Monday, February 1, 2010

Week In Review: 2/1/2010

If you want a little Twins talk, make sure you check out my previous post about the top 100 MLB prospects according to ESPN, directly below this one.  It's a lot more entertaining and uplifting than this garbage.  Thank god the Gophers don't play again until Saturday.  Pretty sure I'm just going to ignore them this week.  Also the Reds signed Orlando Cabrera, so if you had your heart set on him playing third for the Twins you can go ahead and give up.  You're also an idiot.


1.  Charlotte.  If the 49ers want an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament they'll have to be nearly perfect in their A-10 season, and by perfect I mean don't lose any games to inferior teams and steal a bunch from the top of the conference - this week could be their blueprint.  They got a shot at a top team coming to their place in Temple, and beat them 74-64, and then took to the road for a dangerous game at UMass but didn't fall into the trap, coming out a 72-58 winner.  Charlotte now sits a top the conference, tied with Temple and Xavier at 6-1, and is 16-5 overall with wins now against Temple and Louisville on their resume.  They now sit at #38 in the RPI, and things are looking good for their first bid since 2005.

2.  Baylor  The Bears have kind of been hovering under the radar, especially since they started 2-3 in Big 12 play, but it's time for them to make their run and it started on Saturday with a huge win over Texas in Austin.  That 3-3 record is a bit deceiving because they've played three ranked teams already, and any team with wins at South Carolina and over Xavier on a neutral court is a team to be reckoned with.  Throwout a bizarre loss at Colorado and this is a very impressive team.  They lost to Kansas by just six in Lawrence and lost by just two to Kansas State and their only other loss was by three to Alabama in Orlando.  Baylor now plays a string of unranked teams - 9 in a row, with only Missouri having a shot to be ranked at any point - before closing with Texas at home.  Yep, the Bears are set up great to be dancing in March, although now the DWG Jinx probably guarantees that things are about to come crashing down.

3.  Virginia.  If you pay any attention to the ACC you'd know that the Cavs haven't been relevant since the days of Harold Deane and Curtis "The Curt-Man" Staples, but suddenly things are getting awfully interesting in Charlottesville, culminating in a huge 75-60 win over UNC in Chapel Hill.  Yes, the Heels are probably having their worst year in, well, a very long time, but still the symbolism of winning in the Dean Dome has got to be huge for Virginia, not to mention they are suddenly 4-2 and just a half game behind Duke in the ACC.  If they hadn't let their game against Virginia Tech, a game they led by 10 with 3:44 left, slip through their fingers they'd be the talk of the nation at 5-1.  Their are too many bad losses, not enough signature wins, and an RPI over 100 right now, so we probably aren't looking at a tournament team or anything, but things are looking way, way, way up for UVA.  Super stud Sylvan Landesberg is just a sophomore, and forward Mike Scott is just a junior, and both should be back (slight chance Landesberg does something dumb and goes into the draft).  Add in a great recruiting class for next year and the fact that they have a guy named Mustapha Farrakhan, and it seems captain boring Tony Bennett has things moving in the right direction.  All I know is I'm scared of a guy named Farrakhan, and I really want another Curtis Staples in my life.  Fuck J.J. Redick.   

4.  Vanderbilt.  Sure, they lost by 13 at Kentucky on Saturday, but that doens't discount a great, great win earlier in the week when they went into Tennessee and beat the Vols 85-76.  That win brought the Commodores to 5-0 in the conference (now 5-1) and was their tenth straight win.  Really a very good win over a fellow SEC title contender, with guard Jermaine Beal leading the way with 25 and four other players in double figures.  Prior to the season I read some kind of preview that predicted Vandy as a sweet 16 team.  I didn't buy it, because I don't believe in non-Derrick Byars Vanderbilt teams, especially when they're read by a big dopey white center.  Maybe it's time to start believing.  I think Journey would probably want it that way. 

5.  South Florida.  The Bulls beat Seton Hall on Thursday, and, more impressively, Pitt on Sunday and this is special for a couple of reasons, outside of just being a pretty impressive couple of wins.  First, I've always had a soft spot in my heart for USF because Snacks and I went and saw a game of theirs when we were kids and on a family vacation in St. Pete, back in the days of B.B. Walden and Alton Jackson.  Second, the win over the Hall was the second in a row for the Bulls - the first time they have ever had consecutive wins since joining the Big East, and obviously the win over Pitt gives them three straight for the first time.  They aren't going to be anywhere near the NCAA tournament, but could be a pretty good NIT team.  Dominique Jones is a pretty incredible player who ranks in the top 3 in scoring, top 10 in assists, and top 25 in rebounding in the Big East and put up a line of 46-10-8 in their win over Providence last week and tossed up 37 in that win over Pitt.  You know what, forget about all that Gopher vs. Wichita State in the NIT talk, I'm now hoping to get South Florida in the Barn.


1.  Gopher basketball.  Well that was pretty damn disgusting.  I mean seriously, have you ever seen anything so pathetic as that "effort" the Gophers put in on the defensive end?  73% for the first half and 63% overall - and the only reason it was as low as 63% is because the Buckeyes finally started missing shots as the game wound down after it was well in hand.  And it wasn't just that Ohio State was crazy hot or anything, but that they could do anything they wanted at any time.  Basically they could have just chose on any given possession - layup?  Alley-oop?  Wide open three?  Wide open jump shot?  It didn't matter, they were wide open anywhere and everywhere every single trip down the court.

I could try to write more, but what else is there to say, really?  They got their asses whooped on talent, execution, and effort.  No real point on digging any deeper than that.  I could overlook a lot since I consider OSU a Final Four team, but this was too much for me.  As Grandslam texted me, "this team will be lucky to be in invited to the NIT."  I'm not quite ready to go that far (I think they're a lock for the NIT), but this was sickening on a number of levels, and there is A LOT that needs to change between now and next Saturday or they're going to lose to Penn State.  This would actually be a great time to have a home game against like, SDSU on Wednesday, but they don't have anything except practice against each other.  That ought to do wonders for their confidence on offense at least, since nobody plays any god damn defense on this team anyway. 

2.  UCONN.  Just last week UCONN was looking like a major player after beating then #1 Texas, but this week was certainly a disaster.  First they lost on the road at Providence, who isn't remotely a tournament team, despite having led by ten in the first half.  They then followed that with a 2-point loss at home to Marquette on an incredible shot by Jimmy Butler with three seconds left - which followed Kemba Walker's airball from about 8 feet that would have given the Huskies the lead.  UCONN probably doesn't have to worry much about making the tournament (currently a 5-seed according to Lunardi), but they can't exactly relax either, especially since these were two games they were supposed to win.  At 3-5 in the Big East now, they have just four home games left (against six roadies) and suddenly a lot less margin for error.  They're at Louisville tonight, that would be a pretty good start.

3.  Duke.  You know, I'm starting to think this Duke team isn't all that good, and is really overrated as a top ten team.  They got absolutely smoked by Georgetown on Saturday, and the final score of 89-77 doesn't show remotely how thorough of an ass-whooping this was.  The Blue Devils were completely beaten in every phase of the game, had no answer for Greg Monroe, and just overall played flat and uninspired ball - or maybe they just aren't that good.  They're now 1-4 in road games this season, and have looked completely average in games against not just G-Town but NC State and Georgia Tech as well.  It's a pretty simple formula, really, the Blue Devils have just three guys:  Scheyer, Singler, and Nolan Smith.  Shut them down, as Georgetown did (36% shooting, 8 turnovers), and you can beat them - there's nobody else here at all.  No chance this team makes a run in March, look for a first or second round loss.

4.  Conference USA.  With Memphis down, and a number of teams "up", this was supposed to be the year of multiple bids for poor little CUSA.  Memphis, UTEP, UAB, Houston, Tulsa, and Marshall were all supposed to be in play for a March bid.  Well, things aren't looking good.  This weekend Memphis lost to Southern Methodist and now have an RPI of 79 which is only that high becaus ethey've played a tough schedule - but beaten nobody.  UAB, the best bet for an at-large, also lost to UTEP, and although their RPI is still at 27, they can't afford many more losses.  Marshall lost to both Memphis and Houston, giving them four straight losses and droppin them completely out of the at-large conversation.  Houston's been a complete failure, is just 11-9, and has an RPI of 141.  Even Tulsa, at 6-1, is nowhere near a sure thing despite doing nothing really wrong, but they haven't done anything great either and are borderline as you can get at an RPI of 58.  Forget about a whole bunch of bids, C-USA will have to happy if they get two at this point.  Memphis, UTEP, UAB, and Tulsa are still alive, and it's going to come down to ever takes care of the others.  If nobody separates themself, we're looking at a one-bid league once again, and it's probably just time to shut 'er down.

Actually, this might be a good time for the Gophers to leave the Big Ten so it can get back to just ten teams, and join C-USA.  At least they could compete.    

5.  Gopher basketball.  God dammit that was pathetic.  How do you just let The Werewolf get to the rim any time he wants?  How do you let Dallas Lauderdale get three dunks?  Why can't Devoe Joseph play defense?  Why does a great "little things" player like Damian Johnson make so many dumb mistakes on the little things?  Why can Ohio State find Diebler for wide open shots over and over again, but the Gophers couldn't find Hoffarber if they were playing against Gimli and a bunch of hobbits?  Is anybody else as frustrated as I am?  Wasn't this supposed to be a big year?  Wasn't a NCAA berth to be expected, and the minimum this year?  I swear I'm going to move to some other state and buy season tickets to the closest college and just shift my allegiances, nothing can be worse than this.  Seriously, I just don't know what to do.  This is a picture of me that Mrs. W snapped last night after the game:

Please help.


Anonymous said...

A hobbit reference?


Dharma Bum said...

If the gophers left the big ten it would leave 11 teams because Pitt is joining the big ten.

J.Bzdelik said...

I would highly recommend not moving to Colorado and buying season tix to the Buffs and switching allegiances to them. Then you would surely be hanging from that tree instead of considering it in your photo.

One game they play great and beat Baylor(and they beat Baylor, it wasn't baylor being terrible that night). Then on another night they lose to CSU or ISU or some other SU. Now I get to go watch them compete against Kansas for about 25minutes and then get routed by the Jayhawks on Wed.

Captain Kirk said...

If Han Solo was sitting next to you he would slap your face. A hobbit reference? You lost all your geek street cred and gained a whole bunch of fag cred.

rghrbek said...

More RW drama.

rghrbek said...

CCO is reporting Mauer is signed, startrib thinks it's close. Just a formality

rghrbek said...

I should clear up, just a formality in my opinion. Other people are saying Rosen has jumped the gun based on what the Twins are saying. When have the Twins every given us good info? I think Rosen lives up Mauer's ass and is pretty close to his peeps.

WWWWWW said...

Bzdelik - I got a chance to watch your boys against Kansas tonight. They have so many white guys they either belong in the Ivy League or Utah.

Also nice offense at the end of the 2nd half. Looked awfully familiar.

Jimmy the Greek said...

Boulder has enough problems with all the stinky hippies running around. You really think they need some black guys in the town? I think boulder is just fine the way it is.

J.Bezdlik said...

WWWW- My two thoughts at the end of the game.

A) Why are there 7 white dudes on the court at this point? 4 from CU and 3 from KU, shocking, just shocking.
B) Bzdelik may have gone to the T.Smith school of offense, run around pass outside the arc and then with 8-9 seconds left find a desperation 3 to throw up, lets say 27 of them or so. Very gopher like indeed.

Also X. Henry looks like death out there for KU. Either he has cancer or is broken. When Tyrel Reed ( a gringo) is ending the game instead of you #2 recruit in the nation, you need to figure that out.

Jimmy, luckily the thousands of residents feel the same way you do, amazing how the football team is crap too with all whiteys and Samoans.

WWWWWW said...

Rockies guy - I hear you are trying to avoid joining our Fantasy Baseball League. This is unacceptable. All DWG affiliated peoples must enter. Non-negotiable.