Why Rodrick Stewart

A Phog Blog commenter wondered if Rodrick Stewart is being brought in to replace JR, and, if not, is Alex Galindo meant to wear JR's shoes? I'm not sure its as simple as Rodrick or Alex (assuming JR becomes a professional). It seems to me that Self is recruiting multi-positional players. My post Littles and Bigs details this a little more, but Self has articulated at various times that he prefers only to distinguish between 'littles' and 'bigs', and not to require that his teams have a 1,2,3,4, and 5 in the purest sense. His reasoning for doing so seems to be predicated on having more in-game flexibility with regard to lineups and matchups, and having multiple ball-handlers to make the transition game easier to run (having Kirk and Aaron made us the best transition team of the last several years...).

I think Stewart is a possible 'replacement' for J.R. Giddens if he goes pro in as much as he will play, sometimes, where Giddens did (assuming he can take care of his academic business). But I think he'll be replacing JR only part of the time. He seems to be more Keith-like in his game. His high school coach (and that of CJ Giles), had this to say:

He's 6-4, cat-quick, possesses about a 38-inch vertical and the one thing about Rodrick is that he just plays so hard and he has a will to win...that is the thing that is going to really thrill the fans more than anything -- the fact of how hard he plays. [snip] Coach Bibby down at USC...kind of categorized him as the second-coming of Jason Kidd. That's how highly Coach Bibby thought of him. I think he'll carve his niche out being the defensive stopper. He'll control the game defensively as well as offensively. That's the type of impact he'll have on the game.

He struggled last year shooting the ball (about 30% from the three point line), but he shot 50% his senior year of high school. He seems to be a do-everything kind of player who is a worse shooter, but a better rebounder and defender than JR at this point. Of course, I've never seen him play, even on television, so take my word as far as you can throw it.

Anyone who's seen him play care to chime in?

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