I agree, no excuses. We lost last Friday, because the team didn’t play well enough to beat the opponents.
I’m not the coach, so I don’t know what the objective of joining this pre-season tournament is. But let’s take a look at 2 scenarios and see what the possible implications are:
1) The objective is to win this tournament – If so, then expect the coaches to play all out to win as many games to get to the playoffs, then prepare specifically for each game to try to win the title. This assumes that the coaches already have a core team in mind. The best players will see the most action, so the rotation will be short, maybe a maximum of 10 players. Those outside the rotation will probably see floor time only during garbage time, when the game is out of reach either way, or in the last few meaningless seconds of a quarter, or when they need a body to foul an opponent and don’t want the rotation players to sacrifice a foul. Our rotation players will probably improve, but our bench will effectively be a lot shallower because the bench players won’t get much exposure.
2) The objective is to maximize the exposure of the players in preparation for a strong showing in the UAAP – If this is the case, winning the tournament will be secondary to preparing for the UAAP wars. We’ll see a lot of experimentation and rotation of players, to give them more confidence and allow them to become more familiar with each other and the patterns designed by the coaches. The downside is that the team may lose some “winnable” games against teams perceived as weaker.
It all depends on the objectives of the coaches. We may want the team to win every game, but if the coaches “must have” is to prepare for the UAAP, then winning might just be a “nice to have”. The proper pacing of the preparations has always been a trademark of past Archer champion teams. Pre-season tournament championships are nice, but the real prize is the UAAP championship trophy. The team will peak sometime around the end of the first round of the UAAP, and by then we’ll know whether this team has what it takes to go all the way.
One possible concern if the team goes all-out in the pre-season is the risk of possible injuries that may affect a player’s performance in the UAAP. Remember that last year, Arvie was never 100% in the UAAP due to a groin injury he was nursing in the pre-season.
One of Stephen Covey’s 7 habits is “begin with the end in mind”. Our coaches have their end objective. How they get the team there might be inferred from how the team is performing today.