The point guard called the one or point, is one of the five positions in a regulation basketball game. A point guard has the most specialized role of any position. Point guards are expected to run the team's offense by controlling the ball and making sure that it gets to the right player at the right time. Above all, the point guard must understand and accept their coach's game plan. While the point guard must understand and accept the coach's gameplan, they must be able to adapt to what the defense is allowing, they must control the pace of the game. A point guard, like other player positions in basketball, specializes in certain skills. A point guard's primary job is to facilitate scoring opportunities for his/her team, or sometimes for themselves. Lee Rose has described a point guard as a coach on the floor, who can handle and distribute the ball to teammates; this involves setting up plays on the court, getting the ball to the teammate in the best position to score, controlling the tempo of the game.
A point guard should know when and how to instigate a fast break and when and how to initiate the more deliberate sets. Point guards are expected to be vocal floor leaders. A point guard needs always to have in mind the times on the shot clock and the game clock, the score, the numbers of remaining timeouts for both teams, etc. Among the taller players who have enjoyed success at the position is Ben Simmons, who at 6’ 10” won the 2018 National Basketball Association Rookie of the Year Award. Behind him is Magic Johnson, who at 6’ 9” won the National Basketball Association Most Valuable Player Award three times in his career. Other point guards who have been named NBA MVP include Russell Westbrook, Bob Cousy, Oscar Robertson, Allen Iverson, Derrick Rose and two-time winners Steve Nash and Stephen Curry. In the NBA, point guards are about 6' 4" or shorter, average about 6' 2" whereas in the WNBA, point guards are 5' 9" or shorter. Having above-average size is considered advantageous, although size is secondary to situational awareness, speed and ball handling skills.
Shorter players tend to be better dribblers since they are closer to the floor, thus have better control of the ball while dribbling. After an opponent scores, it is the point guard who brings the ball down court to begin an offensive play. Passing skills, ball handling, court vision are crucial. Speed is important. Point guards are valued more for their assist totals than for their scoring. Another major evaluation factor is assist-to-turnover ratio, which reflects the decision-making skills of the player. Still, a first-rate point guard should have a reasonably effective jump shot; the point guard is positioned on the perimeter of the play, so as to have the best view of the action. This is a necessity because of the point guard's many leadership obligations. Many times, the point guard is referred to by announcers as a "coach on the floor" or a "floor general". In the past, this was true, as several point guards such as Lenny Wilkens served their teams as player-coaches; this is not so common anymore, as most coaches are now specialized in coaching and are non-players.
Some point guards are still given a great deal of leeway in the offense. Point guards who are not given this much freedom, are still extensions of their coach on the floor and must display good leadership skills. Along with leadership and a general basketball acumen, ball-handling is a skill of great importance to a point guard. Speaking, the point guard is the player in possession of the ball for the most time during a game and is responsible for maintaining possession of the ball for his team in the face of any pressure from the opponents. Point guards must be able to maintain possession of the ball in crowded spaces and in traffic and be able to advance the ball quickly. A point guard that has enough ball-handling skill and quickness to be able to drive to the basket in a half-court set is very valuable and considered by some to be a must for a successful offense. After ball-handling and scoring are the most important areas of the game for a point guard; as the primary decision-maker for a team, a point guard's passing ability determines how well a point guard is able to put his decision into play.
It is one thing to be able to recognize the player, in a tactically advantageous position, but it is another thing to be able to deliver the ball to that player. For this reason, a point guard is but not always, more skilled and focused on passing than shooting. However, a good jump shot and the ability to score off a drive to the basket are still valuable skills. A point guard will use his ability to score in order to augment his effectiveness as a decision maker and play maker. In addition to the traditional role of the point guard, modern teams have found new ways to utilize the position. Notably, several modern point guards have used a successful style of post play, a tactic practiced by much larger centers and forwards. Working off of the fact that the opposing point guard is in all probability an undersized player with limited strength, several modern point guards have developed games close to the basket that include being able to utilize the drop step, spin move, fade away jump shot. In recent years, the sport's shift from a fundamental style of play to a more athletic, scoring-oriented game resulted in the proliferation of so-called combo guards at the po
The five basketball positions employed by organized basketball teams are the point guard, the shooting guard, the small forward, the power forward, the center. The point guard is the leader of the team on the court; this position requires substantial ball handling skills and the ability to facilitate the team during a play. The shooting guard, as the name implies, is the best shooter; as well as being capable of shooting from longer distances, this position tends to be the best defender on the team. The small forward has an aggressive approach to the basket when handling the ball; the small forward is known to make cuts to the basket in efforts to get open for shots. The power forward and the center are called the "frontcourt" acting as their team's primary rebounders or shot blockers, or receiving passes to take inside shots; the center is the larger of the two. Only three positions were recognized based on where they played on the court: Guards played outside and away from the hoop and forwards played outside and near the baseline, with the center positioned in the key.
During the 1980s, as team strategy evolved. More specialized roles developed. Team strategy and available personnel, still dictate the positions used by a particular team. For example, the dribble-drive motion offense and the Princeton offense use four interchangeable guards and one center; this set is known as a "four-in and one-out" play scheme. Other combinations are prevalent. Besides the five basic positions, some teams use non-standard or hybrid positions, such as the point forward, a hybrid small forward/point guard; the point guard known as the one, is the team's best ball handler and passer. Therefore, they lead their team in assists and are able to create shots for themselves and their teammates, they are quick and are able to hit shots either outside the three-point line or "in the paint" depending on the player's skill level. Point guards are looked upon as the "floor general" or the "coach on the floor", they should study the game and game film to be able to recognize the weaknesses of the defense, the strengths of their own offense.
They are responsible for directing plays, making the position equivalent to that of quarterback in American football, playmaker in association football, center in ice hockey, or setter in volleyball. Good point guards increase team efficiency and have a high number of assists, they are referred to as dribblers or play-makers. In the NBA, point guards are the shortest players on the team and are 6 feet 4 inches or shorter; the shooting guard is known as the two or the off guard. Along with the small forward, a shooting guard is referred to as a wing because of its use in common positioning tactics; as the name suggests, most shooting guards are prolific from the three-point range. Besides being able to shoot the ball, shooting guards tend to be the best defender on the team, as well as being able to move without the ball to create open looks for themselves; some shooting guards have good ball handling skills creating their own shots off the dribble. A versatile shooting guard will have good passing skills, allowing them to assume point guard responsibilities known as combo guards.
Bigger shooting guards tend to play as small forwards. In the NBA, shooting guards range from 6 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 8 inches; the small forward known as the three, is considered to be the most versatile of the main five basketball positions. Versatility is key for small forwards because of the nature of their role, which resembles that of a shooting guard more than that of a power forward; this is why the small forward and shooting guard positions are interchangeable and referred to as wings. Small forwards have a variety such as quickness and strength inside. One common thread among all kinds of small forwards is an ability to "get to the line" and draw fouls by aggressively attempting plays, lay-ups, or slam dunks; as such, accurate foul shooting is a common skill for small forwards, many of whom record a large portion of their points from the foul line. Besides being able to drive to the basket, they are good shooters from long range; some small forwards have good passing skills, allowing them to assume point guard responsibilities as point forwards.
Small forwards should be able to do a little bit of everything on the court playing roles such as swingmen and defensive specialists. In the NBA, small forwards range from 6 feet 6 inches to 6 feet 9 inches; the power forward known as the four plays a role similar to that of the center, down in the "post" or "low blocks". The power forward is the team's most versatile scorer, being able to score close to the basket while being able to shoot mid-range jump shots from 12 to 18 feet from the basket; some power forwards have become known as stretch fours, since extending their shooting range to three-pointers. On defense, they are required to have the strength to guard bigger players close to the basket and to have the athleticism to guard quick players away from the basket. Most power forwards tend to be more versatile than centers since they can be part of plays and are not always in the low block. In the
Sam Mitchell (basketball)
Samuel E. Mitchell Jr. is a former professional basketball player, an assistant coach for the Memphis Tigers of the American Athletic Conference. He was the interim head coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves of the National Basketball Association for one season, he was the head coach for the Toronto Raptors of the National Basketball Association from 2004 to 2008. Mitchell has done analyst work for TSN and NBA TV as well as radio work for WHAL in Columbus and WZGC-FM "92.9 The Game" in Atlanta. He currently works as a talk show co-host/analyst on SiriusXM NBA Radio. Mitchell, a 6'6", 210 lb small forward, graduated from Columbus High School. Afterwards he played college basketball at Mercer University for four seasons, scored nearly 2,000 points, becoming the leading scorer in Bears history, he led the team to both the regular-season and postseason Trans-American Atlantic Conference championships in 1985. As a result, the team made the NCAA tournament that year, he was drafted by the Houston Rockets with the 7th pick of the 3rd round in the 1985 NBA draft.
Mitchell did not commence play in the NBA after being drafted and until joining 1989 expansion team, the Minnesota Timberwolves, in their inaugural season. Prior to his NBA career, he spent three seasons in the Continental Basketball Association, playing for the Wisconsin Flyers and Rapid City Thrillers, in the French Ligue Nationale de Basketball team of Montpellier for the end of the 1987–88 and the whole 1988–89 season. After that, Mitchell started his NBA career. During his playing days in Minneapolis, he scored a career-high 37 points against the Philadelphia 76ers on February 3, 1991. On September 8, 1992 he was traded along with point guard Pooh Richardson to the Indiana Pacers in exchange for small forward Chuck Person and point guard Micheal Williams. After spending three years with the Pacers, he returned to the Timberwolves for the rest of his career, before retiring in 2002. Mitchell ranks fourth in Wolves history in points, fourth in steals. Second in minutes played, is fourth in total rebounds.
Mitchell returned to the NBA immediately after his retirement as an assistant coach with the Milwaukee Bucks for two seasons until 2004. He briefly became a part of the expansion Charlotte Bobcats as their top assistant coach, until moving on to the Toronto Raptors when he was named as the sixth head coach in Raptors history after incumbent Kevin O'Neill was fired. Mitchell was named the coach of the month in January 2007 for his effort bringing the Toronto Raptors back to.500 and leading the Atlantic Division. On March 30, 2007, Mitchell got his 100th win as NBA coach when the Raptors defeated the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center. Mitchell, who witnessed his team struggle with rebuilding in his first years as coach led the Toronto Raptors to their first division title in franchise history as the team won the Atlantic Division in the NBA's Eastern Conference in the 2006–07 season. On April 24, 2007, he was named 2006–07 NBA Coach of the Year. On May 22, 2007 after leading the Raptors to their first playoffs appearance since 2002, after much speculation, Mitchell was signed to a four-year contract with the Raptors.
On November 25, 2007 Mitchell surpassed Lenny Wilkens for the most wins in team history. Mitchell was the longest reigning head coach of the Toronto Raptors. On December 3, 2008, after leading the Raptors to a disappointing 8–9 start to the 2008–09 season, Mitchell was relieved of his duties as the team's head coach. Assistant coach Jay Triano took over the position of interim head coach of the Raptors, which made him the first foreign-born player to coach a team in the NBA; the firing was ridiculed by the TNT Overtime crew because the Raptors were only one game under.500 at the time of the firing. Chris Webber predicted that they would not be "as good under another coach." In fact, the Raptors went 25–40 the rest of the season. Mitchell was hired as an assistant coach by the New Jersey Nets on July 19, 2010. On December 6, 2011, Nets hired P. J. Carlesimo and Mario Elie as new assistant coaches and Mitchell was reassigned to a scouting position. On 2012, Sam Mitchell named head coach of USA select to 2012 William Jones Cup in Taiwan and his team finished bronze medal.
On June 16, 2014, Mitchell was hired as an assistant coach by the Minnesota Timberwolves. On September 11, 2015, Mitchell became the Timberwolves' interim head coach after Flip Saunders had to take a leave of absence to receive treatment after being diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. On October 25, 2015, Saunders died at age 60. For the rest of the season, Mitchell became the official head coach, although he would still be treated as an interim coach. During his sole season coaching the Timberwolves, he would coach them to the fifth-worst record in the league with a 29–53 record. On April 13, 2016, Mitchell was relieved of his interim head coaching duties as the coach of the Timberwolves after the last game of the season, allowing them to look for a permanent coach, he would be replaced by former Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau. On June 13, 2018, Mitchell was hired by the University of Memphis as assistant coach under Penny Hardaway. Mitchell lives in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife and their four daughters.
Sam Mitchell coach profile at NBA.com NBA career stats as a player at Basketball-Reference NBA career stats as a coach at Basketball-Reference Sam Mitchell on Twitter
Helms Foundation College Basketball Player of the Year
The Helms Foundation College Basketball Player of the Year was an annual basketball award given to the most outstanding intercollegiate men's basketball player in the United States. The award was first given following the 1904–05 season and ceased being awarded after the 1978–79 season, it was the first major most valuable player award for men's basketball in the United States, the Helms Athletic Foundation was considered within the basketball community to be the authority on men's college basketball for that era. Thus, the award was viewed as the premier player of the year award one could receive up until the 1960s, at which point the Naismith College Player of the Year and John R. Wooden Award took over as the national season MVP awards. "Helms Foundation Player of the Year Winners". Sports-reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. 2010. Archived from the original on June 19, 2014. Retrieved December 7, 2010. Bjarkman, Peter. Hoopla: A Century of College Basketball. Masters Press. ISBN 1-57028-039-8
The small forward known as the three, is one of the five positions in a regulation basketball game. Small forwards are shorter and leaner than power forwards and centers, but taller and larger than either of the guard positions; the small forward is considered to be the most versatile of the five main basketball positions. In the NBA, small forwards range from 6' 6" to 6' 10" while in the WNBA, small forwards are between 5' 11" to 6' 2". Small forwards are responsible for scoring points, defending and as secondary or tertiary rebounders behind the power forward and center, although a few have considerable passing responsibilities. Many small forwards in professional basketball are prolific scorers; the styles with which small forwards amass their points vary widely. Some players at the position are accurate shooters, others prefer to initiate physical contact with opposing players, still others are slashers who possess jump shots. In some cases, small forwards position as off-the-ball specialists.
Small forwards who are defensive specialists are versatile as they can guard multiple positions using their size and strength
John R. Wooden Award
The John R. Wooden Award is an award given annually to the most outstanding men's and women's college basketball players; the program consists of the men's and women's Player of the Year awards, the Legends of Coaching award and recognizes the All–America Teams. The awards, given by the Los Angeles Athletic Club, are named in honor of John Wooden, the 1932 national collegiate basketball player of the year from Purdue. Wooden taught and coached men's basketball at Indiana State and UCLA. Coach Wooden, whose teams at UCLA won ten NCAA championships, was the first man to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player and coach, his 1948 Indiana State team was the NAIB National Finalist. The award, given only to male athletes, was first given in 1977. Starting in 2004, the award was extended to women's basketball. Additionally, the Legends of Coaching Award was presented first in 1999; the 2015 presentation was broadcast on ESPN2 and the show was presented by Wendy's at Los Angeles' Club Nokia on Friday, April 10, 2015.
Each year, the Award's National Advisory Board, a 26-member panel, selects 20 candidates for Player of the Year and All-American Team honors. The candidates must be full-time students and have a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or higher throughout their college career. Players who are nominated must have made outstanding contributions to team play, both offensively and defensively, be model citizens, exhibiting strength of character both on and off the court; the selection ballot is announced prior to the NCAA basketball tournament. The voters sportscasters representing the 50 states; the top ten vote-getters are selected to the All-American Team, the results are announced following the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Tournament. The person who receives the most votes is named the Player of the Year, the winner is announced following the NCAA championship game; the Player of the Year is awarded a trophy consisting of five bronze figures. The player's school receives a duplicate trophy, as well as a scholarship grant.
The other top four members of the All-American Team receive an All-American Team trophy, a jacket, a scholarship grant which goes to their school. Each coach of the top five All-American Team members receives a jacket; the All-American Team members ranked six through ten receive an All-American Team trophy and a jacket, but their schools do not receive a scholarship. The criteria for the women's Player of the Year award and All-American Team honors are similar to those for the men. For the women's award, the National Advisory Board consists of 12 members, 15 candidates are selected for the ballot; the voters are 250 sportscasters. In contrast to the men's All-American Team, only five members are selected for the women's team; the Player of the Year receives a trophy, her school receives a duplicate trophy and a scholarship grant. The trophy features five bronze figures, each depicting one of the five major skills that Wooden believed that "total" basketball player must exhibit: rebounding, shooting and defense.
The concept for the trophy originated with Richard "Duke" Llewellyn. Work began on the trophy in 1975, sculptor Don Winton, who had sculpted many top sports awards, was given the task of designing the model of the trophy; the figures are bronze attached to a pentagonal base plate. The tallest figure is 10¼ inches high; the trophy's base is 7½ inches high, is made from solid walnut. The total height of the trophy is 17 3⁄4 inches, it weighs 25 lb; the Wooden family announced in August 2005 that he would no longer participate because of a trademark dispute concerning the use of his name. However, he never contested the use of his name prior to his death in 2010, the award continues to bear his name. “I don’t want anything to interfere with the continuation of the award,” told The Associated Press at the time. In 2011 the Wooden Family began participation. Coach John Wooden’s son, presented the Wooden Award to Brigham Young senior Jimmer Fredette. In 2012 John Wooden’s grandson, Greg, on behalf of The Los Angeles Athletic Club, presented the Wooden Award to University of Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis.
Greg Wooden made the announcement on ESPN College GameDay. The John R. Wooden High School Player of the Year awards are given to the most valuable player in each of the five divisions of the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section, one Los Angeles City division; the Legends of Coaching Award recognizes the lifetime achievement of coaches who exemplify Coach Wooden's high standards of coaching success and personal achievement. When selecting the individual, the Wooden Award Committee considers a coach's character, success rate on the court, graduating rate of student athletes, his or her coaching philosophy, identification with the goals of the John R. Wooden Award. List of U. S. men's college basketball national player of the year awards John R. Wooden Classic Official website
UCF Knights men's basketball
The UCF Knights men's basketball team represents The University of Central Florida located in Orlando, United States. UCF competes in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the American Athletic Conference; the Knights play their home games in the CFE Arena located on the university's main campus. They are coached by Johnny Dawkins, hired in 2016; the Knights have appeared in the NCAA Division II Tournament six times, including the Final Four in 1978. UCF has reached the NCAA Division I Tournament five times. UCF has won twelve conference championships, seven regular season championships, five tournament championships. UCF played its first intercollegiate basketball game before the team had a nickname. In the Division II era, under Torchy Clark, UCF found great success including a DII Final Four appearance. UCF has competed in the Atlantic Sun Conference, from 1992 until 2005, when all sports joined Conference USA; as a Division II team, the Knights had been a charter member of the Sunshine State Conference from 1975 to 1984.
The Knights had a brief one-year stint in the Sun Belt Conference. UCF has had seven head coaches since organized basketball began in 1969; the Knights have played nearly 1,200 games in their 44 seasons. In that time, four coaches have led the Knights to the postseason: Torchy Clark, Kirk Speraw, Donnie Jones, Johnny Dawkins. Clark in 1976, 1977, 1978, 1980, 1981, 1982, Speraw in 1994, 1996, 2004, 2005, Jones in 2011 and 2012. Clark is the only coach to lead the Knights past the first round of the NCAA Tournament, reaching the 1978 Final Four following a 24–game winning streak. Speraw is the longest tenured coach in program history at 17 seasons. Clark remains the winningest coach in school history with 274 wins in 14 seasons. Donnie Jones, hired in 2010 was fired by UCF on March 10, 2016. Johnny Dawkins, fired by Stanford, was hired on March 22, 2016. Eugene "Torchy" Clark, served as FTU's UCF's, first head basketball coach. In 1969, a Wisconsin high school coach, was responsible for starting the university's basketball program from scratch.
The creation of the program had only been approved by the Florida Board of Regents five months prior to his hire. That year, as a club level team, the Knights went 11–3, including a 99–38 victory in their first game over Massey Tech; the first season would serve as an omen for UCF basketball, with Clark bringing the university unprecedented success as a Division II team. Roaming the sidelines for 14 seasons, Clark never had a losing season, built UCF into a national power, bringing the Knights five Sunshine State Conference regular season championships, one conference tournament championship and six NCAA tournament appearances in eight years. In 1978, Clark led the Knights, which at the time were riding a 24–game winning streak, to the Final Four in Minnesota. During his tenure, the Knights were ranked in the top 10 nationally for seven consecutive years. Clark earned Sunshine State Coach of the Year honors four times and won the conference's coach of the decade award. While at UCF, Clark coached both of Bo and Mike.
All three men are members of the UCF Athletic Hall of Fame, Clark is a member of the Sunshine State Conference Hall of Fame. Bo is the Knight's all-time leading scorer with Mike second on the list, as a freshman in 1976 Bo was the nation's leading scorer; the father-son duo were featured in a 1979 Sports Illustrated issue. On February 26, 1983, Clark coached his last game with UCF falling to Florida Southern. During his tenure, Clark's squads went 274–89, winning 20 or more games in a year on seven occasions. Clark enjoyed a 71–13 record in the Sunshine State Conference. In the decade after Clark retired, the Knights had only one winning season, the year. Replacing the legendary Torchy Clark would prove impossible for his successors; the three men that would replace him, went a combined 96–180 in 10 seasons, including only one season with a winning record. Hired to be Clark's replacement, Chuck Machock, an assistant coach at Ohio State, took the helm for the 1983–84 season; that year, Machock led the Knights to a 15–13 record, earning the teams sixth Sunshine State Conference regular season championship in their final year in the conference.
The next year, UCF ascended to the ranks of Division I, earning a 10–18 record under Machock in what would be the Knights first losing season, Machock's final season with the team. In two seasons, Machock led the Knights to a 25–31 record. Following their first losing season, the Knights hired Phil Carter. Carter would coach the Knights for four years. In his first year with the team, the Knights suffered a disappointing 6–22 record; the next year, Carter engineered one of the top improvements in the nation, leading UCF to a 12–15 campaign. From there the club would falter under his lead, earning 7 win seasons respectively. Carter finished his tenure without a winning season. Coming from Birmingham-Southern, coach Joe Dean replaced Carter. Dean led the Knights with two conference affiliation changes. In his second year with the team, UCF joined the American South Conference, the team's first affiliation since joining Division I; the next year the conference became the Sun Belt Conference, the next year the Knights joined the Atlantic Sun Conference.
In 1991, the Knights moved from their original home-court, in the education building, to their new court inside what's now known as "The Venue" In their last game