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View Full Version : So close, but no cigar



Jim V2
12-03-2008, 09:46 PM
ACC wins the challenge 6-5.

But if Illinois had won that eminently winnable home game...

MinnMarchDTF
12-03-2008, 09:50 PM
Impressive wins by the 'Cats and the Lions though.

TheHofferette
12-04-2008, 06:40 AM
The Illini are who NEEDED to win on Tuesday. unacceptable. if we lose to them 2 or 3 times this year, I am done watching the Gophers. OK that's not true, but there is NO WAY we should be scared of that team.

coolhandgopher
12-04-2008, 07:09 AM
Keep in mind, the Illini were playing without guard Alex Legion, who will be eligible for second semester and should be a pretty formidable weapon for them. I'm thinking we defeat them this year, I'm hopeful for a sweep, but they'll be tough match ups, they always are.

StPaulHawkeye
12-04-2008, 08:28 AM
I am really disappointed in my Hawkeyes. A big 'sorry' on their behalf to all B10 fans.
I expected them to be down by double digits most of the game, especially considering that Tucker only played 8 minutes battling the flu (so I have heard).
But Iowa managed to hang in there - some credit to the Hawks, but mostly due to BC not playing all that well. But seeing the Eagles score only 1 point in the last 5 minutes or so, Iowa had to find a way to make something happen and come out of that game with a win for the B10.
Nice job, Gophers. Your team represented well.

SelectionSunday
12-04-2008, 08:52 AM
Yes, no doubt about it I'd love for the Big 10 to win this thing once, if for no other reason we can stop hearing about the Big 10's doughnut vs. the ACC. And for the obvious ramifications on the Gophers. ... the better the Big 10 does, the better their strength of schedule, the better their RPI, etc., those things do matter. That's why I'll cheer for every Big 10 team, even the Badgers and Hawkeyes. It's the same reason I'll cheer for Virginia, Louisville, NDSU, Bowling Green, Cornell, etc., to do well this season, because the Gophers have them on their schedule; every little thing they do can help (or hurt) the Gophers.

However, I've come to the conclusion, does the final result of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge really matter all that much? Did it stop MSU from winning the national title in 2000? Or Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State or Wisconsin from reaching the Final 4? All this talk about what conferences are the best, what conferences are the weakest, in the end, who cares? It's all talk, and does it really matter come March?

Think about it. As a Gopher fan, what's the most important thing to you every season? Yes, we all crave Big 10 championships, but it's probably the same thing for you as it is for me. ... getting to the NCAA Tournament. When it gets right down to it, does it really matter if the Big 10 is (perceived as) the best conference, the second-best-conference, third-best conference or the worst BCS conference? All that matters is that the Gophers are 1 of the 65. If the Gophers are one of those 65 that has a chance to compete for the national title, that's the most important thing; that's where the money is; that's where the glory is, and that's where the One Shining Moments are.

As much as I want the Big 10 to do well every year in the NCAA Tournament, bottom line is if the Gophers are one of only 2-3 Big 10 teams in the tourney or even if they were the only Big 10 team to make the tournament (that will never happen in my lifetime), I'm a happy man.

I'll conclude with what I say every year in March, when I'm selecting my final Field of 65, and I'll say it again when people are whining about this conference or that conference not getting enough bids, or too many bids. ... TEAMS GET (AT-LARGE) BIDS, NOT CONFERENCES. People don't want to hear it, but it's the truth. No matter what conference they are in, the Gophers need to build THEIR resume, and that means having success against the best teams on their schedule.

That's my ramble for today.

playhosea!
12-04-2008, 08:52 AM
"Missing" Alex Legion should not be an excuse for Illinois. They return three senior guards who I think have a combined 14 years in the program. They also return their best player from last year in sophomore PG Demetri McCamey.

To choke away that game at home with all the experience they have in the backcourt is embarrassing.

coolhandgopher
12-04-2008, 09:12 AM
I'm not using Legion's absence as the excuse for their loss; I'm just saying that when the Gophers face Illinois, he will be a part of the team, so the team that you saw lose to Clemson did not have all the pieces it will later in the season.

cncmin
12-04-2008, 08:38 PM
Keep in mind, the Illini were playing without guard Alex Legion, who will be eligible for second semester and should be a pretty formidable weapon for them. I'm thinking we defeat them this year, I'm hopeful for a sweep, but they'll be tough match ups, they always are.

How much you wanna bet that Meacham actually hits nearly all of his shots against the Gophers again this year? He didn't look good at all against Clemson, but face him against the Maroon and Gold and that guy can't do anything wrong.

Jim V2
12-05-2008, 12:50 AM
I am really disappointed in my Hawkeyes. A big 'sorry' on their behalf to all B10 fans.
I expected them to be down by double digits most of the game, especially considering that Tucker only played 8 minutes battling the flu (so I have heard).
But Iowa managed to hang in there - some credit to the Hawks, but mostly due to BC not playing all that well. But seeing the Eagles score only 1 point in the last 5 minutes or so, Iowa had to find a way to make something happen and come out of that game with a win for the B10.
Nice job, Gophers. Your team represented well.

Sorry? I think they outperformed expectations, a young team going into the home court of a supposedly clearly better team and almost pulling off the upset. I'm sure you're disappointed they didn't win, but I still think they deserve a pat on the back.

Thanks for the classy post.

StPaulHawkeye
12-05-2008, 10:26 AM
You're right, Jim V2, I shouldn't be too hard on them. I think my post was like that for two reasons:
1. A win there would have put the B10 over the hump and off the schnide in the Challenge. That would have been nice.
2. I didn't expect the game to be close and for Iowa to have a chance late in the game, but when it was, I guess I expected more. A win there might have changed the team's outlook on the season. Or maybe not. I fully expect the Hawkeyes to get blown out many times this year, especially in the B10. It would have been nice for them to get a big win on the road.