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  1. champs99and04

    I had planned to post this March 12th

    The bolded section is recently added. Everything else is verbatim from my March draft box. If you'd told me back in late December that UConn would finish 10-8 in conference play, I wouldn't have been surprised. They were a decent, albeit limited team that was set for two+ months and 18 games...
  2. champs99and04

    Taking stock of the program heading into 2020 (originally written 12/11)

    UConn’s somewhat meteoric rise in defensive efficiency – from a disappointing 129th a year ago to 37th as of this moment – can be attributed in large part to the addition of Akok Akok. They simply do not make very many human beings like him, and to the extent that he’s elevated their defensive...
  3. champs99and04

    Ohio State, Urban Meyer deny allegation of Zach Smith racial slur

    There's a lot going on here. My first reaction is that I can't believe McMurphy published this story. This is what happens when our country cheaps out on paying journalists their worth - you end up with fringe news outlets skirting the boundaries in order to give laid off reporters the outlet...
  4. champs99and04

    Six games, 12 punts

    Five of them came in the span of eight drives against Syracuse. Of course, that was after they had racked up 31 points in their first five possessions. Beyond that, you're looking at three against Rhode Island, one fairly early in the game against UCF when they inexplicably decided to not go...
  5. champs99and04

    I've never seen a team more overmatched. At any level. Ever.

    The score will not do it justice. If Boise wanted to win 100-0, they could. It's not the kids fault. You can't even pin it on coaching (though they haven't helped). This is the the result of an institution completely squandering its signature investment through close to a decade's worth of...
  6. champs99and04

    Winners and losers from week one around college football

    Yes I realize there's still another game. But more gets set in stone than you think after just one slate of games. Most programs play four OOC games max, with at least two of them typically being buy games. That means we already have a pretty good idea of which conferences are going to rate...
  7. champs99and04

    Tarin Smith to UConn

    Per Rothstein.
  8. champs99and04

    Four years ago today

    They can't take it away from us.
  9. champs99and04

    If you want a chance to get mad at something

    Read this ESPN article on the best all-time champions (disclaimer: it's impossible to make this list without getting somebody mad, and they showed three of our four champs plenty of respect, so don't take it as a "the media hates us" post) Where does 2018 Villanova rank among all the national...
  10. champs99and04

    "Can't win with transfers" - outdated philosophy?

    I'm not distinguishing between grad transfers and regular transfers here, but you can if you'd like. My impression used to be that grad transfers were super valuable while regular transfers had to be special if they were going to take up a scholarship for a year. Our success with normal...
  11. champs99and04

    Happy 19th anniversary

    We knew this day would come but still it is hard to process the fact that not a single prospective UConn student who graduated high school with their normal class will have been born prior to March 29th, 1999.
  12. champs99and04

    Sunday games

    Couple observations: 1. Brunson is as fundamentally sound a college player as you are going to find. Kids just don't play that way. 2. Notice how Wright gets Brunson a breather right before the media timeouts to extend his rest. Those are the tricks Ollie didn't have with guys like Adams...
  13. champs99and04

    The remaining field demonstrates the value of sticking with a coach

    I invite you to look for yourself. The evidence is pretty much irrefutable. Coaches are constantly adapting, evolving, modifying, consulting, and experimenting. The things that work with one group of players don't with a different one, the recruiting pitches that convert some fail to persuade...
  14. champs99and04

    anyone else rooting for Cuse on Friday?

    Tough to imagine, I know. But put the rivalry stuff to the side for a second and tell me you want the school that has signed the top three players in next years class to beat the team that had to play a walk-on down the stretch against Michigan State. I don’t care if K is dirty or clean and...
  15. champs99and04

    Great coaches are measured in large part by winning games they're not supposed to win

    It's not all of it. Collecting the parts and assembling them are really important. Not finishing 8th in the American is really important. But almost everyone, at some point, has to pull out a game or two that they had no business winning. Ask yourself which coaches have done that and which...
  16. champs99and04

    Tom Izzo vs. Jim Boeheim

    The most overrated coach in the country vs. the most underrated coach in the country. #1 in the country pre-season. Roster loaded with five stars at every position. Lottery pick. 9th place team in the ACC. Game in Detroit. 53 points. What a failure.
  17. champs99and04

    Corruption/incompetence

    That's the only way you explain Syracuse getting in. It's the only way you explain St. Mary's not getting in. USC somehow falls short. Texas and Oklahoma don't even have to pass the Dayton clearinghouse. The #1 overall seed stares at Kentucky/Arizona in the sweet sixteen. I don't even...
  18. champs99and04

    Preemptively ranting about the committee

    Pardon the deviation from the Ollie saga, but I'm already angry about the living contradiction that is the NCAA Tournament selection committee. They glorify the "human component" and value the "basketball people" on the committee, because apparently, statisticians and odds-makers are not...
  19. champs99and04

    Mamadou Diarra played three more minutes than David Onuorah this season

    With those three extra minutes, he scored 53 more points, grabbed 17 more rebounds, and blocked ten more shots. He was a freshman with obvious upside and Onuorah was a stopgap grad transfer who had no role in our future plans. Of all the things you can second guess Ollie on, this will be...
  20. champs99and04

    75-21 final score

    You can probably guess one of the teams involved. Thing is, the game wasn't nearly that close. It was 66-11 after three quarters when the foot was presumably lifted from the gas pedal. The second quarter was 26-0. In a conference tournament semi-final game. People will argue whether this is...
  21. champs99and04

    14.5 point dog today

    From my understanding the game is not being played in Houston’s normal gym? That has to be a psychological edge for us. I had circled this game on the calendar as a beat down, but I could also see something crazy like us only losing by ten. Depends what UConn team decides to show up. If we...
  22. champs99and04

    A little more like UConn basketball

    That was probably one of the best three games I've seen Jalen play in a UConn uniform. Dominant, all-American caliber performance that I expected to see more of at the start of the season. It isn't a fair standard to hold someone to but then again how can you not? Watching Diarra tonight...
  23. champs99and04

    +18.5

    Is that the largest this season? Until Cincy’s recent skid I thought it might end up over 20.
  24. champs99and04

    Wichita State

    They just went on the road and shot 53% against the #2 defense in the country. Love him or hate him, Marshall is a hell of a coach. I caught most of the second half and the offense they were running was about as gorgeous as can be - free-flowing screening and cutting within every possession...
  25. champs99and04

    This team is storming into March

    Guard play wins in March. It's been proven time and time again. Who is playing better over the last 24 hours than Jalen Adams? Nobody in this conference, that's for sure. Cincinnati is struggling with Wichita State at home after just losing to Houston a few days ago. I would pick UConn to...
  26. champs99and04

    Season in a nutshell

    There are just so many things wrong. To need one stop at 70-69 to seize control of that game and give up an uncontested layup (and I don't care what your personnel was) is staggering. That's just the epitome of softness, be it mentally, physically, whatever. Any team with a pulse at least...
  27. champs99and04

    Saturday feels like a last stand of sorts

    I qualify with "of sorts" because it's one game and there are an assortment of other things that have to be considered regarding whether Ollie returns, and that's even before we get to the investigation that could render everything else that happens this season irrelevant. But then again...
  28. champs99and04

    Not much to be encouraged about tonight

    It's hard to expect much when you have grad transfers from Fordham and Cornell playing significant minutes along with a trio of three star freshman who have some tools but still can't take two dribbles in a row. To say Vital and especially Adams are swimming upstream surrounded by this...
  29. champs99and04

    Impressed

    That was the #32 team in the country on KemPom. They were also 29th in adjusted offense and shot 27% from the field against a defense that has begun to look longer and more athletic with every minute Polley and Whaley get under their belt. It's immensely beneficial at any level when every...
  30. champs99and04

    Nova

    They're not playing a very good team today. In fact they're playing a really bad team. But sometimes that's the point. They came to Hartford and competed with the same or more energy than UConn, snuffed out any inkling they may have had of winning the game in the opening possessions, and...
  31. champs99and04

    UConn +16.5

    That’s such a big number. Not unexpected but to see it in print is jarring. 16.5 point home dog. Amazing.
  32. champs99and04

    What it looked like from 108

    It looked alright. Nothing extraordinary, but good enough. UCF is limited. Their limits have limits. Two guys score in double figures, nobody above 11.6. It's going to be a real grind for them even when Taylor returns and if you asked me whether they look like a tournament team, the answer...
  33. champs99and04

    UCF -1

    I'm a bit surprised by this line. They're about 75 slots ahead of us on KenPom (they're also #4 in adjusted defense while we're 203rd in offense). I know they're missing a key player, but he's been out for a while now and it hasn't stopped them from playing some pretty solid ball. They've...
  34. champs99and04

    What is the reaction if Henderson's three rims out?

    Big picture, very little changes. We guard the three point line with the urgency of a moose crossing, we still can't inbound the basketball to win a game, and we still only have 2.5 players who can score. On the other hand, some of the emotional comments probably become realistic assessments...
  35. champs99and04

    Bills/NFL playoffs

    I'll admit that I'm a sucker for these sorts of stories. Watching the videos of fans celebrating and reading about how many people gathered to greet the team plane in 5 degree weather makes my eyes well up. It's one of the best fan bases in sports and they have been dragged through every...
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