Pushing tempo; fans & players to benefit


Basketball players usually say they prefer to compete in a full-court game. Fans, too, seem to enjoy end-to-end action.

When Fred Hoiberg said he wanted to employ that style as coach of the Cyclones, everyone had a vision for what that approach might yield.

On NCAA Men’s Basketball coverage last weekend, analyst Kenny Smith was talking tempo and said the easiest measure tempo is shots attempted. An up-tempo style should, of course, yield more points and more shots.

Here are comparisons – for points and shots per game – for recent coaching tenures at Iowa State …

* Fred Hoiberg, 2011:  74.8 points, 62.3 shots
* Greg McDermott, 2007-10:  66.3 points, 55.5 shots
* Wayne Morgan, 2004-06:  73.3 points, 60.7 shots
* Larry Eustachy, 1999-03:  72.1 points, 55.2 shots
* Tim Floyd, 1995-98:  68.8 points, 53.2 shots
* Johnny Orr, 1981-94:  77.7 points, 62.4 shots

Fred said on numerous occasions that Orr told him to implement his style from the beginning. Johnny urged him to establish an identity.

Orr’s first three teams averaged 67 points per game. His last seven Cyclone teams scored 84.1 ppg as he recruited for his fast-paced attack. Orr’s favored playing style was implemented in year one.

After one year, it is apparent Hoiberg has written a similar script and his attention shifts to recruiting for his preferred tempo. Fans and players will be the beneficiaries.

Email feedback is welcome at 2minutetimeout@iastate.edu. You can also follow me at: twitter.com/SteveMalchow


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