a talent who just needs experience.  This is another reason why Hughes is the only senior I care about returning.  Marcus would be blocking Dre's development and taking his PT away next year.

 

3/05/2021 4:49 pm  #10


Re: Who do we want back?

Would welcome all three of our 5th-year seniors back for one more go round, though I gotta think Hughes and Weathers will be able to get paid to play somewhere next year. TDM the most likely to return and I'm fine with that as long as it's the right role. He can't be the full-time PG though. We need to bring in somebody else. TDM was at his best when he was in that 6th man role his first year. If I could take only one of the seniors back it would be Hughes as he would be the hardest to replace. Weathers leaving would open up a full-time role for Andre Harris and I think he's ready for that, at least he will be after an off-season of conditioning, weights, etc.

Kelly seems fine in a backup role, but is he ready/good enough for starter's minutes? I don't think so. Rotroff just hasn't looked like an A10 player since blowing out his knee. Not sure what to think about Austin, but I think his issues are more mental than anything else. I'd hate to give up on him, but if he needs a fresh start somewhere else, it may be the best for everyone. He's behind Baker and Okani in the rotation if he stays.

Really excited to see more of Baker, Okani, Acuff and Harris. Just hope they stick around. Have to wonder about Jett's future when he can't get on the court for a team that struggles to make 3s. Hima remains a mystery. Bekelja's a serviceable role player for a few minutes a game, but don't really think we'll miss him if he transfers out to an NEC or AEC program for more playing time. 

 

3/05/2021 5:07 pm  #11


Re: Who do we want back?

The consensus seems to be that everyone wants the seniors to return.  I don't have a problem with occupying those three spots for these guys.  Between lack of a facility and Covid their experience at Duquesne hasn't been what it should have been.   I think they deserve a full senior year with a possible championship team, a beautiful facility, and fans; hopefully lots of them, in the seats.  That is the experience that they expected when they followed KD to Duquesne. 
Considering the addition of Hima and the new recruit, I count 12; leaving us with only one spot to fill for next year.  In today's world of college basketball projecting a roster at this point is problematic.     
 

 

3/05/2021 7:14 pm  #12


Re: Who do we want back?

Levon, as you know Huges, Weathers and TDM would not count towards the scholarship limit. Assuming everyone else stays (I count 10 players) we would have two scholarships to give in addition to Barba,  Realistically, I see at least two players underclassmen leaving, maybe three.  If I am right that would give us 4-5 more ships.. Guess will know soon as I think whoever is leaving will want to get their names in the transfer portal quickly.

 

3/05/2021 7:44 pm  #13


Re: Who do we want back?

Ok, that helps!  I thought I heard something to the affect that the returnees would still count against your 13; but good to hear that’s not the case.  Of course teams loaded with seniors like Richmond and St Bona could return a lot as well.

 

3/05/2021 9:14 pm  #14


Re: Who do we want back?

Marcus,Maceo,Weathers,Acuff, Okani, Kelly, Baker, Dre, Roesing, & Hima

I don't trust that TDM could or would be used in moderation. If that were the case, I would say yes to him as well. He picked up good skill & experience the last 6 weeks that would make him a monster off the bench for 20 minutes a game.

Rotroff & Bekelja should use this year as a Mulligan & find better homes at a lower level.

If Bekelja plays legit minutes & TDM is a starter next year, the program will have officially stalled.

I am much higher on Maceo than most but agree with the idea that a new start elsewhere might be just what the doctor ordered.I would rather that he come back with something to prove & then do so. I see his as the team's highest basketball IQ & he has plenty of eligibility left. He is the kind of player that could make an enormous positive, well-rounded contribution while scoring only 7-8 points per 30 minutes.

Yes, this program desperately needs shooting & a serious lead guard. For me, assuming Hughes and/or Weathers comes back, a serious uptick in poise & smarts is just as important as the PG/shooting needs. The experience/cerebral play gap between DU & SBU is much greater than the talent gap.

How much better prepared would Okani, Acuff, & Baker have been for the season's stretch run if they had had 8-10 non-con games under their belt? Those repetitions are a much bigger deal to DU's freshmen than they are to Richmond's juniors & seniors.

I won'tbe shattered or surprised if Hima & Roesing depart. I would prefer to see what a year in the program did for 2 players that were purported to have things the program is likely to be in short supply of. I will always think that bringing in a huge batch of freshmen is bad because it is so difficult to keep them all engaged due to lack of minutes.

 

3/05/2021 9:50 pm  #15


Re: Who do we want back?

Right on point Phil:
Rotroff & Bekelja should use this year as a Mulligan & find better homes at a lower level.

If Bekelja plays legit minutes & TDM is a starter next year, the program will have officially stalled.
 

 

3/05/2021 10:58 pm  #16


Re: Who do we want back?

I don't believe this has been posted, includes post-game interviews with Mike and Marcus.
(I wasn't  permitted to post the link because I haven't  made 10 posts.  Its at pgh sports now if interested.  I'm here real often, but prefer to listen to you that are more knowledgeable.)

I tried to find information  on Hima, didn't find much, but he's not at all heavy, runs the floor well, athletic and prides himself on his D, rebounding and shot blocking, says he needs to work on his shot.

Besides the obvious picks, I'd like to see Maceo and Kelly return.

 

3/05/2021 11:29 pm  #17


Re: Who do we want back?

I love the team we have right now and would love to see them with the opportunity to play a full year together. So if it were up to me, I'd take everyone back. In order of importance though, or how much I'd want them back I'd say:

1. Baker - He's a star in the making and has to at least be a candidate for conference freshman of the year. He became a go to scorer over the past few games and would be recognized as a stat sheet stuffer if his points weren't so important. Three more years as a Duke would be incredible. Three years elsewhere would be painful to watch.
2. Hughes - Look at the season's stat sheet if you want to know how important he is. Second in points, first in rebounds, second in assists, second in steals, first in blocks. Beyond that, nobody can replace his physicality, and when adversity hit he truly became a team leader. Bringing him back would be huge.
3. Weathers - He was our best scorer, and when his shots weren't falling he still found ways to contribute. I like the Barkley comparison, but think Draymond Green is closer. He does a little bit of everything. Most of all, when the team had no fire, he provided a spark time and time again.
4. Harris - Whether it's now or after next year, he becomes our best big man when Hughes leaves. He was getting better every game until his playing time started to wane down the stretch. It's exciting to think about what he could do with 25-30 minutes a game.
5. Okani - Similar to Baker, youth is a big part of this one. His game isn't as developed as Baker's, but he had some really impressive flashes of talent. I'd like to see his game develop in a Dukes uniform.
6. TDM - He's this low more because of misfit in role than anything else. A move back to his sixth man role would be best, but is unlikely to happen. His shot selection could be downright maddening at times. The potential is always there to light up the score sheet though. He also has made some clutch shots for us in his time here, and I think a lot of the team's never say die attitude comes from him.
7. Acuff - He might never be a true point guard, but the more he played the better he got. He's a good ball handler, has size without sacrificing quickness, and looks like he could be a good shooter with some work. 8. Kelly - It took him a long time to recover from his injury, but the athleticism is back. His game isn't as far a long as some guys much younger than him, but you can't teach height. He'll never be all-conference, but if he can turn some of the athleticism into basketball skills he can be a quality A-10 player.
9. Austin - The raw talent is definitely there. There's a reason he is the highest rated recruit on the team. If he can get over the mental setbacks he can be a big contributor. 
10. Hima - He's a giant mystery at this point. Like I said with Kelly though, you can't teach height. If Hughes moves on we'll need someone to protect the rim. His other offers say it could definitely be him.
11. Roesing - It's hard to knock down 49% of your threes even if there's no defense. The team needs a shooter and it could be him. Still, there is obviously a reason he didn't see the court this year.
12. Rotroff - He seems like a really good guy, and flashed some potential before he got hurt. He hasn't been the same on the court since though. If it hasn't come back yet, it's tough to say that it ever will.
13. Bekelja - Dambrot obviously loves his game, and I'm not going to doubt his judgement. The team seemed to play better the more he played. He's this low because I could never explain that fact, and Acuff is probably ahead of him at this point, even in Dambrot's book.
14. Murphy - I kept hoping he'd be the missing piece we needed, but he never was able to do it. A high character high major player is never something to turn down, but one and done at Duquesne wouldn't be a big deal.
15 - Williams - A walk on, but one with at least some potential. He'll never be a starter, but he could eventually give us 5 minutes a game.
16 - Buono - He'll never see the court outside of garbage time, but every team needs scout team players.

 

3/06/2021 9:44 am  #18


Re: Who do we want back?

Looks to me that KD has had a Popeye moment: "I have all I can stans and can't stans no more".  Sounds to me like changes are coming.

Inside the Dukes: Keith Dambrot Very Opinionated About Duquesne's Future | Pittsburgh Sports Now

 

3/06/2021 9:55 am  #19


Re: Who do we want back?

What happened wharfrat58?  Did Pearly Baker lock you out of your other account?

 

3/06/2021 11:19 am  #20


Re: Who do we want back?

https://twitter.com/nolimittdm_11/status/1367910129480441856?s=21

This doesn’t sound like a guy who is returning to me.

 

3/07/2021 12:03 pm  #21


Re: Who do we want back?

VBC wrote:

What happened wharfrat58?  Did Pearly Baker lock you out of your other account?

Well done VBC! I guess its because I have less than 10 posts they forbid posting links, sort of like doing time for another's crime.

 

3/07/2021 7:09 pm  #22


Re: Who do we want back?

I have to tell you as much as I dislike the obnoxious Bonaventure fans (our buddy Phil excluded), I am envious of how Mark Schmidt has built a terrific team.. Everyone of their starters are strong, disciplined, skilled and unselfish.  Another thing is everyone of those guys can drive the ball as good as any team in the country in my opinion, and they play in your face defense and never seem to get tired.  Extremely well condition. They are a team filled with players who are difference maker and can step up and consistently make plays.  There is no dead wood in their starting five.  They fire on all cylinders. 

I am hopeful that Dambrot can build a team like that.  He has a lot of work to do in that regard.  He has four good freshman some potential to build around, but these players need to be committed to work their ass of in the off season to get bigger and stronger and really need to work on all aspects of the game.  Each of these guys need to not only be pushed by Dambrot, but also by better players KD needs to bring into the program.  Nobody should feel they have a lock on a starting job.  Moreover, as KD said there needs to be a higher level of commitment.  KD needs to get rid of any trouble makers (which he alluded to in his interview) but also any dead wood.  This recruiting year is critical for KD and DU.  High level players only, no projects,  We are going to find out if KD himself is still committed to winning, or just an old solider content with telling old war stories and riding out his time. I think the fire is still burning strong in KD, this recruiting season he can prove it. 

 

3/07/2021 7:23 pm  #23


Re: Who do we want back?

wharfrat58 wrote:

VBC wrote:

What happened wharfrat58?  Did Pearly Baker lock you out of your other account?

Well done VBC! I guess its because I have less than 10 posts they forbid posting links, sort of like doing time for another's crime.

Just stay away from the Burgundy and live the life you should.
 

 

3/08/2021 8:38 am  #24


Re: Who do we want back?

In what conference do you compete for a championship with 6-8 center and 6-5 pwr frwrd?  Leave the touchy-feely behind, coach.

 

3/08/2021 10:01 am  #25


Re: Who do we want back?

A 6'8" C who was a national leader in blocked shots.   

Like i said before, I am torn on the seniors coming back, they each have +/- aspects.   Weathers - would be that Harris might up and leave knowng he will be a backup again.   A Hughes/Hima combo at C would be interesting.   KD can bring in a PG with experience, maybe as a backup, if TDM doesnt come back.

Next year, opening night, I would be excited for this lineup:

PG- Acuff
SG - Baker
SF - Okani
PF - Harris
C - Hima(I watched some tape on him, he has the game and now a year to get bigger and up to speed on college ball).

thats the athletic lineup that would compete for top 4 in the A10 in 2022 or most likely '23   

Maceo, Kelly, Roesing are top reserves, and could start any given nights.

The rest of the roster will be either freshman or tranfers(who no one knows at this point).

Last edited by townsonkid (3/08/2021 10:11 am)

 

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