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Drew Ellis covers Oakland University basketball for The Oakland Press. His news and notes keep you up to date with Golden Grizzlies men's basketball.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Where’s the deef(ense)?

Oakland coach Greg Kampe sounded exhausted when he reached the mic after Tuesday’s loss to rival Oral Roberts.
“It’s obviously not getting any better,” he said to open the post-game press conference.
“Those first 10 minutes of the game, I was just looking at them like ‘What is going on?’ ”
He further lambasted his defense, but did offer an explanation.
“We get beat off the dribble a little too much, which creates an odd-man rush as in hockey and they pass it around for an open shot,” he said. “And everybody is making them for about six or seven games in a row. … Our field-goal percentage was very low through the first eight games and we were 6-2. We had tremendous stats through eight games. Now, it’s unbelievable (how bad) it is.
“We’re so bad on offense, we make so many mistakes that it leads to odd-man rushes.”
Both teams started poorly from the floor Tuesday, going 1 for 5 in the opening minutes. The Golden Eagles recovered to shoot 54 percent for the half, while Oakland went to the break at a 39-percent clip to a season-low 26 points. Oral Roberts then began the second half 7 of 8 from the floor and 4 of 4 from 3-point range en route to a season-high 69 percent (11 of 16) from behind the arc. The Golden Eagles were the second team in the past three games to shoot better than 60 percent from the floor against Oakland, going 34 for 51 (67 percent).
Guard Reggie Hamilton had an idea what’s happening on defense.
“Most of the time, it’s just a lack of effort, somebody doing the little thing that can make a play,” he said. “It’s people depending on someone else to get things done.”
Whatever the reason or the cure, Kampe and fans alike know it needs to be resolved quickly. The Grizzlies were 4-2 in the first half-month of the season with wins over Houston, Tennessee and Utah Valley, but just 4-6 in December.
“We were a darn good team in November and had a chance to be a really, really good team,” he said. “We’ve gone in the other direction. We have to find a way to get that changed back to change that back.”  
After Western Illinois’ visit Thursday, Oakland hosts IUPUI Saturday before heading back to the road for a three-game trip at IPFW, Southern Utah and Oral Roberts.


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