Let’s talk about the newest Razorback, Eric Musselman.
Eric has a little bit of Chad Morris in him. In fact, Eric tweeted about Coach Morris in August of 2013. His fire, energy, and love for the game make him a mirror image of Coach Morris.
Eric was at Nevada for four years and completely turned around their program. In the three years prior to Coach Musselman’s hire to Nevada, the Wolfpack won 12, 15, and 9 games. Once he was hired, they won 24, 28, 29, and 29 games. Drastic improvement. Those numbers are also comparable to what Coach Morris did at SMU.
One thing Hog fans need to understand, this isn’t a typical coaching change. MA has left EM with a manageable roster to work with. This isn’t a team that finished dead last in the SEC the past two years. Barring any more transfers, we should expect a improved team next year, and even a NCAAT team. It is a very different situation than the football rehaul that is going on.
Eric is a BIG #’s guy. My favorite part of his press conference last week was when he mentioned Billy Beane. He talked about when he started coaching he wanted to implement the analytics from that story into basketball. What could that mean? Well, if you do not shoot better than 30% from deep in practice, you will not shoot them in a game. I am looking at you, Gabe Osabuohien and Jalen Harris.
Eric is a high energy guy. He is going to get the best out of the roster. Something Mike Anderson may have not been able to do.
Some people, including myself, have mentioned his lack of recruiting high school athletes as a knock on Eric. If you dig into his career you’ll understand why he heavily recruited transfers. At Nevada he wanted his program to get off the the ground fast and become relevant. He targeted guys with experience that could make a difference day 1 and not wait 2-3 years to become relevant. Smart strategy. Also, his last recruiting class at Nevada he was able to reel in a McDonalds All American 5. Eric is going to do well here. His expectations will be high. His biggest key right now is to keep the guys on the roster.
His offensive style is similar to Mike’s. He described it as shooting a lot of 3’s and drawing a lot of fouls. He wants to play fast. Pace and space.
At this point if you had to ask me if I’m glad Hunter Yurachek fired Mike, I think I would be leaning towards yes. Seeing who we got and what he could do with this team, I believe the future is bright.
I am ready to see this team in action. The future is bright in Fayetteville.