Friday, January 12, 2007

Quick Hitters

As has been a recurring theme this season, life’s been busy the last couple of days, so I’m somewhat derelict in my basketball watching and writing. Nonetheless, I’d like to get in a few quick thoughts before the weekend is upon us:

1) Nice win for Marquette the Wednesday night at UConn. If you saw the game, it would be easy to minimize this as a win over a program that’s having a down year and played remarkably sloppy basketball. And while those things are true, I don’t think you can ever minimize a win over UConn on their home court. They might not have Rudy Gay, Josh Boone and Marcus Williams this year, but they’re still UConn, and I’ll take that win any day. Particularly when it means that it provides Marquette with its first conference win, and something to build on. Kudos, by the way, to Dwight Burke, for having his first really solid game as a Golden Eagle.

2) I saw the end of last night’s Washington-Stanford game, which I stumbled upon and felt compelled to watch because a) it was much closer than I expected and b) Washington is rapidly becoming one of my favorite teams to watch. Stanford ended up pulling out the upset. Much as I enjoy the Huskies, I’ve seldom seen a team bungle things up like they did in the final 30 seconds of last night’s game. From Ryan Appleby’s inexplicable foul when the game was tied with just under 30 seconds to go, to the entire team’s failure to promptly foul when down by two afterwards, the whole thing was a brutal affair. On the bright side, Stanford’s Robin Lopez looks an awful lot like a tall version of the character Spanish from the film Old School.

3) Nice to see UWM keep rolling along with a 60-48 victory at Cleveland State last night. While Cleveland State’s not exactly an epic win, a victory over them was not a given for UWM earlier in the year. I’m unlikely to see the Panthers play in person again until Cleveland State makes its way to Milwaukee, but I’ll have my eyes keyed in on their box scores until them.

4) I’m worried about the Wisconsin trip to Northwestern this weekend. While a win for the Wildcats seems totally illogical, I’m scared because of Wisconsin’s historic proclivity for struggling on the road. And because of my deep-rooted dislike of Northwestern athletic teams, they would be the perfect villain to rain on the Badgers’ parade and spoil everything that Wisconsin has worked toward so far.

5) After receiving the question from my friend Adam last night, I’d like to clarify that I will not be wearing my Kevin Pittsnogle jersey to the Marquette-West Virginia game tomorrow. While I still have a healthy respect for Mr. Pittsnogle, Marquette is my team, so I will not wear an opposing team’s gear to any game (with the exception of the Wisconsin game, as my allegiance to my alma mater trumps any local pride that I have in the Golden Eagles).

Enjoy the weekend. I’ll be having fun with the local teams, and looking forward to Bruce Pearl and his boys from Tennessee paying a visit to Ohio State. Should be a fast-paced affair!

Happy basketball-watching this weekend.


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