Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Nice little doubleheader tonight of Gophers vs. Northwestern and Duke vs. UNC. Figured I might as well hang out with my good friend Captain Morgan and watch a couple of basketball games.
As I watch Saved by the Bell to prepare for the games, I'm getting very nervous, and I'll tell you why. No, it's not because I'm semi-attracted to Zack Morris, it has to do with the line on game. First off, the line is 6.5. Northwestern hasn't lost a game by less than 9 this year, and at home lost to Michigan by 10. The Gophers have proven they can play on the road, including going into Ann Arbor and blowing out that same Michigan team. Seems like the line should be at least 9, at a minimum. Fishy.
But there's more. According to wagerline, 71% of the wagers are coming in on Minnesota. That should be enough to move the line at least a point. But it hasn't moved from 6.5, in fact, at one point today it moved a full point the opposite way. What this means is that 71% of the wagers are on Minnesota, but at least 50% of the money - and probably more based on that movement - is on Northwestern. So someone, somewhere very likely put a very, very large wager on the Wildcats. In general, those kind of people that make those kind of wagers know what they're doing.
It looks like Vegas thinks that either the Wildcats win, or this is going to very tight game. Thus, I'm worried. I'm going to go ahead and try and dull this concern with alcohol. On to the game.
6:02 - Whoever this announcer is it tells us that Spencer Tollackson is the key for the Gophers tonight. Great. That's super. I'm actually in agreement with From the Barn in wanting to see limited minutes for Spence and Williams, and going small against the smallish Wildcats. We shall see.
6:05 - Shamala starting. What. The. Eff.
6:05 - The Big Ten Network has frozen. This is awesome. It's just stuck. Not cool.
6:07 - Fixed in time to see Hoffbauer knock down a three. Apparently he's starting for McKenzie tonight. This is the perfect team for Hoff to have a good game, since his defense won't be exposed as much.
6:09 - Loving Tollackson's new found ability to make free throws. And he looks a lot better. At free throws, not lookswise. He still looks just like The Todd, and he is one ugly MoFo.
6:12 - First break, 8-7 Gophers with Hoff shooting three when they come back. The announcer said, "Lindsay Lohan doesn't get as many second chances" as the Gophers did last time these two teams played. It's going to be a long game.
6:19 - Damian Johnson just airballed a layup. Well, he hit backboard, but missed the rim completely. Seriously.
6:21 - After a three minute frozen tv signal delay, we come back just in time to see Craig Moore hit a three to give NW an 18-16 lead, followed by a McKenzie travel. I knew this was going to happen.
6:24 - Channel out again. I'm going to watch UCONN/Syracuse instead.
6:25 - Johnny Flynn is really, really good. Sweet name too. Sounds like an extreme sports kind of name.
6:38 - I can't believe I'm typing this, but Spencer Tollackson is UNSTOPPABLE!!!!111!
6:42 - UNSTOPPABLE. He's getting the Gophers more second chances than Lindsay Lohan!
6:51 - 47-33 at half, Gophers lead. And this is with the Wildcats shooting 50%. They should easily be able to slam this one shut in the second half. See, idiots? This is what happens when you make free throws. 15-17 in the half.
7:04 - So, yeah. The whole "not play Tollackson alot" thing. Well, I was wrong. And speaking of Tollackson, that Shaq trade for Marion is really bizarre. Now, their Player Efficiency Rating is really quite close. Marion is 20.25 and Shaq is 18.16. Two points, which is about the difference between Garnett and Nowitzki. So Shaq is still playing at a fairly high level. Marion has been bitching for a long time about wanting to be the alpha dog on a team, which he won't be with Wade in Miami, so I don't get why he's all excited to go from a championship quality team to a bottom dweller. And I don't get why Phoenix would want Shaq. You have to change your entire offensive scheme to get him to fit. He can't run, he can't execute a pick and roll. His whole game is posting up, which isn't Phoenix's preferred style of play, because it takes the ball away from Nash. Very interesting. But Shaq is still good enough to be 16th in the league in offensive rebound rating, which means the Suns should get more second chances than Lindsay Lohan.
7:11 - Shamala just owns Evanston, hitting another three to open the half giving him 13 so far, after dropping 19 on them there last year and 15 as a freshman. He's just like me balling at the Y. You can't leave me open, cuz I'm gonna hit it every time.
7:21 - Shamala's career at Evanston: 12-16 from three.
7:25 - Duquesne is up 24 on St. Joes? Jesus, how does that happen?
7:26 - Lack of intensity setting in with 13 to play. 8 straight for the Wildcats to cut the lead to 15. Let's get Busch in there to spark some fire.
7:27 - I'm totally kidding. Busch should never be in, under any circumstances.
7:32- If Shamala and Tollackson were teamed up on NBA Jam, they'd be the Shaq and Penny of the college game. If Shamala ever missed, Tollackson would get him more second chances than Lindsay Lohan.
7:33 - Sweet, Big Ten Network reads Down with Goldy. They just put up the graphic showing Shamala's career three point shooting in Evanston. Only took them 14 minutes to steal my shit. Mike Judge used to steal my bits for Beavis and Butthead when I was in high school too.
7:37 - In case you're unaware, the Gopher football team's recruiting class has been ranked as highly as 16th in the nation. If you care about that kind of thing, and I do in a "I should probably care" kind of way, and you haven't been to Gopher Nation to read all about it, go now.
7:56 - And there it is, 92-72 Gopher win, in a completely dominating performance that also managed to be extremely boring. Now onto UNC/Duke and Iowa/Wisconsin.
7:57 - Holy shit. I wish I had a picture of some guy interviewing Hasheem Thabeet from UCONN. Thabeet is 7-3, and this guy must have been 5-5, and they had a perfect camera angle to show the difference. I literally laughed out loud.
8:01 - Comments in the comments section below from From the Barn about the quality of the radio announcers reminded me of when I was driving home from the debacle of Wisconsin v. Gophers on Sunday, and Lynch started talking about how surprised he was Wisconsin didn't play Kevin Gullikson. The dude who got kicked off the team or suspended or is in rehab or something for getting a bunch of alcohol citations. Nice research, Lynch.
8:12 - If you're watching Wisconsin/Iowa instead of Duke/UNC, you are making a HUGE mistake.
8:18 - I was just thinking about the post I did on Rivalry Week, and I guess you could include Illinois/Indiana in there too. Since the whole Eric Gordon thing I'm thinking they don't like each other much.
8:28 - Duke raining threes at a 7-10 clip so far. It's like a whole team of Shamalas out there.
8:29 - Want to know who is really going to win at Pebble this weekend? Kevin Sutherland. Book it. He's 45-1 to win. Easy money.
8:34 - Or 4-1 to finish in the top 10. That's like giving money away.
8:37 - UNC = not the same team without Lawson. It's really too bad he got hurt. He should probably not be such a giant pussy.
8:40 - Singler dominating Hansbrough. What started as a great game is threatening to turn ugly in Duke's favor.
8:43 - Sideline reporter let's us know that Duke and UNC are located close together. Thanks for that. Also, I really don't find Dickie V annoying at all. Am I weird?
8:55 - Duke 42, UNC 39 at half. This game makes me hate the Big Ten.