What's the surest sign that it's October?
"Before you even ask the question later, because I know you will," Lowe joked, "yes, we will speed up the tempo."
Yes, here we go again. This is always a thing that fans want to talk about and the coaches then have to address. At this point I'm starting to wonder if Lowe has ever had any intention of speeding things up, or if he simply prefers to answer the question with a fib rather than the unpopular truth, which would go as follows:
Lowe: "Speed up the tempo? No, I don't think so. I anticipate we'll be in the bottom 100 in terms of pace, just as we have been each of the last three seasons."
Some Idiot: "Bottom 100?! Why that almost sounds like... like Princeton offense territory. YOU MANIAC."
Lowe: "And get this: not only will we crawl like the Princeton, we'll be far less effective at the same time! Tickets on sale now!"
Some Idiot: "Actually that's fine. So long as you don't take too many threes. They're icky."
See, that's just plain bad for business. Can't beat "Speed! Running! Layups! Racing stripes! Live wolfdog!"
But maybe Lowe really does mean it this time. The question I ask every time this comes up, three Octobers in a row now, is: can we do it? The last two years, the answer was a resounding no. The defense wasn't good enough to provide enough transition opportunities, and did we really expect Farnold Degand to trigger a renaissance?
As I said last year and will say again because if Sid can do it then I might as well get in on the action:
But as I mentioned around this time last year, this team hasn't done a good job of forcing turnovers or rebounding defensively at any point in the Lowe era or the one prior to it. There's only so much you can do with the tempo when you're bringing the ball in from underneath your own basket to start every possession.
"As I said last year..." leads into a comment that begins with "but as I mentioned around this time last year..." I'm beginning to feel dizzy. Someone check the space-time continuum for cracks.
Anyway, assuming Lowe's commitment to change, the plausibility of an up-tempo attack depends on how you feel about two things. First, can we continue playing the sort of solid defense we saw at the end of last season? And second, is Ryan Harrow going to have the immediate impact needed to make this whole speed thing happen?