Don’t Cry Out Loud

I’m telling you right now that the next three weeks are going to be–flat out–a blast. And I’m not talking about one stinking minute on the court, either. We’re going to see and hear a variety of spin, an alphabet soup of data points, and a litany of oxymorons like the “quality loss.”

Personally, I’m going to love every minute of it, because I’m a geek that way. (Side note: I always tell Kathleen that there are far worse (and more expensive) sites I could spend hours on each day than kenpom.com….)

Here’s your charge: don’t get overemotional about any of it. Gottleib doesn’t “give ODU love?” Bilas preaches the 8th place ACC team deserves a bid? Packer opens his mouth?

Pay no attention. They don’t know more than you do–they just have a national stage. I’m not saying they aren’t intelligent and haven’t done homework. They have. I’m just saying their conclusions are no better than yours. So relax and don’t take everything as a slap in the face/cemented positive.

Enjoy the process and watch it unfold. I mean really watch it unfold. Teams start to get airtime and then don’t. Mid majors are good and then they aren’t. Everything is so in-the-minute, I can imagine the Selection Committee sitting around with earplugs and stat sheets, wondering what is going to happen next.

Here is why I’m saying sit back and watch and enjoy. Drexel is in fourth place in the CAA yet has the best resume of the bunch. VCU is in first but the worst. ODU is darn good and has a ton of closing speed. There is a lot that is going to happen–on the court–that is going to shape every argument you hear between now and mid March.

Remember Air Force (not a regular season conference champ and RPI of 50 with crappy noncon numbers). Utah State. And Seton Hall. And remember, too, that at around 6:15 on selection Sunday last year you thought the CA was getting in one team. I did a Team A, B, and C for you last week to show that, when you take name and conference affiliation out of it, both VCU and Drexel were every bit as qualified as West Virginia. I’ll now ODU to that mix. But you know as well as I do conference affiliation matters. It just does.

Selection Sunday is going to be the ultimate litmus test for the committee. It was one thing to find a reason to exclude a mid major last season, but after George Mason, Bradley, Wichita State–and to a lesser extent ODU–the landscape was altered. We’ll see if things unfurl the way they have on the court.

The argument is always that the major conference team plays in a much tougher conference and thus is better tested and you know more about them. Fine. That would mean ODU would NEED to have better credentials than WVU in order to offset the difference in conference strength.

And that’s exactly what they have.

I also think that Clemson, etc. are showing their, uh, strength.

We will indeed see, in about three weeks, if there is a climate shift or not. I can’t remember so much chatter going on so early and so many knowing so little. That’s what makes it fun.

***

Funniest technical foul I’ve ever seen was the one Sean Hull whistled on Bruiser Flint the other night. Granted it was also nearly the most costly technical foul I’d ever seen, too.

In case you missed it, Drexel was nursing a seven-point lead at Creighton with about 90 seconds to play when the Dragons hoisted up a 15-foot jump shots with a ton of time on the shot clock. If that didn’t make Bruiser want to rip off his show and beat a puppy, Scott rodgers then tripped the Blue Jays player in the back court and was called for a foul.

Bruiser’s reaction was a very frustrated two-footed pogo stick stamp, to which Hull t-d Flint up. Bruiser imemdiately made peace and smiled, telling Hull that he was yelling at his players. Still, the misunderstanding–and that’s all it was–did its damage. Thankfully the Dragons eventually made a free throw and held on to win…the biggest of Saturday’s Bracket Busters slate.

Now I’m not getting into the color analyst’s constant explanation of the technical foul being called on Flint for being out of the coaches box. Granted, Flint spends more time out of it than in it, but his explosion was conducted inside the line. I love that irony.

Out for now, back later…

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~ by mglitos on February 19, 2007.

2 Responses to “Don’t Cry Out Loud”

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  2. I found it very ironic that Dana Altman got t’d up for leaving the coaches box when he’s playing opposite the godfather of leaving the coaches box.

    A couple points to add to the marketplace of thoughts:
    1. MVC went 5-5 in the bracketbusters. 2-4 for their 6 teams who are in the RPI Top 100.
    2. Drexel/ODU are currently for at-large bids. A major variable for the selection committee to consider (which you alluded to in a previous post) is the # of non-conf *true* away games. Here are the numbers among some bubble teams.

    App. St: 5
    Drexel: 8
    Okla St: 0 (1 semi-away v. Tennessee in Nashville)
    Notre Dame: 0 (2 semi-away v. Butler, Maryland)
    Purdue: 1 (1 semi-away v. Butler)
    Michigan St: 1
    Illinois: 0 (3 semi-away v. Arizona, Illinois-Chicago, Xavier)

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