Wednesday Bytes: Too Much Too Pass Up

I’m busy this morning and wasn’t going to take a whole lot of time to post anything. But, every article/topic that I clicked on this morning in my reading provided me something on which to comment. So, I’m just going to hit some high points real quick.


* As a super follow up to this entry regarding the strength of the ACC, Dave Sez does some number crunching and adds some comments that are perfectly complimentary to our entry.

* As a little further clarification regarding one of the criteria that I use to analyze strength of conferences:

I think one of the best ways to determine the strength of a conference is by dropping an identical, hypothetical team into each conference and projecting that team’s record.

I think that if you took a team and dropped them into both the Pac 10 and the ACC that the team would end up with a better record in the Pac 10 than in the ACC. Therefore the ACC is tougher.

I think that the depth and breadth of the statistical rankings help bear out this point.

* There were some AWESOME college basketball games last night. None more amazing than the Texas @ Oklahoma State game. There aren’t enough superlatives to describe the 3 overtime thriller.

* I had my eye on the Maryland-Virginia game last night more than most people. Virginia beat Maryland last night in what I considered to be a ‘must win’ for the Cavs. UVa effectively staved off complete elimination from NCAA Tournament consideration with the win. Maryland effectively moved themselves a little closer to an NCAA bubble than they would like to be at this point of the season. (Update: Again, Dave Sez hammers important points regarding this game saying the Hoos “Had to have it”)
* The Charlotte Observer doesn’t normally add much insightful analysis to the universe. They break even less exclusive news. But, this front page article today discussing the importance of depth is definitely good…and very relevant to NC State.

Four teams in the ACC (Boston College, Duke, Maryland and N.C. State) entered the week with fewer than nine players averaging at least 10 minutes. Boston College was the only team among them with a winning ACC record entering Tuesday.

“The way it seems now, you have to have depth,” said N.C. State coach Sidney Lowe, whose team doesn’t have that luxury. “Because a lot of teams do. Teams are playing eight, nine, 10 guys, so you have to have it. It’s not the same as it used to be.”


* Over the last couple of years I must have heard one hundred times just how wonderful Marvin Sanders is and how he is one of the best coaches in all of America. I appreciate Dave Glenn’s work, but I have heard Glenn extol Sanders to almost saint hood on the radio since Sanders was brought to Chapel Hill. NOW…with Butch Davis in town…Sanders has been relieved of his duties. What you won’t read in the N&O is WHY Sanders has been released and what is going on in the background. We have definitely heard some things…but, would love to hear what some of you may have heard.

* Make no mistake about it – the move of Gary Crowton from Oregon to LSU is huge. HUGE! Crowton is one of the best. We even said as such on January 12, 2005.

* A lot is being made of the economics behind Nick Saban’s move to Alabama. This article discusses the topic, but I thought that one of the more interesting items from the article was the recognition of the impact of sports off the field.

…additional exposure from football may help officials meet school president Robert Witt’s goal of boosting the university’s enrollment to 28,000 students by 2013, a nearly 40 percent boost from a decade earlier.

“The message is getting out that we offer a quality education, and that Monday through Friday our students work hard with a focus on academics,” said Mary Spiegel, head of undergraduate admissions.

“But there is also that component of Southeastern Conference athletics on the weekend: Football, basketball, gymnastics, all those things,” she said. “Can I say that Saban being here will not help recruitment? I cannot.”

* Why isn’t Charlie Weiss in trouble? It is a question that I had not pondered until I reviewed this entry. Don’t misconstrue the basis that Weiss SHOULD be in trouble under normal circumstances. I don’t think that almost any coach should be in trouble after just two years on the job. BUT, the difference is that Notre Dame has behaved so irrationally in the past that they have served to set their own standard. By judging Weiss against their pre-determined standard then the question is legitmate.

General NCS Basketball NCS Football

49 Responses to Wednesday Bytes: Too Much Too Pass Up

  1. choppack1 01/17/2007 at 9:50 AM #

    Interesting on Sanders. Of course, if you would have believed Glenn, Bunting was a saint as well. I took his interview w/ Baddour in August to be the opening salvo in the “Battle to Dismiss Bunting.” If UNC is going to dismiss a coach, Glenn will definitely play a role. His reporting was a key factor in keeping the Hill from being criticized for letting Doherty go. Lucky for him, Bunting was so bad this year and had been there so long that there was no need for accusations of inappropriate behavior, the criticism of hiring of an assistant coach w/ a very shady past (and present now) or the need to bring up the Tar Heel Police Blotter under Bunting.

  2. statered 01/17/2007 at 10:01 AM #

    Please someone, give specifics on Sanders. I have heard rumblings of money and the DE who committed to USC. Anyone have the scoop?

  3. RickJ 01/17/2007 at 10:23 AM #

    “None more amazing than the Texas @ Oklahoma State game. There aren’t enough superlatives to describe the 3 overtime thriller.”

    Kevin Durant at Texas & Mario Boggan of OK State put on a simply amazing display. Boggan is from Durham, had grade issues and went to Hargraves. I think he ended up in Junior College in Florida and then may have signed with Florida and maybe even played for the Gators a short time. He then transferred to OK State.

    As a high schooler, he was talented but overweight. He has lost the extra weight and made himself into quite a player. The great Lorenzo Charles game at Duke came to mind watching this guy last night. It was overwhelming. It isn’t fair but I found myself fantasizing about Tracy Smith turning out to be this type of player.

  4. packbackr04 01/17/2007 at 10:30 AM #

    funny how everyone was clamouring for HAith to be the next NC STAte coach, and now his team is terrible. we would be 6-11 with Haith at the Helm. glad Fowler stumbled upon the right man for the job. Fowler is luckier than a dog with 2 dix

  5. Mr O 01/17/2007 at 10:46 AM #

    Choppack: Why should UNC have been criticized for firing Doherty?

    If Doherty had not been fired, then they would not have won a national title because the key players would have transfered. Making the decision to fire Doherty directly led to UNC winning another national title. How can a decision that wins a national title be worthy of criticism?

    The point I am getting at is that for some people anyone who reports on UNC can’t win with NC State fans. If they write an article that is “positive” about UNC, then they are pro-UNC and anti-NC State. If they write an article that is “negative” about UNC, then they are trying to get a coach fired and that makes them pro-UNC and anti-NC State according to you.

    So essentially from your perspective, no member of the media can report the facts about UNC athletics because no matter what they report these reporters are just trying to help UNC win more games.

    Isn’t that a bit overly paranoid?

  6. Mr O 01/17/2007 at 10:52 AM #

    I thought Boggans was a full qualifier out of Oak Hill. Wasn’t ha sr. the same year as Justin Gray, T. Strickland, E. Williams and Cam Bennerman? If so, then with a transfer year after leaving Fla he would be a red-shirt senior this year.

    Interesting comparison to T. Smith. Mario was a good HS player.

  7. BoKnowsNCS71 01/17/2007 at 10:53 AM #

    What is it about Oklahoma State?

    They take the all the guys that that have criminal records and orther problems. e.g. Jameson Curry — felony conviction for selling pot, and I beleive a few others that have had legal problems.

    I know that kids make mistakes and should be forgiven but Ok St is becoming a cowboy Alacatraz for the downfallen.

    If Ok St. wins a national championship with a team with character and other issues like this — what message does that send?

  8. RickJ 01/17/2007 at 11:01 AM #

    ^O – you may be right about Oak Hill and being a full qualifier but for some reason I remember something about a JC in Florida although he may never have attended. You are definitely right about his class with Cam.

  9. legacyman 01/17/2007 at 11:10 AM #


    I suppose it shows that you can win an NCAA title regardless of character…so character doesn’t count…or something like that.

  10. Mr O 01/17/2007 at 11:12 AM #

    RickJ: You are right.

    02/03 – U of Fla
    03/04 – No school(red-shirt year)
    04/05 – Chipola JUCO
    05/06 – Oklahoma St
    06/07 – Oklahoma St

    37 points and 21 rebounds last night including the game winning three pointer????


    He actually played for Southern Durham as a sophmore, then Oak Hill as a jr. and then Hargrave as a senior.

    IIRC, we did in fact recruit Mario, but don’t think he gave us much consideration. I remember when he chose Fla. everyone was wondering if he would really produce in college because of his weight and lack of height. Our preference was obviously Eric Williams out of that class who chose Wake.

    That was a very good year for NC basketball. Boggan, E. Williams, Justin Gray, Cam Bennerman, and Trent Strickland were all very good players in college and not a single one was offered a scholarship by UNC or Duke.

    That is four all-conference players not offered by Duke or UNC from our backyard. We could really use this type of NC class right about now. I have seen people say the 2009 class is very good in NC.

  11. Jeff 01/17/2007 at 11:33 AM #

    funny how everyone was clamouring for HAith to be the next NC STAte coach, and now his team is terrible. we would be 6-11 with Haith at the Helm.


    (Polite) What are you talking about?

    Your comments resemble straw man message board arguments related to Haith. Nobody was closer to the coaching search than SFN…and we can’t recall anyone “clamoring for Haith to be the next NC State coach.”

    To be specific and accurate – the ONLY thing that folks were clamoring for was for Haith the be allowed to be a candidate IF that was the route that NC State ultimately wanted to go. The fear was that (1) the ACC would get in the way IF it was deemed that State wanted Haith…and (2) LF and NCS would wuss out on pursuing Haith IF he was deemed to be a great candidate.

    BUT, very few, if anyone, were deeming Haith the best candidate.

    There is a big difference here.

  12. RickJ 01/17/2007 at 11:42 AM #

    ^Chipola JUCO

    From Monte Towe’s bio – “Towe also served as head coach and athletics director at Chipola Junior College in Marianna, Fla.” The circle of life.

    Mr. O – Great point about the in-state players in 2002. This class was basically signed in the fall of 2001 right on the heels of our losing season and Wilkins splitting. At that time, Prosser was living in a dream world with our situation and Dougherty at UNC. I think UNC came after Eric Williams very late. The shoe is on the other foot now, Prosser gets to recruit with hopefully two bad years in a row. We can never afford to lose any in-state player we really want to anyone not named UNC or Duke.

  13. McPete 01/17/2007 at 11:44 AM #

    SFN : What you won’t read in the N&O is WHY Sanders has been released and what is going on in the background. We have definitely heard some things…but, would love to hear what some of you may have heard.

    Caught naked in a Cookout drive-thru.

  14. VaWolf82 01/17/2007 at 11:57 AM #

    From the comments section of the Charlie Weis article:

    Fifth and most importantly, think of this: Can Charlie Weis lead the Irish to a National Championship, or even to a top 5 finish, sometime in the next 3 years? The overall feeling is “Yes, he can”. Could you have said that of Willingham after his third season? No.

    I have always contended that “hope” is the single most important factor in determining whether or not a fan base is happy with their current coach. When you have hope that next year can or will be better, then the coach is not in serious trouble. When the hope finally dries up, discontent will set in.

  15. choppack1 01/17/2007 at 12:09 PM #

    “So essentially from your perspective, no member of the media can report the facts about UNC athletics because no matter what they report these reporters are just trying to help UNC win more games.

    Isn’t that a bit overly paranoid?”

    O – You are totally missing the point. I’m not someone who bases his perception of Glenn based on a few comments.

    I’ve listened to his show several times and I know that the fangs come out when he talks about Carl Torbush. I know that one of things he likes to mention is that Duke, then UVa and UNC historically better students academically than most other ACC schools. However, he says this being well aware that the golden era of UNC-Ch sports during the 90s had so many “academic exceptions” that the school chose to stop using the words. Both the football team and the basketball team during that period were built w/ students who were on the wrong side of the curve so to speak. I’ve never heard him mention that. I’ve never heard him criticize Mack Brown for that. I never heard him criticize Bunting for having someone on the staff who was linked to one of the most notorious football recruiting scandals in recent history.

    For the record – the Tarheels were smart to let Doherty go ASAP. However, I have a hard time believing that if Doherty were successful, you would have seen Glenn take a hard stance. He’s had chances to do so w/ Dean Smith and Mack Brown. He had earlier chances to do this w/ Bunting – but he didn’t.

    So you see, he can “win” w/ me. Simply say something critical about a successful UNC-Ch coach.

  16. BoKnowsNCS71 01/17/2007 at 12:20 PM #

    MCPete — I think he was caught naked in a KFC drive thru.

    Oh no — that was Colonel SANDERS……

  17. zahadum 01/17/2007 at 12:45 PM #

    I have to disagree with the statement that: “Clearly the conference is better than last year.” I don’t see that as being the case at all, much less clearly the case. I’d say to this point there are 4 teams better than last year, 5 teams worse and 3 teams about the same.

  18. BoKnowsNCS71 01/17/2007 at 12:55 PM #

    I watched the ending play in the OK St – Tex 3 OT game. Nice full court pass, then a behind the back pass back from the lead man to Boggan for the winning dunk.

    My first thought was to 1983. State playing UNCH last game of regualr season — against Michael Jordan et al. Sidney Lowe takes the ball to the hoop at the end of the game, jumps up as if to make the play — drawing the defender — but bounce passes the ball back, down between his legs back to Whitt who dunks it in. Icing on the cake!

  19. Par Shooter 01/17/2007 at 2:06 PM #

    ^Make that Bailey. Could Whitt even dunk back in the day?

  20. Dan 01/17/2007 at 2:39 PM #

    Josh Powell has been traded to Golden State as part of a eight player deal.

    It appears all our boys are becoming throw-ins. And now Ced is firmly rooted on the bench as well.

  21. Mr O 01/17/2007 at 2:41 PM #

    Choppack: I guess people will believe what they want to believe. In terms of GPAs and SATs for incoming football players, Glenn breaks the ACC into three groups:

    1. BC, Wake, Duke, GT
    2. UVa, UNC, Miami, Md
    3. FSU, Clems, Va Tech and NC State

    Not sure how you can argue otherwise considering how we led the ACC in non-qualifiers during the Amato era. Is it criticism just to state the facts as they have collected info. on incoming football recruits for the past decade+?

    As far as UNC’s academic exceptions…those aren’t exceptions to NCAA minimums. Those are exceptions to UNC admission standards. We also had the same exceptions at NC State, but UNC had more because the student they typically admit has a higher GPA and SAT score than the typical NC State student.

    If Dohery was successfuul, then why would you criticize him? It just doesn’t make sense. What is there to not criticize about Torbush?

    I guess you are talking about Brad Lawing who was on UNC’s staff for a year or two. Were there any major violations of NCAA rules during the Bunting era at UNC that would draw criticism?

    And as far as Dean Smith, I am not sure what “negative” there is to report considering that he is one of the top 5 college coaches of all-time. Not sure if Glenn was with the ACCSJ when it was reported, but it was the only publication that printed anything about what happened with Jeff McInnis and Phil Ford’s wife. Is that negative enough?

    With some NC State people, the media can’t win. I am convinced of that because no matter what stance they report “positives” or “negatives” it will be argued that the reporter is pro-UNC and anti-NC State.

    Glenn was one of the few media members who defended NC State fans and their feelings about being tired of Herb Sendek. In fact, he empathized with us going way back to years 5, 6 & & as I exchanged some emails with him over Sendek.

    So in the case of Herb Sendek, then you would probably argue that he really thought Herb was the next Everett Case and therefore purposely questioned Herb Sendek’s ability to sabotage NC State basketball to support UNC athletics.

  22. VaWolf82 01/17/2007 at 2:44 PM #

    I have to disagree with the statement that: “Clearly the conference is better than last year.” I don’t see that as being the case at all, much less clearly the case.

    You need to mix in some facts before your opinions/conclusions will garner much respect around here. Last year, the ACC only put four teams into the NCAAT and never had more than five that looked to have a good shot at getting in. (For the second straight year, UMD played their way out of the NCAAT and into the NIT).

    Right now, eight teams look to have a legimate shot at the NCAAT….even though I doubt that more than 6/7 will get in. That looks like substantial improvement in overall conference strength to me.

  23. packbackr04 01/17/2007 at 2:52 PM #

    JEFF^ I didnt mean to imply that the admin here at SFN was clamouring for haith, i just remember when the coaching search was going on, and on, and on, and on. When it seemed that all hope was lost that MANY posters here were acting like he was our guy and wanted him to come to State. we must have had different views of what people were saying back then, but thats ok, like i said, i am glad we got the right guy for the job

  24. Mr O 01/17/2007 at 2:57 PM #

    Choppack: Also, don’t mean to get into a big argument over Glenn/media. I think you make great points on about every topic, but obviously think your opinions of Glenn are a bit extreme.

  25. Mike 01/17/2007 at 3:01 PM #

    Ironic packbackr04, was thinking the exact same thing the other day – where is the Golden boy Haith now?

    I dont know that SFN ever campaigned for Haith but a lot of people on here certianly did want him.

    And what did Sanders do? I have missed it completely, but reading between the lines looks like a recruiting issue/scandal?

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