January 5, 2010 at 7:51 pm #1438
Lehigh (8-6) version…..
http://www.lehighsports.com/assets/spor … 010510.pdf
Yale (4-10) version……
http://www.yalebulldogs.com/sports/m-ba … 0104qj4n8d
Sagarin Predictor Line: LU -6
We wrap up OOC Play tonight in what should be a "gimmie." That said and knowing how unpredictable we are as a team – always losing a bit of focus late in games – I’d take the points if offered. Once in the books, LU will lay claim to having completing play against the second softest schedule (336 SOS rating) among PL participants during this the Out of Conference (OOC) segment of play. Lafayette holds the distinction of having played the weakest grouping of opponents at # 346 (remember, there are only 347 teams competing in D-I this year). How bad is the PL? Real bad. Final OOC won-loss records will be out soon but they won’t begin to tell the whole story. What drives home the league’s ineptitude are the Strength of Schedule numbers and the number of "bad losses" (for example: BU loss to Dartmouth last night) we’ll look back on in the days ahead leading up to the start of league play on Satruday. Six of the league’s eight schools posted SOS’s worse that 300. Only HC (125) and BU (283) went up against stiffer competition (SOS’s better than 300).
Anxious to put this one behind us. Hopefully we ride a 5 game winning streak into league play which begins on Saturday as AU comes to town.January 6, 2010 at 6:50 am #1439
I am being funny, so don’t get mad at me.
I think the LU coach might disagree with you. After all he has the talented bunch in the league. Not sure if you can convince him, he is not ready for PL. Remind me to revisit this message with you in March, right after the season. It’s great to see someone writing on this board.January 6, 2010 at 5:01 pm #1441
A good win but not one to conclude that all our troubles are behind us. They’re not. After all, Yale’s top scorer didn’t play last evening and the single digit scorers dressed in blue became double-digit contributors this night as our "D" went to sleep in the lane on more than one occasion. In fact, the Bulldogs out-rebounded us by 12 (47-35) and 17 to 9 in the offensive category. And, it’s not as if Yale never lead in the game. They did, and once losing the lead came back time and time again with strong bench play. Another storm cloud on the horizon and on display again last night was the up again, down again offensive production of our leader, Marquis Hall. Granted, he draws a crowd of defenders every night, but why the inconsistency? There used to be a time when you could count on Marquis for 10 pts. and 5 assists a night. I guess you still can, but in most unsettling ways. Check out his 15 game sting of numbers below (last night’s in bold).
Points in game order: 14, 12, 9, 11, 2, 6, 19, 6, 17, 2, 16, 7, 20, 6, and 4. Average: 10.1
Assists in game order: 6, 10, 10, 3, 10, 1, 5, 6, 3, 4, 0, 10, 1, 6, and 11. Average: 5.7
What’s the line about that "box of chocolates?" You never know what you’re gonna get.
Another noticeable change in MH’s game this year -somewhat in view last night- is his Free Throw shooting, connecting on only 28 of 43 attempts (65.1%) this year while attempting but 2.9 tosses a game. This is the same guy you wanted at the strip in his sophomore year when he connected 83.2% of the time. Even last year, when the percentage slipped to 68.7%, he still managed to get to the line nearly 5 times a game and buried a number of late game free throws.
The story of the night, however, had to be the return of Joe Knight and Jose Olivero disguised as freshman sensation, CJ McCollum. You don’t often get to see a college player – a freshman no less – score 31 and knock down shots as if it were in a pregame shoot-around. Regrettably, only 605 fans got to witness it in person. Thank God for Yahoo Sports! Come to think of it, CJ probably missed more shots in the warm-ups. In his postgame interview he calmly and cooler stated, in what best could be described as in a most unassuming manner, that he fully expects to hit every open three. You know, I really think he means it. Sincerely, he does. This young man may prove to be the best pure shooter – perhaps none better at the catch and release – to pass thru Lehigh in recent memory. And, just think we have the next 3 1/2 years to make that judgment.
Hey, but it was fun and a win (5th in a row) is a win and it certainly positioned us well for the start of PL play on Saturday. More on that in future postings.January 6, 2010 at 5:32 pm #1442
Certainly it’s not a cloudless horizon, but if McCollum and Knutson can keep this up in league play, the rest of the PL is going to have to stand up and take notice. I’m not saying a couple of games means they will be able to do this game in and game out, but if they prove to be the playmakers they’ve been the past few games we could to have four legitimate scoring options on the floor at any time. I mean, everyone knows Hall and Carrington can break out for big games at any time; if the fab freshmen can too, things look awful promising.January 7, 2010 at 6:52 am #1444
While I agree with your analysis about the freshman, with that much talent on the bench, should LU be better prepared by playing as many players as possible to make the run for the title? Injuries happen and everyone needs to be ready. Last year they did not really go beyond 7 players. Correct me if I am wrong.January 7, 2010 at 4:01 pm #1445
"norcalfan" wrote: Thanks LU65,
While I agree with your analysis about the freshman, with that much talent on the bench, should LU be better prepared by playing as many players as possible to make the run for the title? Injuries happen and everyone needs to be ready. Last year they did not really go beyond 7 players. Correct me if I am wrong.
Some might even argue that they didn’t go beyond two players. :lol:
Seriously, though, I think a lot of players have gotten PT as well: Ojo and Grenier leap to mind, and of course Buchburger and Small. That’s eight, and I’m sure I’m missing a couple more. No longer do I think we have no hope if Hall and/or Carrington go down. In a way, Carrington’s December injury had the silver lining that it allowed a slew of forwards to get extra PT.January 7, 2010 at 5:43 pm #1447
Heading into conference play it seems like we have our three primary weapons: Hall, Carrington, and McCollum. Hopefully we can get at least two of them to step up every league game. Behind them we have the secondary scorers: Knutson, Ojo, Keefer, Buchberger, Greneir. While there has been quite a bit of inconsistency thus far, hopefully with our scoring this spread out, we won’t have any truly off nights in the league. It’s a nice luxury to have so many capable scorers, but as LU65 has said, it would also be nice if we could truly count on our two SR leaders for consistent double digit games to go along with Hall’s distribution and Carrington’s rebounding.
Although our schedule (along with Lafayette’s and Army’s) has been extraordinarily weak, we have shown as much as anyone else in the league in the OOC portion of our schedule. The league is wide open and it should be a very exciting winter.January 8, 2010 at 5:46 am #1449
Thanks for all the responses. There are at least 4 more who can score or defend if given the chance. In my opinion, if Reed does not get it done this year, it will be more difficult, not impossible, next year. He will need hard nosed defense to balance the offensive side. The sleepers will rise to the occasion. Looking forward to PL play. Let’s try to keep writing on this board. The other boards are so interactive.
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