Posted: Thursday February 2, 2006 1:35PM; Updated: Thursday February 2, 2006 5:45PM
Other Hoop Thoughts
The thing I liked most about Rudy Gay's 22-point performance in UConn's win over Pittsburgh on Tuesday night is that he only shot three 3-pointers (making one). Huskies coaches have been emphasizing to Gay that he needs to play more like Caron Butler did and use his size and athleticism to score in the mid-range. Looks like the message is finally getting through.
He didn't quite make my top 10 list, but nobody coaches effort better than North Carolina's Roy Williams.
Glad to see Lute Olson finally realized his team can't make 3s. The only hope for the Wildcats is to forge their identity around their defense, but I don't hold out much hope for that.
It's worth watching Creighton play just to see 6-foot-9 junior forward Anthony Tolliver shoot his set-shot 3-pointers.
I know I've been hard on Kentucky this season, but in case there's any doubt on this, Tubby Smith is not a good coach. He's a great coach. End of discussion.
The fact is, Gonzaga's NCAA tournament preparation is being hurt by playing in the West Coast Conference, which is having a down year. The Zags know they can coast and still win most of their games, and that's a bad habit to get into.
You know how Coach K chastised his team after the Georgetown loss for doing too much "J.J.-watching"? Well, Washington has the same problem with Brandon Roy.
Thank you, Oprah, for carving that snake James Frey into a million little pieces.
The only thing that bothers me about Villanova is that the Wildcats don't blow teams out.
Now that I've given props to Calipari and Memphis, I can also tell you that the Tigers do not like to play against physical teams. And you have to beat physical teams to reach the Final Four.
That was a really bad loss Arkansas suffered in Rupp Arena last weekend. The only thing worse than blowing an 18-point lead is doing it against a team that doesn't make 3s. Ronnie Brewer is a heck of a talent, but he tends to disappear at inopportune times.
I'd love to share in the Louis Orr optimism, but the reality is that Seton Hall needs to at least make the NCAA tournament for Orr to be back. It's not only how this team plays that is hurting Orr, but also his inability to generate any buzz through recruiting.
It's also no secret that Arizona State coach Rob Evans is in dire trouble. Lots of guys will be lining up to take that job if it comes open, but I've got a sleeper for you: Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon, who grew up in North Hollywood, Calif., and was an assistant at Northern Arizona, Hawaii and UC-Santa Barbara. If it comes down to money, Arizona State shouldn't have a problem getting Dixon, because he's one of the lowest paid coaches in the Big East.
Speaking of the Big East, I know I've been saying that the league could get nine or 10 bids to the NCAA tournament, but given the way Cincinnati, Louisville, DePaul and Notre Dame are tanking, it's hard to see the conference getting more than eight at this point.
There's only one place to properly settle this Redick vs. Morrison thing: No, not Halo 2. Indianapolis.