The process of installing a new system can be a difficult one, especially when doing so at a program that hasn’t experienced much success in recent years. That’s what Duggar Baucom, in his first season as head coach at The Citadel, is faced with as he looks to build the program into one that pressures full court and plays fast for 40 minutes. Saturday night the Bulldogs took on No. 24 Butler at Hinkle Fieldhouse, and things got bad in a hurry.
Chris Holtmann’s Bulldogs, picked to finish third in the Big East’s preseason coaches poll, didn’t have much trouble breaking The Citadel press and found plenty of quality scoring opportunities as a result. But even with that being the case, Butler managing to score 144 points in a 73-point victory (144-71) was a shocking development.
The point total represents the most scored in a game matching Division I teams since TCU scored 153 in a win over UT-Pan American (now UT-Rio Grande Valley) in 1997 according to ESPN Stats & Information. Butler shot 63.6 percent from the field, and that percentage includes an 8-for-26 night from beyond the arc. While the perimeter shots weren’t falling at the rate Butler would have liked, they found so many looks around the basket after breaking The Citadel pressure that it didn’t matter.
How easy did Butler find it to get into the paint? They finished the game with a staggering 92 points in the paint.
Kellen Dunham scored 22 of his team-high 24 points in the first half, with Jackson Davis (eight rebounds) scoring 19 points, Roosevelt Jones (11 rebounds, four assists) and Tyler Wideman (six rebounds) adding 18 apiece and Tyler Lewis accounting for 17 to go along with three assists. All 12 Butler players scored at least two points, with seven of the 12 finishing in double figures.
While Butler should be better offensively thanks in part to the addition of NC State transfer Lewis, they’re unlikely to have it this easy in any game they play the remainder of the season.
As for The Citadel, these growing pains come with the work of establishing a new style of play. Baucom’s going to continue to work towards remaking the program in the image he wants, and that’s going to lead to some tough nights. But even with Saturday’s result being what it was, don’t expect him to suddenly back away from looking to force the tempo on both ends of the floor.
Reports: The Citadel hires VMI head coach Duggar Baucom for same position
The Citadel will hire VMI head coach Duggar Baucom to the same position, according to multiple reports. Baucom’s hire was first reported by Scott Eisberg of WCIV. The 54-year-old Baucom was the head coach of the Keydets since the 2005-06 season and had a 151-159 overall record at the school.
Baucom will take the reigns of another team in the Southern Conference, as he finished 11-19 at VMI during the 2014-15 season — the school’s first in the new league after moving from the Big South.
Baucom was a finalist for The Citadel head coaching job when Driesell eventually landed it before the 2010-11 season.
Taking over at The Citadel will be a major uphill battle for Baucom. The men’s basketball program has never made the NCAA Tournament and only has one postseason appearance in the program’s history — a 2009 trip to the CollegeInsider.com tournament.
Former College of Charleston assistant joins staff at The Citadel
With the offseason turmoil that ultimately led to the College of Charleston relieving Doug Wojcik of his head coaching duties, assistant coach Ryan Freeberg was one name mentioned when it came to who would replace Wojcik with the start of practice rapidly approaching. The College of Charleston went in another direction however, bringing in Clemson assistant Earl Grant to get things headed in the right direction.
Freeberg moved on in the aftermath, and on Wednesday it was announce that he’s joined Chuck Driesell’s staff at The Citadel as an assistant coach. Freeberg joins the Southern Conference program after spending two seasons at the College of Charleston, so there’s some familiarity with the conference he’ll be coaching in given the fact that last year was Charleston’s first in the CAA after leaving the SoCon.
“I am excited that we have added Ryan Freeberg to our basketball staff,” Driesell said in the release. “He comes to us highly recommended with great experience and knowledge in both the recruiting and basketball phases of the game. He has worked hard in the profession and has developed a strong reputation amongst his peers and I am confident he will come here and be a great asset to our basketball program and The Citadel.”
While it certainly wouldn’t be classified as a “trade,” Freeberg’s move to The Citadel comes on the heels of a staffer heading in the opposite direction. J.D. Powell, who was an assistant on Driesell’s staff for the last five seasons, is now on Grant’s staff at the College of Charleston.