Anyone get a license plate number?
Yikes. The Bearcats looked like they got flattened on Thursday night by a speeding
The sun came up this morning and I am looking forward to Selection Sunday.
I was hoping to do a Big East Tournament Top 10 list for four straight days, but no such luck. Here's the final edition for 2011:
1. 25 instead of 38. The 38-point margin of defeat was the second-largest in Big East Tournament history (Syracuse beat Boston College by 41 in 1999), but the number I'm choosing to focus on is
2. Selection Sunday. I always look forward to filling out my bracket (only to lose to the cleaning lady in the office pool), but I don't know that I've ever been more excited about watching the selection show. Even after the Notre Dame rout, ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi has UC listed as 24th overall on his s-curve which would make
"I wanted them to see the best actors and chemistry and how a group plays off of each other because I believe that's what they've done this year," Brey told reporters after the win over UC. "We were like 'Jersey Boys' tonight. We were all doing our thing."
I'm fairly certain that the Bearcats did not attend a special preview of the ill-fated Broadway production of Spider-Man.
4. Defensive Disaster. So how did the Big East's top-ranked defense allow 89 points to a team that only scored 66 points against UC in
"In every meeting that we had, Coach Cronin told them that we had to be the aggressor in this game, but they got us back on our heels and we just never recovered from it," assistant coach Larry Davis told us on the radio post-game show. "They came out and shot a high percentage from three point range early in the game. We switched to zone and as soon as we did they banged two or three 3-pointers in. It just got discouraging at that point. Our guys didn't throw in the towel, but you could see that their body language dropped. They didn't have that 'pop' and quit doing the things that normally makes us a really good defensive team."
"I didn't think we were capable of playing 'D' as bad as we did tonight, but they made a lot of shots - a lot of shots - especially early," Yancy Gates said. "Coming out of the press, they did a good job of getting us to collapse and kicking it out, but they came out ready to play."
5. No Serious Injuries. As rotten as Bearcat fans felt last night, it pales in comparison to what
"I've wanted to play in the NCAA Tournament since I picked up a basketball in grade school, and this is a real blow," said Kennedy in the New York Post.
6. Déjà vu. Perhaps the biggest reason for optimism following the loss to Notre Dame is Bearcats ability to rebound from their lowest moments this season. Lose at home to
"We have shown the ability to bounce back, and I know that Coach Cronin will get them prepared," coach Larry Davis told me. "We'll put this one in the rearview mirror and move forward. There's no choice. We've got to."
7. Yancy Gates. It was not a great offensive performance as Yancy went 4-for-10 from the floor, but I thought he was the one Bearcat who stuck to the game plan and never stopped fighting against Notre Dame. Yancy finished with 12 points, 9 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 2 assists. Over his last eight games, Gates is averaging 15.1 points and 7.8 rebounds.
"He's played really hard now for eight games in a row and has tried to lead the team," Coach Davis said. "He was the one guy in the huddles who just kept saying to the guys, 'Come on man - keep playing.' That's a good sign of his maturity because under adversity tonight he just kept playing."
9. Positive Publicity. There's a huge headline in Friday's New York Post that reads, "Cincy's New York Accent." The story is about
"It started with Lance," Coach Cronin said, referring to former
10. Moving On. As painful as the Notre Dame game was, we'll barely remember it if
"The one thing about the NCAA Tournament is that everybody is 0-0 when you get there," Coach Davis said. "Once you get in, anybody can get beat and anybody can advance. We'll rest and give them a couple of days off to clear their minds and rest their bodies a little bit. Rashad's toe is a little injured and
"It's my feeling in March in tournament play, you've got to be aggressive," Coach Cronin told me. "You can't worry about losing, you need to throw the first punch and try to get the other team on their heels. You can't think about what's at stake and 'If we lose we're going home.' Scared money never wins, so you've got to stay aggressive."
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