Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Hello from Hollywood

Yes that's right, I'm on a business trip here in L.A. and I'm sure you're looking forward to some drunk ramblings but here's the thing, I just flew in here late tonight and boy are my arms tired.  Seriously though, folks, this time out I have an absolutely jam-packed schedule going from 7am to 8pm (minimum) every night and I know I usually have a sink full of ice and beer and just type things and drink things to the point where I can't remember the last few things I typed up the next morning (usually a pleasant surprise) but this time that wouldn't be smart.  Luckily, I am not exactly known for doing the smart thing, so I do have a sink with ice and beer.   Will I be smart and just type up a little bit and then go to bed, or will I down all my beer and type into the wee hours?  READ ON.

-  With college football in full swing my thoughts inevitably turn to college basketball, and I'm a little nervous about this season for the Gophers because I'm feeling something I never do:  optimism, which is weird because usually optimism and me go together like vinegar and your face.

Obviously the season mainly hinges on Trevor Mbakwe, but let's say he's healthy.  Let's say he's even just back to 90% of the player he was before Dayton intentionally injured him because they're jerks - doesn't he become either the #1 or #2 post-player in the league, depending on what you think of Cody Zeller?  The only immediate impact type post playing freshmen coming into the conference this year are Mitch McGary at Michigan and Adam Woodbury at Iowa, and I think Woodbury is a bit of a project so at worst, assuming McGary is a world-beater, Mbakwe is a top-3 post guy (if he's healthy).

Then let's say Rodney Williams thrives with Mbakwe back rather than regressing to the passive wing player he was prior to Mbakwe's injury, and continues to exploit his athletic advantage over damn near everybody and becomes 1b in the paint to Mbakwe's 1a - wouldn't they have a massive rebounding edge over everybody?  In that scenario who even comes close to having two inside players that can match that?  Indiana (with Zeller and Watford) and who else?  I can't think of anybody.  Most of the top post-players either are hurt (Branden Dawson at Mich State) or jumped to the pros.

And how about Andre Hollins?  He's getting to be nearly unguardable going to the rim and makes nearly every free throw.  If he's worked on his jump shot (although 38% from 3 isn't terrible for a freshman) and can play a little more under control (but not too much more, I'm not Tubby here) what's his ceiling?  That run he put on to close out the season (save the Stanford game) was remarkable.  If he can play at that level who'd you take over him in the Big 10?  Trey Burke, sure.  Tim Frazier, maybe?  I could even listen to Aaron Craft but I'd like to know if he can be an offensive catalyst on a team first rather than the defensive and "glue" guy.  That's it.

Couldn't you make a case that the Gophers could potentially have three players in the top 3 at their position in the Big 10 this year?  And couldn't that be enough, with good role players (the other Hollins, Elliason,Welch, Osenieks, Walker even though I read he got fat but what would you expect) to win the Big 10 title?  Am I crazy here?  Probably.  And Probably I'm in for a world of disappointment this season but I'm going to go ahead and feel good about this season so there.

-  Remember what I said about writing alot.  Well instead I got a call from a coworker to go have a late dinner which I did (rice noodles in a garlic sauce with chinese broccoli and shrimp, roasted serrano peppers as an appetizer and then three Macallen 12's) so I'm going to call it a night.  I know, I'm disappointed too.  But as I told my wife when we got married, get used to dissapointment.  Until tomorrow.

Better post from last time I was here.  Well maybe not that good but there's some links in there that were better.  I don't know.  Just go click on stuff.  What do you have better to do.

NOTE:  There are some really, really good comments in some of those links.  I miss those guys when they were funny

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