Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Worried about catching all of the games you care about? Sign up here to get a free live video stream of every game.

That sounds very commercial-like, so to be fair I will say something bad about the video stream. I did this last year for a few games, it kinda sucks. On thur/fri when you really need it b/c 230948 games are on at the same time it gets really choppy. But you get what you pay for.
Acie who? Joe what? The real name in Aggie basketball is Brain Blackburn. This 5'10'' 165lb point guard is almost the next "Steve Nash". Okay that was a bit over the top. But give him 3 inches and some talent he might just have what it takes to "make an impact at the Big 12 level..." However Billy has yet to figure out how to make guys taller. So, for now, "Cap" runs the scout team. And apparently he is a once-in-a-generation scout team player, "In my 20 some years, I've not seen guys as good as Brian Blackburn... in practice to help the scout team..."

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Acie gets Big-12 player of the week.

We head to Austin tomorrow. Last time we played Texas we hung 100 on them. Since then Barnes thinks their defense has "definitely gotten better". He might be right. Their defensive efficiency was 106 before that game and 90 after. But in all fairness, all but one of those "good defense" games were against teams in the bottom 1/2 of the conference. I don't think anyone expects us to get into triple digits again, but I also don't think anyone expects them to shut us down.

A win tomorrow will give us our first football/basketball sweep in 20 years. Our upsurge, and Billy's celebrity status, has made Barnes a very grumpy boy.
Next year is what no one wants to talk about. No Acie, no AK, no Marlon. That is scary. We have been here before, remember Billy's 1st year? That "next year" included no Antoine Wright, which I feared much more than the current "next year". I am not saying Wright was better than those three seniors, no way. What I am saying is the program Billy has built gives me some amount of comfort. Sloan and Davis have grown up a lot. We have DeAndre please-dont-be-one-and-done Jordan on his way. A lot has been done so we can win "year after year after year."

That said, next year is still scary.
Here are two pretty big stories I missed (my b):

Billy is a National Coach of the Year finalist

Acie is in the top 30 for the Naismith Trophy
It is voting time. Fans are stuffing online polls, coaches are getting their assistants to fill out ballots, and journalists are pretentiously writing stories about the ballots they will submit. This year the race is tight in the Big-12. As OSU head coach Sean Sutton puts it, "I think Kevin Durant is the best player in college basketball. But Acie may be the most valuable player to his team in the Big 12." That is a good point. NCAA, unlike the NBA, gives out an award to the best players and not the most valuable players. And we all know the type of internal struggle voters go through when they try and separate best from most valuable. I like the argument that is based on how bad the team would be if the player is removed. This prevents good players on really bad teams from getting the award, remove the player and there is not much change, they are still really bad. It also gives some extra weight to players who do not have an all-start supporting cast and who really does (I apologize in advance) make everyone else around him better.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Here is a dunk from DeAndre Jordan, our stud high school recruit...

Once again, from Andy Katz...
Jason(Louisville, Ky): Andy, who are your number 1 seeds?

Andy Katz: As of today:
1. UCLA -- West
2. Ohio State -- Midwest
3. North Carolina -- East
4. Florida -- South
But I could easily see Kansas and A&M and still Wisconsin moving these last two out.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Here is some good stuff from

No. 8 Texas A&M 66, Oklahoma State 46: Even Dick Vitale could have seen this coming for the Cowboys, and he’s only got one eye. Due to injuries, there’s no depth, and offensively, if you shut down Jameson Curry, there’s just nothing from the perimeter. Stillwater is a difficult place to win, so to dominate by 20 reinforces our theory that the Aggies are … wait for it … a Final 4 team. Yup, we’re in lust with Acie Law. So smooth.
Here are the stats from last night's name. I added defensive efficiency. Similar to offensive efficiency, defensive efficiency is the number of points allowed per defensive possession. I am most surprised at how few possessions our starting squad had. You can see the impact of that first few minutes of the game where neither side could score. Everyone's numbers look pretty good, especially the offensive efficiency of any squad with Sloan.

The columns are (squad, offensive efficiency, offensive possessions, defensive efficiency, defensive possessions)

Carter,Kavaliauskas,Law,Pompey,Sloan 1.33 3 0.67 3
Carter,Davis,Kavaliauskas,Lee,Sloan 1.25 8 1 7
Carter,Kavaliauskas,Kirk,Law,Pompey 1.4 10 0.7 10
Carter,Davis,Kirk,Law,Pompey 0 0 2 1
Carter,Jones,Kavaliauskas,Law,Sloan 1.12 25 0.78 27
Carter,Jones,Kavaliauskas,Kirk,Law 0.625 8 0.25 8
Carter,Davis,Elonu,Johnson,Sloan 0 0 0 1
Carter,Davis,Kavaliauskas,Law,Sloan 3 1 2 1
Carter,Davis,Elonu,Jones,Sloan 0.67 3 1.5 2

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

So we haven't won at OSU in 84 years, but if we want to get back on top of the Big-12 we are going to have to on Wednesday. The Cowboys are going to come out swinging. Head coach Sean Sutton thinks they need to "win nine or 10 games in the conference" to make the dance. With only 5 Big-12 wins and 5 games to go, that means beating us. Vegas is on our side (-5 right now).

Gary Blair and Billy G aren't too worried about making the tourney this year. Our women can "lose out" and still make the dance. Billy thinks the NCAA tournament field should be expanded to include 96 teams. First round games could be at campus sites, similar to the NIT. I like it. I would have REALLY liked it when we were a 66-96 team.

Billy talks about recruiting players from foreign countries, "you're going to go where you can find a player." Which, in his case, is in the middle of BF Kansas (Barton County Community College), where he found AK.
Ever wounder who are most effective starting 5 are? I took the offensive efficiency stats from and calculated the efficiency for each different combination of players we used against OU this weekend. Turns out the most efficient five are Carter, AK, Kirk, Law and Pompey. They average just over 2 points per possession. Our starting five average just over a 1 point per possession.

The problem? Carter, AK, Kirk, Law and Pompey only had 2 possessions. Our starting 5 had 23. I am working to get stats for all of our games, this should help.

Here are all of the numbers for the OU game:
  1. Carter, Kavaliauskas, Kirk, Law, Pompey : 2
  2. Davis, Jones, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 1.555555556
  3. Carter, Jones, Kavaliauskas, Kirk, Law : 1.086956522
  4. Jones, Kirk, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 1
  5. Davis, Kavaliauskas, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 1
  6. Carter, Jones, Kirk, Law, Pompey : 1
  7. Carter, Jones, Kavaliauskas, Law, Sloan : 0.666666667
  8. Jones, Kavaliauskas, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 0.666666667
  9. Carter, Kavaliauskas, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 0
  10. Carter, Jones, Law, Pompey, Sloan : 0
  11. Carter, Davis, Kirk, Law, Pompey : 0
Acie did an interview on one of blogs. I wounder if I can get access to these guys. Maybe I will stalk them in facebook...

Sunday, February 18, 2007

In his latest chat Fran Fraschilla put us in his final four, I wounder when this will start to get old. Do you think UNC bloggers get fired up when people put them in their final four? Oh well, I am not there yet. Here is what he said...
Bob F (Chicago): Buzz give us your final four

Buzzmaster: Right now, I'm going with UCLA, Florida, Texas A-M, Pitt.

Buzzmaster: How do you like that cluster?

Saturday, February 17, 2007

That might have been a bit closer than most of us expected (wanted), but it shows how tough our team is. At half time we had only scored 19 points, a season low. We shot 36% with only 1 three in six tried. OU however was shooting almost 48% and made 3 of their six attempts beyond the arc. As Acie put it "we had to take back the momentum and get back in the ballgame...". And that we did. In the second half we shot 52% to their 23%. In the end it was a game of foul shots. Acie made it a bit closer than it needed to be by missing the front end of a one-and-one then his next two. In the end we won, 56-49.

Side note, I am very happy that Sirius allows me to listen to games when I am traveling, but they really need to not make me listen to the OU broadcasters. These guys pretty much chalked the win up to poor officiating. The play-by-play guy was fine, but the color guy was so whinny. "That was clearly not a foul", "I am pretty sure someone hit his wrist after he released the ball", "That was a bad no call" He would not shut up when the ref stopped play after Acie hurt himself on the break away dunk, some BS about how all a defender needs to do is act hurt to stop the offense from scoring... SHUT UP.

Friday, February 16, 2007

So we lost, 77-75. Losses in college basketball do not equal losses in college football. It is good to lose games. However, it does hurt to lose at home. And it REALLY hurts to get swept by a team. So why did it happen? Why couldn't Acie's heroics get us to a W. Billy knows, "We couldn't stop them." Acie knows too, "That motion offense... They've always got you on your heels." The possession-based stats from back up Billy and Acie. We simply cannot stop the General's motion offense. Our average defensive efficiency (points allow / 100 possessions) is 86.65. Our defensive efficiency against our two losses to tech are 115.9 and 114.1, the two worst performances of the season. Lets just hope we don't see these guys in the dance.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

To make matters worst, the game winner is today's ESPN top "sweet play".

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The first time I got a good look at Bryan Davis was in the Texas game. He came in when just about everyone was hurt or in foul trouble and played very well. In 14 min he pulled down 6 boards and scored 8 points. Davis was one of our top recruits last year, and Billy "thought he was going to be really good..." After learning and maturing Billy now thinks "he's going to be lot better than that now."
The men's basketball team faces Texas Tech tonight. As you well know, Tech is our only Big-12 loss. A part of that lost was Josh Carter's five-fouls-no-points night. Actually, Josh has had a bad night in all three of our losses, racking up a total of 10 points and only 1 three. Against Nebraska he proved he still has the stroke, going 8-of-11 from 3 and earning Big-12 player of the week honors. Against Texas he showed us he can get to the rim. Billy wants to see more of both, "he has to drive it more and then set up his drive with the outside shot and then set up his outside shot with his drive." If he can do that, Bob Knight's worst loosing streak in 35 years should be extended.
When $$Bill was shopping for a coach, current Nebraska head coach (then UTEP assistant) Doc Sadler said, "You're going to hire the wrong guy... unless you're willing to do the things you need to do to win, because he's not going to stand for anything less." With a new scoreboard installed and a $20 million facility up next, it would appear that $Bill is willing. Texas head coach Ricky "Watermelon" Barnes thinks so, "It goes back to the administration... I think they care now". And for now Billy G likes "being able to say I'm the head coach at Texas A&M." However he knows that the "harsh reality of coaching is people usually change their mind." We will just have to hold our breaths every off season as the next round of athletic directors plead Billy to lead their programs. I hope $$Bill lives up to his name.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Knocking off the #1 team on the diamond is the new fad on campus, Megan Gibson's walk-off two run homer lifted the Aggies over over top-ranked Arizona. We are now 5-0, which also includes a win over #4 Northwestern.
Two back-to-back nationally televised wins have been very good for Acie's street cred...
Acie Law will rip your heart out, serve it with a light plum ragout and wash it down with a delicious Fresca. Law's game-winning bomb from the deep corner on Feb. 5 at Kansas added another chapter to the Aggies guard's legend of late-game heroics. He's the biggest reason Texas A&M sits atop the stacked Big 12 and now looks like a legitimate Final Four contender. I've got him third on my fake Player of the Year ballot, behind Kevin Durant and Alando Tucker and ahead of the likes of the Florida's Oh-Fours (they cancel each other out), Tyler Hansbrough (also too much talent around him) and Aaron Brooks (watch him -- he's been coasting lately).
Oh ya, we beat Nebraska. More later...
Craig Stinson's bat (3-for-3 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored) and reliever Kyle Nicholson's arm (came in when the game was tied and runners at first and second, forced a double play and didn't allow another runner into scoring position again) the Aggie baseball team beat top ranked Rice. We are now 3-1.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Billy G was a guest on Jim Rome show. I am not a big fan of this guy, but he sure did give Billy some love. Here is the audio. I am very happy to see BG talk about how the administration has shown they are committed to winning. I think Rome was a little smitten, "smooth, real smooth."
Hopefully this will make you smile again...

Thursday, February 8, 2007

It is a very sad day. Former men's basketball coach Shelby Metcalf has passed away.

As much as I dislike Bill Simmons (I cannot give specific examples b/c I do not have the attention span to wade through his massive articles artificially jammed with 90210 references), but he did have some nice things to say about Billy and not so nice things to say about Ricky Watermelon-Watermelon Barnes...
Everyone makes a fuss about Billy Gillespie but it's absolutely justified; sometimes you can just tell when a college team is well-prepared. A&M adjusted nicely over the course of the game, double-teamed KD and attacked him on the other end with bigger players. Come to think of it, the Gillespie-Barnes battle was a complete mismatch -- Barnes is coaching the best freshman scorer since Maravich and has no clue how to get him the ball. Why wouldn't they spread the floor and have him attack off the dribble? What's the point of posting him up when he's always double-teamed? Why do they settle for so many bad shots? Durant should be scoring 35-40 a night. Easy.
This was in the forum, had to post it.
More great news from Aggies in the NFL. Terrence Kiel did his best Reggie McNeal impression and was arrested for some very bazaar drug actions. Kiel shipped some sort of codeine-based cough syrup that is mixed with soda to make "lean". Wtf?
Our football singing class rank slipped in both and ESPN. However ESPN did have some very nice words...
While Texas makes the headlines, the Aggies quietly have been putting together an impressive class, featuring unrelated Stephenses on each side of the ball -- OLB Derrick Stephens (Houston/Cypress Falls) and RB Bradley Stephens (McAllen, Texas/Memorial). QB/ATH Billy Chavis (Beaumont, Texas/West Brook) could be a huge surprise regardless of position. Defense and quarterback needs have been addressed.
Fran described the smallest class since the 80s as flexible, he tried "sign athletic guys that could hopefully play more than one position." Whatever. Looks like the win in Austin didn't help us much, maybe it will "pay off huge a year from now."

I am glad we don't play USC. They grabbed the top 3 high school kids. Who would have thought a school in the middle of Watts could attract that kind of talent. Then again, their cheerleader's don't always wear underwear.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Signing day has arrived, and I wish it hadn't. Our signing class is a little lack luster, puts us at 39th. ESPN puts it at 14th. Man I hope it is at 14th.
People with more access than me have an update on Acie. Looks like he will start on Saturday.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Wow. I am a Texas A&M fan. My team folds. You would think foul trouble, injury, player-of-the-year doing his thing, and loosing the lead whould bring out the typical reaction. But that team last night did something different. The young guys (Carter, Sloan, Davis) showed someone else can step up and "take over a game" (scored 31 of the next 39 points after Texas took the lead). We fingured out how to shut down Durant (one point in the last 10 min). And won big, 100-82.

Acie tied a school record for assists, 15. Josh Carter found his way to the rim. AK got 18 points and 11 boards. We were far from perfect though. As Billy put it "I never thought if they scored 82 points, we'd win..."

Rick Barnes showed he was a total d-bag again. His reaction to the heckles from the Reed Rowdies was "
Watermelon, watermelon, watermelon rind. Look at the scoreboard and see who's behind ..." Ya, look at the score Ricky.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Kansas victory? That is old news. Tonight we play Texas, our rival. After Fran beat Mack (IN AUSTIN) and Billy has our boys playing at such a high level, when I say rival I do not mean it in a historical sense. We finally have the Rick Barnes rivalry recipe "two teams who can beat each other on any given night." Two things to remember in this game. They can loose even if Durant has a great game (32 pts in K-State loss). And try not to let this d-bag (Matt Hill) annoy you.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

I think this guy actually has a mullet. At least he didn't wear some sort of Winnie the Pooh suit.
Acie (Big-12 player of the year candidate) drained yet another cold-blooded shot to put us up by one.

He followed that with two free throws to give us our first win against KU in 11 tries, Billy his first win over papa-Self, and me a free shot courteous of our waiter at the bar. Acie is the perfect player to have come tourney time. He will spend the whole game setting guys up, working the system, then when it is ours to win he brings it down.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Looks like our basketball program is all growns up now. Today the athletic department announced that basketball ticket pull would now be a lottery system. I am amazed the AD was able to move so quickly with a complete overhaul of the ticket pulling system.
Here is a video of the madness

We won, 73-49. Joe played great. Defense was good. Crowd was good. But the real news was the mass chaos that happened outside Reed where students began lining up to pull tickets for the Texas game. Here a picture to give you an idea of the scale we are talking about:

According to the Batt's time line, students started lining up for tickets before the (non-sold out) game was over. Once the game let out, more people started lining up. Then it got ugly. The head Reed Rowdy, Aubrey Bloom, came up with a plan to organize the pull that pretty much made the whole situation fall apart. In a few hours the athletic department canceled the pull. Hello ticket lotto!