Some observations and opinions after two weeks of high school boys and girls basketball tournament play:
- It never ceases to amaze me that during pregame or halftime warmups, the "bigs" on teams, i.e., forwards and particularly centers, never practice the shots they are most likely to attempt during a game.
Instead of practicing moves inside the lane or shooting seven- to 10-foot jumpers, they are all outside the 3-point arc launching bombs.
Those kind of shots may be fun, but they don't hone the shooting skills they're likely to need during a game.
- Speaking of triples, way too many players are not working the ball around for a high-percentage shot and instead throwing up a 3 as soon as they can.
The instant gratification if you make the shot is great, but it's still a low-percentage shot.
Of 55 total shots attempted by Ishpeming's boys against Gwinn on Wednesday, 20 were from 3-point range. The Hematites made just four.
It's one thing to launch a trey when you need to make up ground fast or to tie or go ahead in the final minute of play. It's another to forego offensive patience and put up a long shot just because it's fun or the way the NBA operates.
- Doesn't anyone follow up a shot anymore? I might have seen one or two players move in for a possible rebound after shooting the ball. Those who attempt triples are particularly at blame.
Maybe their coaches tell them to stay back on defense after attempting a shot. But it's probably a lack of fundamentals, mental awareness and-or just plain laziness they don't follow up on their attempt.
- It bothers me that no one practices free-throw shooting during warmups. There's enough time, but I've only seen one squad - the Houghton High School girls - have everyone attempt a charity-stripe shot or two before a game.
The Gremlins wound up sinking 8 of 11 (72.7 percent) during Thursday's Class C regional finale against Ishpeming.
Conversely, Gwinn's boys' team canned 11 of 26 (42.3 percent) against Ishpeming Wednesday and Negaunee 14 of 24 (58 percent) vs. Gwinn on Friday. Neither team practiced its free throws before the game.
In tourney play especially, free throws can mean the difference between a win and a season-ending loss.
- I always laugh to myself a couple of times every game when fans around me LOUDLY complain about EVERY referee's call - or non-call - against their team.
Whether the call was justified or not, these fans dispute every decision made. I guess they believe a ref should never call a foul - or fail to make a call - concerning their team.
Craig Remsburg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 251. His email address is email@example.com.