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About Osage

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  1. Osage

    New club team

    It is surprisingly difficult to compare how Alliance and TPV did at AAU. Turns out there is not a single AAU age / division combination in which both clubs entered teams. So maybe the best way to compare them is to look at how they did against the targets they assigned themselves. The clubs are their own best judges in terms of their teams' competitiveness. Alliance, as I understand it, does not make any decisions in terms of where to enter its teams. Mizuno teams always play Open, Molten always play the next level down (Premiere, at AAU), and 3rd level teams play Club. Alliance does not enter teams in the lowest divisions (Aspire and Classic, respectively). The Sports Performance model means you enter teams in divisions where you expect them to win. For this reason, even the Mother Ship in Chicago does not enter younger teams in Open divisions, theory being the training model takes a few years to make the kids competitive. So long story short: Alliance entered teams in top divisions, TPV did not, and (though there were exceptions, as Clifford points out above), it was mostly a rough tournament for both clubs: less than half of Alliance (6 of 14) and TPV (8 of 18) finished in the top half of their divisions. Of those that did, there were some pretty good results: TPV placed 9th and 25th out of 75 in 13 Club, and 33rd out of 125 in 13 Classic TPV 18's finished 13th of 74 in 18 Club Alliance 15's and 16's (as mentioned above) had very good results Alliance 18's teams also finished strong (10th of 20 in Open and 13th of 37 in Premiere) What stands out the most is Alliance weakness in the 13's and 14's, and strength in the 15's and 16's. 9th out of 59 in 16 Open is really, really good for that Alliance 16's teams, placing them ahead of some outstanding teams. The exact opposite is true for TPV, with great results younger, and next to nothing in the middle age groups. If I were TPV, I would be trying hard to poach some kids off those 15's and 16's teams, so keep the illusion of competitiveness alive while those 13's evolve. I would have liked to have seen how those TPV 13's did against better competition, but back to the SPRI model: we'll have to wait a year or 2 to find out. There is certainly open-level potential there.
  2. The main pro I see is a matter of injury prevention. There could be a secondary benefit of playing more freely, slightly (but not completely) free of the worry that somebody is going to end your season by taking your knees out. Lots of cons, tho... cost, discomfort, restricted movement chief among them. But if you go to an SEC game (or similar), most or all of the interior linemen are wearing external knee braces. So there must be value there somewhere. Discuss please. If you your kid is (or was, or theoretically would be) a high school varsity center, guard, or tackle, would he be wearing knee braces?
  3. Osage

    Off-season Question

    I'll bite, because I honestly don't know: what would have been better for the kid? D Line?
  4. Osage

    New club team

    There was a Pre-Nationals Event in conjunction with A5 on the original schedules, but don't hold me to the exact verbiage. My point is that this had been in the works for a long time. In fact, it almost happened last club season, but A5 got cold feet because of uncertainty around the availability of A-Game. Hopefully the first of many.
  5. Osage

    New club team

    SJ, we have 2 very different views on all this. The "nonsense" I was talking about was the idea that Alliance wanted to return to the Southern Power League this season, but were denied by those running that circuit. Maybe I am inferring too much, but I think you are saying that not only is that false, but further the denial is attributable to the (now former) Club Director. Do I have that right? If not, please correct me. If so, I stand by my statement, that it's silly to think that anyone associated with Alliance (parents, coaches, players, admin) enjoyed their experience in the Power league and were pining to return to it. If Alliance is permitted to return next year (and does), I will know I had this totally wrong. As an aside, it might not be the worst decision for Alliance to schedule against TPV more often, to give itself more opportunities to show how far apart the clubs really are in competitiveness. Joining the Power League would do that. As to the strength of the field in the Sweet Tea event, again, new management had nothing to do with this. These tournaments are planned months in advance. It was billed from the outset as a top-heavy, Open-level event. The field was available in AES even before this club season. Most of all, Alliance wasn't even the host; A5 was. We do agree that more events of this level are good, long-term, for Tennessee volleyball and for Southern volleyball as a whole.
  6. Osage

    Franklin Rebels

    Coach Webb very much still there.
  7. Osage

    New club team

    I wonder if TPV shot itself in the foot with early messaging about competitiveness. It set some awfully high expectations, posting comparisons on their website showing the Chicago club's success, comparing it with Alliance and K2 and others. They also then aligned themselves with that organization by trucking up a bunch of kids and their families for a clinic. The message was clear: come play for us, and this is what you can expect. You set expectations like that, you'd better deliver. But with the lack of competitiveness, even in the face of a weak schedule, I don't wonder that a lot of TPV parents feel like they were sold a bill of goods. It will be interesting next fall to see whether this reveals itself in the school seasons. I don't hate the TPV training model, per se, but you can't implement it without the depth of coaches they have in Chicago.
  8. Osage

    New club team

    The TPV 13-1 team is comprised almost entirely of last year's Alliance 12-1 team. Alliance badly mismanaged that group last year, and I don't think they were surprised to see them transfer. TPV is right to treat that team as a bit of a flagship, they'll be Open-relevant over the coming years. Speaking of Open-relevant, the only other TPV team that looks like it should be playing Open is the 17's team. Once again, we are talking a group of mainly Alliance transfers, a mix of first and second team kids from last year's teams. No other TPV team should be playing Open, and I question why they do. Nobody is getting any better losing (or winning) games 25-6. And I know TPV has a unique training model that should, theoretically, differentiate its kids over time, but the gap between TPV and the rest of the field in Knoxville is huge. I don't think TPV did itself any favors. K2's depth is at the older ages. It's real. And it is about to age out. To put them in the same level of depth as Munciana, KiVA and A5 is silly. Once the 2019 group graduates, I'd consider them more aligned with MidTen / A5 Chattanooga, top to bottom.
  9. Osage

    New club team

    The idea that Alliance wanted to return to the Southern Power League and were not allowed to is nonsense. That said, the league predates TPV by a few years. It's an implementation of the idea Rick Butler had up in Chicago, to host a league that wouldn't be subject USA Volleyball oversight. It works up there, mostly, because the SPRI teams are so strong. Good teams attract good teams. The Mideast Power League (which K2 has participated in) is pretty strong, too. Southern Performance (the SPRI Satellite in Birmingham) was the original host club of the SPL. The idea is the same, but the reality is a very different thing. Birmingham is not suburban Chicago, and the Southern Performance coaching staff doesn't have the depth Chicago does. Hence, lots and lots of very low level teams. Who wants to compete against them? Other very low level teams. I think the Southern Power League had a chance if A5 had joined.
  10. Osage

    2018 Patriots

    Which Patriots are we talking about here? Oakland?
  11. Osage

    Memphis sweep this year???

    They probably playing the closest to their ideal level of anyone in the tournament. Well-coached, intense and physical and solid on the ball defensively, but not deep. The Anti-East, if you want to think of it that way. I don't know any of them personally, but I would have to think MJ is probably in the "happy to be here" category.
  12. Osage

    Memphis sweep this year???

    East is a question mark for me. They are bringing more horses to the tournament than anyone in a long time. But the expectations put on this group might not have been fair. They had a lot of early season uncertainty around their roster and eligibility questions. That affects chemistry, makes people question their roles. Then they had a rough holiday spell where they learned maybe they weren't as good as everyone thought. (Simeon and University School I get, but Olive Branch?) Then they haven't been tested since. Is that because the schedule got light all of a sudden? Probably. Or did they just put it together in mid-January and have been The Machine ever since? Maybe. We'll find out. No TN team can take down East when they are right. Both Blackman and Bearden are good enough to beat them when they aren't.
  13. Osage

    Penny to University of Memphis??????

    It was always going to turn out this way, and makes perfect sense for Memphis. It's all about recruiting talent, keeping the top kids in the program for a year or two, winning with them while you can, then moving on to the next set of McDonald's All-Americans. Penny can do that. He can sell the vision, he already has the relationships with the right kids and third parties. He might even compete well in the transfer market. Gotta think Todd Day will be part of this too. If I'm John Calipari, I am not happy about this news. Penny is going to get the kinds of kids Cal used to be able to count on. Memphis is running off an outstanding coach, and a class guy.
  14. Osage

    Mount Juliet at Franklin Sub-State Game

    Franklin has had some unexpected losses this year (Page? really?) but seem to be peaking. A team that rides shooting as its primary weapon is never a sure bet, but even on off shooting nights, Franklin has won games with defensive pressure leading to easy transition points. I'm sure the gym will be packed and loud. Franklin has very little inside presence on either end of the floor. Mt. Juliet isn't much taller, but they they do have some strong kids down low. If Bryan Aiken and Isaac Stephens can own the glass and maybe get some cheap, early fouls on what little depth Franklin does have inside, Mt. Juliet may have a chance. If not, hard to see a win for them. I'll call 15 3's for FHS in a 10 point win.
  15. Osage

    New club team

    I didn't look that far down in the results... yes, strength at the 13s and 14s would be encouraging, and in fact a little surprising... the Sports Performance model historically hasn't lent itself well to competing in the lower age divisions. Did the exodus you were talking about in those ages show up in Alliance's first weekend?