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Username Post: End of OOC        (Topic#27713)
Masters Student
Posts: 516

Age: 57
Loc: Charleston, WV
Reg: 04-11-10
01-06-24 03:06 PM - Post#361316    

For the second straight year, the Big Red end their OOC schedule* with a 10-3 record and for the third straight year they end it with only 3 losses, none of which are bad. (Okay, BC wasn't anything great last year, but still it was a two point loss at an ACC school).

On the other hand, the best OOC win each season was probably Colgate. The Raiders have a good program, but beating 'gate isn't making headlines.

I like watching this team, and believe Earl is a very good coach, but even when reading comments on this board about Cornell being a lock for the ILT, there is this feeling that I've seen this movie before. On offense, the guys continue to play fast (15 second a possession), take a lot of threes (too many, really), but move the ball well and are very efficient. On D, they love pressure but it's still a matter that if they don't get a turnover they are probably giving up a good look. The defense is slightly better than last year, but most of it is at the margins except that opponents are hitting a stupidly low percentage from the line -- a figure that will almost certainly revert to the mean.

Gray is fearless and great defender, but he is not as steady the ball as Dolan was and that has played a role in the Big Red turning the ball over more than last year. Nazir, at his peak, is probably the team's best player, but he has not been as good this year as he was last. Manon remains a force, but he's committing over 7 fouls per 40 minutes, which is obviously problematic.

On the bright side, Ragland is shooting significantly fewer threes and is now making them at a mediocre rate instead of a brutal rate.

The emergence of Okereke and Noard has been great to see, and I agree that Beccles has real flashes of potential. On the other hand, Nix is really struggling and you have to wonder how long Coach Earl can start him, only to pull him quickly and have him sit most of the rest of the half. He's almost more good luck totem than player, which is tough for me to say considering I thought he would be a difference maker.

They should make the ILT, but I have real concerns if they can get enough stops to really be a contender. Last year they dropped three league games in which they scored 80, which is the difference between being safely in the ILT, and sweating a tie-breaker.

Sorry to prattle on for so long. I really do enjoy watching these guys and like Earl a lot. But wonder if their ceiling is one and done at the ILT.

*They have one more d3 game against a woeful Wells College team.

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