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Cal says he’s willing to accept Skal as a “jump-shooting big man”

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Trying to figure out how to play Skal Labissiere has been one of John Calipari’s biggest challenges this season. After watching Skal put up 11 points off some impressive jumpers, Cal said maybe he just needs to accept that Skal is a “jump-shooting big man” instead of trying to make him bang around in the post.

“I’m trying everything to figure out this team and I’m trying to figure out individuals. In my genius ways, I’m trying to post him up and make him — Maybe [Skal] is a jump shooting big man. So, let him shoot jump shots!,” Cal said, adding that Skal still needs to get in better shape in order to do that. “But, he had confidence because he made a couple shots. That’s not on him, that’s on me.”

Skal admitted that moving away from the basket helped his game flow a lot more on offense.

“It helped a lot. I just kind of took what the defense gave me. My teammates and Coach Cal put me in a great situation to have great looks to score, so I took advantage of it.


Hilariously, Calipari said he thinks Tyler Ulis had the realization that Skal is better off playing away from the basket a few weeks back.

“After the game, I said [to the team], ‘how was he?’ And the team all — I said, ‘guys, let me tell you, a lot of this is on me. Maybe he is a jump-shooting big guy. What do you think?’ And Tyler looked around and he must have said that to Kenny [Payne] weeks ago. ‘Dude, you’re trying to make this guy something he’s not. He’s not Shaq. He’s a jump-shooting big man.’ If he rebounds and blocks, I’ll let him shoot jump shots.”

Further proof that Tyler Ulis knows all.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

11 Comments for Cal says he’s willing to accept Skal as a “jump-shooting big man”

  1. 2thepoint
    10:35 pm January 21, 2016 Permalink

    Tonight he proved that point to everyone that he needs to play facing the basket. Skal helped the team tonight.

    • UK Big Board Update
      10:36 pm January 21, 2016 Permalink

      That’s good. I was afraid the rednecks around here were about ready to ship him back to Haiti.

    • The Rest of the story
      10:28 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

      Damn Big Board Azzhole nothing but positive comments and you still got to show how much of an Asshat you are. You don’t like rednecks then move MF this is Kentucky and we are proud to be who we are. Obvious you hate this state anyway.

  2. jonthes
    11:16 pm January 21, 2016 Permalink

    Skal is a very tall small forward. Been posting that for months. Me and Ulis. Pop him below the foul line where he can turn and shoot and teach him to pass out if they collapse. Then you got a great FF shot. No one – NO ONE – has as sweet a shot as he does at his size.

  3. somerset bill
    2:02 am January 22, 2016 Permalink


    7:12 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    I thought Cal recruited Skal because he was a “jump shooting big”? Wasn’t that his appeal since day 1? Ulis really raised his NBA stock against Arkansas. 14-15 FT’s with 17 second half points (10-11 FT’s) in the second half. He took over the game again and his defense was just as impressive as his offense. I will hate watching him leave at the end of the season. Great all-around game last night by everyone. Our potential is limitless if we play consistently. On nights like last night – we can beat anyone in the country… on nights that our bigs “no show” – anyone in the country can beat us.

    7:37 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    Lot’s of people have been trying to say let him face up. But here is the thing he has a great back to the basket game too, he’s just not strong enough to get position or smart/aware enough to feel and find double teams and make the smart play. All that will come in time. They still need to feed him sometimes. There were times where he was Wide open off the roll/pop screen and Tyler wouldn’t even look at him. Tyler NEVER passes him the ball in the post either, even when he’s open or has a mismatch. Tell Tyler to play point and leave the coaching to the staff.

  6. somerset bill
    9:37 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    it may also be that cal is willing to accept briscoe as a non-free-throw-shooting 2-guard. which would be another great development. the 4 games since lsu he only took 7 free throws–none last night (woohoo!). previous 4-game totals were 17, 19 and 15. this is another thing we need to keep going. it does seem like briscoe is going all the way to the rim much less than he had been, and i think this could be another adjustment that cal has made.

  7. The Rest of the story
    10:05 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    OK good game for the Cats on the road. Personally I think Ark. is just not that good. Like Alabama they were not a team that bangs you down low so the advantage was to the Cats favor. Skal does play much better away from the basket and cannot believe Cal would not try this sooner. Willis is the X factor for this team and seems more steady, aggressive, and just a better scorer than any big we got. Really a poor shooting night for most of the team till late for Murray and Ulis, who just owned the Ark. guards going to the basket. Nothing they could do but foul him. Vandy will be a good test with good bigs down low.

  8. Biglaw Dawgin'
    11:09 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    Fran Fraschilla was pretty spot on too.

  9. somerset bill
    11:26 am January 22, 2016 Permalink

    i like fran fraschilla but when i read his comments on skal before the game i really did wonder if maybe he had heard that this particular change was coming. he presented it as a mr-fixit sort of suggestion, but i’m not so sure. the timing is too coincidental.