NEXT 8 GAMES

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Roadtrip72

NEXT 8 GAMES

Post by Roadtrip72 » Sat Feb 07, 2004 12:20 pm

The final 8 regular season games could make for an interesting season. Win all 8 and go 17-11; in my dreams. Lose the final games an be 9-19; highly unlikely, but what a nightmare. It's going to take a 5-3 record just to get to.500. I think 6-2 is possible, with 4-4 being my most reasonable expectation. Anyone else care to comment?

GO UMASS

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Post by The Great Herndini » Sat Feb 07, 2004 1:48 pm

Roadtrip, I posted this before, but I think it matches your expectations.

Richmond is now #33 in the RPI; Dayton #41; Xavier #67; St. Joe's #2. Getting any one of these games would be a steal. St. Bonaventure and Fordham are games that should be won; Rhode Island and Temple are toss-ups. Just winning games that absolutely should be won puts us at 2-6 for the last eight. Strong play puts us at 4-4 (wins over RI and Temple), and 13-15 for the season. Stealing just one (1 of Dayton, Xavier, St. Joe's and Richmond) puts as at 5-3, and 14-14 for the regular season.

So, to get to .500 by the end of the season, we have to play strong throughout and likely steal at least one game somewhere.

Tomorrow would be a great time to start.

Roadtrip72

Post by Roadtrip72 » Sat Feb 07, 2004 4:39 pm

Well Herndini.... looks like Dayton at home is the one to grab. Richmond and X on the road and St. Joe's at home look tough. Also, @ Temple.
A Win over the Flyers would be a good start on this final leg of the season.

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Post by The Great Herndini » Tue Feb 17, 2004 2:28 pm

The first two games of the remaining eight really didn't tell me much one way or the other. Good showing against Dayton at home, poor showing against X away. I felt getting either of these games would have been a steal. The strong game against Dayton was washed away with the poor effort against Xavier.

The next two weeks (and 4 games) should be more telling. RI and Fordham should be wins, given Rhodie's recent, and Fordham's longstanding, fall. St. Joe's would be a steal, and the Bonnies should be a strong win. If we are heading in the right direction, we should be 3-1 through the next four.

The last two are going to be tough. Temple is playing much better, esp. in Philly, and away at Richmond is not going to be easy. Playing strong might get us 1 of the 2, but 0-2 looks more likely, even with very good play. However, if we are indeed playing well throughout, we should at least be in the running to take one of Richmond and Temple. That is, these games should be close, and we should at least have the chance to win one with strong play.

This would put us at 4-4 for the last 8 (and 13-15 for the season), with strong play. Playing beyond expectations would mean stealing one of St. Joe's and Richmond (we've already missed stealing one from Dayton and X). Given how St. Joe's seems to be feeling the pressure now of an undefeated season, and the fact that we are facing them at home, they may actually be the better bet for a steal.

A record of 2-6 in the last eight will be very disappointing, but is a likely scenario. This team has not responded well to losses in the past. The RI game will be difficult if this team is not properly prepared following two losses to good teams. This in itself should tell us something.

For me, I still need to see 4-4 for the last eight (meaning 4-2 in the remaining six) in order to be convinced that this team is heading in the right direction. This would mean that the team has learned to bounce back from losses (thereby getting the win against RI at home), and can steal a game against strong competition (and again, they've already missed getting this steal against Dayton and X). We are now watching a team that we will be very close to the team we will be watching in November 2004. Going 2-4 from here on out isn't showing the development and growth that we will need in 2004-05.

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Post by bdance » Tue Feb 17, 2004 2:49 pm

The Great Herndini wrote: Given how St. Joe's seems to be feeling the pressure now of an undefeated season, and the fact that we are facing them at home, they may actually be the better bet for a steal.
How are they feeling the pressure? They're still stomping all comers by double-digits. Even if they were the gap between these two teams is massive. If SJU's played 22 games vs UMass this season they'd still have that same 22-0 record.

Six games left. Hard to envision them beating Temple or Richmond either. If they beat Rhode Island, SBU, and Fordham then maybe they'll be ready to handle that cupcake schedule they were supposed to handle this year. Anything less than 3-3 over these last 6 and I'd question if they're even ready to do that.

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Post by twisters tavern » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:25 pm

We scored 44 friggin points against Xavier. I won't mention the other horrible losses this season since some on this board seem to want to forget about them and not judge the current coach on these failures. To think that you can even fathom this team "stealing" games against top 50 RPI opponents is insane.

We will lose to Temple and Richmond. St. Joe's is going to stomp all over us. They are the '95-'96 Minutemen but we surely are not the '95-'96 GW Colonials. We will get waxed.

URI at home. Yes we should win but using "should" with this team is far too disapointing.

Fordham on the road. I will be there and we should win. If we lose this game, I will question the authenticity and reputation of my UMASS degrees if I hear any current students or alums still support Lappas.

St. Bonnie's at home. See URI above.

3-3 = 12-16 regular season.

Win 1 game in the A10 Tourney, finish 13-17.

Would you label a 13-17 season a success? I sure as hell wouldn't. Even if I was to take a hit on the crack pipe and call this a "rebuilding" year, I still would not label it a success based upon the WEAK schedule. This is destined to be one of the worst years for the A10. Le tme not even bring up the OOC schedule.

Think about it. If we had beaten CCSU, Hartford, LaSalle, and St. Bonnie's, we would be going into this stretch at 13-9. Go 3-3 and we are 16-12 and in the NIT. That would have been a success. So, the only conclusion is that Lappas was a win agianst CCSU and Hartford away from his first postseason at UMASS. How sad.

LAPPAS MUST BE FIRED FOR THE GOOD OF THE TAXPAYERS! (For you Voxpop)

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Post by The Great Herndini » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:29 pm

bdance wrote: How are they feeling the pressure? They're still stomping all comers by double-digits.
More accurately, they were stomping all comers. See the last game against RI. The pressure of an undefeated season is building in an adverse manner. ESPN had a segment on it -- Digger mentioned repeatedly that Umass's lone loss in 95-96 was a positive as it relieved pressure. Even Martelli admitted the building pressure after the game and its effect on their poor performance in both practice and games. And he's not exactly a glass-half-empty type of guy (his words).

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Post by twisters tavern » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:38 pm

Our scoring average in the last 13 games is a shade under 65.
Our defensive scoring average is above 75 in those same 13 games.

Even if St. Joe's had a somewhat offensive collapse, their defense could shut us down and they would still beat us handily.

Where is this offensive explosion and/or defenseive stand going to come from?

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Post by The Great Herndini » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:50 pm

twisters tavern wrote:To think that you can even fathom this team "stealing" games against top 50 RPI opponents is insane.
I don't disagree. From where we should be, you are right. From where we are right now, they would be steals. We're not in the RPI top-150 right now. If your point is that this has everything to do with poor playing and coaching in the past until the last week of January, then there's nothing to talk about. There's certainly, for me, nothing to dispute.

My comments center on improvement from this point in January, when a spark of life appeared. This team underachieved until that point; they then showed some very good things. The point is simple -- was this spark of life an aberration, or the beginning of something new and different from what we saw until January? This is the only hope Lappas has, I believe in returning next year. If the team goes 4-2 the rest of the way, then the "we've turned a corner" argument becomes plausible. I think they also have to win at least one in the A-10 tournament. If not, then the argument that this team is learning and getting better is difficult to uphold.

Now really, does everyone on this board have to be bi-polar? :D
Last edited by The Great Herndini on Tue Feb 17, 2004 4:09 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Post by The Great Herndini » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:52 pm

twisters tavern wrote:Our scoring average in the last 13 games is a shade under 65.
Our defensive scoring average is above 75 in those same 13 games.

Even if St. Joe's had a somewhat offensive collapse, their defense could shut us down and they would still beat us handily.

Where is this offensive explosion and/or defenseive stand going to come from?
That's why it would be called a steal, my friend. :D

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Post by Old Prospector » Tue Feb 17, 2004 4:01 pm

twisters tavern wrote:Our scoring average in the last 13 games is a shade under 65.
Our defensive scoring average is above 75 in those same 13 games.

Even if St. Joe's had a somewhat offensive collapse, their defense could shut us down and they would still beat us handily.

Where is this offensive explosion and/or defenseive stand going to come from?
Christ, we can't even root for the team to beat St. Joe's now? :shock:

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Post by twisters tavern » Tue Feb 17, 2004 4:09 pm

I did not say once that I nor anyone else should not "root" for us to beat St. Joe's, URI, Fordham, and the rest. I will be "rooting" for them as always.

This thread is and always has been each of us prognisticating what we think could happen. Some of us think that we could "steal" a game from St. Joe's for reasons still unknown. I think that we will lose (but I am still rooting for us to win) to St. Joe's, Temple and Richmond, but have a chance to win (still rooting) the games against Fordham, URI, and St. Bonnie's.

The other part of my post was about games in which I rooted my damnest for this team to WIN, yet they LOST, and sometimes by an embarassing spread.

Why can't one cheer on the team but be critical of the times when one did cheer, and the team lost to lesser teams? That is what has been going on for the last 2++ seasons.

BTW Great H., I do hope for the utmost best for these players. These players desevre better. I agree with you that improvement must be shown in order for these players to turn the corner and feel positive going into next season. I am just really at a loss as to how those who believe that Lappas shouldn't be let go based upon the 2++ season's performance is truly frustrating.

You are a true fan and we need a lot more of us critical thinkers on this board.

GO UMASS!

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Post by Orange Julius » Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:42 pm

If Umass beat St. Joe's then it would be the biggest upset in college basketball this season thus far. That's how much of a long shot it is. You have a borderline #1 team in the country playing a very sub .500 team with lots of "youth". No Doubt.

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Post by UMass87 » Tue Feb 17, 2004 8:03 pm

twisters tavern wrote:... To think that you can even fathom this team "stealing" games against top 50 RPI opponents is insane....
I tend to agree with you. Lappas' UMass teams have a grand total of three wins over teams in the RPI top 50. Two came in the first four games of the first year and the third last year. In fact, there appears to be a correlation between the fraction of Lappas recruits and the performance of the team. I'm probably just imagining it, though. Happy thoughts.

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Post by bdance » Tue Feb 17, 2004 8:33 pm

The Great Herndini wrote: My comments center on improvement from this point in January, when a spark of life appeared.
A spark? Maybe. But note that Temple was foundering at the time, Rhode Island was in a free fall, Fordham 'nuff said, and Rider for crying out loud, these were the wins. And Dayton are the NE Patriots of the A10, they don't blow anybody out, they just walk out with a win while the opponent is left saying 'they weren't that good'. So keeping it close, while nice, isn't exacty definitive evidence of progress.

And as far as the SJU/URI game that you wanted me to 'see': must be nice to get all tight from the pressure and only beat the opponent by 14 points.

That said, I do think they're probably ready for that cupcake schedule now. A year late, but we'll take what we can get. They're Just nowhere near ready to even dream about beating a top 25, let alone a top 2 opponent.

Last, I'm not sure quoting Digger Phelps is permitted around here. Isn't that grounds for banishment?

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