What An Opportunity!

  • Self toughening… nuthin’ like it!

    OU on Saturday… B12 tournament to follow.

    We know Perry will miss Saturday. Why not rest him through the B12 tournament, too? It’s a throw away tourney for us… on the other hand…

    I believe we should go without Perry until March Madness. Put the pressure on the boys to win without Perry. Keep hammering down on “Self toughening.”

    Look how hard WVU fought without their two guys, one of them being Staten. I’m sure Huggins would have liked to close this game out, but he still has to be pleased with the fight his guys brought to AFH.

    The clear coaching that needs to occur moving forward… first… the emphasis has to be on toughness. We’ll win more in March by bringing toughness than any kind of slick offense or defense.

    But at some point, we have to get back to Xs and Os. Our current strategy is one for teaching… and useful for winning. But somewhere down the road we need to get back to attempting to run effective offense.

    Can our guys continue to play tough when points come easy?

    That is the most-important question to be answered moving forward.

    Right now, I am very skeptical. But I’ve also been amazed at how Self has turned these guys into toughness warriors in these BAD BALL, grind games. Can he take them to the next level and have them playing tough when the points rack up quick on the long ball?

    At some point, even if we aren’t running perimeter offense, some of those 3s are going to start dropping. Is it bad news when they do? Anyone remember the OU game at home?

    I think we are a ways from playing tough when the going is easy. The first half of last night showed me that. It was senior night, and we were playing in our own building for another clean B12 title… and we were playing a team without 2 of their key players. We were coming off a big lesson toughness game against Texas that was successful. Why did we let up in the first half? Why were we on auto pilot?

    Saturday’s game with OU should be very interesting. This is the next test. OU has something to play for. We have nothing to play for except our pride. Will we bring our pride to Norman? Will we want this game just as much as we wanted games when it mattered in league play?

    This is a game we could take a rain check on. And regardless of what happens, we will be playing our entire bench. But isn’t this the ultimate game prep for March? Remember all those upset losses in March? When we thought we could rain check on an opponent and instead they sent us home.

    OU will be a great barometer game. Just how bad do these guys hate to lose? We are the B12 regular season champions for 11 straight years. Don’t we want to end our regular season with a tough win?

    Heck yes.

    What an opportunity! For the team with a weak post to have the all-conference post player in street clothes along with the promising post newbie.

    Jamari, Landen and Hunter… the big lights are on you!

    What an opportunity!

  • @drgnslayr what is OU playing for?

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    OU is playing for a better draw in the conference tourney and definitely for a higher seed in March. We are set for the conference tourney, and pretty much set as a 2 seed in March.

  • @drgnslayr said:

    OU is playing for a better draw in the conference tourney and definitely for a higher seed in March. We are set for the conference tourney, and pretty much set as a 2 seed in March.

    If you look at bracketmatrix.com, there is an unusually strong consensus on the #1 seeds and the #2 seeds, but after that not so much.

    We are practically a lock for #2 going to Omaha, but in which region? The more we win the later we meet Kentucky.

    Oklahoma could be a #4 at worst, at best a #3. I don’t know if “better” 3s get a better draw in the tournament. Anyone?

  • @ParisHawk All I know is you have to be UNC or Duke to get the best draws.

  • @brooksmd Duke especially. I feel like every year they somehow have their first games in North Carolina. Makes me crazy!

  • I can’t help but wonder with Cliff’s rebounding if last night if we’d have had much more success.

    It was also interesting to see the guys step up in Perry’s absence. They played with way more resolve and determination when he wasn’t on the floor. That’s not a knock against Perry, but it could really benefit us over the next few weeks. Jamari wow, and for all the times we’ve dogged on him this year. He won that game for us.

  • @joeloveshawks

    “Duke especially. I feel like every year they somehow have their first games in North Carolina. Makes me crazy!”

    I’ve had similar feelings. I looked into it a little bit and I think because one year UNC gets to stay home and another year Duke gets to, that we think each team gets it every year. It hasn’t happened as much as we think, although I would say the NCAA does get them home when they can.

    KU happens to be in a state that just doesn’t have any sites to host a sub regional. North Carolina has a lot of D1 programs that are significant which means they also have arenas that are NCAA worthy.

  • @wissoxfan83 Here’s my philosophy (cuz I know everyone is interested 😼 ) - I wouldn’t be surprised to see a bit of a letdown with Perry out on Saturday. The idea behind that is when they were thrust into a desperate situation (Perry being injured) they responded in great fashion. Kind of like the stories you hear about a little old lady lifting a car off of a toddler or whatever. They just reacted. With urgency.

    I’m afraid if they have a few days to mull it over, they’ll be overwhelmed (oh, what do we do without Perry??? ) and play like it. I hope I’m wrong. I have been before.

  • I watched a few of the talking heads last week going over bracketology. Joey “Toupee” Lunardi has Wisconsin in Kentucky’s regional (Cleveland). One of the guys asked the question “why would the committee do that when Wisconsin isn’t the 4th rated 2”. The answer was it’s either they get their closest regional, which the committee likes to do for 1s and 2s, or they’d travel to Syracuse (East Bracket), Houston (South Bracket), or LA (West Bracket).

    Right now we are looking at these 1s

    1. UK (Midwest)
    2. Virginia (East)
    3. Duke (South)
    4. 'Nova (West)

    These are the twos

    1. Wisconsin
    2. Kansas
    3. Gonzaga
    4. Arizona

    Hard to say which of the two, Arizona or Gonzaga, gets the West bid. Does the non-LA team out of those two get the next most western site of Houston? And then KU to Cleveland and Wisconsin to Cuse? Or do you give KU and Wisconsin their closest sites which are Houston and Cleveland respectively?

    Gonzaga really screwed it up by dropping to a 2 with their L this week!!

  • @Kip_McSmithers

    If every thing stays the same and Wisconsin ends up a very strong #2, hell is going to be raised if they are put in Kentucky’s bracket. And I’ll be leading the charge!

  • @wissoxfan83 By the way, I’ve been watching Lunardi for weeks diss WIsconsin. I can’t stand the guy now! Wisconsin has one loss all year playing at full strength, to Duke, when Duke shot like 70%. Their point guard Traevon Jackson has been out with a broken foot, who’s return keeps getting pushed back. We’ve lost two games with him out, and we infamously lost to Rutgers when Kaminsky was out and Jackson missed the 2nd half when he broke his foot. I really think we (Wisconsin) can knock off Kentucky this year but would prefer to have the opportunity to do so as late as possible in the tourney!

  • @wissoxfan83 Well he may have won it, but those 2 ft’s by Devonte “Icewater” Graham and that block by Lucas gave him the opportunity.

  • @nuleafjhawk “Here’s my philosophy (cuz I know everyone is interested 😼 )”

    I gave you an up vote just for that first sentence. 👍

  • @nuleafjhawk All that plus they put a lot into that game last night to (1) get the championship outright, (2) senior night, (3) 30+ final home game win streak and (4) undefeated season at home. Saturday gives them nothing but the pride of winning as a champ on the road in the psuedo Big 12 conf. I still say HCBS should sit all the starters and give the game to the bench.

  • @wissoxfan83 Heard a talking head on tv this week say that Wisc in his opinion was the only team that could beat Kensucky.

  • @nuleafjhawk don’t forget about the geese theory! Honk Honk!

  • @Crimsonorblue22 what is OU playing for?

    I’ll take a stab at that one…OU is playing for Lon Kruger to score a " I Beat KU" cash bonus, just like Huggie did…I have no idea of the validity of this scenario, but it sounds good…

  • @KUSTEVE ha ha, marbles!

  • @drgnslayr Why not rest the starters Ellis (knee), Mason (42 mins vs WVA) and Selden (was limping with rolled ankle vs WVA), and put the bench (Mickelson, Lucas, Svi?) against OU and the B12 tourney? Get the starters fresh for the March run? By the way, any chance a coach (Self) would hold a player (Mickelson) out of games (except vs. WVA out of necessity) to reprogram the player to get ready for the March run? Opponents don’t have much info or stats on him since he hadn’t played. Perhaps I’m dreaming- that Mickelson will be lights out against unsuspecting teams & their footers with his blocking in March. Thoughts?

  • @HawksWin I say, play that kid! Hunter that is. Rest Mason, Selden if his ankles bad, get Svi and BG going!

  • @Crimsonorblue22 They could play Hunter from now on, and that would be fine as frog hair with me.

  • Brannen should play all 40 minutes just to find his shot before the tournament.

  • @wrwlumpy svi too!

  • @HawksWin

    I think all our scholarship players are going to see PT in Norman… and should.

    But I’m also thinking Self wants to win this one. Continue the “play tough” teachings. It wouldn’t be good to let off the gas now and expect them to pick it up later.

    I kind of wonder if this hasn’t been a problem in other Self March performances. We’ve often dogged through the B12 tourney, perhaps to get rested and not risk injury. But then the guys also come out slow in March games.

    Not sure how well it goes to “amp down” players and then expect them to “amp up” with the snap of Self’s fingers later.

    Even though we are struggling through these recent games, it seems they are becoming tougher guys. Often feels more like a team of men now instead of boys. But we need to keep the push on.

  • @drgnslayr I’m not sure what I think about the conference tourney. It’s definitely good bb, but I worry, especially w/our league, that it’s a huge strain on the beat up bodies. So undecided.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    I know. Me, too. And after last night… who wasn’t banged up?

    On the other hand… these kids all think they are ready for the NBA. Better get used to getting beat on constantly…

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Football?

  • @drgnslayr particularly liked this line:

    But at some point, we have to get back to Xs and Os. Our current strategy is one for teaching… and useful for winning. But somewhere down the road we need to get back to attempting to run effective offense.

    Relying on 80% FT% with high volume is fools gold.

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