Friday, July 30, 2010

trend or hiccup?

I think it would be an accurate statement that the vast majority of programs at our level would consider 20 wins to be a good season. Maybe not what they wanted, but good. In fact, most schools our size would consider 17-18 wins to be a pretty good season.

One year is not a trend. Two years is a small trend. Was last year the start of a trend, or a hiccup? Who knows. I certainly have no idea. We did not have a bad year last year – we had a TERRIBLE year. Attach that to another bad year, and it is a trend. If, at this point of his career, without any post season, if Shields starts a bad trend, he could be gone, and deservedly so. If he proves that last year was a hiccup, he probably earns himself a good bit of slack, and deservedly so.

The Stirps and names

My 86-year-old father (nicknamed "The Stirps" - meaning Head of the Clan) watches a lot of ballgames on TV. This last basketball seasons he made a hobby of noting all the notable names of players that he heard. Southern Illinois will add to his list next season with Mamadou Seck and Devonte Drinkard.

non-conference motivation

The goals and expectations of non-conference seasons differ drastically. At the top level, it is about making your case for an at-large berth, or even for high seeding. At a lower level, it is about preparing your team for conference, and, if things break just right, maybe an outside shot at an at-large. At the lowest level it is about taking bruises to raise money.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Four-star recruit JerShon Cobb will play for Northwestern. He said "they fit my style of play." Northwestern runs the deliberate Princeton offense. So much for the claim that no one wants to go to schools that play at a slow pace.

Monday, July 26, 2010

not too long

Only about six weeks until the preseason magazines come out. I'm ready!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

hard sell

Pity poor Robert Morris. They had a great season: 23 wins and an overtime loss to Villanova in the NCAA tournament. But they averaged a home attendance of only 1029 per game.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Roster shows two players from Canada, one from Brazil and one from Mexico. Nice international flavor to the team. Still, the strongest connection is to Texas, with five players.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

John McGraw was right

Smallball is the way to go. Way more exciting. Much better brand of baseball. McGraw didn't like it when Ruth came along and made baseball a home run derby. If he could see it now! Move back the fences!

Monday, July 12, 2010

perimeter defense

Perimeter defense is just about a "must" for mid-level teams, since because of a lack of quality big men their opponents will have to put an inordinate dependence upon the 3-point shot.

Missouri State?

What happened to Missouri State last year? They started out great guns, winning their first ten games, including wins over Tulsa and at SLU, then took Arkansas to OT at Fayetteville. Then in conference play they were sub-.500. They return their top four scorers, and should be tough again this year.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Gut feel

I just have the gut feel that the downside potential of this team is a lot greater than their upside potential. Don't know why. Maybe it is because we stunk up the place so badly last season, and that smell is still in the air.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Pine Bluff rewarded?

I hope the AD at Pine Bluff rewards the team for their good season by allowing them to play a few games that don't fall into the "take a thrashing for the paycheck" category.