Chrisman's record is a direct result of tough competition
Few teams in our coverage area had higher hopes this year than the William Chrisman boys basketball team.
With a pair of Division-I signees on the team in Justin Clark and Jon Ekey, many were looking for the Bears to compete for district and conference titles and bring home a superb record.
With one game before the new year, the Bears are sitting at 4-5 and have lost three straight.
With those three losses, plus a loss to archrival Truman, some Chrisman fans may be worried about what’s going on with the season.
Those fans have little to worry about.
Right now, the Bears don’t have the record they want to have right now. But the record at this point in the season is nothing to worry about.
One-third of the games for the Bears are in the super-tough MaxPreps Holiday Classic in San Diego.
How tough is this tournament? Every single team has at least two Division I players.
And not just lower tier or mid-major Division I talent. These are guys going to Michigan, UCLA, the big guns.
These are players who are among the most highly touted in the entire nation.
Right now, the Bears are getting a taste of some of the best competition in the country. And they’re not getting blown out.
And if the Bears shot as well as they normally shoot, they maybe steal one or two of these games.
That’s the thing about the Grinnell system Chrisman employs. When the team is on, it’s tough to beat. When the team doesn’t shoot well, it’s hard to win.
The Bears are currently on another coast, playing in a completely different time zone trying to compete with West Coast teams with an exorbitant amount of talent.
All this is going to do is make the Bears better when they come back.
Chrisman has a loss to Truman, yes. But the Bears did knock off Park Hill South – the preseason pick to win the conference. And at times this year, Chrisman has shown signs of just finding a completely different gear than its opponents.
A lot of this system has to do with finding your role, then finding your shooting touch. There are some new players who are adapting to that. And when the shots start to fall – and they will – this team is going to be just fine.
Besides, Truman was struggling for the first half of the season last year, pulled it together at the right time and made the state semifinals.
Chrisman could possibly do that as well.
And if the Bears do get to that point, you can bet the lessons learned with these games in San Diego will be key to that success, as well as the future success of the team this season.