Wednesday, November 16, 2011
3-point shot: Nonsensical scheduling
By Andy Katz
1. Power six teams should be applauded for going on the road but the games have to make sense. LSU and South Carolina had no business going to Coastal Carolina and Elon Tuesday night. Both SEC teams lost on the road. LSU, which has been in a long-term rebuilding phase under Trent Johnson, lost to a Big South school that was gutted a year ago. Meanwhile, South Carolina lost at Elon. This was the first time a power-six team went to Elon. I’m not sure it shouldn’t be the last. These losses will only drag down the bottom of the SEC.
2. We all get caught up in the matchups in the early-exempted tournaments. But the Maui Invitational now looks incredibly lopsided. UCLA is now in chaos with the suspension of Reeves Nelson and an embarrassing loss to Middle Tennessee State. Kansas just got smacked by Kentucky. Those two teams are on one side of the Maui bracket. The other side is loaded with Duke going against either Memphis or Michigan. That semifinal will likely be the real final next Tuesday in Lahaina.
3. The games weren’t as close in the second half but college basketball does have the opening it desperately needed with the Carrier Classic Friday night in San Diego in an unprecedented atmosphere on the USS Carl Vinson. The Champions Classic with Duke-Michigan State and Kentucky-Kansas was a success, even if games weren’t as close. The more the game has openings like this the more likely it will attract the mainstream fan. Of course, it helps that the NBA is locked out.