Ending With a Most Pathetic Whimper

From BJD:
In its regular season finale, with a full week to prepare, NC State played about as poorly as possible, and continued its 3 game losing streak. The Wolfpack could get no closer than 7 in the last 10 minutes, despite ice cold shooting from Justin Gray (which every Wolfpacker not named Atsur or Grant matched, and then some). Wake still looked sloppy and uneven (especially with its ballhandling), but a State loss was simply not to be denied today.

Side note – Gmisnki and Brando backed up the Billy Packer meme, declaring that Big Ced needed to get more touches down low. As the clock wound down, Ced started to get more touches, but he didn’t finish either. However, he did at least nail a bunch of free throws.

In what hopefully will not engender significant reverse karma from 2005’s infamous “CP3 nut punch” – a frustrated Tony Bethel lost his cool and threw an elbow at Justin Gray, with the outcome decided. Clearly, there was no malice or pre-meditation, but still quite uncalled for. Especially when it’s about an even-money bet that you will face this same Deacons squad in the ACCT quarters (no, I’m not a big believer in either FSU or Miami). Wake has had a putrid year, but has some athletes. The last thing you want to do to a team like that is provide them with a rallying cry (ask last year’s Deacon squad about that). As I noted way back in November, this Wake team isn’t good. But if they give us their very best shot, or if State continues it’s general post-Cameron sleepwalking – you could very well see an ACCT Friday exit and the Wolfpack in the dreaded ejector seat (8/9 seed) come Selection Sunday.

From Jeff:
NC State lost to Wake Forest, the LAST PLACE place team in the Atlantic Coast Conference, today Check that. The Wolfpack didn’t just lose…State NEVER LED in a game against a Demon Deacon team that had won only two ACC games prior to today. Then came NC State.

State has now lost three in a row heading into the ACC Tournament.

Tim Brando
I found Tim Brando’s announcing to be insufferable today. I usually quasi-enjoy Brando’s calls, but today he sounded like one of the biggest rationalizing whiny-pants in the world. It seemed to be a non-stop Sendek-esque brigade that would have made Stormin Normin roll over in his grave. I couldn’t keep up with Brando in between some of his craziness, particularly how it isn’t a bad thing for State to be a 6 or a 7 or 8 seed in the NCAA as opposed to a 2 or 3 or a 4 for some odd reason that I still can’t understand.

Big Four
Another game against a Big Four opponent. Another loss.

Is there really a surprise in this? Jeez. There shouldn’t be.

In TEN YEARS of coaching at NC State, Herb Sendek is now an atrocious 17-52 (24.6%) vs Big Four opponents. In this season, one that many of Sendek’s strongest supporters have touted as his best team of his tenure, Sendek is 1-4 vs the Big Four. Sadly, these folks are probably correct – it is one of Sendek’s best teams; doubly sadly, these folks see nothing wrong with the record despite having three seniors (2 senior guards) and a future NBA post player on the roster.

HSSS Irony
I can’t help but snicker at the irony of this loss when I think of the Herb Sendek Sunshine Squad. All season the Sendek Pride Message Boards have been taking snipes and criticizing Wake Forest Head Coach, Skip Prosser. Oh how I wish I would have saved some of those “insightful” criticisms of Prosser for right now. For the record, Prosser took over a program that had stagnated to the point where the previous coach (Dave Odom) was pushed out of Winston-Salem. For the record, Skip Prosser is 7-3 vs Herb Sendek in the regular season and 7-5 vs Sendek overall.

About BJD95

1995 NC State graduate, sufferer of Les and MOC during my entire student tenure. An equal-opportunity objective critic and analyst of Wolfpack sports.

General NCS Basketball

39 Responses to Ending With a Most Pathetic Whimper

  1. ncsslim 03/04/2006 at 6:44 PM #

    Can’t we have MacD(umbass) to set us straight???????

    What a pitiful ending to a “special season”…

  2. classof63 03/04/2006 at 6:50 PM #

    Hung dog look no. hung wolf look Yes. coach got confused-ran the Princeton defense today. time for Herb to go. as a strong ncsu fan i am disapointed very much.

  3. Slader4881 03/04/2006 at 7:05 PM #

    If this is a special season I would hate to see a horrible one. This smells like a first weekend exit in the NCAAT. As bad as it sounds I’m looking forward to spring football practice.

  4. Daniel 03/04/2006 at 7:10 PM #

    Who is this “future NBA post player” that you speak of? Surely you cannot be referring to Simmons. He is on a hellbound train to the depths of nowhereland, courtesy of Sendek.

  5. Slader4881 03/04/2006 at 7:12 PM #

    Something else, Jeff you mentioned it yourself Ced is a future NBA post player. But has he done anything since the Duke game? I mean he mauled the #1 defensive big man in the country (S. Williams) But since then I really can’t remember a dominating performance. Considering big man play in the NCAA is horrible nowadays how can this guy not be better than he is? The blame for this has to be on Herb. I realize everyone saying “oh ced has to get more touches” But this starts in practice, and I have this feeling they don’t exactly spend a lot of time pounding it inside to ced during practice.

    Seth Davis said it best at halftime “NC State can’t beat anyone when they aren’t hitting their threes”

  6. BJD95 03/04/2006 at 7:18 PM #

    ^ And is it even remotely possible to hit your threes for 6 games in a row? So, with the Sendek offense, a national title is impossible.

  7. Daniel 03/04/2006 at 7:19 PM #

    Simmons should seriously go ahead and declare and try to make it off of the Duke performance because there will be no further development, no improvement, no enhancement, and no refinement in his game, should he stay.

  8. BJD95 03/04/2006 at 7:20 PM #

    Also, I corrected one stat. Sendek’s “bestest team EVER!” is 1-4 vs. Big Four opponents, not 1-5. Duke has only beaten us once this year…so far.

  9. BJD95 03/04/2006 at 7:20 PM #

    Big Ced is morphing into Josh Powell. God, I hate to see that.

  10. BJD95 03/04/2006 at 7:25 PM #

    As a side note, I’ll tell you a story about Big Ced. My mother was an elementary school teacher in Brunswick County for several years. One day, she saw a giant kid shooting by himself on the school’s courts. My Mom, being the extrovert I am not, shouted out “Hey, we could use you at NC State!” Ced was very polite, responding “Oh, yes ma’am, I’m going to. I love NC State. I’ve always wanted to go there.” She was shocked, since kids so rarely like NC State anymore, especially ones with talent.

    If Ced’s career here goes the way of Powell’s, how many future low-post big men will choose State, even if by some miracle of chance, they grew up huge fans?

  11. VaWolf82 03/04/2006 at 7:36 PM #

    Three-game losing streak.
    Lost four out of the last six games….two to teams ranked 100+

    There is no way to put a positive spin on the last several weeks. I just hope we’re spared the excuses.

  12. ncsslim 03/04/2006 at 8:19 PM #

    Can’t you people just “enjoy” the season??????

  13. Sammy Kent 03/04/2006 at 8:22 PM #

    Tim Brando’s dumbest comment today: “Where would Wake Forest be today without Eric Williams?” My answer: exactly where they are…last place.

    Someone on PackPride reminded us all of Herb’s comments after the GW game when a reporter complimented him on how well our guys ran the offense. Herb said, “They’re not doing it yet.” Here is the real tragedy, boyz and girlz, and I’ve been saying it for weeks. After torching GW by 18 not running “the offense”, Herb refused to believe what his own team was doing before his own eyes. He stubbornly held on to the conviction that somehow the Sendek Weave variation of the Princeton Offense was the way to go, despite the obvious superiority of the old-fashioned traditional way. Starting with the Seton Hall game Herb completely abandoned for the rest of the season the style and aggressive inside-out play that had propelled us to being able to beat teams like GW and BC like cheap drums, and take us to the 2 or 3 minute mark tied against Dook and Carolina before doing the gag thing.

    Yeah, against GW and BC our guys weren’t running “the offense”. But whatever it was, it was a darn sight better than what we’ve been suffering through since they actually started running “the offense” against Seton Hall. Herb Sendek is a fraudulent excuse of a basketball coach.

  14. Andy 03/04/2006 at 8:45 PM #

    For all the complaining about the offense the real problem the past few games has been the defense, and more importantly defensive rebounding. It’s hard to get the transition baskets that were so huge for us early in the year if no one rebounds the ball after a miss. Also Ced is a good player but really has no post offense to speak of. While the duke game was an abberation this year, hopefully he’ll continue to develop and be more consistent next year. He’s still young and has shown tremendous development from last year to this year, which I guess everyone will claim is inspite of Herb.

  15. Clarksa 03/04/2006 at 9:03 PM #

    Thankfully, I didn’t have to watch the end of the game today…two more loses and we’re on to spring football and baseball.

  16. RedFred 03/04/2006 at 9:40 PM #

    I was not watching at halftime so I don’t who said it, but I heard someone spout off this line


    Last year I heard another announcer, I think it was Steve Lavin when he was summing up the early NCAA tourney brackets who said:


    Is there anyone left out there now who is willing to make a total jackass out of themself by defending Herb Sendek, Lee Fowler, or the NC State athletics program in general? Its all just a dream, a never ending nightmare that even the alumni old enough to remember the better days, seem to be willing to willing empty their wallets to perpetuate.

  17. Wxwolf 03/04/2006 at 9:49 PM #

    ^ I think that is ultimately the biggest problem now. Those who are in positions of power and/or give the big $$ are, based on all available evidence, perfectly happy with the state of our basketball program (and athletics in general). Until those people change their minds or are replaced with people who feel otherwise, all this heartache is ultimately pointless. Financially, the Athletics Dept. has no incentive to make any chagnes. They are raking in the $$ with lifetime rights, etc.

  18. RedFred 03/04/2006 at 9:56 PM #


    I love NCSU and will support them to the day I die. But if had a kid with enough talent to play ACC caliber basketball next year, you better bet that I would make sure that NC State was the last school on his list.

  19. PACDADDY 03/04/2006 at 10:08 PM #

    Terrible game….Terrible season it’s turning out to be for this team….I see no reason to believe this team will turn it around by the way they played the last X number of games…

    I don’t know what to say…disappointment is all that comes to mind. This team is lost.

  20. Grumpy Llama 03/04/2006 at 10:10 PM #

    ^^Agreed Wx. LTR’s are great for an athletic program, but only if the leadership is there. But in this case, they steal the voice from the average fan. People can’t afford to not continue buying them after they’ve invested so much money. If it weren’t for LTR’s, people would have a voice, by not buying tickets.

  21. Hunwolf 03/04/2006 at 10:27 PM #

    LOL! Another game of shoot till your drop 3 pointers. Iron that Fells is the first on to hit a 3 for the Pack and then he is summarily dismissed to the bench. The interior defense and rebounding for the Pack continues to be non-existent and down right embarassing.

    Beyond the defensive and offensive shooting woes, the lack of heart and/or fire from this team is appalling. Make no mistake, a team with any gumption would have at least made a game of it with Wake today. Evtimov and Bethel have given us nothing over the last three games and are finishing off their careers with a wimper. Plus, Bethel showed a clear lack of emotional maturity with his late game brain fart.

    Herb Sendek has piloted the “Best Pack Team in 20 Years” squarely toward the 8/9 game iceburg. LOL!

  22. TVP 03/04/2006 at 10:55 PM #

    In 10 years, barring a miracle ACC tourney victory, we will have only earned a seed higher than 7 in the NCAA tournament ONCE. We will have NEVER lost fewer than ten games in a season.

    I have tried to give Sendek every benefit of the doubt. This is just unacceptable however. Even over a five year period, such a record is not acceptable. Making the NCAA tournament is not enough.

    Even if we had the opportunity to hire a new coach, however, would you trust Fowler to hire the best available coach?

    Looking at the situation dispassionately…it’s hard to see how things will change anytime soon.

  23. Elrod 03/04/2006 at 10:57 PM #

    I am so mentally numb right now it is difficult to put together many coherent thoughts about today’s debacle. Every time I try to think about anything, my thoughts seem to all come back to Ced’s game.

    I kind of felt sorry for him because Wake collapsed on anything inside, daring us to beat them from the outside. Of course, we did not meet the challenge and Ced paid the price to the tune of 0-0, 10-12 for 10 points.

    A lot of folks point to the Duke game as proof of Ced’s capabilities. Maybe so, maybe not. That game, Duke was playing us straight up, with respect for the outside shot. At that point in the season, we were shooting well and the respect was warranted. Ced played a good game and got the corresponding publicity. However, I don’t know if teams have adjusted to him or if he is like Glenn Sudhop (one good game in him for his career). He certainly does not seem to play as high as he used to.

    Ced was in a clear mental funk all during this game. In other games, you could see intensity or just fun, but today there was another look in his eye – distraction. I don’t know what from. Perhaps Williams was getting into his head. Perhaps he was unsettled from the continual dirty play inside. Perhaps his girlfriend is mad at him. Who knows, but that certainly was not the same Ced I have seen this season.

    Before I forget it, thank you Gavin Grant for showing us how to play an inspired game. Broken nose, who cares! He just went out with some intensity and played hard. Too bad it was not very contagious. I also want to give a shout out to Courtney Fells. Was his game polished? No, but he did go out there and try to do some things with his athleticism and I appreciate that.

  24. Rick 03/04/2006 at 11:14 PM #

    “Terrible game….Terrible season it’s turning out to be for this team….I see no reason to believe this team will turn it around by the way they played the last X number of games…”

    Tell what you think now? You have been riding the Sendek train all year.
    What do you think of the mighty Herb now?

  25. PACDADDY 03/05/2006 at 12:09 AM #

    ^Not sure…I haven’t given up…yet. I will say this…my support of him was during a time where it made no sense to be critical. I will have to see how the rest of the season plays out. There’s no excuse for the way we’ve played lately…coach is responsible. He’s gotten enough passes, with injuries from me… Cam wouldn’t have made a difference tonight.

    Sad situation for this program…I’m tired of defending Herb after games like this…he better get it together next weekend and during NCAA, or next season(if he’s still here) my attitude will be extremely different.

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