Sunday, April 1

Good Heavens

Fools Fest was a near total success.

I mean, we could have won the final, but that might have been asking for too much. There will, perhaps be a full entry on it later. Might not. Highlights could include, without being limited to:

  • Achieving the team's stated goal of "Doing just enough to have a first round bye on Sunday" by earning the 8-seed in Mixed, Div 1 playoffs.
  • Being unquestionably beaten in burrito-eating skill by an A. Davis from Rutgers.
  • Backing into a Spirit Award (This HAS to be the first that I've won)
  • Bailey Russel playing defense (Incredible Video Evidence at 11!)
  • As always, running into the rest of the ultimate world
  • The consistency and dedication with which our team carried out the Tight Ass Country Club theme
NCAA Title game tonight. If I have to pick in real life? I pick the Oden State University. If I have to "go against a Sicilian when death is on the line?" I pick Florida.

This can only mean it will be a good game despite Billy Packer, who, while not as bad as many have made him out to be, is not fun to listen to.

If you missed it on Saturday morning, Maurice Peterson joined Sheed in the Anthony Atkinson club this week by doing something completely ridiculous to win a game. As a teaser for the full story, Bailey would've joined that club on Sunday if we could have won after his "Concussahan" knocked him out of the game.
Rest Day:
That is, watch the title game and work to heal my grapefruit-size sprained ankle.


Mackey said...

Any post with a Princess Bride quote will get a comment from me. Especially one from the best scene in the whole movie.

Sprained ankle? Finals appearance? Don't tease me so with these vague allusions! Details, man.

Also, since blog commenting precludes email, I thought you should know I got a job working as an RA at Skidmore this summer. I may have dropped your name in my cover letter. Just FYI.

Bill Mill said...

Corey Brewer is the best basketball player in college right now. I wouldn't have said that before tonight, but he is beating Ohio State singlehandedly. Sick.

dusty.rhodes said...


I've got enough to say about working that summer gig that I'll save it for an email.

Also, I do not think preclude means what you think it means.


The MVP of that game was the three point line, not Corey Brewer. Greg Oden is scary good, but the guards were not up to snuff.

I do not understand why, with a big man like that, that OSU wasn't playing as tight as possible on the perimeter instead of diving to help in the lane. There's a dude in the lane who is affecting every shot-- even the ones he doesn't touch. Somehow, the strategy wasn't "force them to take pull-up jumpers instead of 3s because we know they're scared of the lane."

Then again, what do I know?

Bill Mill said...

Did you see why their guards couldn't get off a three? They couldn't get *near* the three point line.

Brewer (and Green to a lesser extent) up at the top of the key made life *miserable* for the OSU guards. They were running the offense from four feet outside the three-point line, and they were absolutely terrified anywhere near Brewer. His three steals came out of nowhere, using his tayshaun-prince-like long arms.

It's his D, not his O, that impressed me.

Bill Mill said...

Oh, and agreed that Greg Oden is scary good. In another 5 years, he'll be Olajuwon-esque.

And I retract my statement that Hansbrough is better inside right now, that is plainly wrong.

dusty.rhodes said...

I agree that Brewer played great D. I'm saying that if there was no three point line, the outcome would have been different.

Florida shot 10/18, OSU was 4/23. That's a 7 point swing on threes. Also, while the assessment that Brewer was strong on D, he didn't force turnovers like OSU did-- he just forced bad shots. Florida had 15 TOs and OSU had 7. OSU hit (30) and took (64) more shots than Florida (26/53) while Florida hit (22) and took (25) more FTs than OSU (11/17).

The difference in the game was behind the 3pt line and behind the charity stripe.

Method 1: If you adjust both relevant percentages to something similar to the season averages for those teams (OSU stands pat in FTs and make 4 more 3s while Florida misses 5 FTs and makes 3 fewer 3s, OSU stands at +4 and Fla stands at -8) the game ends up being a 79-76 OSU victory. If you, more realistically, assume that the Gators stepped up and shot better from the line in a big game by removing the change in FTs, the game becomes a 81-79 Florida victory.

Method 2:
Remove the 3 point line from the game. Just for sanity, assume that the teams would all take the same shots (which is completely false, but let's assume that it would affect both teams equally) and shoot the same percentage. Intead of an 84-75 Fla victory, it would be a 74-71 Florida victory. That's a much more manageable margin.

Two further thoughts:

1. I think this reflects the intelligence of the coaches in the game. Not necessarily intelligence in terms of IQ, but intelligence in terms of understanding what it takes to have a successful team in men's college basketball. Either through recruiting or coaching (the two major jobs of a college coach) Donovan learned over his 13 years that the THREE is vital to winning. Matta did not learn this over his 7 years. He had neither a stone-cold shooter nor a shut-down perimeter defender on that team. Donovan had one of the former (Humphrey at .459) and more than one of the latter (Brewer and Green for sure and the other three starters when needed). Maybe Matta will learn this eventually, but he hasn't yet.

2. Interesting that you chose to ascribe the difference in three point shooting to the performace by the Florida players and I chose to point to two other reasons for the same thing: OSU not playing good D and OSU not shooting well as a result of their own inadequacies. Just two interesting ways to look at the problem. At least we agree on what the problem was.

And yes, Greg Oden is terrifying. I hope he (and Durant) wait a year so that the Sixers can tank a whole season for either him or KD. I don't care which of the two. I would mortgage an entire season for either. Although, for the record, if I were either one of them, I'd jet for the NBA post-haste.

Or at least enter into a contract with the Spurs so that they will sit Duncan down with a mystery injury for all of next year in hopes to form Twin Towers v 2.0. This time Duncan can be the old guy in the commercials.

Anonymous said...

"Also, I do not think preclude means what you think it means."

Another subtle use of "The Princess Bride." Nice.

"Or at least enter into a contract with the Spurs so that they will sit Duncan down with a mystery injury for all of next year in hopes to form Twin Towers v 2.0. This time Duncan can be the old guy in the commercials."

I can see that. But really, with Greg Oden's too-mature-for-18-look, Tim Duncan would still be the younger guy in those commercials.

Now. Was the NCAA finals really the best thing to come out of Fools weekend?

dusty.rhodes said...

No, the final was not the best thing to come out of Fools' weekend, but I have to commit some time to put any comments together about *THAT* massive an experience.

Anonymous said...


While 80s movies are on tap (ha), can you maybe work in an "Airplane!" reference when you get around to the Fools writeup? "Where did you get that pink polo shirt, it's terrible. And those golf shoes with that sweater vest, oh geez!"

Hope your ankle's doing better. I still think you shoulda gone through the CAT scan with Bailey: "DEAR GOD...IT'S A FOOTHEAD!"


Bill Mill said...

> didn't force turnovers like OSU did-- he just forced bad shots.

His 3 steals each turned into an immediate transition bucket for Florida. Give OSU all three buckets (and dumping it into Oden was nearly a guaranteed two last night), and that's a +12 difference. Huge.

As for blaming it on Matta, I don't think that's really fair. In truth, it's a miracle that he got the team this far in a single year. In his first recruiting year, he scored the biggest recruit Ohio State has ever seen.

It remains to be seen if he'll be able to get guys to shoot the three and more ballers down low in the future, and if he'll be able to properly utilize them.

dusty.rhodes said...

That is likely a good point. Then again, perhaps that speaks more to Florida's fast break aptitude or OSU's inability to play transition defense.

As for dumping it in to Oden, OSU (like Texas) is a team that does not seem to understand the concept of the "re-post."

I'm not saying it is entirely Matta's fault, but it did seem to me that Florida's gameplan centered around not allowing easy threes and getting the ball to open Florida shooters for easy threes. The least they could have done was stop leaving Humphries all by his lonesome.

I don't know if Ode can equal The Dream because Hakeem's post moves were flat out art. Oden's post moves tend more toward the devastatingly effective.

Bill Mill said...

I agree that OSU needed to play better perimeter D. Horford and Noah never had to prove that they could play with Oden down low - but likely that was part of the game plan, to keep Oden from fouling. I think Matta needed Florida to prove they could beat him from the outside in order to keep Oden in the game, which he needed in order to have any shot at all.

Florida, on the other hand, let Oden go one-on-one against bench players all night. I think that they effectively prevented the re-post; instead of collapsing to help whatever schmoe was guarding Oden, they played denial on the outside and dared OSU to beat them with Oden.

Thus, it boiled down to Florida's 3s versus Oden. With the college line and Humphries on your team, it's clear who wins that battle.

I thought it was pretty well coached from all sides, but that Donovan had more weapons.

dusty.rhodes said...


I think that the repost is still valuable in a situation like this. The defnder relaxes the second the ball is tossed back out and then when it is given back, the bucket is easy.

Donovan definitely had more weapons.