Louisville Card File: Miami (Ohio)

There have been college basketball seasons when it became obvious at some point during the campaign that one school was distinctly better than all the others and would, absent some cataclysmic upset, win the national crown.

Last year’s Kentucky team is the one that comes immediately to mind.

San Francisco in ’55 and ’56. Indiana in ’76. Georgetown in ’84. Vegas in ’90.

They were locks, and, indeed, shut the door on every team that challenged them.

Yes, there are exceptions. Villanova, playing an almost perfect game to upend the Hoyas in ’85. Jim Valvano’s one shining moment to bump off Phi Slamma Jamma in ’83.

So, the contemplation evolved for me this weekend, even before U of L gobsmacked the Redhawks yesterday like they were a bunch of Biddy Basketballers.

If this talented, very deep Cardinal team progresses in the normal course, might it rise to the status of one of those “inevitables?”

This is what we do. Yes, of course, it is the silliest of contemplations just three tilts into the season. It is time to take a deep breath, and, as I texted a friend waxing enthusiastic during yesterdays plundering, “Don’t peak too soon.”

What is most fascinating this season is that our neighbors right across the Sherman Minton are experiencing the same ruminations. So too, those fans a few miles east down I-64, but, this year, that appears to be truly wishful thinking. (If Cal pulls this one off, there will be an actual coronation.)

I look forward to seeing IU play tonight and tomorrow to gauge how good they are.

* * * * *

On Sunday, the Cards hit 46% of their threes. 12/26.

That statute on averages tells us this cannot continue.

For if it was to be their season’s average from beyond the arc, cutting down the nets in Atlanta would indeed be inevitable.

Last time out, U of L hit 7 of 31 long balls.

I’d settle for splitting the difference on the season. 19/57 is 33%. Which is the equivalent of making 50% of two point attempts.

At the 3:11 media timeout yesterday, the Cards were up 33-12, having outscored the visitors 23-2 over the previous 10 minutes +. At that juncture, U of L had made 8/14 threes, but only 2/10 otherwise from the field.

* * * * *

My favorite play of the day came right before that timeout.

Siva stole the ball near midcourt. The Cards spread out for the fast break as it is set down in the text books. He flipped it to Kevin Ware on the left wing, who set up trailing Gorgui Dieng for the slam.

Clair Bee, John Wooden, Peck Hickman, all those b-ball fundamentalists from the days of yesteryear, looked down with smiles on their faces.

* * * * *

I’m not sure there is anything that especially stands out from yesterday’s exuberant dissection.

The defense was relentless, though still not without some flaws. We saw some zone for the first time.

Siva had ten assists and only two turnovers.

Even Luke Hancock played better, though he was still only 1/7 from the field. It was heartening to hear the crowd cheer him on, instead of groaning on the misses.

* * * * *

I gotta ask.

What’s the deal with Angel Nunez?

MIA, he is.

“Official” word is he’s sick. On the scoreboard, before the Samford game — and perhaps yesterday, I didn’t see — he was listed as out with a concussion.

A murmur I heard, that came from a former Cardinal star, is that Nunez, seeing the prospect of little playing time, started making some transfer inquiries. When The Rick heard of it, he immediately exiled Angel, like Papillon, to Devil’s Island.

* * * * *

You know, that little commercial game they foist on us during one of the timeouts, the one where a fan guesses which of the three bouncing balls has the Cardinal on it?

Well, fans have hit it right three times in a row. Which, if memory serves, is a new Yum! record.

* * * * *

L-Tryptophan Warning. As a public service, let me remind you that Thursday’s tip off against Northern Iowa is a late one.

If you gorge yourself on turkey, allow time for a nap to sleep it off before the game starts.

– Seedy K

One Comment

  1. cbcard
    Posted November 19, 2012 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    Please note that Angel Nunez has quite a few letters but no “d.”

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