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  • Penny's Memphis

    When Penny took over at Memphis, and subsequently acquired Lomax and a number of other high level recruits last year, the questions I had were as follows:

    1) Will his coaching translate to high level D1?
    2) Will this level of recruiting continue after the well of "previously-coached" players dries up?
    3) Will he resurrect UM basketball to its former level of glory?

    All of these questions remain unanswered one year later, but I still hope that the answer to all of these questions is yes. This can't be a bad thing for the conference or WSU.

    Last I checked, UM had secured a crazy number of high level recruits and had the #4 recruiting class and is getting respect in the polls.

    Is this the beginning of an era or a flash in the pan?

  • #2
    I’ve been impressed with Penny. Not afraid to admit to shortcomings. Appears to be a standup guy. Great for the league.

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    • #3
      Penny is striking while the prep school iron is hot. That is his only shtick. When the connections (and father-godson) relationships wane, it will be all Penny with regards to results. Next year he'll finish in the middle of the pack. The following year after his 5-star beast leaves for the NBA, Memphis will start trickling down the final standings until he's eventually fired or quits. Same story, different ex-NBA'r coach.


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      • #4
        Top recruits are not turning down hundreds of thousands of dollars so they can play for Penny and/or his "superteam" and Memphis lacks the protection given to the blue bloods. It is only a matter of time.

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        • #5
          Memphis is in a unique position. Their natural recruiting base is stacked, seriously look at how many top recruits come from this area, and most of them grow up wanting to play at Memphis. Penny will be removed from his AAU players very soon but that doesn’t mean all the talent will dry up. If he can keep the recruiting fence around Western Tennessee he’ll do just fine (been one of their biggest problem since Cal left).
          If you're not going to go all the way, why go?

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          • #6
            I think this will be the year that the question regarding his coaching talent gets answered. He should rarely face a team with a more talented roster than his own. I'm curious to see how he handles such a wealth of talent in game (Xs, Os) and out of game (managing egos / minutes).

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            • #7
              Also, an interesting side note, Memphis' AD just up and resigned today. That seems to be a little unusual considering their football has been decent and their basketball is on the upswing. Not starting any rumors... just thought it was interesting.

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              • C0|dB|00ded
                C0|dB|00ded commented
                Editing a comment
                Likely not wanting to suffer through the tidal wave of NCAA investigations starting in T-minus 5...4...


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            • #8
              I read a quote from Larry Brown once, discussing the difference between NCAA coaching and NBA coaching; he stated that he did more coaching in 5 minutes in the NBA than he did all year in college, having to constantly adjust, manage time, etc. I suspect the same gap exists between Middle School and Div 1. He'll win against teams he should beat but won't against teams with better coaching. Having said that, I have no idea who is on his staff that can help him coach.

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              • #9
                Penny's recruiting wins are nothing but good for WSU and the league. I think he will maintain this over time based on the local talent pool if nothing else. He is a local hero in Memphis and is a good guy too. Best of all, it shows that you don't need to be a traditional 'blue blood' to get that kind of talent anymore.

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                • #10
                  Originally posted by Dice260 View Post
                  Also, an interesting side note, Memphis' AD just up and resigned today. That seems to be a little unusual considering their football has been decent and their basketball is on the upswing. Not starting any rumors... just thought it was interesting.
                  Running for the hills as all that Shoe Money comes pouring in???

                  I don't know...seems a little strange though.
                  FINAL FOURS:
                  1965, 2013

                  NCAA Tournament:
                  1964, 1965, 1976, 1981, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2006, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

                  NIT Champs - 1 (2011)

                  AP Poll History of Wichita State:
                  Number of Times Ranked: 157
                  Number of Times Ranked #1: 1
                  Number of Times Top 5: 32 (Most Recent - 2017)
                  Number of Times Top 10: 73 (Most Recent - 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017)

                  Highest Recent AP Ranking:
                  #3 - Dec. 2017
                  #2 ~ March 2014

                  Highest Recent Coaches Poll Ranking:
                  #2 ~ March 2014
                  Finished 2013 Season #4

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                  • #11
                    I have no doubt it's the perfect challenge to bring out the best in GGG .

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                    • Stickboy46
                      Stickboy46 commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I disagree that Memphis improved last year as the year went along. Their win streak at the end largely was attributed to Martin's hero ball and dropping 30-40 in games. His touted freshman basically disappeared towards the end of the year and he rode the Seniors that were taught very well by Tubby. This year will be his true test because he has the most talent in the league by far. Would not be surprised to see them finish out of the Top 4 though.

                    • WSM
                      WSM commented
                      Editing a comment
                      They were a lot easier to beat under Tubby the year before than under Penny last year. Tubby ran a very tight offense that worked the ball inside. Penny had an inside-out, run and gun offense. He appears to be getting the type players and quantity of players to run his offense. I was in Memphis when the AAC was played last year. They came within one play of beating Houston and their coach said they were the most improved team in the league. Whether it's Penny coaching them, Miller, or Mitchel or a group approach, they appeared to make a vast improvement over Tubby's team running a totally different offense. Tubby's players did not fit what they were trying to rum last year. These new recruits seem to fit their strategy.

                    • ShockingButTrue
                      ShockingButTrue commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Shockers will have size that they can play on the perimeter this coming season.

                  • #12
                    I’m really curious to see the W-L record this year. If they play fast break basketball (like they did last year), there will be few teams that can keep up over 40 minutes.
                    Livin the dream

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                    • #13
                      Penny did a good job last year with a veteran team that he didn’t recruit. Now he has to win with a bunch of freshmen. That will be the real test. Even Kentucky has struggled with top recruits in the past. When a couple of the freshmen declare for the NBA he will have to keep the recruiting up, he’s starting the type
                      of program that is a tremendous challengs to maintain and he doesn’t have near the experience of the other coaches that have been able to pull it off.

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                      • C0|dB|00ded
                        C0|dB|00ded commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Operative phrase: veteran team

                        Operative backstory: coached up by a hall-of-fame veteran coach

                        Ask UConn how that plays out after everyone graduates.


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                      • WSM
                        WSM commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Your statement is correct. He did do a good job with a veteran team that he didn't recruit. None of Tubby's recruits fit Penny's style of basketball. They were big, slow, and deliberate. Penny wants fast, quick, and play-makers. To me that says a lot about their coaching ability. Martin showed no ability to score 40 points with Tubby, but he did for Penny. To me, that is coaching, just like HCGM would do. Penny will be a better coach with his type players as HCGM will be with his type recruits. A rising tide lifts all ships. We need more coaches like Penny to draw attention to the AAC, in my thoughts.

                    • #14
                      Great recruiter. Might be a good skill developer. Don't know that he can actually coach because Mike Miller does all the in-game coaching.

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                      • #15
                        The only reason I can see for wishing for Penny to fail is having spent too much time in contests on the AAC board to see which fan base can urinate higher on the fence post.

                        You would think it would be a good thing to be in a league with a consistent top-10 or top-20 team, play that team 2 or 3 times a year, and have them play in CKA every year.
                        The future's so bright - I gotta wear shades.
                        We like to cut down nets and get sized for championship rings.

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                        • Awesome Sauce Malone
                          Editing a comment
                          The inferiority complex shtick gets old but for reasons unknown the fanbase continues to wear it on their sleeve like a badge of honor.
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