Nah, I’m joking. As I said before, I didn’t know what to expect from this game and I’d be content with any result. I actually had a bad feeling heading into this game, so I’m certainly not surprised. I’m more mad at myself for not taking UM against the spread. Unfortunately PSU didn’t have it tonight, but this is nowhere near as bad a loss as this looks. Like Tim Doyle just said, the Big Ten road is tough. Examples: Illinois 36 @ Minnesota 59, Minnesota 47 @ MSU 76, NW 45 @ UW 74. None of those scores are indicative of how good the losing team is. We’re in the middle of an aburdly difficult 7 game stretch. If you told me after these first two road games, we’d be 1-1, I’d take it and assume we would have beaten UM. But in fact, we beat freakin MSU, which will look like a gem come March. Losing at UM, regardless of margin, is not bad. So in reality, we’re still off to a great start in this season defining stretch.
Battle and Pringle combined shot 6-29 from the field. You read that right. Obviously those numbers are going to demand credit for the job the opponent did. But I think those two might have finally realized that they really shouldn’t put up some of the shots that they do. Especially when you have a senior leader who just could not miss a shot. Jamelle Cornley scored 25 points and shot 10-12 from the field (putting him at 18-22 against UM combined!). And would you believe that there were more than a fair share of possessions where he didn’t even TOUCH THE BALL? That was beyond annoying. I just read that Cornley only attempted one shot in the first 11 minutes of the 2nd half. That’s just not right.
Unfortunately, this game really lost all my faith in the supporting cast. The Big 3 can’t do it all game, every game. It would be nice for someone, anyone to contributed anything. Morrissey, DJ, and Brooks are really just providing absolutely nothing. I can tell myself they’ll come around all I want, but there’s just 8 conference games left. It’ll be a miracle if we get 10 points combined out of those 6 guys any game (add in Ott, Woodyard, Babb). Jones is progressing and I don’t think he’s ever going to be a ‘go to scorer’, as in a guy we can count on to get a bucket when we need one. So he gets a pass but the rest of those guys? Please don’t just come along for the ride. Some of you have the talent to contribute, so play to your potential sometime. Thanks in advance.
Tip of the hat to UM for their second half performance. They got after it on defense. It looked like PSU was putting themselves in position to steal another one after they played another lackluster 20 minutes and somehow went into the half leading 31-29. But the better team tonight won as they should have given how they played in the second half.
It’s annoying though that officials essentially make Manny Harris unguardable. You have to admire Harris’ ability to initiate contact and stay under control. But it would be nice if the officials didn’t call a foul every time Harris jumps into a defender.
Also, it was not surprising that UM hit some open threes tonight, unlike the game at the BJC. They finished 10-26 from behind the arc. It’ll be interesting if PSU/UM somehow meet up in the BTT to settle this season’s series, considering now that each team has stomped the other on their respective homecourts.
Usually after losses like this, you worry about how the players will respond. But these guys have already proven their resiliency and toughness, so I’m not worried about them. In fact, I’m far more worried about the Bandwagon. I highly doubt it’s ‘meltdown-mode’ like after some football losses, but the wagon blew a tire tonight. Who knows if the PSU fan base knows that it’s pretty much impossible to play well every game of a college basketball season. Hopefully we can still get a sellout on Sunday for Wisconsin.