Insane of the Membrane

You Think You Know, But You Don’t Know

We Know: Harding Nana is a beast. This team is destined for a play-in game.
We Don’t Know: If David Henderson coaches past Nana’s eligibility. A 3-6 record is somewhat excusable, but losses to Marist and UMBC are interesting to say the least. Delaware has one of the best players in the conference and has not shown up in a few games.

We Know: Bruiser Flint has his team ready to play every night.
We Don’t Know: Very little. This team is good, but not great. Three wins, five losses, then four wins. Are the five losses an aberration based on the fact that they were played over the course of seemingly two days? Each game almost comes down to the other guy as Drexel is so predictable. Will somebody play a great game against them in March?

George Mason
We Know: This team has talent. They took Wake and ODU to the wire and just drilled Holy Cross 71-38. The Creighton debacle is looking like the exception rather than the rule.
We Don’t Know: If they can keep it up, as the bench is thin. We also have reservations about Lamar Butler. Come late February, will they be out of gas? Can they net their eighth straight season of 10 or more conference wins?

Georgia State
We Know: These guys are hot and cold like we’ve never seen. Win by 30. Lose by 27. Have VCU down 17 but lose the game by 14. Score 11 straight against Kentucky and lose by more than 20. The Panthers will beat one of the top CAA teams this year. Bank on it.
We Don’t Know: Very much about them, still. Here’s a primer: Michael Perry basically goes seven deep, but only two players (Boyd Copeland, Rashad Chase) have started every game. Herman Favors is generously listed at 5’9”, but the kid (who wears #50!!) can direct the offense. Malcolm Manier has a ton of range, as in NBA range. Copeland is their best player but Manier’s shooting and D’Andre McGrew can be a load in the post.

We Know: Stokes, Agudio, and Rivera cannot be matched in the backcourt. Uter is secretly becoming one of the best big men in the league. (At least now we know this.)
We Don’t Know: Much like George Mason, this team needs its bench to grow up and contribute, or a wonderful regular season could come to a crashing halt in March.

James Madison
We Know: The Dukes have more talent than they are given credit for; certainly far better than 2-5. Youngstown State is a head-scratcher, but they’ve been in every game this year, including Georgetown.
We Don’t Know: At what point do these guys start gelling for Keener?

We Know: Like it’s news that JJ Barea and Shawn James are two of the better players in the conference.
We Don’t Know: How good the rest of the team will perform. They’ve looked good, but last night’s loss at Wright State (RPI in the high 200s) is curious. Plus, they really only have one good performance against a quality team. Are they destined for a .500 season?

Old Dominion
We Know: These guys have not lived up to expectations. Not even close.
We Don’t Know: If turning things around, and they will, salvages the season. They are still the best team in the CAA, but they are now like everyone else: three days in March. Does one more slip up kill their postseason?

We Know: Pat Kennedy can coach. Gary Neal can play.
We Don’t Know: If it matters.

UNC Wilmington
We Know: This edition of The Dub can put the ball in the basket, much like the days of Brett Blizzard and Craig Callahan.
We Don’t Know: If they can last. Toughness is great in a one-game scenario. They will need three in a row. Which part of the “top tier” will they finish? Seeding has never been more important.

Virginia Commonwealth
We Know: A Jeff Capel team will get after it and defend.
We Don’t Know: If rebounding woes will ultimately spell defeat. The Rams are a top three regular season team, but facing a tall team that rebounds well could end it all quickly for them.

William & Mary
We Know: Calvin Baker will win freshman of the year in the CAA. This team is improving.
We Don’t Know: How far they can realistically improve. Tony Shaver is a quality coach and has his heart in the right place, but there are far too many obstacles for long term success, including being a football school.

The Conference
We Know: The chances of an at large bid have been reduced to slim and none; and slim has his bags packed. Hoping someone runs the table in the regular season and then loses in the conference final is, in the words of Da Commish, “fool’s gold.” However, it may be the only hope. It ain’t happnin’. The one constant that has not changed is the fact that the teams in this conference will spend January and February beating the tar out of each other. Sets up a great March, though.

If, indeed, the at large is lost, we can point to the last two weeks of December as to when it was lost. And we need to remember this.

We Don’t Know: Whether or not anything I’ve written holds water. But that’s why college basketball is so much fun. Insert Jim Mora rant here…


~ by mglitos on December 28, 2005.

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