Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Doug Gottlieb played basketball for OSU and now is an ESPN college basketball analyst, here are some clips of his chat yesterday...

: Can you put into perspective just how impressive Billy Gillespie has been at Texas A&M and are his Aggies a legit contender come March?

A: Perspective? How about this- in 1998 I played against A & M for the first time in G. Rollie WHite---their old gym---there were at most 1300 fans in attendance---until last year, the Aggies had never won a Big 12 tourney game---and now they have the best team in Texas, they have signed the best player in Texas and they have a legit shot to win the whole thing.

There was a very intresting thread about recruuting at Illinois under Bill Self....

Q: Apparently you have p'd off the Illini faithful with comments you made today over the radio. Thank you for giving them something else to whine about. I like you....

A: All I said is that I love Bruce Webber the man and the basketball coach, but he is trying to be the first in a long line of coaches to truly do things the right way in Chambana---and they are not getting it done in recruiting....there in lies the question, with so many people expecting Illinois do go down the wrong path, do you penalize Webber for doing it the right way and not winning as many games?

Q: Are you implying that Bill Self cheated while at Illinois?

A: No. But Lou did for years. It has been well documented that Bill had a couple dozen minor violations.
There is a perception at Illinois---from recruits more than coaches, that there was something not on the up and up---
That leads to expectations from in-state is unfair to say they falt out cheated, but there was that perception back in the day

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Gary Parish at seems to thinks wins and losses should determine your ranking (he obviously does not pay attention to Duke). If we pretend for a second that his craziness is correct, then he has some compelling evidence as to why Oregon should be ahead of TAMU: Top-25 wins (3 v 1), Top 25 losses (1 v 3), etc.

My thoughts? Who cares who is 8, 9, or 10. This is basketball. There is a tournament where the teams, not pre-season rankings (ask Auburn), determine the national champion.
Baseball season is ramping up, get excited. Well not too excited. The Aggies did get 1 first place vote in the preseason Big-12 coaches poll (ata boy Childress), but some how landed 7th overall.

With the way Billy keeps talking about how good AK can be, I can't help but think of AK as the next Dirk Nowitzki. I mean, you can't deny the resemblance between the two.
I was wrong when I predicted that Ma Bennett was going to focus on football and would not re-join the basketball team this year. He did re-join the team, but not for long. Siting mental and emotional exhaustion, Ma is leaving the hard wood. I am not mad or surprised. This guy is all-conference, he can do whatever he wants in my book.

Monday, January 29, 2007

The D-Morn News College Blog analyzed Acie's last 5 min v previous 35 min in each Big-12 game:

Team: Last 5, First 35
Baylor: 7 (2 of 4), 13 (5 of 12)
Colorado: 10 (2 of 3), 11 (4 of 8)
Oklahoma State: 11 (3 of 4) ,5 points (2 of 4)
Texas Tech: 7 (2 of 4), 19 (7 of 11)
Oklahoma: 12 (2 of 2), 7 (3 of 11)

Which give us an average of 9.4 points at 70.6% in the last 5 min and 11 points at 45.7%. Not that surprising. I would love to see the comparisons between his offensive ratings in those two time periods. Maybe I am just dorky enough to figure that out. I will have to fight a decent amount of laziness.

Side node, I plan on referring to the stats on Ken Pomperoy's site much more often. He maintains the stats for all D1 teams using formulas that remove the pace of the game (faster pace means more shot not a better offensive team). Which is very cool. Plus Texas A&M is high on the defensive stats.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

H-Chron had YET ANOTHER story about how Aggie basketball has changed and posed YET ANOTHER stupid "whoda thunk" question. This type of crap is dead to me.
I know I don't give the women's team and Gary Blair much time here, but after yesterday's victory I had to post something. They upset 6th randed OU IN NORMAL, and in front of about 11,000 fans. Who knew 11,000 people watched women's basketball all at the same time. Well, outside of free tickets and $1 sausage. Apparently the game was pretty ugly, and that is exactly how Blair likes it. "How many teams can come in and shoot 33 percent, 58 percent from the line and still win ball games? Does it all have to be pretty ball all the time?" Guess not.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

$80 up front and $12 a month. That is what I pay for Sirius satellite radio. I may not use it enough to justify the cost, but being able to listen to the game while on a train to NYC makes it all worth it. I was able to listen to our second all time win against OU, and we have played them a bunch of times (27). Once again Acie turned into one hell of a player at the end of the game, propelling us to a 70-61 victory. Sounds good, but both Billy and Acie were not that happy. "It shouldn't have came down to that point where I needed to score those kind of baskets at the end..." "He could play better from start to finish." Josh Carter didn't lay another egg, thank god. He showed a good ability to get to the basket and hit his threes, finishing with 13.
Okay, I have recovered from losing. The chants of "5 fouls no points" have stopped waking me up at night. I can blog again. Thank you for all the calls, cards, and flowers.

We play OU today at a sold out Reed Arena. Very exciting. Our last win against OU was in 1999, but with IU plucking Sampson (I still think that was the weirdest choice for IU) and Billy et al kicking ass that drought should end today.

Update on the we-get-no-respect front. Former Georgetown coach John Thomson "hosts" a radio show in the DC area. I put hosts in quotes because this guy has no clue. He didn't recognize the name Bill Self. I am pretty sure he stopped watching sports when he retired from coaching. Anyways, the success of A&M's basketball team was actually discussed for about 15 seconds on Friday. Made fighting DC traffic a little less painful.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Worst in-bound play ever. I will tell myself that it is good to get some losses in early and on the road.
Great news, assistant coach Al Johnson is back on the sidelines and hopes to make a full recovery from der-mat-o-my-o-sie-tis.

We face Tech today, in Lubbock, bringing our well documented defense ("nation's best", "No. 1 defense in the nation " etc). Tech beat Kansas, allowing us to take the solo spot a top of the Big-12 (Bob credited the moon for the victory). Now the Raiders are "feeling very confident". Maybe that is why they are 2 1/2 point favorites. I am not a betting man (not after betting on us to beat BAYLOR two years ago), but I would take those odds. This VERY long scouting report sums up 3434 pages into a few BS words, "the outcome may well depend on ... which team can impose its will upon the other. I believe Tech has exhibited the qualities necessary to do that." Wtf? Who are they Jack Bauer? Did they just decided NOT to impose their will against UNLV? Or maybe that game did not depend on imposing will. Maybe it was decided on defensive and offensive production.

NOTE: Bob Knight had the coolest answer to a question during a weekly press tele-con. The question, "What is it like to be in your dog house?" Bob's answer... he just hung up the phone. Amazing.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

More on the dude who spammed by blog, Fadi Kalaouze. Looks like our administration does not disagree with the lawsuit, saying we would have done the same. They are surprised it "took them so long".

Monday, January 22, 2007

Apparently if it was not for Papa Bear Bill Self, our own Billy G would still be a high school coach. I wounder if BG would be able to scale back the intensity as to not make high school kids go nuts. Acie could barely handle it. BG also stole boot camp and about everything else from Self. I am hoping our Bill can do it better.
I have two comments: 1) I am at about a 3rd grade writing level. Check out my post on the 21st, there are a scary number of mistakes. I actually wrote "there" instead of "their". I blame it on the opium like euphoria I felt after handing OSU their ass. 2) I was so excited that someone left a comment on my last post only to be COMPLETE disappointed that it was spam about the guy from Aggieland Outfitters (Fadi Kalaouze or something) is being sued over his "Saw 'em off" shirts. It went on to ask for donations to his legal fund. Donations?!?! This dude has cornered the A&M T-Shirt market, he owns Aggieland Outfitters and Inspirations, and now he wants help with the legal fund. Hell, most of the shirt there have something to do with the rivalry. And now he wants MORE money. What a joke.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Add Mark Schlabach to the chorus of ESPN guys who are singing our praises and putting us in the final four.
Hell yes. All by our selves at the top of the Big-12. A win here (our's) a loss there (KU's) and we are king of the Big-12. Heavy is the head that wears the crown, and Billy knows it "there's a lot of basketball to be played." Well I want to dwell on the basketball that just got played.

Last night we beat a very good and respected (see previous post about national title condenders) OSU team, 67-49. Yes 49. 49. These guys have never scored that low, previous low was 57, and they average over 82 a gain. Hell they beat other teams by more than 49 (52 v SW OK State).

We started out great, which was about the oppoiste of what little Sutton had in mind when he wasted to "start fast, forcing them to call a time-out 22 seonds into the game
. The game was close until Acie decided to turn in on in front of a record 13,187 fans at Reed. Acie only played 8 min in the first half, but, like the man he is, put the game away late after Marlon stopped there comback with a pull up jumper.

37-points-20-rebounds Mario Boggan's All-American stock went belly up after facing our deffense. A host of guys helped hold him to 11 points. I love it.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

And I am back. Looks like Jan 12th was the last time I was not lazy. Matthew, from the College Station Eagle, has recently showed interest in the blog so I need to cowboy up on this one. Don't want to give the wrong impression.

So what has happened in the 8 days...

Andy Glockner followed up on his promise and posted a front-and-center article about how our nasty defense and spotty offense is the formula for a national title contender. We made him look very smart by beating the pants off Colorado. I didn't watch the game, but Billy thought "they just whipped us and made us like it". Looking at the stat sheet, I just dont see it. Yes they are the first team to get over 65 on us, but they still only shot 37%. We shot 52%. Joe didn't foul out. 4 of our players were double digit scorers. They did have a bunch of offensive rebounds, but when you miss that many shots you are bound to have a lot of rebounds.

A big shot out to my boy, Dom Kirk. This guy was a last minute recruit and has started ever since. And I must say, he has the oddest voice-to-face match up I have ever heard.

OSU, who looked great until Kansas ran them over, is in town today. The game will be played in front of the first sold out crowd of the year. A sold out Reed may not be one of the best places to watch some hoops, but I would not trade tickets to that game for anything.

Jason Jack is entering the draft, something about personal reasons. Good news is that he will be graduating. As you might remember, the NCAA has tied graduation rates to scholarships, so we will not get dinged for that. Oh ya, and he has a college education.

Women are doing well. The basketball followed form and whipped Colorado and the softball team was picked to finish 1st in the Big-12.

Friday, January 12, 2007

The Aggies are getting a lot of love in the ESPN chats lately. The latest is from Andy Glockner

think the Aggies have a good shot at winning the Big XII, given the defense that they play (only team in the country to not allow more than 65 points in any game). In addition, their offense is evolving. What are your thoughts on their chances in the Big XII race?

I'll have more to say about this tomorrow in a column on the Aggies, but I think they could win the league if the divisions were switched. Given the Aggies only play at Kansas and KU's North Division is far weaker, you have to favor the Jayhawks, regardless of whether you think the talent is equal or not (it's not). That said, I'm one of the people here who really likes the Aggies.

I am looking forward to his column.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Did I mention that Fran Fraschilla is my new favorite ESPN college basketball columnist? Well he is, especially with this shot out ,"Don't sleep on Texas A&M. The Aggies fell off the national radar after losses at LSU and versus UCLA in Anaheim, but they are one of the nation's best defensive teams and appear likely to be the only challenger to Kansas in the Big 12."

Other good news is that all the ESPN guys put us in the top 10 of their power 16 ratings, some as high as 7 (Joe Lunardi).

Oh ya, women beat Tech and we hired K-State's strength coach.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

3-for-3. Not only did every major Texas paper write their own story about the game, they all some how worked in Acie Law's name into the headline. H-Chron "Law, Aggies zip past Bears for win", SA-Express "Law the word for A&M as Aggies thwart Bears", D-Morn "Acie doozy: Law gets A&M past Baylor", FW-StarTel "Aggies lay down Law against Bears". That kind of consistency might be a sneak peak into who was last night's MVP, however if you read the AP story you have have thought Joe Jones was a lock for MVP.

What was Billy's answer? "Acie". With a game high 20 points and two layups to break open the game with less than 4 left I think Acie gets my vote two. I am pretty sure this is the first time Billy has referred to Acie as a "future pro guard". Acie certainly has the endurance to play with the big boys, he was in for every second of the game and has played all but one minute of Big-12 play. The win was not only Acie's, Jones did pulled down 12 boards and puked all during half time. Dom-Kirk held Aaron Bruce to two points, well below his double digit average. The win give us our best start since the 1959-60 season.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Andy Katz puts us as a final four contender, but we did not make his list of title teams (Florida, Kansas, North Carolina, UCLA, Arizona, Wisconsin, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Oklahoma State).
Say hello to the top-10 again. Coaches put us at 9.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

We are 2 for 2 now. In the two games that I have remembered pay attention, all of the major Texas papers (H-Chron, SA-Express, FW-Star, Big D-Morn) had a beat writer cover the game instead of printing the AP wire story.

I listened to Dave South's version of the game, so I pretty much have no clue about anything but the halftime and final score. Looks like we played poorly, 16 turnovers and sub .5 shooting, but still won. That is always a good sign. After starting out VERY cold, 0 points in 32+ min, Josh Carter came back in a big way to put us back in the lead. K-State head coach Bob Huggins was not too happy about loosing his first Big-12 game. It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. This win, and Alabama's loss, should put us move us into the top 10.

Saturday, January 6, 2007

We pulled it off. After giving my a nasty case of heart burn on two missed free throws, Acie made his next two, sealing a 65-69 win. I listened to this one on the radio and, thanks to Dave South, I have no clue how our guys played. There was one mention early in the second half that K-State was either playing harder or running faster. I am hoping the first conference game of an almost-top-10 team will get some press so I may get some clue.

K-State didn't break 65, so we are still up there with Michigan State as the only teams to not let a team go over 65.
Why why why does Acie have to miss both? To give me heart burn? That is just mean.
AK has become a dominate force inside for us this year, and the amazing thing is that Billy saw him on a recruiting trip to see another player. Apparently "the other player was a good player. But I (Billy) liked Antanas a little bit more, so we went after him."

We play K-State tonight, opening up Big-12 play. A "tough draw" for them and their new coach, Bob Huggins. Huggins was fired from Cincinnati after getting arrested for drunk driving and being a dirty coach.

Undefeated at home, quality wins, and a to-the-wire loss to UCLA on national TV, but still no respect. I really don't care if the media respects us, just the NCAA tournament selection committee. In fairness I will say that the lack of respect only exists in the national media. According to the Texas media we are 2nd behind Kansas in the Big-12 rankings and one of the 3 teams to watch this year.

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

First off I am happy to report that all of the major Texas papers DID NOT run the AP report.

That was a great game. We "roughed up" a Winthrop team that nearly beat two top-5 teams (UNC and Wisconsin). In fact, Tuesday's game was their worst loss of the season, 71-51. Team offense looked great, and the stats show that. 25 total baskets, 24 assists. I was impressed with AK. He "punished the Eagles." He has great hands, seals off the lane, gets open, has a soft touch, and always take the ball strong to the hoop. It must be his European roots, but that kid goes straight up as soon as he gets it. None of this Andy Slocum try and dribble down low then shoot crap. To sum it it up, I agree with Winthrop head coach Gregg Marshal's assessment, "Whatever, he's good." AK's play made you barely notice Joe's "foul-plagued performance". The win completed our third consecutive nonconfernce campaign at home without a loss. 4 years ago we lost to Texas A&M-CC. Was that really only four years ago? Wow.

Here is my favorite quote by Gregg Marshal, "By and large, we play harder than most people we play, but not them."

Jerrod Johnson suited up for the game, but did not play. Ma Bennett is still not practicing with the team. Hopes are still high Ma will join the team, but Billy has not spoken to him recently. You have got to think that he wants to be part of this team.

Josh Carter's record tying seven first half three-pointers against Grambling State was good enough to earn him the Philips 66 Big 12 Men's Basketball Co-Player of the week.

ESPN's bracket wiz, Joe Lunardi, has us as a 3 seed playing Texas A&M-CC in Lexington, KY. Yes, that is right, we will be facing the team that provided our last (deep breath) nonconfrence regular season home loss. Being good is fun.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Everyone's favorite #11 team faces Winthrop tonight in our last non-conference match up, and it is a good one. Winthrop gave UNC (L by 6) and Wisconsin (L by 3) tough games. We need to look to shut down Torrell Martin. Dollar Bill has cut game ticket prices in half for the game to attract the townies. Flights from DC to the BCS have not been cut in half, so I will still be watching the game on the Aggie All-Access feed. Will Ma. Bennett suit up? My guess is no.