It’s player report card time!
For this year, as usual, I’m reviewing the players in order from fewest minutes played to most. But also for this year, I’ve made the decision to cut off the report cards at 100 minutes played for the season — mostly because I don’t want to bother writing a few paragraphs about Peyton Daniels, who left the team after three games and thus spared me having to root for a player named “Peyton” any longer than that.
That means we’re getting things started with Drew Weikert, the main beneficiary of Daniels’ early departure as it meant that Weikert could be placed on scholarship for the second semester after spending two and a half years as a walk-on. And for the most part, Weikert played sparingly, only appearing in 15 of Vanderbilt’s 36 games — though he did draw five starts and played double digit minutes on six occasions. Mostly, aside from the obligatory Senior Night start and getting a few minutes of action in the utter destruction of Georgia in the SEC Tournament, Weikert’s playing time seemed to hinge on whether (a) Rodney Chatman was available and (b) Stackhouse wanted to get someone’s attention by playing Weikert ahead of them.
Then again, this mostly worked only because when Weikert did play, there was generally little to complain about in his performance in light of him being a former walk-on and the 13th man on the roster. In fact, he ranked 5th on the team in Win Shares per 40 minutes; granted, it helped that opposing defenses didn’t really spend much energy trying to guard him, but he did shoot 7-for-18 from three-point range.
Overall, I like Stackhouse’s usage of walk-ons a lot better than I liked Bryce Drew’s — Stackhouse is willing to play a guy like Weikert for a few minutes if he doesn’t like the effort he’s seeing from the regular rotation. You obviously can’t win with a team full of guys like this, but you can do worse than making much more talented players watch a limited player bust his butt for a few minutes here and there.
Grade: A- because I’m really, really grading on a curve here