The Billikens started down a prolonged trail behind toward basketball inflection Friday night.
The tour promises long-haul fad with new manager Travis Ford heading a way. Next season’s patrol will underline impact transfers and four-star recruits. Winning campaigns dawn on a horizon.
In a nearby term, though, transport will be treacherous. Expect construction delays and lots of highway debris.
The Ford Era began with an unmannerly 85-64 detriment to intermediate Ball State in SLU’s regular-season opener during Chaifetz Arena.
The Billikens bumbled and stumbled to 15-3, 32-13 and 43-17 deficits during their awful initial half. They finally pulled themselves together after a break.
“In a second half we saw signs of recklessness and competitiveness, that we have to play with,” Ford said. “What we were in a second half, it was some-more like who we can be. Things aren’t always going to go a way, though we’re going to quarrel by it, we’re going to go on runs.”
This onslaught was no surprise. After pang uninterrupted 11-21 seasons underneath former manager Jim Crews, this depleted module was clearly firm for additional suffering.
The Billikens are deploying with usually 9 grant players and one really accessible walk-on while formulation ahead.
“This was a good training event for some guys who have never been in this form of position, as distant personification a mins they are playing,” Ford said. “It’s a good event to learn in Game 1. It’s a tough approach to learn though infrequently it takes this.”
In a ranking of Division we teams No. 1 by No. 351 for this season, CBSSports.com placed a Billikens 278th, behind a likes of New Jersey Institute of Technology, Bryant and Quinnipiac.
ESPN.com was usually somewhat some-more optimistic, ranking SLU 206th behind code names like IUPUI, Stony Brook and Wagner.
You get a idea.
It didn’t take prolonged for SLU’s shortcomings to turn glaringly apparent. The Billikens’ initial possession of a diversion finished with a roving call on ensure Davell Roby for a movement stop.
After Roby managed to modify a lay-up on SLU’s second time down a court, a subsequent possession resulted in a pushing atmosphere round with a shot time expiring.
Here is what happened a subsequent 4 times a Billikens had a ball:
• Roby posted adult on a block, got bumped on his spin, mislaid a round and got no call.
• Big male Austin Gillmann stepped out high and set an bootleg screen.
• Post male Reggie Agbeko spun into a line with a burst offshoot that came adult short.
• Agbeko took a throw pass into a post and shuffled his feet while seeking leverage. That warranted him a roving call instead of a bucket.
Whew! In no time during all a Billikens trailed 13-2. The destruction continued unabated, with turnovers, clanked giveaway throws and shots missed from all angles and distances on a court.
They competed tough during both ends of a court, to no avail. SLU done usually 21 of 59 shots from a building and 18 of 28 shots from a free-throw line. They also incited a round over 16 times.
But it’s early. Ford is laying a module foundation, substantiating training regimens, environment use standards and installing his descent and defensive schemes.
“Setting a high customary … they all have to be peaceful to get out of their comfort section and take a possibility and contend I’m going to be this good,” Ford said. “When we set a high customary for yourself, we have to figure out how are we going to get there.”
Players like 6-foot-9 redshirt beginner Elliott Welmer (seven points, 3 blocks), 6-foot-7 loyal beginner Jalen Johnson (10 points, 3 rebounds) and 6-foot-6 loyal beginner Zeke Moore (seven points, 3 steals) will get their possibility to grow while available reinforcements.
Power brazen D.J. Foreman (Rutgers), pitch male Javon Bess (Michigan State) and sharpened ensure Adonys Henriquez (Central Florida) will use their redshirt year to serve their growth after their transfer.
All 3 players could step into a starting lineup when eligible.
SLU cumulative four-star recruits Jordan Goodwin and Hasahn French during a early signing period, and it’s usually removing started underneath Ford. Power brazen Carte’Are Gordon, a five-star actor from Webster Groves, has given a module an verbal joining for 2018.
That’s a prolonged approach off, of course, and lots can occur between now and afterwards during a really high finish of basketball recruiting. But Gordon’s joining combined a stamp of flawlessness to a fledgling program.
Potential recruits took note, as did opposition coaches. Despite Friday night’s grave spectacle, Ford is gaining some-more recruiting traction in year one during SLU than Kim Anderson has in year 3 during Mizzou.
As for indeed winning games, well, now, that’s entrance down a pike.