Thursday, February 23, 2006

NC State basketball and you: an educational film

The following entry is entirely for the amusement of Jason Matthews. I apologize to everyone else.


Timmy: Golly! My friend scored club-level seats for the State-Carolina game! I sure hope the Wolfpack plays an exellent game tonight!

Mister: Hold on just a second, Timmy. You may be going into this game with lofty expectations.

Timmy: Gee Mister, I don't think my expectations are unreasonable. We're ranked ahead of Carolina.

Mister: Well Timmy, let's take a magical trip to the basketball court, where the games are played...

Timmy: Oh boy! A magical adventure!


The JMatt did, in fact score(courtesy of his employer) the club level seats with the little TV's in the tables for this game. The seats were great, but I had a bad feeling when I looked at the ticket and saw Evtimov(who has ousted Adam Harrington as my least favorite player on a team I love) on the front of it. Still, the crowd was excited and the game was about to start. For 8 minutes of game time, there was basketball. For the rest there was the Wolfpack getting absolutely embarrassed. By the end, even Carolina's scrubs were making us look slow. It's as if the team had been bitten by (Marvel) Zombies.

The only thing that made the night even remotely worth it was the post game trip to the Waffle House, which can go a long way to heal wounds.

You want to know why we got so embarrassed? Keep on reading after the end of the film.


Timmy: Shucks, Mister, I suppose that even a talented team can lose if no one bothers to coach them and they're saddled with Evtimov and Atsur. I should keep my expectations low in spite of our high ranking.

Mister: We'll see about that. How do you see the rest of NC State's season going?

Timmy: A bounce-back win against Boston College and a sqeaker at Wake Forrest, followed by a deep run in the ACC tournament before getting bounced in the second round of the NCAA's?

Mister: Now you're getting it!

TImmy: From now on, I'll save my unrealistic expectations for the football team!

Mister: Oh, Timmy...


Why do sports insist on making me sad?

NC State's gameplan never changed from our end. Not one iota.

We didn't adjust to the defense Carolina was using. What's even worse is that we should have been ready for it. It's the same one Duke used to shut us down as they pulled away from us in that game. They took away the three point line. Ideally, we would have responded to that by challenging them inside. Instead, we just kept throwing up 3-balls.

We didn't adjust to the fact that the refs were calling everything, up to and including eye contact. Carolina knew how to use this. We should have. If we had gone to the basket(which we needed to do anyway with the 3-point line taken away), we could have probably picked up some extra cheapie fouls, too.

No defense. None. On some Carolina posessions, I don't think we even tried. And if we did manage a stray turnover, we found a way to give the ball right back. I'm almost certain that Carolina scored more points off of Carolina turnovers than NC State did.

We go out-hustled, and especially out-rebounded. I think Carolina got 100 offensive rebounds. No one(except for Brackman, who seems to be making a career out of being the only one who wants to put in any effort vs. UNC) showed even a hint of hustle from this team.

If only there was someone who could be put in charge of creating game plans, including adjusting to what another team is doing and the way the refs are calling a game. If only there was someone with the power to take someone who keeps forcing bricks up from behind the arc out of the game and tell them to try something else for a while. If only there were someone who could maybe coach the team during the game. Technically, we do have one of those. What'd he have to say?

"I don't think we played with the kind of effort we needed to have tonight," Sendek said. "I don't have any idea why."

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