But this was also a much worse defensive squad than our last two teams. The board talked about our trouble defending the 3 quite a bit before Pac play and the conversation kind of faded. But it was still an issue with some notable exceptions like the Bay Area swing. This year our FG percentage D was .431, good for 8th in the conference while our 3-pt fg percentage D was .356 (10th place). Here are the prior seasons' stats with pac ranking in parentheses: 12-'13 FG % defense .401 (3rd). 3-pt FG% defense .320 (1st) 11-12 FG% defense .404 (1st), 3-pt FG% defense .326 (2nd) I think this is where Dre's loss was felt the most. Other reasons for our decline could probably include Mayor's injury and freshmen inexperience and possibly the rule changes (although the last one doesn't explain why we rank so poorly compared to the rest of the conference). Turning our D around, however, could be a much quicker process than expecting the offensive improvement some have talked about from our current roster (I think the freshmen can be effective on O but I think it more likely it takes them multiple seasons to get there). And there are some damn good pieces there. A lineup that includes hopkins, fletch and gordon could stick some people. XJ did get better on the perimeter but I think he's still better at defending the 4. About the only lineup that could be a problem for us is having Thomas and Talton on the floor at the same time. At any rate, I was kind of spurred on by all the talk in one of the other threads about our ability to finish in the top 3. I don't think that happens next year without turning around the numbers above.