2020-2021 College Basketball Other Games Thread

Block M

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UW played terrible defense and Maryland played really hard.That Marquette talent in the last 15 years or more has made them 2nd class in the state. UW offered Carton in high school and loved Dawson but he did not like them.
There has to be some concern about the lack of high-end ballers on the UW roster. Sometimes I think Gard is doing it with mirrors. I have a lot of respect for him but their margin for error seems really small this year.
 

builtbadgers

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There has to be some concern about the lack of high-end ballers on the UW roster. Sometimes I think Gard is doing it with mirrors. I have a lot of respect for him but their margin for error seems really small this year.
I agree. I think with time that Davis will be really special but they will have a small margin of error. They will win their share though because they will do what they will do most nights.
 

builtbadgers

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There isn’t a player on Wisconsin I’d take over Carr or Robbins.
I agree but remember, that group already grabbed a conference title because they were all together. Our Big two will not have as long to do that. But heck, our two could do that this year and then some. The conference is a minefield but the so called elites are over rated.
 

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I agree but remember, that group already grabbed a conference title because they were all together. Our Big two will not have as long to do that. But heck, our two could do that this year and then some. The conference is a minefield but the so called elites are over rated.
The fact that team won a share of a conference title speaks to the fact that the conference hasn't been in the best of shape for quite sometime. Not a single pro in the group. Hopefully with most of the Big Ten getting it's act together and seemingly making better hires, it'll escape this place of mediocrity. There really hasn't been an elite program in the conference for a good decade where other conferences have 2 or 3.
 

builtbadgers

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The fact that team won a share of a conference title speaks to the fact that the conference hasn't been in the best of shape for quite sometime. Not a single pro in the group. Hopefully with most of the Big Ten getting it's act together and seemingly making better hires, it'll escape this place of mediocrity. There really hasn't been an elite program in the conference for a good decade where other conferences have 2 or 3.
For most of that 10 years your right but That back to back Final 4 team was elite. They destroyed a ton of really good teams, they beat the UK team many were calling historically elite. Your right as a whole though as the ACC was rocking multiple 30 victory seasons, a 35 victory season a national title for UVA, dominance of the ACC, National titles for Duke,UNC, Louisville..No conference came close to having 4 teams like that. I do not think you will have 4 of that quality but the depth of the Big 10 is real and teams like Illinois have the chance to be elite. Their problem is they already have three losses and to be truly elite can a team have 6-7 losses. College basketball is pretty down overall, Save for Gonzaga who truly has the chance to run the table clean.
 

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For most of that 10 years your right but That back to back Final 4 team was elite. They destroyed a ton of really good teams, they beat the UK team many were calling historically elite. Your right as a whole though as the ACC was rocking multiple 30 victory seasons, a 35 victory season a national title for UVA, dominance of the ACC, National titles for Duke,UNC, Louisville..No conference came close to having 4 teams like that. I do not think you will have 4 of that quality but the depth of the Big 10 is real and teams like Illinois have the chance to be elite. Their problem is they already have three losses and to be truly elite can a team have 6-7 losses. College basketball is pretty down overall, Save for Gonzaga who truly has the chance to run the table clean.
Bo deserves a lot of credit for those F4 teams, it's really difficult for a developmental program to hit like that. I question whether Gard will be able to replicate that but he seems to be attempting to make up the difference in recruiting but we're not necessarily seeing the player development. I mean Trice has improved but he'll also be 25 in the spring so not sure we can read too much into that.

The 2010s the ACC had was truly unprecedented, If you even dropped Florida State into the Big Ten in the last decade, how many conference titles do they have? Replicating what the ACC has is borderline impossible but what's bubbling in the Big 12 I think is something closer to what we can hope for in the Big Ten with a little more upside if Indiana ever gets it together. You look at what Drew's doing at Baylor, Beard at Texas Tech, Mike Boynton is doing some good things at OSU and obviously Kansas...programs building for deep runs in March. Baylor in particular seems well on it's way to giving that conference a second elite program. It's really early for Illinois, They've had their breakthrough with Ayo and Cockburn but can they stack classes? Those guys will go pro, you'll be left with Miller and Curbelo but then what? That's what's limiting the Big Ten right now, you have programs that are hot and cold in recruiting year to year so stable programs like Wisconsin and Purdue can be inflated.

We'll see what Juwan Howard does from an on the court perspective but culturally and judging by how they're recruiting, Michigan is going to raise the bar and maybe that provides the same spark Urban Meyer arriving at Ohio St did on the football side for the conference. Some good culture coaches in the Big Ten but it's time to stop letting Midwest kids slip away to the Southeast.
 

builtbadgers

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Bo deserves a lot of credit for those F4 teams, it's really difficult for a developmental program to hit like that. I question whether Gard will be able to replicate that but he seems to be attempting to make up the difference in recruiting but we're not necessarily seeing the player development. I mean Trice has improved but he'll also be 25 in the spring so not sure we can read too much into that.

The 2010s the ACC had was truly unprecedented, If you even dropped Florida State into the Big Ten in the last decade, how many conference titles do they have? Replicating what the ACC has is borderline impossible but what's bubbling in the Big 12 I think is something closer to what we can hope for in the Big Ten with a little more upside if Indiana ever gets it together. You look at what Drew's doing at Baylor, Beard at Texas Tech, Mike Boynton is doing some good things at OSU and obviously Kansas...programs building for deep runs in March. Baylor in particular seems well on it's way to giving that conference a second elite program. It's really early for Illinois, They've had their breakthrough with Ayo and Cockburn but can they stack classes? Those guys will go pro, you'll be left with Miller and Curbelo but then what? That's what's limiting the Big Ten right now, you have programs that are hot and cold in recruiting year to year so stable programs like Wisconsin and Purdue can be inflated.

We'll see what Juwan Howard does from an on the court perspective but culturally and judging by how they're recruiting, Michigan is going to raise the bar and maybe that provides the same spark Urban Meyer arriving at Ohio St did on the football side for the conference. Some good culture coaches in the Big Ten but it's time to stop letting Midwest kids slip away to the Southeast.
Awesome post. You follow the game closely across conferences. Really enjoy thoughtful and insightful posts. I do think FSU would have won more than one Big 10 title. ACC is down now but it will be a short cycle as some of the better coached teams have recruited very well. Your correct on Bo, highest conference winning % in history. Gard played the largest role i have ever seen a assistant play and i do think he will get to a final 4. Gard did something smart early on, he knew to keep it simple. Smart,skilled players could win a lot if they played great defense,took care of the ball, took quality shots and stayed together. On the trail he made a lot of friends amongst high school coaches. People trust his values. HE is a humble farm boy. He is very close to the Bennett's.
I do think that Howard will coach pretty well, he will recruit off the charts. Izzo has stepped up recruiting in his next class. Thought Miller would turn the corner by now with his own guys but have not seen it yet. Covid season will be crazy as many teams have had less than half the practices as others, some have played once or twice, some have played 10. There will be more postponements.
Still love the essence of the game, the whole idea of trying to put the ball in the basket and to stop the other team from doing that with so many different styles with so much diversity. What i miss is going to the high school games, the open gyms in person, the intense college crowds. Until then we can only do the best we can do.
 

Gopher Teeth

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Awesome post. You follow the game closely across conferences. Really enjoy thoughtful and insightful posts. I do think FSU would have won more than one Big 10 title. ACC is down now but it will be a short cycle as some of the better coached teams have recruited very well. Your correct on Bo, highest conference winning % in history. Gard played the largest role i have ever seen a assistant play and i do think he will get to a final 4. Gard did something smart early on, he knew to keep it simple. Smart,skilled players could win a lot if they played great defense,took care of the ball, took quality shots and stayed together. On the trail he made a lot of friends amongst high school coaches. People trust his values. HE is a humble farm boy. He is very close to the Bennett's.
I do think that Howard will coach pretty well, he will recruit off the charts. Izzo has stepped up recruiting in his next class. Thought Miller would turn the corner by now with his own guys but have not seen it yet. Covid season will be crazy as many teams have had less than half the practices as others, some have played once or twice, some have played 10. There will be more postponements.
Still love the essence of the game, the whole idea of trying to put the ball in the basket and to stop the other team from doing that with so many different styles with so much diversity. What i miss is going to the high school games, the open gyms in person, the intense college crowds. Until then we can only do the best we can do.
My bet is Miller will be gone very soon.
 

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Duke's only two wins this year are Coppin State (who's now 1-8 on the year) and Bellarmine (who's 1-3). That's it. They've got two wins over teams that are combined 2-11. How are they ranked in the top 25?
 

gopherguy15

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Duke's only two wins this year are Coppin State (who's now 1-8 on the year) and Bellarmine (who's 1-3). That's it. They've got two wins over teams that are combined 2-11. How are they ranked in the top 25?
Because their win over final four contender notre dame was impressive...

(They've won three games so far, but yeah I'm with you.)
 

builtbadgers

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My bet is Miller will be gone very soon.
Sounds like they are waiting to see how the 2021 class plays so they will give him at least through next year. Are you thinking sooner ? This his 4th year. Perhaps he took the wrong job. Several schools in the conference will give you twice that time. Look at Penn State, Look at Northwestern, Look here. Damn, he was great at Dayton, winning big by 35 years old. IU is a different animal. If they move on it is the only college job Brad Stevens covets if he were going back.
 
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golf

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Anyone else excited to watch NW vs Iowa’s game tonight to see who will lose?
Will be interesting game. Also, nice win for rutgers minus two top starters defeating purdue.
 

Biggsohnasty

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Duke's only two wins this year are Coppin State (who's now 1-8 on the year) and Bellarmine (who's 1-3). That's it. They've got two wins over teams that are combined 2-11. How are they ranked in the top 25?
Why do you think? C'mon.
 

Biggsohnasty

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There's this weird dangle-measuring contest between Big 10 folks and ACC folks and just kind of examining the ACC through the first month of the season and what a weird league it's looking like:

Duke: No good wins (unless Notre Dame counts). A couple bad losses. Bad by Duke standards.

UNC: Three losses, zero perimeter shooting. Terrible by UNC standards (though better than last year which was an absolute nightmare much to the enjoyment of hhe moral high horse brigade).

Virginia: Top 5 in preseason and thus far has shown nothing to warrant that hype. Routed by Gonzaga. Looking underwhelming.

FSU: ranked in preseason. Losing to Clemson. Looking like just another okay team.

Louisville: Decent but also not without its issues and not particularly good by Louisville standards.

Syracuse: haven't been good in years and doesn't look like that's changing this year.

Virginia Tech: Was supposed to be bad and are good.

Miami: Down again

The knock on the Big 10 in the preseason by people I pay attention to was that while the depth of the league was insane, there didn't appear to be any legitimate title contenders. While that may be the case (more because Gonzaga and Baylor just look light years ahead of the field), the ACC is in the same boat or worse in that at this point, it wouldn't be surprising if the ACC didn't have a top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament (Duke probably figures its crap out and gets a bump on brand).
 

builtbadgers

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There's this weird dangle-measuring contest between Big 10 folks and ACC folks and just kind of examining the ACC through the first month of the season and what a weird league it's looking like:

Duke: No good wins (unless Notre Dame counts). A couple bad losses. Bad by Duke standards.

UNC: Three losses, zero perimeter shooting. Terrible by UNC standards (though better than last year which was an absolute nightmare much to the enjoyment of hhe moral high horse brigade).

Virginia: Top 5 in preseason and thus far has shown nothing to warrant that hype. Routed by Gonzaga. Looking underwhelming.

FSU: ranked in preseason. Losing to Clemson. Looking like just another okay team.

Louisville: Decent but also not without its issues and not particularly good by Louisville standards.

Syracuse: haven't been good in years and doesn't look like that's changing this year.

Virginia Tech: Was supposed to be bad and are good.

Miami: Down again

The knock on the Big 10 in the preseason by people I pay attention to was that while the depth of the league was insane, there didn't appear to be any legitimate title contenders. While that may be the case (more because Gonzaga and Baylor just look light years ahead of the field), the ACC is in the same boat or worse in that at this point, it wouldn't be surprising if the ACC didn't have a top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament (Duke probably figures its crap out and gets a bump on brand).
I think the ACC is in real danger of not having a top 4 Seed . UVA is a year away from being who they have been for 8 years. UNC roster is a mess. Duke looks terrible but when Johnson comes back healthy they will be a lot better. Miami playing without 3 starters including Lykes. Syracuse has been better than we have even when down. Louisville will get healthy, NC State and VATECH have a chance for the tourney. The Big 10 may have 5 teams better than anyone in the ACC right now but trophies are not handed out just yet.
 

Biggsohnasty

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I think the ACC is in real danger of not having a top 4 Seed . UVA is a year away from being who they have been for 8 years. UNC roster is a mess. Duke looks terrible but when Johnson comes back healthy they will be a lot better. Miami playing without 3 starters including Lykes. Syracuse has been better than we have even when down. Louisville will get healthy, NC State and VATECH have a chance for the tourney. The Big 10 may have 5 teams better than anyone in the ACC right now but trophies are not handed out just yet.
Agreed on all that stuff.

Think they've got a lot of tourney-caliber teams but in recent years, the top of that league has had top-10 teams like Duke, Virginia, Carolina and Florida State or Louisville for spurts. All those teams were projected contenders and ranked highly in preseason polls and to this point, they've all been fine but nowhere near looking like title contenders.

Think Virginia still has the talent to get there. Duke probably does too (though I may be guilty of buying into brand more than anything). Carolina's nowhere near what it should be.
 

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Just showed the conference standings during the iowa-nw game. There is a single 3-0 team at the top and a single 0-3 team at the bottom. Looks strange to see who those teams are.
 

builtbadgers

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Agreed on all that stuff.

Think they've got a lot of tourney-caliber teams but in recent years, the top of that league has had top-10 teams like Duke, Virginia, Carolina and Florida State or Louisville for spurts. All those teams were projected contenders and ranked highly in preseason polls and to this point, they've all been fine but nowhere near looking like title contenders.

Think Virginia still has the talent to get there. Duke probably does too (though I may be guilty of buying into brand more than anything). Carolina's nowhere near what it should be.
I do not think UVA has the playable talent to get there. Losing Key and Diakite , their two best defenders in a year without the practices needed for their defense. They were one of the nations worst offenses a year ago but went 15-5, 2nd place by being number one on defense. Year before top 5 with that magical junior class. They have that class now with the redshirt shedrick, mccorkel, Rahim and Beekman. Rahim is a top 50 kid that in that system can not get more than 2 minutes a game ! This is first and only bad defense and you will see starters benched for good if they do not play it. Of course time will tell. Alot of these struggling teams have coaches with strong records, actual win loss records of finishing strong. Include Syracuse in that group. Many people do not like Boeheim but he has a incredible record. He has not won the ACC but he has been to the final 4 as a ACC member.
 

UpAndUnder43

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The big ten is a gauntlet. No one will go unscathed which will hurt rankings and potentially seedings for the tourney. I do feel like if a team is healthy and survives B1G play they will be ready to play any team in the nation. The Big Ten has a variety of teams that play a variety of styles. Big guys, small guys, senior laden squads, young teams, teams that run, teams that crawl. I think the conference covers it all honestly. Even from a coaching standpoint. Have some OGs, some up and comers, guys who have won elsewhere, guys who haven't won anywhere but have nice teams currently. It'll be fun to watch.
 

builtbadgers

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The big ten is a gauntlet. No one will go unscathed which will hurt rankings and potentially seedings for the tourney. I do feel like if a team is healthy and survives B1G play they will be ready to play any team in the nation. The Big Ten has a variety of teams that play a variety of styles. Big guys, small guys, senior laden squads, young teams, teams that run, teams that crawl. I think the conference covers it all honestly. Even from a coaching standpoint. Have some OGs, some up and comers, guys who have won elsewhere, guys who haven't won anywhere but have nice teams currently. It'll be fun to watch.
Wildly entertaining and several teams with a break or two can get to a final 4. I think 16-4 wins the conference and a one seed. I could see two one seeds coming from the conference. The only thing that stinks for me is not going to the games.I normally make 15-20 college games per year.
 

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I just looked at 247 to see Duke and NCarolina's recruiting the last 3 seasons.
They have each recruited one 3 star recruit and the rest of the recruits split pretty evenly between 4 and 5 stars. Shouldnt those programs be doing significantly better than they are this season?
 

builtbadgers

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I just looked at 247 to see Duke and NCarolina's recruiting the last 3 seasons.
They have each recruited one 3 star recruit and the rest of the recruits split pretty evenly between 4 and 5 stars. Shouldnt those programs be doing significantly better than they are this season?
Of course they should but you have two old coaches who have been rolling the ball out for a long time now to very inexperienced teams. K use to really coach.
 

golf

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Of course they should but you have two old coaches who have been rolling the ball out for a long time now to very inexperienced teams. K use to really coach.
Are the fan bases starting to whisper?
 

Biggsohnasty

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I just looked at 247 to see Duke and NCarolina's recruiting the last 3 seasons.
They have each recruited one 3 star recruit and the rest of the recruits split pretty evenly between 4 and 5 stars. Shouldnt those programs be doing significantly better than they are this season?
Problem is that a lot of those 4 and 5 star guys Duke and UNC have gotten don't stay in college for more than a year.

UNC hit a home run with Coby White and he was a one-and-done. Nassir Little was just a guy and left after a year (though they were a 1 seed in 2019). Leaky Black was a 4 star in that class and to this point is a nice defensive player but a horrendous shooter on the wing. Not sure if you blame the coach, the ranking system or the player on his lack of development.
Anthony was a one-and-done guy. Bacot, another 5 star is a solid piece but not special. Anthony Harris, a 4 star has barely played due to injuries.

And now this year they've got a 5 star PG in Caleb Love who is shooting 25 percent from the FIELD and less than 15 percent from the 3-point line. Again, I don't know, do you blame the coach for a 5 star who shoots 15 percent from the 3-point line? That's complicated to me. Their roster balance isn't great.

Duke is in a similar boat. Zion, Reddish and Barrett were the guys in 2018 - all one-and-dones. Tre Jones only stayed two years. Vernon Carey was a one-and-done. Cassius Stanley was a one-and-done despite not being all that good. And now their highly rated freshman class looks just kinda blah. They haven't gotten much development from Baker, O'Connell (before transferring) and some other non one-and-dones. Do you blame coach, the players or the rankings?

Certainly won't shed tears for Duke, UNC (though I'm a fan and it's annoying that they've been so mediocre/bad the last couple years), Kentucky etc but it's hard to sustain a program at those schools nowadays because the culture of college basketball is to get out as fast as possible. Perhaps it was always this way, but it feels like more than ever, kids are going with the sole purpose of getting out and getting to the pros (NBA, Europe, GLeague or whatever) and it's actually hurting some of the blue bloods because while they get highly rated kids to commit, you don't get to see those guys come even close to their ceilings in college because they leave after a year.
 

golf

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Problem is that a lot of those 4 and 5 star guys Duke and UNC have gotten don't stay in college for more than a year.

UNC hit a home run with Coby White and he was a one-and-done. Nassir Little was just a guy and left after a year (though they were a 1 seed in 2019). Leaky Black was a 4 star in that class and to this point is a nice defensive player but a horrendous shooter on the wing. Not sure if you blame the coach, the ranking system or the player on his lack of development.
Anthony was a one-and-done guy. Bacot, another 5 star is a solid piece but not special. Anthony Harris, a 4 star has barely played due to injuries.

And now this year they've got a 5 star PG in Caleb Love who is shooting 25 percent from the FIELD and less than 15 percent from the 3-point line. Again, I don't know, do you blame the coach for a 5 star who shoots 15 percent from the 3-point line? That's complicated to me. Their roster balance isn't great.

Duke is in a similar boat. Zion, Reddish and Barrett were the guys in 2018 - all one-and-dones. Tre Jones only stayed two years. Vernon Carey was a one-and-done. Cassius Stanley was a one-and-done despite not being all that good. And now their highly rated freshman class looks just kinda blah. They haven't gotten much development from Baker, O'Connell (before transferring) and some other non one-and-dones. Do you blame coach, the players or the rankings?

Certainly won't shed tears for Duke, UNC (though I'm a fan and it's annoying that they've been so mediocre/bad the last couple years), Kentucky etc but it's hard to sustain a program at those schools nowadays because the culture of college basketball is to get out as fast as possible. Perhaps it was always this way, but it feels like more than ever, kids are going with the sole purpose of getting out and getting to the pros (NBA, Europe, GLeague or whatever) and it's actually hurting some of the blue bloods because while they get highly rated kids to commit, you don't get to see those guys come even close to their ceilings in college because they leave after a year.
Interesting, thanks
 

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I always said nobody can do less with more than good old Dean Smith.

He won only 2 National Championships despite running out the McDonald's All-American Team every year! And this was back before there were one and dones. Yes, he made the Sweet 16 every freaking year, but a lot of coaches could have done that and more with the rosters he had. Give Rick Pitino those teams and you probably win 6 or 7 Nattys..
 

Biggsohnasty

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I always said nobody can do less with more than good old Dean Smith.

He won only 2 National Championships despite running out the McDonald's All-American Team every year! And this was back before there were one and dones. Yes, he made the Sweet 16 every freaking year, but a lot of coaches could have done that and more with the rosters he had. Give Rick Pitino those teams and you probably win 6 or 7 Nattys..
There's some truth to this, but I'd push back simply on the idea that only one team wins every year, and if this team wins, then that team's coach gets the 'how did he not win more championships' treatment.

You see this a lot with coaches like Calipari, Coach K, Williams, Self etc. but for all the coaches that overachieve, how many have much to show for it? Izzo has one title to show for all his overachieving. Bennett has one title to show for his overachieving. Most people acknowledge these coaches as the elite of the elite, but only one team wins the title every year. And the list is pretty short of coaches who have more than two titles.

I don't remember which teams won when Dean Smith was running UNC but I'd bet there were some damn good teams that if you apply context - it wasn't a shock that UNC didn't win the title.

This reminds me a bit of the folks talking about how crazy it is that Russell Wilson has never won an MVP earlier in the year when he was dominating. Sure it seems weird that a guy as good as Wilson hasn't won an MVP. Until you think about the last few MVPs and try to figure out how in any world he would've been the MVP.

Context matters - though in this black and white world we live in I know that it's just easier and juicier to focus on the sweeping big picture.
 
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