Monday, October 29, 2012
3-point shot: Inside the secret scrimmages
By Andy Katz
1. From the world of secret scrimmages over the weekend (a ridiculous NCAA rule prevents teams from talking about them even though teams travel like its a road game or two teams meet in a neutral location): Iowa and Creighton scrimmaged to a tight game. Technically, Creighton won the game (but the schools aren't supposed to keep track of scores). A source said Creighton looked very strong with a variety of offensive options, not just preseason player of the year candidate Doug McDermott. Iowa, a sleeper in the Big Ten, played well, but remains inexperienced with freshmen and sophomores in key spots. Maryland was able to scrimmage George Washington over the weekend and while the Terps are still a trendy pick to rise up in the ACC, one source said that the guard play for Maryland still needs to improve quite a bit.
2. Texas Tech scrimmaged Texas Southern and new long-term coach Mike Davis (four-year deal) and a source said that the Red Raiders played well together under interim coach Chris Walker. There was the usual adversity during the game but the Red Raiders didn't get frustrated and played through it. The energy level was high and the Red Raiders were more athletic than previously predicted.
3. Colorado scrimmaged SMU over the weekend and one source said Mustangs coach Larry Brown was coaching as if he were in his mid-40s again. The Mustangs, while offensively challenged, were strong defensively and didn't have the look of a last-place team in C-USA. Meanwhile, the Buffaloes will have no issues on the perimeter with a pair of strong, productive guards in Askia Booker and Spencer Dinwiddie. Both could find their way onto an All-Pac-12 team by the end of the season. The Buffaloes got productive play in points and boards from All-Pac-12 first-team guard Andre Roberson. Freshmen Xavier Johnson and Josh Scott both rebounded well in the scrimmage. For the Buffaloes to excel in the Pac-12 they'll need Johnson and Scott to shine. Colorado won the Pac-12 tournament, beat UNLV and lost to Baylor in the NCAA tournament. The Buffs should be in the top half of the Pac-12 again.