Yesterday: 1-2-1, (33.00%)
Season: 9-16-1, (36.36%)
Sides: 6-10-1, (37.50%)
Totals: 3-6, (33.33%)
Overall: 9-16-1, (36.36%)
1-2-1 last night as Saint Mary’s was the main culprit. A push on Elon, a win on 2nd half Yale but a loss on Saint Mary’s full game and another loss on Saint Mary’s second half. Simply put they just couldn’t shoot. The defense was excellent holding Winthrop to 0.88 PPP they flat out just couldn’t hit shots. That’s basketball sometimes. Anyways the slow start continues but I keep moving forward, here’s what I have tonight…
Creighton (+5.5): Interesting matchup here as it looks like Howard is hell bent on speeding up the tempo with Michigan. As we all know they were snail slow under Beilein and to now switch gears so quickly isn’t that easy. They got away with it against inferior App State but now is their first real test. Also it’s the first real test for Howard and his ability to make in game adjustments and handle his team in a close game will be tested. Just feels like those are a couple big hurdles for Michigan to clear that from a roster and coaching standpoint they haven’t dealt with yet. If this ends up being the track meet that the line movement is projecting then I like Creighton’s chances. They have experience playing fast and plenty of guards who can handle the ball very well. They don’t have much height but they have athletes all over the court and if Howard wants to run it might be a be careful what you wish for situation. I will concede that the Bluejays don’t have much size but Michigan isn’t really built to take advantage of that. Aside from Teske the Wolverines don’t have anyone above 6’7″ who really plays meaningful minutes. At the end of the day give me a coach who has been there before and a roster that’s is comfortable playing at fast tempo over an inexperienced coach and a roster that’s trying to adjust to a new style of play. Probably comes down to the final minutes, and in such a game 5.5 in your back pocket is awfully nice.
Evansville (+25): I think this line is about 3-3.5 points inflated and I personally make it 21.5. Kentucky beat Michigan State last week and then beat the hell out of Eastern Kentucky to follow it up and now I think we have some market inflation. Now Evansville comes in with former UK star McCarty at the helm and call me crazy but I just don’t know if Calipari would want to run it up on a Kentucky legend with no real reason to do so. It also looks like Montgomery is still out for Kentucky and that helps a bit too. Overall I think the talent level is improved with Evansville as Cunliffe (former top 100 recruit) is now in the fold and Labinowicz is a solid add from Coastal Carolina. Another interesting addition to the roster is DeAndre Williams a Sophomore who put up 26 points in his debut last week. He’s a very thin 6 foot 9 but has a nice skill set and can even step out and knock down the 3. He’ll be a unique guy to deal with and can at least somewhat keep the Kentucky defense honest. Now don’t get me wrong Kentucky is a massive favorite for a reason. The talent gap is night and day and just by rolling the ball out there and going through the motions they could still win this game by 10-15. It’s just the combination of Evansville being a bit improved, McCarty being able to prepare his guys for this type of environment, and Calipari probably not seeing a need to beat them into the ground that has me on the Aces as the big road dog.
I have a few more plays but unfortunately out of time for write ups. The rest of the plays (along with the ones above) are listed in the summary below.
Army/Air Force Ov 146
UNLV/California Un 139
Washington State (+3)