To put a bow on this college basketball season, we’re once again diving into a classic series of ours where we ask each returning Cyclone to “step into my office” to review the season that was, and take a shot at what next season could look like.
In this edition of “step into my office” we look at Coach TJ Otzelberger’s overall performance from this season, which included a visit to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time since 2016.
Season at a Glance
Otzelbasketbergerball is not known for aesthetically pleasing play, and Bob Jones is real good at making games ugly. Robert, who I’m going to call Bobby from here on out, had a role to fill when he got here, and he did a good job of filling it.
He was a big man off the bench that was going to be put on some of the biggest strongest tallest players in the Big 12. That’s not an easy task. I’m not going to pretend like Bobby was the second coming of Shaq, but he was exactly what we needed out of a bench big.
The less the offense can go through Bobby, the better. I don’t think any player, since Jeff Beverly, has made me as nervous, and unsure when the ball in his hands. He was at his best when he hustled, got boards, used some hard fouls, and gave the guys some rest.
Bobby’s last season at Denver he averaged almost 10 ppg and 5 rpg. Something to keep in mind before I tear him apart, his minutes were cut in half, he had to adapt to a new system, and was playing against much better competition in the Big 12.
All that said, I’d say Jones’ first season here was still underwhelming. Big Man Bob was only averaging one more point per game, than fouls. This year he averaged about 3 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 1.9 fouls per game. Woof.
Not to mention, he was a liability and then some at the free throw line, shooting under 30% from the charity stripe. He also shot 50% from the field which is a little lower than you’d like considering most of his shots came within a very close proximity to the basket.
2022-2023 Season Outlook
He doesn’t really have to do much more. If Joens comes back, I think he’d expect a similar role. Otz has been targeting some high-volume usage bigs, and I think Jones knows there’s a good chance he’ll be coming off the bench.
His rebound rate is perfect, his big thing is making that FG% higher, and maybe bump up that FT% by 15%.
Another, thing I’d like to see out of Bob Jones, play to the crowd. George Conditt did an incredible job of getting the student section involved, and we need another spark plug big man that can get the home crowd on their feet.
Bob Jones knows what he’s getting into once conference play comes around next year, and hopefully that familiarity and confidence will bleed into the stat sheet.