Breaking down Vescovi's 'phenomenal' adjustments to life in SEC

#1

kamoshika

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#1
The turnovers have been the biggest improvement from Vescovi’s debut to now. Vescovi credits a focus on fundamentals in addition to adjustments in speed. “I think my biggest problem was I was jumping all the time to pass the ball,” Vescovi said. “It cost me a lot of turnovers, so I think, first of all, it was playing off two feet and just trying to read the situation and not jumping, wondering if someone is open.”

"A lot of things have adjusted for him, I think,” Barnes said. “For one, he has gotten himself into better shape, that's where it started. There's no doubt he can shoot the ball, he has a great feel for the game, he's competitive, he sees everything really well, he knows he's going to have to get better defensively.”

There aren’t many stories in college basketball this season more impressive than what Vescovi is doing. Playing for a coach that is famously known for being hard on point guards, Vescovi has been able to learn a new offense and run it at a high level in just seven weeks.


“It’s crazy,” Nkamhoua said. “I didn’t really understand how crazy it was until we were in the film room one time and coach Barnes said, ‘What do you guys think is really special that’s happening on our team right now?’ and he said, ‘You guys realize Santi (Vescovi) has been here for three weeks, and he’s doing what he’s doing.’ That’s when I realize[d] noticed it.” For Barnes, it’s Vescovi’s mature approach and ability to learn on the fly, both from things Barnes and defenses throw at him, and from his mistakes.
Breaking down Vescovi’s ‘phenomenal’ adjustments to life in SEC

After Turner was shut down, Tennessee didn’t have an aggressor. Jordan Bowden was kind of forced into that role, but that’s not who he is. Vescovi has become that guy for Tennessee, getting into the paint and either getting a shot up or finding someone else. The offense looks drastically different than it did in late December.

While the win column isn’t exactly showing that progress, his development is clear. On Tuesday though, Tennessee cruised to a 21 point win over Arkansas. Vescovi’s effort was recognized by Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman after the game. “I thought he was phenomenal,” Musselman said of Vescovi. “He’s a very entertaining player to watch on tape. It’s a great find for their coaching staff, to be able to find a point guard who comes in and plays with great intelligence, a guy that can knock down the three, make his foul shots. His composure, for a freshman -- phenomenal.”

Santiago Vescovi was thrown into the fire — and he’s already better for it
 
#3

cncchris33

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#3
The dividends of learning on the job just might save this season’s hopes, but the real return will be seen next season when he doesn’t have to spend the first 2 months adjusting. I am so glad we didn’t redshirt him this year like was talked about. That is going to pay off in spades, even if it cost us a half season of eligibility.
 
#4

alaVOL

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#4
Ves is gonna be an assist magician before his Vol days are over. This young man has a high ceiling and we'll all be happy he's all VOL. He is adjusting quickly and we'll be amazed after he's had more time with our team. GBO!
 
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#6

Voltopia

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#6
Three things I know for certain:

(1) Santiago Vescovi is so good his game is gonna sell tickets these next few seasons. That is damn good. People will sign up for the chance to watch that kid (and the Vols) razzle dazzle.

(2) Rick Barnes has a golden horseshoe crammed right up his rear end to produce a conference-ready freshman PG playing with Vescovi's level of international experience, considering Turner's loss. I mean, I kid, it's a lot of hard work and having an experienced and professional staff putting in the effort, but still, if I saw a bit of a golden shine sometimes I wouldn't be surprised.

(3) I think that second article hits on a good observation-- I expect Bowden is going to turn in better results the more Vescovi can shoulder the load at PG. A bit less attention on Bowden, a bit more attention on another guy, and he won't have to play at PG as much. We may see more nights like last night this season.
 
#7

StrangeVol

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#7
Having Santi literally take charge of this team is resulting in better performance in every game. Bowden is more comfortable as mentioned above, Fulky knows he has a PG that will get him the ball, Pons knows he needs to get into position near the rim when Santi drives because he'll get him the ball if he doesn't like his shot and he won't try to force something up.

Santi is very good at making the defense move side to side and he is quick to feed an open perimeter shooter. His adjusted Assist to TO ratio (throwing out his first three games) is around 2.0 which is pretty good for a freshman point guard in anybody's league. What else could you want from a point guard that should be just now finishing up his senior year in high school?

Of course, you could throw in a handful of three-pointers and over 80% free throw shooting and I'd say we're in very very good shape. He does need some help beating traps...but it's a rare player that doesn't need help.

Clearly, Santi is getting it done. :)
 
#8

i2amavol

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#8
Having Santi literally take charge of this team is resulting in better performance in every game. Bowden is more comfortable as mentioned above, Fulky knows he has a PG that will get him the ball, Pons knows he needs to get into position near the rim when Santi drives because he'll get him the ball if he doesn't like his shot and he won't try to force something up.

Santi is very good at making the defense move side to side and he is quick to feed an open perimeter shooter. His adjusted Assist to TO ratio (throwing out his first three games) is around 2.0 which is pretty good for a freshman point guard in anybody's league. What else could you want from a point guard that should be just now finishing up his senior year in high school?

Of course, you could throw in a handful of three-pointers and over 80% free throw shooting and I'd say we're in very very good shape. He does need some help beating traps...but it's a rare player that doesn't need help.

Clearly, Santi is getting it done. :)
Last night, even after he had a turnover, he came right back and played with composure. I think that is the difference between him and a lot of players. He just went right back to work.
 
#9

cardvolfan

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#9
Last night, even after he had a turnover, he came right back and played with composure. I think that is the difference between him and a lot of players. He just went right back to work.
Also, we still have to understand that he would be going to his Senior Prom in Uruguay soon if he followed the normal course of basketball progression in the States. Maybe they have a Uruguayan fiesta instead? Anyway, the point is that he just turned 18 and has done some remarkable things at such a young age. Also, he was on the post game show last night, and was very humble, thanking the fans for coming to watch Tennessee play. Impressive!
 
#10
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#10
Stokes played his freshman year at UT after graduating early, but I think that Santiago would have finished high school nearly a year ago. However he is pretty young for his class and could have probably been held back a year. I fall into that group of being one of the youngest in my class and my parents considered starting me a year later. Sometimes I wonder how being the oldest in my class would have worked out. Probably would have just been a more mature delinquent I suppose.
 
#11

IPleadInsanity

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#11
Looks to slash the defense 1st, been missing at UT for a while. When nothing opens up "drive and get fouled". I am curious to see what Barnes can do with the 7footer and the point guard. Gave up calling them by their names. RAW talent.
 
#12

RollerVol

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#12
ok, then...liked what I saw...he better keep it up or I'm going to jerk his butt and put it on the bench...:D

PS. one game doesn't make a season...;)

GO BIG ORANGE!
 
#13

Peyton Berry

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#13
All you guys have mentioned a lot of good points, but one of the biggest improvements I’ve seen (other than the turnovers) is on the defensive side of the ball. His first 2/3 games, guards were attacking and blowing by him like crazy, switches and communication was getting messed up, he was getting back doored badly...
He is still having trouble staying in front of guards with elite quickness and explosiveness, like Quickly and Maxey of KY, but that’s because he wasn’t given the elite quickness to match it. But the mental aspect can help cover some of that, and that’s what he’s improved on so much
 
#17

gainesvol82

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#17
Lots to like about Vescovi's game. High IQ, good passer, unselfish but looks to score, good rebounder, probes the defense well and makes good decisions, great even demeanor and hustles.

He is getting much better at understanding where to be on defense. I want to see him improve his conditioning so he can move more without the ball.

I really like his shot, especially his back step/hop into the 3 ball. I never see him off balance on his jump shot. His no-look passes are electric and is a reliable FT shooter. I look forward to watching his speed and athleticism improve after an off-season.
 
#19

VolMarine1371

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#19
Aside from the turnovers, he's made huge strides in finishing at the rim. Look at LSU, then look at last night against the Pigs, and his improvement is amazing.
2 totally different teams in 2 totally different places. LSU is a good team. And the Pigs well are no ad good as LSU but still a top 50 team In Ken Pom rankings. Maybe we get lucky this year and get in on the bubble but none the less Vescovi gives us a chance the more he is able to learn that’s for sure.
 
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#20

BigBadVol

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#20
It's adjusting to everything mentioned in a short amount of time but one thing that stands out to me is his dribbling with either hand has improved dramatically. It gives him the ability to work from either side of the court.
 
#24

Roustabout

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#24
The turnovers have been the biggest improvement from Vescovi’s debut to now. Vescovi credits a focus on fundamentals in addition to adjustments in speed. “I think my biggest problem was I was jumping all the time to pass the ball,” Vescovi said. “It cost me a lot of turnovers, so I think, first of all, it was playing off two feet and just trying to read the situation and not jumping, wondering if someone is open.”

"A lot of things have adjusted for him, I think,” Barnes said. “For one, he has gotten himself into better shape, that's where it started. There's no doubt he can shoot the ball, he has a great feel for the game, he's competitive, he sees everything really well, he knows he's going to have to get better defensively.”

There aren’t many stories in college basketball this season more impressive than what Vescovi is doing. Playing for a coach that is famously known for being hard on point guards, Vescovi has been able to learn a new offense and run it at a high level in just seven weeks.

“It’s crazy,” Nkamhoua said. “I didn’t really understand how crazy it was until we were in the film room one time and coach Barnes said, ‘What do you guys think is really special that’s happening on our team right now?’ and he said, ‘You guys realize Santi (Vescovi) has been here for three weeks, and he’s doing what he’s doing.’ That’s when I realize[d] noticed it.” For Barnes, it’s Vescovi’s mature approach and ability to learn on the fly, both from things Barnes and defenses throw at him, and from his mistakes.
Breaking down Vescovi’s ‘phenomenal’ adjustments to life in SEC


After Turner was shut down, Tennessee didn’t have an aggressor. Jordan Bowden was kind of forced into that role, but that’s not who he is. Vescovi has become that guy for Tennessee, getting into the paint and either getting a shot up or finding someone else. The offense looks drastically different than it did in late December.

While the win column isn’t exactly showing that progress, his development is clear. On Tuesday though, Tennessee cruised to a 21 point win over Arkansas. Vescovi’s effort was recognized by Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman after the game. “I thought he was phenomenal,” Musselman said of Vescovi. “He’s a very entertaining player to watch on tape. It’s a great find for their coaching staff, to be able to find a point guard who comes in and plays with great intelligence, a guy that can knock down the three, make his foul shots. His composure, for a freshman -- phenomenal.”
Santiago Vescovi was thrown into the fire — and he’s already better for it
And we still have idiots who think he isn’t a PG.
 
#25

Namorto1

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#25
This kid is my favorite player on the team. A month ago there were legit worries about his turnovers, and weaker dribbling with his right hand, but I have absolutely zero worries at this point. His progress is just about all phases is noticeable after 3 weeks. He is already the quiet leader on this team in my opinion and I have no doubt in his current and future ability to be our PG. He has a lot to improve upon but he strikes me somewhat like a young Jalen Brunson, who also was a stocky lefty, who wasn’t a great athlete, but was crafty, knew how to play, and was a flat out winner.
 

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