How to fix a broken team

A pointed look at the strengths and weaknesses of our men’s basketball team

Daniel Rependa

Staff Writer

It doesn’t take a sports analyst to recognize that our men’s basketball team is not having a great season. In fact, the Lions have been having a terrible past couple of seasons.

Now, I am sure I am not the only person asking, “What the heck is going on with our basketball team?” Over the past three years we have had two seasons with a win percentage under .280 and one with .455. And even our one season with the .455 win percentage was really not that impressive considering the season only consisted of 22 games and our record got us in the bottom seed of the playoffs. So, what’s the problem with our team? Why is it that we are losing so often? And when we are winning, why is it always in the latter half of the season when we can’t make up the wins?

One could argue that the Lions are currently a young team and just need some time to develop. However, while it is true that 13 out of the 17 players are first and second-years, that’s been true for the past two seasons. Basically, we have had a “young team” for the past three years. With the exception of Justin Bell, David Tyndale, and Kenneth Buchanan, we don’t really have a well-developed team that has been playing together for a long time.

Speaking of Bell, the player is a 230-pound, six-foot-six forward who has an excellent shooting range and can play very aggressive when needed. Which brings the question to mind, “Why isn’t he playing more?” Over the season he’s averaged approximately 20 minutes a game and rarely gets to start. Being a senior on the team, he should be getting minutes equivalent to team star, Tyndale.

And I don’t mean he deserves time strictly because he’s a senior, but rather because he’s good. He’s one of the largest players on the team, he has great offensive and defensive capabilities, and he’s been playing with teammates Tyndale and Buchanan for three years. I can understand wanting to develop a young team, and even wanting to start younger players because they will be the future of the team. However, the team has been young for three years and championships won’t come with only learning and developing experiences.

Now, I am not trying to sound negative. I am a huge fan of the York Lions and will always support them. However, I’m currently a fan of a team that hasn’t won an OUA championship since 1985. So, I feel like I am well justified in saying that not starting capable players and having new players cycle in through our ranks every year, is definitely a problem.  And while I always try to remain hopeful and optimistic, I am sure I don’t only speak for myself when I say I am frustrated and anxious for wins. Wins that will only come from doing things diffrently.

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By Excalibur Publications



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