Navy guard Jordan Sugars‘ final season of basketball at the academy will look plenty different than his first three.
The Midshipmen’s 20-man roster is green, strewn with freshmen and sophomores. The green light Sugars was given the past two years is gone.
But the senior is anything but blue about the situation as he and the Mids enter their first season under coach Ed DeChellis.
“I’m still learning,” Sugars said. “It’s going to take some time. I have to break habits I’ve had for three years now. Obviously, I’m still learning every practice. I’m doing the best I can and just trying to jump on board with coach and kind of be another coach out there.”
Navy (11-20 last year) can use all the on-court savvy it can get.
Sugars is the only junior or senior with any significant time to his credit. And the Mids are undergoing a substantial stylistic overhaul as they transition from former coach Billy Lange, who left in May to become Jay Wright’s top assistant at Villanova.
Lange preached a wide-open style with a reliance on the outside shot. Little wonder Sugars has attempted a whopping 388 shots beyond the 3-point line over the past two seasons. It’s hardly an outlier; eight of Navy’s nine largest single-season 3-point attempt totals were logged in the last five seasons.
Enter DeChellis, who left Penn State in one of the offseason’s more intriguing coaching changes. He is basic in his principles: defense, rebounding and taking care of the ball. He also is willing to win ugly, as evidenced by the 36-33 defeat of Wisconsin in last March’s Big Ten tournament that helped book the Nittany Lions’ passage to the NCAA tournament.
All of it begs the question: How will a volume shooter who is easily his team’s most experienced asset and most capable scorer handle the literal change of pace?
“I think he’s going to see the advantages of where he can get the ball and where he can score,” DeChellis said. “It doesn’t always have to be jumpers. It can be an offensive rebound. We’re going to give him the ball in the post some, and we’re going to come up with some things where he can catch the ball in the post.”
Not that every adjustment is instantaneous.
“In my case, I’ll make a move that last year was OK and this year coach is like ‘Slow down, let’s run the offense through,’ ” Sugars said. “It’s totally different. Coach Lange was more of a free-style coach where the guards just kind of go. Coach [DeChellis] is bringing more structure this year. You kind of learn on the fly.”
With a young roster in place, Sugars welcomes the changes.View Entire Story
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
Patrick Stevens has covered Maryland and other Mid-Atlantic college sports for more than a decade. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Entertainment News and Reviews from Washington, D.C. and beyond.
A carefully guided tour through the confusing world of modern bookselling and publishing.
Empowering mind/body/spirit and health dialogue along with cutting-edge, conscious social, political, and world commentary with Adam Omkara. Join the Evolution!
A politically conservative and morally liberal Hebrew alpha male hunts left-wing viper
World's Ugliest Dog Contest
Spelling Bee finale
Marines train Afghan soldiers
Rolling Thunder 2013
Benghazi: The anatomy of a scandal