I hesitate to even log an entry this morning in light of VaWolf’s awesome “Looking for Brackets” entry that you should read here. Additionally, there are other entries beneath this that may be of interest to you (so many folks visit on only look at the top entry and miss other recent submissions).
But, in addition to the Pack’s trip to Atlanta yesterday, I thought that I would share some random comments and thoughts on the weekend:
* Correct me if I am wrong…but, NC State almost never makes an appearance on ESPN’s College Basketball Gameday in any manner. We don’t even get a Cedric Simmons dunk spliced in the middle of the incessant dunk highlights put to music. What’s the deal? I’m not even asking for them to come to Raleigh and put us on a spotlight game. Just get give us a couple of highlights and maybe choose one of our games once in a while!
* Speaking of Gameday, did you know that Rick Barnes’ University of Texas has been the feature game of ESPN’s Gameday THREE TIMES in the last year and a half of Gameday’s trips to college campuses? I guess that State can continue to dream to ONE DAY be a national fixture in basketball like Texas. It must have been their history and facilities?
* Digger Phelps calls George Washington over-rated and projects that they will be exiting the NCAA in the 2nd round. VaWolf points out, “GW is 20-1 after a nice road victory yesterday. They are also 10-0 against teams 201+. Their overal SOS is ranked 200+ in all of Division I. I think that GW is way over-rated by the voting polls. How much credit do you give GW for beating up a bunch of patsies?”
* I am seriously enjoying NC State’s current basketball season, but I would be blind or stupid if I had a deep-rooted “expectation” about success in this year’s NCAA Tournament until I see the Pack step up against Boston College, Carolina, and in the ACC Tournament in light of our record against “good” competition as there seems to be a very clear line between the top programs in the country and “the rest of us”. Now that we’ve lost to GT, my excitement has obviously dampened even more as the opportunities for a true “peak season” comparable with our peers of the last 15 years (since FSU entered the league) year continues to dissipate quickly.
* Take for example UConn’s 42 point win over Seton Hall last night. That is the same Seton Hall that also lost to Duke by 53 points and beat State in Raleigh by 22 points.
* Additionally, in a trend that mirror’s Herb Sendek’s history in Raleigh, this team also is struggling mightily against “NCAA Tournament-type” teams. Sorry, but that can’t help but scare me. NC State is currently 1-4 against teams ranked in the RPI’s Top 35 and 4-4 against teams in the Top 50 (thanks to Alabama for moving on up). Until we exert some muscle against “Top 30 teams”, how can we truly believe that we are a Top 30 team?
* Quick question — because of the pod system in the NCAA Tournament, what kind of seed does State need to earn to be “guaranteed” an appearance in Greensboro in the 1st and 2nd rounds?
* I attended the State-Maryland game last week in the RBC Center. Lots of thoughts on the experience…one disappointment that I had was the omission of any mention of Bill Cowher and the Steelers’ appearance in the Super Bowl. How did the gameday operations folks overlook ANY mention of the Super Bowl just hours before the game? NC State had Sean Locklear and Bill Cowher getting ready to kick off on the world’s biggest stage and there wasn’t a single “good luck” to either of them? Does ANYONE in Raleigh actually know what the word ‘MARKETING’ really means?
* JJ Redick commented that the Duke-Maryland rivalry is different from the Duke-Carolina rivalry because of the presence of more legitimate feeling of true dislike.
* ACC Basketball Today ran a nice piece on Virginia’s John Paul Jones Arena. WOW!! What a wonderful facility this is going to be!!! I wonder if UVA will struggle in their first 3 years in the facility like State did the ESA/RBC? Using the timetable that is so acceptable to so many Wolfpackers — since Dave Leitao is only one year into his job, we shouldn’t have to worry about the Cavs being competitive with us or the mid-tier of the ACC for at least another 5 or 6 years.
ACC Basketball Today is a television show that comes on Fox Sports South every Saturday morning. About the same time as ESPN’s College Basketball Gameday. Tivo is a wonderful thing.
* You’ve got to see Jen Sterger’s Confessions of a Cowgirl! She has made it all the way to Sports Illustrated (and beyond)!! Who is this girl? What is the deal? The story is outlined for you here at SI.