Dante Jackson, Xavier
- A lot of talk the first two days about the lack of upsets and the lack of excitement.. but I think today's 3 overtime games more than made up for it.
- Mike Conley's 11 points might have owned overtime, but Ron Lewis owned the game. When things broke down for Ohio State, he pretty much got them to overtime by himself.
So many thoughts.. such little space to put them all in. Where do I begin?..
UCONN is done. Period. Well.. if they win 5 straight lets talk, until then, they're done. Michigan will be joining them in the NIT.. where a Tommy Amaker team apparently belongs.
Big win for VCU at Drexel.. but the Dragons were without their best player. Frank Elegar was suspended by the CAA for that one game. The Dragons were up at half.. and who knows what would have happened if he played. I'm not sold on VCU yet.. and I wouldn't give up on Drexel either.
Xavier will be a tough out in the NCAA Tournament (and they will make it). Who is Johnny Wolf by the way? I think he's the best 10 mpg on a mid-major player in the country.. He doesnt get much play in crunchtime.. but on the season, Xavier's backup point guard has 48 assists to just 8 turnovers. That's a money 6 to 1 ratio.. he also shoots 50% from the floor and 48% from three.. let the kid play!
Oh Louisville.. what should we make of you? You have a big name and a hall of fame coach.. but I guess you're just not that good. Graduation losses and injuries have been too much to bare. There's no shame in losing to a 9-2 UMASS team, or an 8-1 Dayton team, or a 7-1 Arizona team either.. but ultimately you're running out of chances to prove your worth. You don't play a ranked team again until 10 games from now.. by then, perhaps with a loss to Kentucky this weekend or a loss to Notre Dame in a couple weeks.. you'll have blown your at-large chances. Sorry, David Padgett's not going to help you.. the fragile one is as reliable as my old 1980 Ford Fiesta. Juan Palacios is solid but not the star I'd thought he'd be. Derrick Caracter almost has more missed free throws than career points.. But perhaps our expectations are simply too high for you Louisville.. so many freshmen and sophomores is hard to deal with.. especially against more experienced teams like UMASS and Dayton. Perhaps you only need time.. but my patience is running thin.
Three years removed from their astonishing run to the Elite 8, Xavier looks as though they may be ready to make another deep run come March. They have one of the most balanced rotations in the country that will feature eight to nine players. Xavier returns three starters (seniors Justin Cage and Justin Doellman; and junior Stanley Burrell). Most importantly however for Xavier will be point guard transfer Drew Lavender. A former McDonalds All-American, Lavender is ready for a fresh start back in his home state of Ohio. Lavender’s amazing quickness and vision will undoubtedly increase Xavier’s team scoring numbers and lead to many open shots.