Morning Buzz: Where Does USC Go From Here?

USC came really close to playing Oregon State tonight for the Pac-12 Tournament championship.

I mention it because these opportunities don’t come along often and the Trojans had a great chance to win this tournament with a less-than-rigorous bracket.

But that would mean not going 0-7 against Colorado or losing three times in the same season to the same team, which is quite a hat trick.

Andy Enfield can pull it off, of course, which is hardly a surprise to the readers of this blog.

You can’t squander having a generational player like Evan Mobley, who was doing his part Friday night, with a near-perfect game. There’s no reason USC could not win the Pac-12 regular-season title or tournament this season.

But you can’t win a game when you go 6-for-12 on free throws Friday night.

I could go back 50 years, 60 years, maybe 70 years of USC basketball tripping up at a key moment. It’s why Mal Florence, the legendary USC grad/L.A. Times sports writer, once said, “USC basketball fans are always waiting for the other shoe to drop.”

But you need to get something from your bench besides a complaint/whine.

McKinley Wright pushed (Tahj Eaddy) right in the back (on the last play) and they didn’t call it,” USC coach Andy Enfield said after losing to Colorado. “And that was the game.”

If that’s the attitude, no wonder USC is 4-4 since Coach Bohn yelled, “I’ve been to the Tournament the last 7 years in a row! It’s about the seed! Keep fighting for your seed!”

I still think USC can catch lightning in a bottle at the NCAA Tournament if Mobley keeps playing like he did the past 2 days. But why does that need to be the best-case scenario? Why can’t we all expect USC to win some games from an X’s and O’s standpoint? What a dream, right?

  • One observation: I thought it was weird Noah Baumann hit a 3-point shot to end the first half and then doesn’t play at all in the second half. He doesn’t look athletic but USC had only three guys who scored in the first half besides Baumann, so maybe give him a few possessions in the second half to see if he is having a hot night. Or not.

43 thoughts on “Morning Buzz: Where Does USC Go From Here?

  1. colorado obviously has a better coaching staff, at least when it comes to playing sc, and that is how you beat a team with better players…sc football teaches one just that, the last several years, but it does not mean Enfield is a bad coach,he has beat most other Pac 12 coaches and out recruited them also…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. WOW, he’s beaten “most of the other PAC 12 coaches “, WOW. He’s won nothing and will continue to win NOTHING !!!

      Like

    2. LMFAO!

      OH MY SIDE HURTS FROM LAUGHING SO MUCH!

      As usual pudlyfudgepacker69 and Michael Guarino are eating crow!

      I told you clowns the Trojans would choke, just as they always do.

      Evan Mobley is as soft as a Clay Helton practice. Mr. Wolf calls Mobley a “once in a generation player”, I say he’s headed straight for the D league after some idiot NBA general manager wastes a draft pick on him.

      Yep, Trojans are going to get bounced in the 1st round of whatever tournament will have them and they’ll most likely get blown out.

      One good Trojan fans can be appreciative of is that they didn’t waste their money going to the games to see that trash team getting embarrassed and humiliated yet again when it counted.

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  2. if you have seen enfield’s recent interviews he has been patting himself in the back for coming in 2nd when they were forecasted for 6th. so if they were forecasted for 12th and came in 10th, with his mentality would he also be satisfied and considered having overachieved. this is not the right coach.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Tim is anything but a braindead rah rah. In fact, he’s a really sober USC fan who sees things for what they are. He knows that he’s NOT complimenting Enfield when he says he’s beaten most Pac 12 coaches. And I like his description of Enfield: “He’s not a BAD coach”…..
        #Meaning:He’sAlsoNOTAGoodCoach…
        #And,You’re100%Right,Karma:He’llNeverWinAChampionship
        #[AndThat’sJustFineWithMediocreBohn&Folt]

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ha! [At least in our profession (up until Chief Justice Roberta, that is), we had to do more to earn our keep than “walk the path of righteousness” in the Santa Monica mountains….. or give anti-pep talks about it “being all about the seed!”]……
        #OrCongratulateIowaFans”ForCheeringAgainstUs”

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Colorado shot 50% from 3 and McKinley Wright is a great college point guard. That’s it, that’s the game. If you give up that percentage from 3, you will lose almost every time. There are no X’s and 0’s out there to stop a team from shooting 3’s. You close out, contest, and be solid inside out and rely on teams shooting their normal percentage. Colorado was hot, we lost. If they shoot their norm we win by 6-9 points.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hey wolfman how many shots did they miss near the basket? I want to know that stat. That’s where they lost the game, also not blocking out on a lot of rebounds. It’s been happening all year long. There’s the game. Too many missed easy shots. He gets out coached and his team’s lack fundamentals every year.
    Get rid of Enfield all ready. That flavor has gone stale years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. On the money. Glad you put it that way, my friend…
      #Woulda,Coulda,Shoulda…
      #…TheFavoritePhraseOfThoseWhoMissTheMark….
      #[ButItMeansYouCan’tDefendBiden/Harris…
      #WhenThingsStartGoingVeryWrong]

      Like

      1. MG, the nation just finished 4 long years of Trump’s Nationalistic BS and bombastic lies, so I’ll take my chances with Biden/Harris.

        Like

      2. Well hell yeah Owns, all you have to do with Senile Joe and Headboard Harris is wait for the check to come in the mail, why work ?! I’m sure that $1400 pays your rent for moms basement for the whole year !!!!

        Like

      3. …As long as you put it that way —cuz that’s what we’re doing….
        #”TakingOurChances”
        #[GeneralCuster’sBattleCry]….

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      4. at least they were in the woulda,coulda,shoulda position…SC has rarely ever been a good free throw team… in 70 yrs of watching sc…baseball and track and field, they usually won until ncaa restricted scholarships…football and basketball they were usually very competitive and at times football dominated…coaching and the staffs bring in the players to be developed…if they stay,and at sc they don’t, very few seniors on sc teams.

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      1. We lost our last four games. What’s your point, Helton?

        I mean whenever the bozo’s belly’s up to the big BB bar, they wind up puking all over themselves.

        Once again, Andyain’twinning gives SUCC a cheap hickey and a case of blue balls instead of the home run.

        I’m sure Dear Pisley is happy ’cause he enjoys a visceral stimuli.

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  5. It came down to fundamentals last night for the Trojans. 50% at the free throw line compared to 80% for Colorado. Not boxing out on that final missed shot at the end of the game, killer! Great play they ran at the end of the game to get Taj the final shot, but you can’t always get the calls. A little better pass over the top by Evan and they might still be playing today. They get an extra day of rest for the tournament.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Trojans only had 12 assists last night. Mobley did a lot on his own, but that won’t deliver in the tournament. Would like to see more ball movement, more player movement. Seems that Colorado took Trojans out of their offense and if not for Mobley, it would have been a sizable loss.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good stuff, 67. [Enfield is a superior version of Helton —he’s not flat out terrible, but he’s never gonna grab the gold ring]…
      #AndHeDoesn’tSeemCapableOfGrowingAsACoach…
      #He’sTheEXACTSameGuyWhoWalkedInYearsAgo….

      Liked by 1 person

    2. It’s too bad Mobley chose to play BB at a Beach Wallyball orientated Univ.

      Just think if Mobley had decided to enroll at UCLA. He wouldn’t have lost 3 times to Colorado; he’d be playing in the Pac-12 tournament final with a good shot at a 1 or 2 tournament seed in the West.

      Yes Mobley defeated UCLA twice but so what.

      So remind me ’67, how do those two SUCC victories feature in the NCAA BB committee’s decision how to seed SUCC and what bum-f**k tournament region they will shove the bozo’s to – ZERO!

      The committee will notice the 3 defeats SUCC suffered at the hands of Colorado, especially the last defeat.

      Like

      1. With all due respect to Owns, I don’t think what the NCAA thinks of any Pac 12 team’s record is gonna make much difference……
        With all due respect to “Coach” Mike Bohn, I don’t think “it’s all about the seed” as far as USC, Colorado or UCLA goes….
        #…..NotThisYear

        Liked by 1 person

      2. btw —The NCAA has announced a new grading scale for pep talks…..
        It starts at “Bohn” and goes all the way up to “Rockne” —with 4,986,3472 other college pep talks in between…..

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Great take, if Mobley went there, he would be surrounded by mediocre talent and a marginal head coach. You are delusional about bRuin basketball, it is clearly a once was school.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Owns, Mrs. H said it all. It is delusional to think that ucla would be 1 or 2 seed if Evan went there. They would have wasted his talent, just like they are wasting the talent that they already have. It seems like light years ago they went to the final 4. Should have retained Howland.

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  7. USC weaknesses:
    1) Point Guard- Ethan Anderson is not quick enough to guard the top point guards in this league. An absolute necessity to recruit a top point guard. Ethan Anderson is not a bad player, but he is should be the 1st player off the bench. Mckinley Wright, had his way throughout the game no one could guard him in the paint or on the perimeter.
    2) Ball Screens- Watch Colorado they get open shot after open shot on ball screens. USC dribbles the ball too much, and plays 1 on 1 basketball which makes it easier to play defense against this team.
    3) Bulk Inside- Colorado, and many team play a physical style of play. We need a bruiser insider like Evan Battey and that will be fixed next year with KJ Allen coming in who will be an All Pac 12 player with his skills. Reminds me alot of Charles Barkley with an inside bruiser type of game, and can shoot from the outside.
    4) Game Preparation- It sure appeared to me that Colorado had a game plan once again, and the USC coaches felt their superior athletic talent would win out so no game plan was necessary. The USC players looked confused on offense in the first half which is a clear sign the coaching staff did not prepare them properly once again after already losing 2 times to the same team.
    5) Free Throwing Shooting- Shooting 50% will not get it done. Last place in the Pac 12 Conference. No way this happens in a top program which tells me the coaching staff does not give this weakness enough practice time.. If this continues- USC will be out of the NCAA’s after the 1 st. round.
    6)The team looks lost at times especially late in the season. Pure talent will only take you so far with so many good coaches in college basketball USC needs to hire an X and 0’s type of assistant with head coaching experience. Jason Hart, is an excellent recruiter, and Enfield appears to be the PR guy so we need another top assistant coach as I think Hart will leave after this season. Sadly, during timeouts I don’t see the coaches doing enough so it makes me wonder what practices are like.

    Bottom line recruiting is improving, but we need improvement in developing the talent, and teaching the funadamentals of basketball which it appears is definitley not a strength of this current coaching staff.. Is Enfield the answer probably not, but hiring a top assistant coach might help take the program to the top.

    The team will still be loaded next year with talent. Sending a player to the NBA every year is not getting it done. USC is not the NBA Development league the last time I checked, but it can be a top program in college basketball with the right head coach, and coaching staff.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. A piece we can all learn from. Holy shit!
      One observation. Enfield has a lot of Graham Harrell in him. He has his strengths as a coach —but it seems he’s got even more liabilities. And his biggest liability is he’s never going to out- strategy a good coach — like Graham, he thinks the game is all about recruiting well and, then, depending on athleticism to do the rest.
      #That’sNotChampionshipCoaching…..
      #..WhichIsWhyBohnWillHangOnToHimFOREVER

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Scooter,

    to answer your question, USC is going to the tournament. Im hoping they play at their top level. I have seen that, and if they do, they can go far. If they play like they did against Utah and Colorado, first round and done. The only thing about playing Utah and Colorado is, Sc played them three times. Teams in the tournament have not seen or played against SC and hopefully with coaching, SC can go far. Let’s say to the finals against Gonzaga. yes, I can dream.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. This team is living up to the maximum that is feasible under Enfield. You need a better coach if you want to win more consistently.

    Enfield has put together a team that plays together for one year while we have Mobley and next year we will have to re-build the team again. That just isnt a consistent track record.

    Enfield is paid far too much for his track record.

    Liked by 1 person

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