Random Comment Sunday…

Your Weakened Review, early, because MPH intervenes tomorrow. This entails an inability to listen in to the weekly coaches conference call, thus forcing a vacation week for Clee-Shay Monday…

***

Here’s the best way I can think of to quantify and qualify the brilliance of Eric Maynor: defenses are specifically designed to stop him and he still makes plays. Plus, Maynor’s impact on a basketball game is most evident in the things that don’t appear on the stat sheet. I’ve not seen anyone manage a game better than Maynor, and it isn’t even close.

And with all of that, Maynor still posts gaudy stats.

You can see hints of that in Cam Long.

***

Hoo-baby, this is impressive. (And a foul. I generally stay away from the whole officiating thing, because most fans are big whiners, but Jeff Nichols is over his head.)

***

Gerald Lee, where are you? Last night it was four points (six shot attempts?), three rebounds and four turnovers. I honestly cannot remember if he was even on the court when Nor’easter began taking over the game.

In three of the past four games, Lee has committed one or zero fouls. His points have declined each game in the past five, from 20 against JMU to four last night.

I don’t get it.

***

Jay Williams, former Dookie and now ESPN college hoops analyst, is very good. Treat the sound bite stuff as what teevee commentary has become and think about what is going on. Williams is always well prepared, backs up the schtick with stats, and presents it in a lively manner.

He also does some color for one of the CAA teevee pacakges.

And let’s not run me out of town for this one, but he and Doug Gottleib are pretty darned good together.

***

Those that say “if John Vaughan would’ve played yesterday, the game would’ve been different” are both right and wrong.

Mason may indeed have beaten VCU, but they may also have lost by more.

It is true that the Patriots would’ve handled the VCU press much better, and Vaughan would’ve added strength and presence on the defensive end. But you cannot look at that impact in a vaccuum.

Cam Long made some huge shots and showed he can dominate games. That doesn’t happen if Vaughan is in the lineup. Perhaps Ryan Pearson defers a bit on offense, or Darryl Monroe gets more shots. VCU likely attacks a little differently, and perhaps Larranaga never goes to that zone defense that confoundedVCU in the second half.

The point: everything has impact, and everything is connected.

***

Chad Tomko went for 25 and 15 assists last night in The Dub’s dub-OT win over Towson. Add six steals and six turnover and you get a full night.

Reading Mull this morning, I have two distinct impressions. First, Montez Downey may be a tremendous unifying force on the team. He’s back and playing well and it is affecting his teammates.

Second, the money quote makes me laugh:

“Transition is everything. Coach told me before the game this team struggles in transition defense just to push the ball and get guys shots. That’s our best offense. We’re a pretty decent set team. But that’s the real way we want to play,” Tomko said.

Tomko plays best in giddyup mode because he is disruptive and a smart open court player. He has pace to burn. But Chad, you guys are not a pretty decent set team. Love the enthusiam in a very tough year.

Side note: this UNCW team, supposedly one of the worst in CAA history, is technically in 10th place.

***

As I type, Rocky is on in the background, and now the first few minutes of Rocky II. I haven’t seen three seconds of the movie in probably 15 years. Good stuff, I tell you. Well done.

***

The College falls into the cellar after another performance that is less odd than we’ve all thought. We’re halfway through the season and well past figuring things out time. William & Mary cannot shoot, and it cannot stop people from shooting. That’s the precise combination that gets you to 1-8. It’s not a hiccup or aberration.

Their two big threats, Danny Sumner and David Schneider, are struggling. Sumner is in a particular Gerald Lee-like funk. Despite garnering a pile of all league mention, Sumner has scored in double figures only three times in the past seven Tribe games.

Sumner is shooting 30% from the field in conference games and 28% from three. More telling: Sumner has not attempted more than two free throws in a game since January 3.

***

Captip to the commentor MetSox. You didn’t notice this, and frankly neither did I. But while we have been salivating over Leon Spencer and appreciating Scott Rodgers, we may have all missed the maturation of point guard Jamie Harris and what he’s meant to Bruiser and the Dragons.

In more than 34mpg, Harris is averaging 10 points and shooting 53.6% from the field (41% from deep) and 92% from the line. His assist to turnover ration is a sterling 1.75/1.

My apologies, it’s difficult to process “Drexel” and “good shooting,” but that’s exactly what we are seeing. The Dragons are scoring and defending.

And as of today, the consensus #12 choice in preseason is watching from the stands on tournament Friday.

***

The JMU/Hofstra game is exactly why you pay for the video feed of CAA games. It was a thriller that ended when Chuckie Jenkins hit a twisting shot with nary two seconds to play.

It must be mentioned that even though Jenkins led the way with 22 points, My Man Corny Vines hit four triples, including a gargantuan shot with less than two minutes to play.

The up-and-down Pride have now won three in a row, and if memory serves Hofstra is something like 8-1 this year in games decided by five or fewer points. (I’ll need to fact check that, but it is gaudy.)

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~ by mglitos on January 25, 2009.

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