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Boston College 66 Louisville 59


hrcarrier
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Looking back, I think it's easy to forget that Michigan State, UNC, and Virginia Tech were all down at least one starter when Louisville beat them. This is the team, and this is what it looks like.

 

They're an exaggerated version of last year's squad. When they get punched in the mouth, they fold. And they don't have Snider, Adel, and Spalding to try and clean things up. And that team didn't make the tournament.

 

A less-talented version of last year's Louisville team that lost in the NIT quarterfinals is what we're currently trotting out there twice a week.

 

That's a thing that's going to be important to remember as we struggle through these final few weeks of basketball.

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And for the "the Duke game broke this team" folks...

 

I think we're collectively forgetting that just three days before the Duke game, Louisville coughed up a 10-point second half lead and lost to Florida State. And that in the first game against Boston College, Louisville had a 23-point lead on the Eagles that dwindled all the way to five with two minutes left in the game before Louisville stopped the bleeding long enough to get the win.

 

They're a little erratic and often lazy with the basketball and their highs can be high and their lows pretty low.

 

This is the team.

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This one stings. The other losses I got but this one stings.

 

I don’t think this team is all that talented and played out of their minds early and caught some breaks against UNC and Virginia Tech, but this one still stings.

 

I don't buy that. Prior to the UNC game at home, they had solid efforts in most every game except @ Pitt, late v BC and maybe v UK (and UK's defense had a lot to do with that)

 

Tennessee - in the game and could have won it

Marquette - should have won it

Sparty - won

@ Seton Hall - won (recall they beat UK)

@ IU - lost by 1 (IU looked better when that game was played)

Lipscomb - beat a sneaky good team

@ Pitt - mostly a "no show"; maybe the 1st inkling that this team had a "Mr. Hyde" lurking; however, this was the reverse of the Mr. Hyde that is now firmly in place; team played lousy and then made a furious run to get game into OT

@ UNC - the above "inkling" was dismissed with a "high water mark" performance against a team that never "hit back" after UofL punched them in the mouth

BC - late collapse but held on; they were solid for most of game

NC State - won (see IU above)

UNC - 1st complete "no show"

@ Va. Tech - solid performance on the road against a team that now looks better than when that game was played

@ FSU - collapse late

Duke - collapse after great 30 minutes

Clemson - collapse but got a win (did not exorcise any demons)

@ Syr - putrid effort and performance

UVa - fools gold for 20 minutes; real team showed up on both sides after half

BC - putrid effort and performance

 

So, through 29 games, you have 2 putrid, 4.5 collapses and 1.8 "no shows." It looks / feels so awful because it has been so concentrated and recent. Competition level definitely stepped up, but we forget Tennessee, Marquette, Michigan State, @ Seton Hall, @ UNC, etc. because they were further in the past.

 

This team CAN be good. Maybe not as good consistently as they played in the 1st half of the season, but certainly better than how they played in FEB.

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They won some good games early on and were definitely in games that many wouldn’t have expected them to be at that time, but they aren’t playing good at all when they need to be, which has greatly shown over the past month. Regardless of who the team is, the month of February tells what’s going to happen regardless of how good or bad things were earlier.

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I don't agree with the "this is the team--accept them for what they are" rationale. While acknowledging the stiffer competition of late, the team's performance has clearly regressed. The effort has declined. The basketball IQ has declined. The shooting might be at a historic low percentage the last 3-4 games. No player leadership is coming forward. Having only one dependable ball handler this year--Cunningham--(and he is only slightly above average) has hurt, but the Cards overcame that earlier in the year. My opinion is that UL should be playing much better. Mack needs to hire one more assistant to turn this thing around: Sigmund Freud.

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