The Duke Aftermath

2/26/2009 9:16:50 AM Wow, there were sure were some interesting comments last night.  Losing to Duke sure brings out the frustration for us! 

Hey, we can still say we've won a National Title more recently than them, so we still have that going for us... which is nice.

Anyway, despite the Duke fan's comments, I really believe that it's the frustration of being right in the game for the first 30+ minutes and not finishing that has a lot of us looking for blame.

In my opinion, the reality is we came to play last night.  We played hard.  The defense in the first 30+ minutes was as good as it's been all year, with just a few breakdowns (but that's going to happen).  In the past week, I'm more convinced that this team has a legitimate shot of getting to the tournament.  We are still flawed, or course, so it won't be easy, but this team has made me proud the last week.

I really think the great defense was the reason for the poor free throw shooting.  I really think the players were exhausted after running around and that caused them to miss those shots they normally make.  No excuses.  They need to be stronger on the line and make those shots since the FT's were a big reason we lost control of the game late.

Hopefully the players learn from this game.  They were close to pulling off one hell of a week, but Vasquez has to control his emotions to the point of not picking up silly fouls.  Mosley has to realize that he does not need to take a charge every time down the floor.  Mosley had a freshman game.  It was bound to happen.  But I don't blame Gary for sticking with him because Mosley makes things happen on the defensive end and that's what we needed.  We needed to get some easy buckets late, and the defense could have allowed us to score in transition.

In hindsight, I'm sure Gary would not have done some of the things he did, but personally I don't have a problem with his strategy except for the very short-lived attempt at a zone that failed miserably, though I'm thinking that may have had something to do with the foul trouble.

In any rate, we did not embarrass ourselves and while Virginia Tech's win last night was not good for us, we still control our own destiny.  All 3 remaining games are winable and they are all losable too.  Step one is winning a big game on the road this Sunday. We'll need a top effort, but I have confidence this team will be ready and give it all they got.  We'll see whether it'll be enough.
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