Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Colonials Take

Okay, y’all have to forgive me another basketball post. We’re deep in the season now, and there have been a couple of conference games, and a bunch of non-conference games, which I can only think of as warm up games. Pretty much everything from now on “counts”, so the games are getting important. So. Here’s the thing. I worry. I worry about their preconference schedule, which was very soft. They struggled against teams they should not have been having trouble with (I mean, Norfolk State? Why was that such a tough game for them?). I think that their loss at North Carolina State, and then the near losses that followed (they went into overtime two of their next three games) really got them back on their game. I mean, it can’t be fun to be away from home, be losing badly, and having the opposing crowd chanting “Overrated” at you for five minutes can’t exactly be building your confidence.

That said, they played an outstanding game against St. Joseph's. I don’t know if St. Joe’s just isn’t as good as they were last year, but GWU simply dominated them. It was beautiful. And Stony Brook? Yeah, that club needs a few years of building. It’s possible they might be good at some point (their new coach used to be an assistant coach for GWU), but now is not it. I felt sort of bad for them, because they didn’t even score for the first eight minutes, and we got up by twenty points and never really looked back. I think at some point we were ahead by thirty points.

But I made a discovery last night. I really like to watch basketball, but I don’t like watching players who have no personality. For example, Omar Williams has made great strides in his four years at GWU. Hobbes played and played and played him, never really gave up on him. And I’ll give him credit, he’s a lot better than he used to be. But he’s sort of boring. it takes a lot to get him going, he has these occasional flashes of greatness, but he’s not consistent. And he fouls a lot, but there’s not a whole lot of return there. Now, Mike Hall is fun to watch. He’s dependable and steady, and, now hear me out. You’d THINK that would make him boring, but it’s not. He scopes out the strategy and he tends to put himself in a place where he can get the ball to the basket. He doesn’t push plays, he waits for his opening. He can slam the ball, make three point shots, fade away jumps, and he’s a reliable foul shooter. He plays clean, too, so he’s not likely to be giving away those free foul shots to the other team. Danilo Pinnock? Elegant. And, again, smart. Also a good three point shooter, solid on the foul line. Fluid. Carl Elliot? Something of a hothead, goes for broke, he’ll drive down the lane if he think he can get in, but he’s got self control, so he can pull back if he needs to. Mo Rice? Fun, very much like Elliot, actually. Both good point guards. Pops? Well, he used to be a lot of fun to watch, but...he seems flat this year. The problem with Pops is that he’s the big inside guy, and he’s only good if he isn’t guarded. He gets shut down, he can’t do anything else. He can slam the ball in like no one else, but I’ve yet to see him even do a lay-up. and when he tries something further away? I don’t even know why he bothers. He shoots 50% from the foul line if he’s lucky. So, he was fun last year, but this year, not so much. Alex Kireev I have a certain affection for because, hell, he’s better than Roma was (I mean, he does have the ability to handle the ball). Last year he seemed to improve dramatically because he’d played with the Ukrainian national team, but he sort of fizzled. He doesn’t suck...okay, he does. But I like him anyway. He’s an underdog. Decent freshman talent. Montrell McDonald has been getting a lot of time. My dad likes Rob Diggs, and thinks he’ll get time on the floor next year. We’ll see.

The big fear, of course, is that Karl Hobbes will decamp next year to a bigger program. Now, this fear is currently being stoked by my Big Brother, who...we’ll see. It’ s not like he’s got the inside line What Karl Hobbes Is Thinking About His Career, so I’ll just nurture the hope that he’ll stick around for a few more seasons.

We’ll see how they do up against some tougher teams coming up and going into the NCAA rounds. My guess is that their early season was too soft, and they might fall apart against tougher teams.


Blogger stalebREAD said...

YO MAVEN, give us some new material! And, I don't think Hobbes will leave this year, I think it's next year you'll have to worry about if they do anything close to what they're doing this year.

1:32 PM  
Blogger mickey said...

as a former temple owl, it is hard for me to read this love of the colonials, lol. and how the hell did you guys get so good so fast? you used to be awful about ten years ago. now the owls are getting to be a patsy for you. so hard to adjust to. :)

2:10 PM  

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