So, now we begin to understand the importance of the great Lynn Greer.
The Owls got humiliated by cross-town rival Penn by a score of 71-46.
Our beloved team (0-5) is off to its worst start in the 107-year history of the program.
Greer was one of the most memorable players in the history of Temple basketball.
If anyone had any doubts about this former point guard’s importance to a successful team, those doubts must be gone now.
“The point guard is the most precious person in Basketball, not the big men,” coach John Chaney said after the game.
After watching the beginning of this season, nobody can call Chaney a liar for that comment.
This team cannot score.
They cannot get open shots, and barring some miracle, will not be able to win consistently.
These are all things that point guard Lynn Greer brought to this team, and now they are gone.
How has John Chaney planned to remedy Greer’s departure?
He has put a round peg into a square hole.
David Hawkins was never recruited to play at the point guard position.
He is a small forward by nature, but because of his ball handling and leadership skills, he has been inserted into the most important position on the court.
David Hawkins’ big strong, slashing style seems to be hindering him from being effective at the point.
“I never expected the season to start out like this,” Hawkins said, “It hurts even more, because I’m an upperclassman, a leader, and we haven’t won a game yet.”
This 0-5 record cannot be put solely on Hawkins’ shoulder, because he is being asked to play a position that he isn’t meant to play.
Freshman Maurice Collins, a natural shooting guard/small forward, has also spent some time at the point.
He is a natural scorer with a lot of potential, but he has also been forced to play out of position.
Freshman Chris Gaither was a standout point guard in high school, but his transition in the college ranks has been understandably slow.
He has been logging a few minutes at the point, but has not been very productive.
This is reasonable, considering the fact that he is a freshman.
With a tough schedule still remaining, Temple must right the ship quickly if they have any hopes of winning basketball games.
Temple Basketball had a very disappointing season last year, and this season is off to an even worse start.
Ball movement and open shots are at a premium early in this 2002-03 season.
Three freshmen are in the starting lineup, neither of which have the experience or maturity to make up for the lack of a true point guard.
This is John Chaney’s team, however, and you must take into account the fact that this man is in the Basketball Hall of Fame. He knows how to coach, and knows how to win.
There is still a chance that Chaney could save this season by making opposing teams play his game.
Lets just hope this team gets the point…
Andrew Monaghan can be reached at ACTMONO@aol.com