Monday, November 22, 2010

Week 2 of the 2010-11 College Hoops Season – The Week in Review and What Week 3 Holds


By Marc Daley


Typically the early part of each college basketball season features a lot of upsets. Teams are typically overrated, especially since most of us bestow high rankings based on the potential of kids who will become millionaires a short time after they discovered girls and the art of shaving. This past week didn't feature the slew of upsets that the NC AA Tournament used to display on a regular basis but the ones that did occur are worth mentioning.


Louisville 88, Butler 73.


Being from Lexington, I like Shelvin Mack as much as the next guy and the Kentucky grad in me doesn't care much for Louisville. Even with Mack and Matt Howard returning, I still didn't think Butler should have gotten the accolades that some people heaped upon them in the preseason but I didn't think they would miss Gordon Hayward as much as they did. Right now, the Bulldogs are playing two against five. Mack and Howard combined for 14-for-25 from the field and 48 points against the Cardinals. The rest of the team went seven for 35. They have to find a third option in a hurry.


Minnesota 72, North Carolina 67 and Vanderbilt 72, North Carolina 65.


Perhaps people will stop drinking the blue Kool-Aid (I know it's tasty and it gives your tongue that cool hue, but c'mon). At the end of the season the Tar Heels may be seasoned enough to give some of the elite teams a scare but now they are more uncertain than a sweaty-handed teenager on his first date. Against Vandy their leading assist men had two each for the whole game and the Heels ended up with an abysmal assist-to-turnover ratio of nearly 1:3. Harrison Barnes had a decent game but you have to wonder if John Henson is ever going to live up to the hype (two points, six turnovers, two shots from the field). Barnes wasn't so fortunate against Minnesota (zero for 12!) So far, his classmate Kendall Marshall has actually looked more solid and you have to wonder why Roy Williams doesn't start him over Larry Drew. The Heels should get well against North Carolina-Asheville before a rematch of last year's upset special against College of Charleston but for now they should be considered a probable one-and-done team in the NCAAs.


Yale 75, Boston College 67.


Steve Donahue knew that this version of the Eagles wasn't going to be as good as his last Cornell team but I'm sure he didn't expect them to lose to a Yale team he is intimately familiar with and is typically picked to finish in the middle of the Ivy pack. After this effort I'm sure the Elis alums went a little crazy and decided to drink the medium-priced brandy or break out the colorful smoking jackets. But in Chestnut Hill, it's obvious that Reggie Jackson is going to have be Mr. November, December, etc. if they have any chance of playing in the postseason.


Looking to Week 3


You can watch some great tournaments this week and get some requisite shots of people enjoying a lot better weather than you are. But once you've taken a mental vacation to some tropical paradise snap back to reality check out some of these matchups.


Kansas State-Gonzaga(Monday at 9:30pm ET)


The Wildcats got a little bored against Presbyterian but should be geared up for this matchup. So far, their best performance has come against a ranked team (Virginia Tech). Is it too early to call this a must-win for the Zags? It's very possible they could end up with five losses before Christmas (Illinois, Baylor, and an underrated Xavier team). The good news is that they have shot lights out so far (6th in the nation at 54 percent from the field).


Virginia Commonwealth-Tennessee(Wednesday at 7pm)


The Rams just pounded a Wake Forest team that has gone through a coaching change and will be "transitioning" (i.e., fans will be pining for Tim Duncan more than ever). They're still an impressive bunch that is flying under the radar (fifth in the nation in assists per game) and should be primed for a Tennessee squad that will have some "transitioning" themselves late this season (i.e. fans will be pining for a coach that calls out another coach for doing the same things he ended up doing himself but still looks scary half-naked). Don't be surprised to see a mild pre-Thanksgiving upset.


Florida-Florida State(Saturday at 7:30pm)


The Seminoles have used their height to their advantage against the Southern division of the Little Sisters of the Poor conference so it will be interesting to see how they respond in their first true challenge of the season. Right after that the Seminoles go against Ohio State, where J.J. Sullinger should have a great battle with Chris Singleton. Until then, will we see the Gators respond as the elite team some pegged them to be?


Top 25


Our first changes of the season feature a goodbye from an elite program and a hello from a team who I have ranked upon for not playing together as a team despite their wealth of talent. At least they're giving their fans something to smile about as their football team has really mailed it in.


  1. Duke
  2. Michigan State
  3. Kansas
  4. Ohio State
  5. Villanova
  6. Purdue
  7. Pittsburgh
  8. Kansas State
  9. Florida
  10. Missouri
  11. Kentucky
  12. Memphis
  13. Syracuse
  14. Baylor
  15. Illinois
  16. Tennessee
  17. Gonzaga
  18. Brigham Young
  19. Washington
  20. Virginia Tech
  21. San Diego State
  22. Minnesota
  23. Georgetown
  24. Texas
  25. Florida State