A night of revelation

February 5, 2009
We love Dejected photos of the Dorks from Durham

One of us loves dejected photos of the Dorks from Durham, the other weeps

Monday, March 16th, 2009 will not be any normal Monday.  On that particular morning, after you tap into that free coffee that tastes like muddy water, you will collect your 5 brackets from the printer.  Instead of analyzing financial reports, government projects, or whatever garbage occupies the morning hours of your day, there will be brackets to browse.  This year we recommend taking a different approach, by just freakin’ guessing.

There’s been talk about a pattern of incongruities (can you say that?) throughout this season, with team’s not being able to “find” themselves.  Last night’s slate of games pretty much sold us on that school of thought. Syracuse started all the action with a response victory that had Syracuse fan’s thinking of Eric Devendorf as a Catholic Alter Boy.  Jeff Diveronica of the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle referred to the ‘Cuse as a “boxer on the ropes.” Syracuse’s beat down of the Mountaineers helped Jim Boeheim and the Orange out of the corner they were backed into, losing three of their last four.

Wake Forest, everyone’s favorite big game team got waxed on the road by the ‘Canes, 79 -52.  The end result: The ‘Canes snap a three game losing streak and sending Wake to their second straight loss, both to an unranked club.  Manny Navarro of the Miami Herald called the ‘Canes victory, “the perfect remedy.” That’s now three ACC road losses for the Demon Deacons.  Will Wake’s fate be a loss to a 14 seed?

Halftime Score: Michigan State 42, Minnesota 16…Game Recap done.  The #19 Golden Gophers came into The House that Izzo Built after building a 18-3 record on the year.  However, the Spartans defended Sparta from warm ups on, jumping out to an impressive halftime lead.  Durrell Summers dropped in 21 on only 10 shots compared to the entire Minnesota starting lineup’s 19 on 27 shots.  Myron Medcalf of the Minneapolis Star called the Gophers debacle “an identity crisis.” He’s probably right, but let’s not forget the Spartans lost both games to Penn State this year.

Two weeks ago Clemson was downed by the very same Wake Forest team that was previously mentioned.  One week ago Wake eeked out a squeaker over the then #1 Duke Blue Devils.  We saw a completely different Tigers team when Duke rolled in last night.   The swarming press of the Tigers made Greg Paulus, Brian Soubek and the rest of the Dookies cough it up more than a pediatrician conducting back to school physical exams.  Clemson was able to pour it on, handing the Blue Devils their worst loss since 1990, a 27 point mauling 74-47.  Clemson did not let the lead drop below 20 points over the final 9 minutes.  Ron Green Jr. of the Charlotte Observer reports that even Clemson Coach, Oliver Perry was surprised by margin of their victory. Clemson might be a National Contender after all.

Notre Dame came into the season as one of the Big East favorites and a Top 10 ranking.  How the mighty have fallen, losing to Cincinnati on Monday night.  Notre Dame drops its SIXTH straight loss and Mike Brey still think “The beat goes on baby,” reports Joe Kay of the Chicago Tribune. Notre Dame is now on the outside of the bubble looking in at teams like Providence, Cincinnati and WVU.

The one certainty from tonight: Heather Cox should not be in HD.

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All is well in the Steel City

January 20, 2009
Sam Young looks old

Sam Young looks old

We don’t have any desire to live in Pittsburgh, but it’s certainly not a bad time for residents there to “rep yo’ city.”

With Big Ben Roethlisberger and Santonio Holmes in attendance, the Panthers recovered from Saturday’s loss to Louisville, getting a good looking win over Syracuse.  Sam Young scored 19 of his 22 points in the second half, as Pitt employed brute strength and ran away with this one, writes Bud Poliquin of the Syracuse Post-Standard.

Bill Raftery, Jay Bilas and Sean McDonough exchanged friendly jabs throughout, and were briefly joined by Steve Andress, a ‘Cuse broadcasting student (probably part of the quasi-elitist “Newhouse School”) as part of their Campus Connection week.

The match-up we were following during the game:  Levance Fields vs. Jonny Flynn.  Two top guards with different styles of play.  Fields wins the battle and the war here– as he was much more effective from the field (7-11 for 15 points) than his counterpart (Flynn was a dismal 3-14, getting  6 of his 12 points at the free throw line).

Elsewhere in the Big East, Providence holds firm over Cincinnati.  For what it’s worth, the Friars are solidifying themselves as the ninth best team in the conference and appear on track to receive an at-large bid.


‘Cuse goes Run and Gun on ND

January 17, 2009
Looking much more comfortable in the Dome

Looking much more comfortable in the Dome


Over 40 of Syracuse’s 93 points came on the fast break to get a much needed rebound win over Notre Dame, 93-74.  ‘Cuse didn’t only score on the fast break but they also exposed Luke Harangody’s sub-par defensive abilities as Syracuse’s front line scored 48 points on 21-31 from the floor.  Six players scored in double figures for the Orange, who may give the #1 Pittsburgh Panthers a scare on Monday in Pitt.  Johnny Flynn hit big shots and dished out 9 assists.   David Lefko draws attention to the debate on Johnny Flynn, but we know Johnny Flynn is clearly the engine on this team and they will go as far as Flynn can carry them.


Quickie Recap 12.30: Teams trying to make a name

December 31, 2008
No fun for the Sooners in Fayetteville

No fun for the Sooners in Fayetteville

The Sooner’s were the next of the undefeated to fall on Tuesday night, and the most we could do was check the score when our browser refreshed every 30 seconds.  Arkansas jumped on them early, starting the game with a 25-10 lead.  The Razorbacks have flown under the radar all year, even with a 10-1 record, but with this win we’re sure more than just Corliss Williamson and Bill Clinton will be paying attention to PIG Sooie!!!  All teams have to fall at some point, unless you have Argyle on your jersey, so a loss to a 9-1 team isn’t the worst way to go down.

Purdue seemed like the “sexy” pick of the year for a lot of people, but now we just want to call them the “Tara Reid All-Stars,” after losing to Illinois 71 – 67 on their own hardwood.  It took overtime to pull it off but the Fightin’ Illini improved to 13-1.  The stat of the game was “6”: Illinois only committed 6 turnovers, coupled with 21 assists.  The Illini, like Arkansas, have been quietly building up force despite being unranked, but today Andy Katz says it’s time to give them their due.

Andy “Rainman” Rautins is back at it.  After tying a school record with 9 triples last game, Rautins (26 pts) added 7 more on Tuesday night to aid the Orange to a 100 – 76 shooting clinic. The Orange shot 55% from beyond the arc compared to Seton Hall’s 7.4% on 2 of 27 (Yes, all schools do TRY and recruit players that can shoot).  The ‘Cuse also welcomed back Eric Devendorf for their Big East opener to the tune of 20 large.


Another chapter..er in the ED files

December 28, 2008

If Syracuse were the setting for “The Departed,” Jim Boeheim would play Jack Nicholson’s Costello. He is, unquestionably, the law of upstate New York.

In the latest episode of the Chronicles of Eric Devendorf, university officials have suddenly reinstated Devo, as apparently the punk has done his time. Devendorf’s suspension for striking a woman in the face was reduced to “a verbal confrontation,” because the victim decided to recant on her initial statement. Funny how that works out.

ED has completed his 40 hours of testing out whether Spaulding fits through the Carrier Dome rims community service and has been reinstated, making him eligible for the Big East opener on Tuesday vs. Seton Hall. This all seems strange to us, as many facts now seem to have been misconstrued or not factual at all.

So with this seemingly swept under the rug, we’re going to make the assumption that Boehiem didn’t like his team sans Devendorf and feared the Orange could not win even ten effing games!!! without him. We don’t like how this played out, but will begrudgingly root for Devendorf the few times times he is needed during the sure-to-be treacherous Big East schedule.


Quickie Recap 12.20: Lesson One in Bracketology

December 20, 2008

We can learn a lot from Saturday’s action.  Not all Mormon prayers are answered.  Tubby Smith still loves beating Louisville teams.  Belmont can hang in there with the best.  And the ‘Cuse can actually make free throws.

Harden and ASU get the best of the Good ole' Boys

Harden and ASU got the best of the Good ole' Boys...barely

BYU almost got to “touch each other after the buzzer,” but when Charles Abouo’s bucket to beat the clock was overturned, Arizona State was able to avoid a detrimental loss.  BYU lead the whole second half until nine ticks remained when James Harden knocked in his sixteenth “freebie” from the charity stripe to give the Sun Devils the 76-75 edge.  Harden finished with 30.

Louisville may not be the team everyone thought they would be at the beginning of the season, falling to the (surprising) undefeated Golden Gophers of Minnesota, 70-64.  Tubby Smith still knows how to coach against that other team from Kentucky.  Pitino could of blamed a nine minute scoring drought on the bus company neglecting to pick the team up at the airport, but all credit should go to Tubby and his staff. He got the final laugh and his team is now 10-0.

The Bruins from Belmont put a huge scare into Bruce pearl’s Tennessee Volunteers, but Tennessee was able to hold on 79-77.  The Bruins returned four starters, all seniors, to a team that you remember nearly upset Duke in last years tournament.  Belmont got 30 from their slasher Alex Renfroe, and almost had us fooled they were capable of pulling off an upset.  Close but not close enough once again, as missed free throws prove costly. Vols win.

Syracuse overcame a wild week in order to pick up a massive “W” at the Pyramid in Memphis, 72-65.  With Devo preparing to pick up trash on I-81, the Orange were led by Jonny Flynn’s 24 points and 6 assists.  Flynn answered every run the Tigers could muster and in the end the Orange overcame their biggest problem this year and knocked down their free throws to seal the deal.


Let’s all touch each other…CLEVELAND STATE just won at the buzzer!

December 15, 2008

 

Two weeks ago on their own court, Cleveland State was stabbed in the heart by conference foe Butler. We didn’t chronicle the drama because well, “Cleveland State versus Butler isn’t very important” became the prevailing thought.

Today the Horizon League demands attention, as now the Vikings have their own game ending story to tell. Cedric Jackson had his prayers answered, handing Syracuse their first loss of the season.

We hope this pushed the lowly Browns off today’s front page of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.