Heard it From Hoard: Column 40
There are currently four teams in the Big East with four league wins: Georgetown, DePaul, West Virginia, and Cincinnati. Of that group, Georgetown is the only team with two road wins, but is there any question that Cincinnati has the more impressive victories?
Here's an interesting comparison. I've attached a number next to each win based on where the opponent was ranked the preseason coaches poll - like golf, the lowest total wins. Since Georgetown and Louisville tied for first they share the #1. USF was picked for last place and gets the #16.
Cincinnati: at Louisville (1), Syracuse (5), Villanova (7), Pitt (4). Total = 17
West Virginia: Marquette (3), Syracuse (5), St. John's (14), USF (16). Total = 38
Georgetown: at Rutgers (15), at DePaul (11), UConn (6), Notre Dame (9). Total = 41
DePaul: Villanova (7), Providence (8), at St. John's (14), Rutgers (15). Total = 44
Like I said, un-freaking-believable.
If the national polls began on January 1st, Cincinnati would be getting Top 25 votes and could very well be ranked. Not too shabby for a school that had one scholarship player on the roster and no recruits in the pipeline a mere 21 months ago.
I know there are still fans that are bitter over the dismissal of Bob Huggins who have not returned to Fifth Third Arena and I understand their enduring loyalty to Huggs.
But they're missing a great show.
Our Kroger star of the game after the Pitt win was freshman Rashad Bishop who had 11 points, 6 rebounds, only 1 turnover, and made a game-saving block. Coach Cronin told an interesting story about Rashad's recruitment on the postgame show.
"He plays like a senior, he really does," Cronin said. "That's one thing about him; he's always going to fit on your team. A lot of people questioned us when we signed him because he wasn't that highly rated. His high school coach Danny Hurley told me, 'You're smarter than I thought.' He said, 'If you want him, get up here.' I said, 'I'll be there tomorrow,' and he said, 'We'll see.' I just walked into the gym the next day and he pulled Rashad over and said, 'Hey, I told every head coach if they want you they need to get here, and this guy is the only one that's shown up. The rest of 'em are just calling or sending assistants.' I told Rashad, 'I want you because this guy (Hurley) says you know how to play and you're a good kid. I've seen you play in the summer, but this guy's got you at practice and that's why I want you.' That was the easiest recruit we've had since I've been back."
We had some fun on an expanded one hour pregame show Saturday as we asked listeners to pick their all-time "Bearcat Villain" team, made up of opponents you've loved to hate over the years.
The choices included Charlotte's Diego Guevara, Louisville's Francisco Garcia, DePaul's Tom Kleinschmidt, Marquette's Travis Diener (Mo Egger expanded that to the entire Diener family), Xavier's Kevin Frey, Temple's Pepe Sanchez, Syracuse's Gerry McNamara, and Memphis' Joey Dorsey. Pete Gillen was chosen as the coach.
Is there any doubt that Notre Dame's Luke Harangody will eventually be on that list?
Feel free to e-mail suggestions if you think there's someone we missed.
Finally, here's this week's obligatory photo of the handsome lad. He'll be in attendance on Wednesday when UC hosts Connecticut. Hope to see you there.
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