Louisville Card File: Seton Hall

Edited 1/10 at 9:45 am (Thanks to a reminder in a Facebook post by a loyal reader.)

If nothing else, U of L survived it’s first test this season with Jim Burr in stripes, holding one of the whistles.

Which he used as injudiciously as usual. Especially on Wayne Blackshear’s third foul. The Cardinal SF was moving his feet and playing good D on his man who cut from the left side toward the foul line. He kept himself between the Pirate and the hoop, and as best I could tell, never touched him.

Oh well.

* * * * *

The Cards also survived running its offense at the end of the court, where lining the front row, were a bunch of fellows in nothing but Speedos. Talk about disconcerting!!

Wonder if they were on the Seton Hall swim team?

* * * * *

Gorgui Dieng.

Gorgui Dieng.

I was reminded last night, while watching Dieng play significantly better than in his first couple of games since returning from injury, of Pervis Ellison. What I recall of Pervis is that his improvement from game to game his freshman year, and even thereafter until his senior season, was palpable. He never made the same mistake twice.

Dieng is obviously taking more time to develop. But his steady game to game maturation is a marvel to watch. He makes his jumpers. He makes his free throws. He gets the rebounds. He blocks shots. He’s getting some nifty moves under the basket. He plays game altering defense.

16 points. 14 rebounds. Toss in a couple of assists and blocks and a steal.

Had he not been hurt, Louisville would more than likely be undefeated and #1. (Which probably wouldn’t be such a good thing anyway.)

* * * * *

Once again, I feel duty bound to ask this question: Why isn’t Wayne Blackshear getting more minutes? Last night, he spent only 17 on the hardwood.

He missed no more D assignments in the first half than any of the other guys. And took but one ill advised shot.

It’s obvious Pitino favors Luke Hancock, who is smart on the court. But very very slow, gets beat a lot at the defensive end and has trouble getting off his shot unless wide open. Blackshear is also a might slower than one would expect or hope, but still has more game and more potential than Luke.

I must accept that Pitino knows more than I do. But this scenario remains dumbfounding to me.

They each hit 2 treys last night, the only ones for the Cards. Hancock finished with 7 points and a rebound in 24 minutes. Blackshear tallied 8 points, along with 2 boards, an assist and 2 steals.

* * * * *

Russ Smith had 6 assists and two steals. But he had four turnovers, all when he tried to do way way too much with the ball on offense, usually trying to drive to the hoop, finding trouble instead. Looked like he was trying to tap into his inner Dwayne Morton.

He was 2/11 from the field, but 7/8 at the line.

It was Russ’s least good game of the season.

His running mate, Peyton Siva had 7 assists and 4 steals.

Silent L is starting to become a force. He sure knows how to dunk.

* * * * *

Why I Know More Than The Rick:

It was obvious at the end of the first half that The Rick believed his best ballers could take charge of the game in the second half. Because he sat them down and allowed Seton Hall back in the game. I thought it ill advised.

I understand he was displeased with the Cards’ defensive effort. That’s still no reason, it doesn’t seem, to put the game in jeopardy.

On the floor for the Cardinals at the end of the half were Tim Henderson, Zach Price, Kevin Ware, Luke Hancock and Russ Smith. In other words, the least of U of L’s available lineups. Unless he went walk on only.

Seven points of a 9 point lead were trimmed in the last three minutes.

* * * * *

Why The Rick Knows More (Way More) Than Me:

After an obvious tongue lashing during intermission, to start the second stanza, Louisville forced 5 Pirate turnovers and 3 missed shots before Seton Hall finally tallied on a free throw. The home team didn’t score from the field until the 14:49 mark.

After Pitino got the team playing D, which it did in the second half, the game was never in doubt, despite Louisville’s woeful shooting.

Bottom Line: Conference W on the road by 15 points without Chane Behanan. Sweet.

* * * * *

Maybe ESPN should stop apologizing for Brent Musburger — who did nothing at all untoward — and apologize for Mike Patrick, who is, as ever, a fawning buffoon. But who fails to tell you what player committed a foul, what foul it is, etc, etc. You know the basics, required of a play by play announcer.

Patrick did a swell job however of giving color announcer LaPhonso Ellis a game long giggle.

ESPN could also be apologizing for its failure to provide even the most rudimentary of statistics at halftime.

* * * * *

Coming Saturday to the Yum!: South Florida Bulls.

Lest you have forgotten, a reminder. The final score of last year’s encounter at the Yum!: Louisville 51, South Florida 58.

– Seedy K


  1. cbcard
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    How old is Jim Burr? Rumor has it that he was Naismith’s third grade teacher!

    Yet another reason for term limits.

  2. Seedy K
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    65 or 66, I think.

  3. cbcard
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    I found it. 66. And if my memory is correct Higgins is one or two years older than Burr.

    Way too old to be doing so many games. And talk about wearing down over the course of a season. Being out of position leads to most bad calls, especially by a zebra who once was pretty good.

    Hang it up you old fart.

  4. doug
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    I cannot recall ever feeling more deflated after a final home game than after that slow down, frustrating loss to USF last year. No post game remarks from seniors, just get the hell out of the gym. Mail in first round losses in Big East and NCAA tourneys and hope for better things next year.
    What was to come is what makes following this program so much damn fun!

  5. fred
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    Last night, Russ had a reoccurence of what I have come to call Reece Gaines Disease. The main symptom is to drive through the lane with no place to go, then fling the ball upward, resulting in what the statisticians will generously call a field goal attempt. There is no known cure. The disease seems to be handed down to Louisville guards.

  6. Phil
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    Regarding the team on the floor at the end of the 1st half, my thought was that Rick was trying to avoid any of the regulars getting in serious foul trouble. I might have done the same thing with Jim Burr patrolling the sidelines. I bet he thought the group he had out there could hold serve, when they almost gave up the lead.

  7. david
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    For the first time since 1980, I watched a U of L road game and never for a second thought we had any chance of losing. That is the way it will be with just about every team in the Big East this year except maybe Notre Dame and Syracuse. We are the best we’ve been since 1980. That’s not to say we will win it all because you need a lot of luck for that. But we are very good.

  8. ken
    Posted January 11, 2013 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t Patrick open the game by announcing that “Cincy” would be in the black with red trim? Problem with alertness, sobriety or just “gotta job and no quality control” ?

  9. doug
    Posted January 11, 2013 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    Less than 24 hours after UL game in New Jersey, Jim Burr spotted in Iowa doing the Iowa- Michigan State game. The quality may be in question, but never the quantity!

  10. Seedy K
    Posted January 11, 2013 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

    I too noted Burr’s presence the next night. Let’s see Newark to Chicago to Des Moines to Iowa City. Just an easy day of travel. Not that many connections.

  11. Seedy K
    Posted January 11, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    Oh yeah. We checked. Burr’s a “spry” 66 years old.

  12. fred
    Posted January 11, 2013 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    How old do you have to be before you can be “spry?”

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