Greentree Pro-Am Wish List

by Face

Can it really be that time again? The Greentree Summer Pro-Am is right around the corner. I'm excited to see some games after this offseason, and I know I'm not alone. 

Last year saw a mixed bag in the pro-am. TJ looked excellent - and that was truly a sign of things to come for our rookie of the year. Talley, a lot of us agreed, just looked small and didn't seem too effective. He sure proved us wrong on that front, putting in a solid freshman season on the bluff. Evans was a great story in Summer League. His passing was crisp, his shot had found more arc and lift... but unfortuantely, his season was hindered by injury and he never really found his form again.  Saunders and Clark didn't participate because they were hoping to go overseas, which fell through. In one game that I saw, BJ was a pretty scrappy defender of a much taller Pitt player whose name eludes me at the moment (was it Donte Taylor?), which impressed me.

Truly there were some ups and downs for the summer, which is as to be expected. What would we like to see next year? I'll give my thoughts after the break and I hope that you provide your own on the boards.

Eric Evans:

Evans just needs more time with a basketball in his hands after the injury last year. If he can return to the way that he looked last summer, when his passing was excellent and his shot had much more arc, there's no reason we can't have the best set of guards in the country. 

BJ Montiero:

Last season saw him come on as a more consistent player, which was important. He had always shown flashes, but was one who would score 17 points in one game and 5 points the next. In my mind, the most important thing for BJ is to continue with that consistency. I'd also put him as a candidate to capture some of the aggressive playstyle that we lost with Bill Clark's graduating.

Rodrigo Peggau:

At the time of this writing, we have no idea as to Rod's status. Rumors of his graduating and moving on were already present before the spring signing period. The size of the recruiting class only fueled that fire. Certainly everyone has wanted Rod to do well. The past few years must have been frustrating for him and I think that anyone could understand a desire to move on. We also have to remember that he's technically a junior next year due to the injury redshirt and big guys can take a while to develop.

If Rod is still around, we need to see him demonstrate a strong post presence against the big guys that the other D1 teams will bring. Plain and simple. That's why he's here. 

Sean Johnson:

Like BJ, Sean became a more consistent player last year. Most notably, his three point percentage went up by nearly 10 points. This is great and will be key to his next two years at Duquesne. I'd like to see Sean continue to demonstrate his abilities as a shooter... to ensure that last year was the beginning of a trend rather than a flash-in-the-pan. Some other stats did change for the worse - like TPG going up, or FPG - but that'll happen when you are playing more minutes than before and having the ball in your hands more often.

Andre Marhold:

I want so much for Marhold to break through; this is even more important with Saunders having graduated, though the height that we just recruited should help too. Marhold got a little more time as the season ended and we changed the style, and he wasn’t too bad at all. I’d like to see a hungry Marold who wants the ball and can finish with it. Sometimes he has appeared tentative, but he is a junior now and it's time for him to step up. I think we all hope that his eye surgery is continuing to help him as a player and as a human being!

Mike Talley:

Talley proved to be a solid contributor as a freshman, and that should continue. I'd like to see improved ball handling as well as a little more aggression when he chooses to drive. The best case scenario, in my mind, would be for him to be on a team with Evans. It's been fun to watch TJ and Talley play together, but Talley/Evans and McConnell/Evans was not such a special thing. Either combination on a team would be great for us. We can hope.

TJ McConnell:

All that I can say for this one is that, however he does it, he needs to continue to perform at an all-league standard. Additionally, he needs to do whatever it is that one does to make the transition from A10 rookie of the year to A10 first team. His three point shooting did tail off during the season, but he has it. Perhaps regaining that form would be the goal for the summer. The kid knows what to do with the ball.

Jerry Jones:

I truly believe that, given the lower-scoring style his high school seems to have played, a polished Jerry Jones can be our answer to the half-court offense. He needs that polish, though. Jerry’s ability to distribute the ball is going to be key. Really, I think that he just needs to play. I’ll take anything from him stat-wise, because experience is what he needs most. We heard a lot of positive information about him in the wake of his recruiting - let's see it!

Derrick Martin:

As we mentioned above, it's been said that big guys take a little longer to develop, so Derrick Martin's ability to practice with the team without losing a year of eligibility is important. This sounds like a Ron Everhart center. He's tall AND can run. His attention to detail from the sidelines during games has impressed some of us. He needs to show that he's a 5 who can play with college players. Luckily, with 5 Division I schools contributing players, we'll have a nice barometer.

Foul Shooting:

This is more of an offseason wish overall. Please? Please?!

As far as the new recruits, I think we're looking for the players to a) participate and b) hold their own. Pitt, RMU, WVU, and YSU are all involved in the pro-am this year. Certainly it would be nice to see our players shine amongst other D1 talent.

Feel free to share your thoughts on the forum!