Standings, Schedules, Saturday, and Such…

We’re not worrying about tiebreakers yet, except knowing NU has the edge on VCU for #1, and W&M has the edge on UNCW for #11:

Nor’easter 11-3: @Mason, Ga State, @Drexel, ODU

VCU 11-3: @ODU, Delaware, @JMU, Ga State

Mason 9-5: Nor’easter, Drexel, @UNCW, Towson

Drexel 9-5: Towson, @Mason, Nor’easter, @W&M

JMU 8-6: W&M, @Hofstra, VCU, @Delaware

Old Dominion 8-6: VCU, @UNCW, W&M, @Nor’easter

Hofstra 8-6: @Delaware, JMU, @Ga State, UNCW

Georgia State 5-9: UNCW, @Nor’easter, Hofstra, @VCU

Delaware 5-9: Hofstra, @VCU, @Towson, JMU

Towson 4-10: @Drexel, W&M, Delaware, @Mason

William & Mary 3-11: @JMU, @Towson, @ODU, Drexel

UNCW 3-11: @Ga State, ODU, Mason, @Hofstra

***

Predictions are going to be a little different today, as win/loss impacts are far more important than chattering about Adrian Uter or Craig Callahan or how allergy season affects Matt Brady’s hair.

Love having the Comcast Triple Play tomorrow as well. Clog the DVR, baby.

Nor’easter at George Mason: High Noon, CSN. A pox on the house of the schedule-maker! How could this game be a nooner, followed immediately by VCU/ODU? I don’t care the order, but one needs to be noon and the other 7:00 so I can get to both of them. Oh, well. I imagine good teevee is moderately more important than my travel schedule.

Heavy impact here: Nor’easter is trying to protect its hard-earned tiebreaker advantage at the top of the standings. Personally I love it, but I’m not certain Poor Bill is happy having Baptiste Bataille as his leading scorer over the past two games.

Mason must protect its turf, because scenario-building last weekend was for a conference title and #1 seed. A loss here and scenario-building may surround its Friday opponent.

Both teams are scuffling a bit, and when we start talking about playing well in late February, this is a game that gets you out of the blocks quickly. It is a very important game for Nor’easter, but it is critical for Mason. Why? Both teams would earn a huge victory, but a loss makes life far more muddy for Mason.

This is Definite DVR material, and for the first time in memory there is a game on the same day as VCU/ODU that is clearly bigger and more important.

***

VCU at ODU: Two Bones on Comcast teevee. You get a bathroom break between the NU/GMU game and this tip. That’s it, because as much as we are downplaying this game, it remains a biggie and it remains heated.

VCU knows what is in front of them and freshman Bradford Burgess admitted as much after the Rams defeated JMU the other day. He said that they saw the NU score (loss to Drexel) on the video board during their game and talked about it during a free throw. You can bet they will have knowledge.

Blaine Taylor is always fun to watch because he is very demonstrative on the sidelines, but he is also a big cat-and-mouse guy. He loves the adjustments and the adjustments to adjustments. It’s perpetual motion on the Monarchs bench, whether play calls, play adjustments, hollerin’, or substitutions.

The problem this season is that Taylor has had to play cat-and-mouse with his own team.

Heavy impacts: ODU represents the entire muddle. They are 8-6 and good enough to win out, but sketchy enough to lose three times. After today, ODU has two winnables and a losable on the slate. This is really the swing game. A win and 9-6 staring at 11-7 makes them feel very good. A loss and 8-7 staring at 10-8 makes them believe four-in-four will be necessary.

It’s very straightforward for VCU. The Rams hold the tiebreaker over Mason and Drexel and are unconcerned about falling. For Anthony Grant it is about championships, and they can smell another one.

***

Hofstra at Delaware: 4:00 tip on CN8. This one screams danger for Pecora and his Bipolar Basketball™ team. You know the reasons because you saw YouDee take down Mason last night and Hofstra is on the road. One addition: that late natural three-point play from Egerson late last night was the best I’ve seen in a long, long time. Power basketball at its best.

Heavy Impacts: For Monte’s Men, it’s a backhanded motivation that we get to say but he doesn’t dare. For Ross, it is all about playing well in late February. For us, winning gets them into the 8/9 game and playing a Towson or Georgia State as opposed to a 10 seed and a Friday date with an ODU, Hofstra, or Drexel.

It’s pretty clear for Hofstra, too. Win games. Beach noted the other day that he is nervous about a weekday roadie at Georgia State and I completely agree. But the Pride is sitting on the “easiest” skedder to finish up. Like ODU, this is a swing game.

***

Towson at Drexel, and The College at JMU: For our purposes today, this is the very same game. The Tribe/JMU game is a 7:00 tipper and the lone night game, and TU/DU goes Sunday at 3:00 on CN8 teevee.

Heavy Impact: For Drexel and JMU, there is a muckiness to losing a home game they should win. JMU cannot look back at a wonderful missed opportunity at VCU, and Drexel cannot look forward to a wonderful opportunity at Mason on Wednesday.

Coaches always talk about putting yourself in a position. Both teams have done exactly this. Both teams have opportunities to validate on their home floors.

These games also pit what is currently my tie for coach of the year: Matt Brady and Bruiser Flint are in a Tomko/Jenkins race for the honor.

***

UNCW at Georgia State: Play to win, baby, play to win. Pride matters. This one may tell a lot about these two teams.

The Dub is coming off a game that politely can be termed a stinkeroo. It was an odd stinkeroo because UNCW had been playing much better and on that upward arc. It will be interesting to see how the Seahawks respond to playing worse than when they were playing awful, after playing well. (Read that again, slowly.)

The Panthers, meanwhile, can’t seem to put anything together for more than five minutes. Good, bad, indifferent, passionate, strong, weak, shoot, brick, etc. Rod Barnes’s team is like the weather in Richmond–you never know what you will get, and if you don’t like it wait five minutes. Ga State’s big impact is finally finding some consistency.

***

Final Note: Of the six games this weekend, five are on teevee. And with that whole transition to digital, I’m thinking some rabbit ears will get you the W&M/JMU game, too.

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~ by mglitos on February 13, 2009.

3 Responses to “Standings, Schedules, Saturday, and Such…”

  1. The Towson/Drexel game isn’t tomorrow, it’s Sunday @ 3PM.

  2. Oops. Metaphysically, I was living in Saturday. “Tomorrow” was the day after the WM/JMU game…

  3. Mason’s home brew continues. This was the first time I’ve seen Northeastern…were they just off, because I didn’t see a first-place team…

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