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Game 8 - Memphis

I keep looking at the score, expecting it to change. Expecting it to correct itself. How can a team be outrebounded 53-26 (25-10 on the offensive glass) and still win? How can a team give up 28 second-chance points and still squeak out a victory? Baffles me, but I am happy it happened.

If you haven't realized by now, I will probably just list a bunch of random observations and then make one equally random and sometimes offensive argument and then call it a night. So here goes:

- Jesse Sapp had the worst game of his career
- Monroe had a deceptively bad offensive game, but he hit his free throws which is why we won this game
- Four Hoya players had over 40 minutes of playing time
- Our starting five can compete with anyone in the Big East
- We have no bench whatsoever, will hurt us immensely come conference play time. This game was one of three in a two week span, and sandwiched between St. Mary's School for the Blind and the local CYO team. We will tire when we have to play UConn, Pitt and ND in an eight day span.
- Jason Clark did a great job at the point and breaking the Memphis pseudo-press
- Do not know why Calipari did not play zone against us, we were awful from beyond the arc
- Memphis took 78 shots, more than half were taken by Evans and Taggart
- Henry Sims had his best game in a Hoya uniform
- Henry Sims did not play
- Pretty disappointed with attendance of only 15k
- Special thanks to Ed Hightower for acknowledging my existence

The press is making a big deal about JT3's impressive overtime record with Georgetown (6-1). Got me wondering about Calipari's. This is the second game Memphis has been taken to overtime against a team they should have beaten in regulation. The first was last year's national championship game. It is also the second game Memphis has lost in overtime. Brand new team, same old mistakes. And it is directly attributable to poor coaching. JT3 runs a system. And as infuriating as it is to sometimes watch a team pass around the perimeter for 30 seconds and then take an off-balance three, his system works. It is effective because regardless of the time, opponent, or score, the team plays the same. We run the same offense in the closing moments of a tie game as we do in the opening minutes of the game. That is why Georgetown always looks so calm and collected come crunch time, why you never see JT3 show signs of worry and why the team has been so good in close games. Calipari has an offense, but when his team desperately needs a bucket, he relies on his recruits' athleticism as opposed to set plays. Nothing wrong with that but for the past two overtime games, you have seen the same result:

vs. Kansas in OT - 1-8 field goals, 1-6 three pointers, 50% of shots taken by one player (CDR)
vs. G'town in OT - 1-9 field goals, 0-4 three pointers, 56% of shots taken by one player (Evans)

In both games Memphis had no offensive sets, no designed plays. Calipari relied on his players to make plays, which is a lot to ask for a bunch of 20-year olds. Kansas had five different people score in the five minute overtime period, and Georgetown had six. That is why both these teams won. They played team basketball in the closing minutes of the game and followed through on the game plan they had prepared. And we are all happier for it, so thanks John.

Boring games until the 29th, expect the same type of game against UConn and Pitt.

Follow-on: I was kindly reminded by follower BBC4EVA that I neglected to post Six Degrees of We Beat Duke for this game. I offer my many apologies. So here goes: Georgetown beat Memphis who beat Seton Hall who beat USC who beat New Mexico State who beat University of Texas-El Paso who beat St. Mary's who beat Providence who beat Rhode Island who lost by three at Cameron so it is as good as beating Duke. Phew, I need a drink after that one.

Good talk.