Chat with Dana O'Neil
Send your questions now and join Dana in The Show on Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET!
Dana O'Neil (2:00 PM)
Hey everyone: I'm in Durham. Anyone know where I can see a decent game tonight?
Dante Cunningham -- Villanova
Greetings Dana, Are we still "overachieving" or are folks willing to admit that the we're just flat out good? Also, when are you going to do a feature piece on me?
Dana O'Neil (2:01 PM)
Dante: I'll say this. Jay Wright is doing the best coaching job of his career this year. Your team is playing as well as any in the country right now and he has maxed out everyone's talent. As for your feature, keep winning and we'll talk.
Brent (Syracuse, NY) [via mobile]
What do think the chances are of SU beating UCONN tonight, considering Onuaku's balky knee and UCONN's dominant inside presence?
Dana O'Neil (2:02 PM)
Brent: You said it. That's an extremely difficult task for the Orange tonight. Going against Thabeet is like going to the dentist for healthy teams. Mix in Syracuse's problems defending and this could get ugly.
Mike Anderson - Coach of the Year candidate?
Dana O'Neil (2:03 PM)
Steve: Heck yeah. What I really admire about him besides the coaching job he did is that he ran out the knuckleheads, stood his ground and held on to his principles despite the heat.
Ryan (From NH attend UD)
The Dayton/Xavier game tonight deserves a lot of attention, unfortunately it's not getting it. (There will be a soccer game on ESPN2 instead of this game) Anyways, who do you think will win tonight? Should be a good one.
Dana O'Neil (2:05 PM)
Ryan: sorry about the soccer. really. Definitely expect a good game tonight. The losses by both teams took some of the shine off but these are clearly the best two teams in the A10. Xavier gets the edge at home but I love Dayton's defense.
Everyone agrees that DePaul's Jerry Wainright is a great guy, but he has to be let go after this year, doesn't he? Home losses to S. Fla and Seton Hall by 20 plus points, no conference wins. That's not much progress in year four of his regime.
Dana O'Neil (2:06 PM)
T: I'm hearing he won't be. He does have a very very young team, which is an out if not a downright excuse.
Chris (Abilene, TX)
What kind of a chance do you give Baylor at beating OU tonight and resurrecting their tournament hopes?
Dana O'Neil (2:07 PM)
Chris: Not good, I'd say. Baylor just doesn't defend well enough to handle a team like OU, one that is very good offensively AND defends.
I am so jealous you are in Durham! How does Duke get back on track offensively tonight against Carolina?
Dana O'Neil (2:08 PM)
Michele: I gotta say I'm jealous of me, too. Should be a great game. Duke absolutely has to get on track offensively tonight. Against the speed of Carolina, they cannot afford to have an off night. I'll be curious to see if injecting Paulus into the starting lineup gives them the jolt of energy.
Billy Gillispie (Kentucky)
Dana. Do you think I'm too harsh on Mrs Edwards during our halftime interviews, or is everyone making a mountain out of a molehill?
Dana O'Neil (2:09 PM)
Billy: You need to simmer down, my friend. Her job is to ask questions. Part of yours is to answer them. Even if you don't like them, you come off like an all-knowing snit when you're rude to people. Not smart.
How bout them Cats Dana?
Dana O'Neil (2:10 PM)
John: They live to play another day and ought to make a shrine of Jodie Meeks for saving their season. Unreal game.
Lou-- New Britain, CT.
With the Big East allowing all teams into the tournament, what are the chances a lower seeded Depaul or Seton Hall team pulling off an upset? Would a first or second round win jump a bottom of the barrel Big East team over a strong team from a not so big conference?
Dana O'Neil (2:11 PM)
Lou: You mean a Tuesday or Wednesday upset? Sure, that could happen. Beyond that, no way. And there's absolutely no way any of those 12-16 teams jump anyone unless they're raising a trophy on Saturday night in the Garden.
Wayne (Memphis TN)
If the Tigers win out are we a 2 seed?
Dana O'Neil (2:12 PM)
Wayne: Probably. That's going to push them toward that 30-win mark again, if I'm doing my math right. And there's no question they are way better now then they were in December.
Since when did Big Ten football move inside. Love the Big Ten but the elbows needs to stop
Dana O'Neil (2:13 PM)
Brad: The elbows and how about the scores? As a colleague said to me last night when I gave him the score from the Villanova-Marquette game midway through the 2nd half - that's 2 Big Ten games.
Do you think Providence will make the tourney if they finish 10-8 in the big east with the remaining 3 wins coming against ND and rutgers twice?
Dana O'Neil (2:15 PM)
Chris: Gonna be a bubble team, I think. That's a very good Big East record, which will earn them a hard look but beating ND and Rutgers isn't going to make anyone jump up and down. I think they're going to be in a situation where they're rooting hard for teams like Butler not to lose in their conference tourneys.
Who is the most surprising team(s) this season?
Dana O'Neil (2:16 PM)
Jack: I'd say Missouri for sure. Illinois, though not great is another. Butler because of its youth and even Memphis considering how much they lost.
Thoughts on UCLA's Alfred Aboya recent surge? He's become an offensive force, while taking his defense to a whole new level. He's held Taj Gibson (u$c)only 4 pts, and Luke Harangody (nd) to 5pts.
Dana O'Neil (2:16 PM)
Marco: I wasn't really sold on UCLA there for a while but I'm coming arouond. Aboya playing well and the Bruins are really smoking people.
Hey Dana, any chance you need a sidekick tonight? Maybe someone to type your notes for you?
Dana O'Neil (2:17 PM)
Pete: Absolutely. Meet me outside of Cameron.
Bruno (De Pere, WI)
If Michigan State wins out and takes the conference title and tournament championship, do they earn a #1 seed?
Dana O'Neil (2:18 PM)
Bruno: I dunno. Those home losses to Northwestern and Penn State are going to be hard to overcome, especially up against the resumes of teams like UConn, Pitt, Oklahoma and the trio in the ACC.
Michael (Evansville, IN)
I'm really nervous about tomorrow night's game for my Cards in South Bend. I know Notre Dame is struggling, but they're at home, they have to be hungry, and they played us tough in Freedom Hall. Do you think Notre Dame has packed it in or do you see a furious push for a bid the next 4 weeks.
Dana O'Neil (2:19 PM)
Michael: Agree that it is a dangerous game for Louisville. I do think the Cards' defense will give ND fits and win the game but I don't think the Irish have packed it in at all.
Awesome! I'll be the guy with Carolina blue sweater and a rose in my hand.
Dana O'Neil (2:19 PM)
Pete: Nah. I need a dozen.
Whos the best confrence top to bottom? Whos the worst?
Dana O'Neil (2:20 PM)
Lou: Big East and SEC, if we're talking BCS conferences.
How about the real Cats in tucson??? Would 20 wins get them in?
Dana O'Neil (2:21 PM)
James: Not sure. The Pac 10 is down this year, so it will be tough. That said, the way Arizona has survived this crazy season is very impressive. Could play their way in.
Dana, do you think the winner of the St. Joe's/Temple game tomorrow night will have a half decent chance at an at-large?
Dana O'Neil (2:22 PM)
Dan: Uh uh. Not enough quality wins for either team. Think right now they'd have to win the A10 tourney.
Allen Flaherty (Mt. P, SC)
Dana. Do you think my Charleston Cougars can make some noise in the SoCon tournament and pull off an upset over Davidson in the championship game to get an automatic bid in the NCAA tournament?
Dana O'Neil (2:22 PM)
Allen: Sort of impossible to say no, considering they just beat Davidson at Davidson. So absolutely they can.
Chris (Abilene, TX)
How many teams do you see getting in from the Big 12 and which ones are they?
Dana O'Neil (2:24 PM)
Chris: Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Texas are in, though Texas is on a precipice. K-State is making a hefty argument with a late surge.
You predicted, "Xavier gets the edge at home but I love Dayton's defense." One problem: The game is at University of Dayton. Care to change your prediction?
Dana O'Neil (2:24 PM)
Tommy: Yeah, I had an early flight after a late game. I don't even know where I am. Hmm... I actually do think home court is huge in this game so I'll flop like a fish and go Dayton.
Which freshman has impressed you most
Dana O'Neil (2:25 PM)
Mike: Jrue Holiday has been steady for UCLA. Ditto Willie Warren at Oklahoma. But I think you have to give the nod to Tyreke Evans. He's been sensational and the key to the Tigers turnaround.
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
Is Penn State going to have to win the Big Ten tournament now if they want to get an NCAA bid?
Dana O'Neil (2:27 PM)
JB: They really put themselves in a bad spot, especially with the loss to Wisconsin. They don't have to win the Big Ten tourney but they really need to come on here against some good teams and then make a strong showing in the Big 10 tourney.
RJ - Dallas
The SEC may be way down, but Lunardi still has 5 SEC teams making it. With Florida having a potential for a 2 seed with a strong finish. And Tennessee having a potential for a 3 with a strong finish. As bad as it may be, it ain't THAT bad
Dana O'Neil (2:27 PM)
RJ: I respect Joe Lunardi immensely but beg to differ with him on this one. Don't see 5 teams from the SEC deserving to be in.
Daniel (tallahassee, fl) [via mobile]
hi dana, it's been a pretty long time but do you think its fsu's year to finally be one of the last five in instead of the first 5 out of the tournament?
Dana O'Neil (2:28 PM)
Daniel: Though they tried like heck to blow it for awhile against Virginia last night, yes I think the Seminoles finally go dancing this year.
Mike (New York)
My Huskies have a couple of huge games coming up, first today against Syracuse and then Monday against Pittsburgh. But in between those games, I'm fearing a let down against a Seton Hall team that is playing well right now. Should I be worried about the trip to the Hall?
Dana O'Neil (2:29 PM)
Mike: It's certainly a classic trap game but I honestly don't think the Hall has the manpower to handle UConn's depth.
Any word on the extent of Dwayne Anderson's injury? He's been a sparkplug on both ends of the floor for 'Nova lately.
Dana O'Neil (2:30 PM)
Mike: Last I heard as of last night was a sprain. They thought he had merely hyperextended it and would evaluate it more today. Agree. Dwayne has been very good for Villanova.
Hal (New Orleans)
I'm an Indiana alum...and, though this season is tough for the obvious reasons....my thoughts, and I think the general consensus is that this team is truly headed in the right direction. What are your thoughts on the future of Hoosier basketball and how many years before we're back as a serious contender in the Big Ten? Its gotta be a matter of when, not if, right?
Dana O'Neil (2:31 PM)
Hal: Agree when not if. I say give Tom Crean maybe two more years. Next year they'll be way better because he'll actually have recruited players. Give them a year to play under him and things will turn around. And lemme just say you Hoosiers are an incredible bunch. Been amazed by the turnout at games despite the team's struggles.
John Charlotte nc
Dana what is your score predicting for tonight UNC vs DUKE.I am going to say 88-80 UNC
Dana O'Neil (2:34 PM)
John: Logic tells me Carolina wins this game. Playing very well right now, really clicking and going to be very tough to Duke to handle. But then I also think Duke's latest struggles are a bit misleading. Still a very good team, especially on the defensive end. Which is my wishy washy way of saying I have a hard time picking. If I have to... I'll say Carolina wins but it will be thisclose. Which means Duke wins in a blowout
You would know best. Would Wright ever consider leaving Nova for say Arizona. I could see that working
Dana O'Neil (2:35 PM)
Jeff: Well Jay would know better but no, I don't see it happening. He has told me more than once that he wouldn't leave Villanova for another college job.
Dana,what do you think about the Mountain West conference this year, and what do you see happening to this competitive conference come NCAA tourney time?
Dana O'Neil (2:36 PM)
Nicole Great conference that no one is talking about. Five teams that deserve a look in San Diego State, BYU, UNLV, Utah and New Mexico. Any one of them could be a sleeper pick come tourney time.
Wayne (Memphis Tn)
with the Tigers playin good how far do you see us going...Don't think no one plays better D then us....what you think ?
Dana O'Neil (2:38 PM)
Wayne; I think Memphis is the single most dangerous team in the country right now. No one really talking about them too much; their defense, as you said, is incredible and they have a whole lot of talent on the offensive end. Honestly I wouldn't be shocked to see them back in the Final Four.
Mike (Altoona, Pa)
Do you have any mid major favorites that could make a "George Mason" type run?
Dana O'Neil (2:39 PM)
Mike: Sure. Siena, I think is a team to watch out for. Utah State is another that no one knows much about. Does Davidson count?
Brian (Sacramento, CA)
USC - do or die weekend in Arizona? What is your opinion on Demar Derozan - shouldn't he stay another year?
Dana O'Neil (2:40 PM)
brian: pivotal weekend yes. Can't be pushing .500 in the Pac 10. I honestly don't think there are any freshmen who absolutely positively should come out this year.
LW [via mobile]
Do you think winning the Big East tourney this year could potentially be harder than winning the NCAA tournament?
Dana O'Neil (2:41 PM)
LW: No. I mean it's going to be crazy hard but if you're a top four team it's three games. It's not three weekends against teams that you could be completely unfamililar with, with everythingg on the line. You lose in the BET you can still get to the dance. You lose in the dance you're watching TV
Need to plan my afternoon accordingly. Are you just going to 3:00 or do we get a liitle more of Dana today?
Dana O'Neil (2:42 PM)
Josh: Touched that you're arranging your schedule. Here til 3, but feel free to take the afternoon off after that.
Will Tulsa beat Memphis tonight? Memphis only won by 1 over TU a few weeks ago.
Dana O'Neil (2:43 PM)
kellen: It's not out of the question though at Memphis it will be tough.
Sean (East Hartford CT)
Right now, who do you think the one seeds will be on selection Sunday?
Dana O'Neil (2:44 PM)
Sean: If it were today, UConn, Oklahoma, Pitt and Carolina.
I'm sick of hearing about how great the big east is... yes I will give them credit where it is due - but with 16 teams I am going to have to listen to this every year???
Dana O'Neil (2:45 PM)
Joe: No, because every year they won't be this good. This year the Big East, unlike the SEC and the Pac 10 didnt lose a ton of players to the NBA so they're loaded. Next year who knows? Sports are nothing if not cyclical.
Skyler Roth (Jonesboro, AR)
Dana, do you think the underachieving Razorbacks have a shot a being a spoiler during the conference tournament?
Dana O'Neil (2:46 PM)
Skyler: Maybe. Certainly they showed flashes, what with the wins against Texas and Oklahoma but this is a VERY young team. Patience, my friend, patience.
Any chance LSU will get any respect nationally if they gat their 8th straight SEC win tonight at Miss. St. A veteran team that's absolutely running through the SEC right now, but all people talk about is Florida, Kentucky and Tennessee (who LSU beat in Knoxville). Marcus Thornton can flat-out play and Garrett Temple and Tasmin Mitchett were starters on a Final 4 team, but they are completely off the radar.
Dana O'Neil (2:47 PM)
Brett: You're right. They are playing better than anyone in the SEC right now and I honestly thought LSU was the best team in the league to start.
Where do you see Wisconsin headed? I say that if they beat Iowa and Ohio State this week they should be on there way back to the Big Dance
Dana O'Neil (2:48 PM)
Jake: Not sure two games is enough to get them back in right now. They're only 14-9 and beating Iowa doesn't count for much.
Thoughts on Wake Forest's chance come March Madness?
Dana O'Neil (2:49 PM)
Tarr: Still a very, very good team. Athletic, tough, play good defense. Will be around for a while.
Al Skinner (BC)
Why doesn't my team know there are two halves to a basketball game? They seem surprised every time I head back onto the court after my halftime speech. Are we done if we don't beat Duke?
Dana O'Neil (2:51 PM)
Al: Maybe they never took Jim Harrick's basketball class? You're not done if you don't beat Duke but you're going to have to do some damage at the end. Winning at Miami would help immensely.
Is Demarre Carroll one of the more underrated players in the country this season?
Dana O'Neil (2:52 PM)
Jason: He's one of them certainly. Saw him way back in November in Puerto Rico and was impressed and continue to be impressed in February. That whole team plays as hard as any in the country.
Dana, right now who will win the whole ting.....
Dana O'Neil (2:53 PM)
Ted: Eek. I'd say right now today I could see Carolina and UConn in a heckuva national championship game and I'd go off course and give the Huskies the edge because of their defense. That's today. Tomorrow I'll say NJIT.
Andy Katz didn't give a good answer. Think a team like Princeton or another 16 seed would be able to take down a 1 this year? Take a 1 seed like UNC who lost to BC, the same BC who lost to Harvard, a team that Princeton beat.
Dana O'Neil (2:55 PM)
Frank: ooh. the transitive theory. I like it. I saw Princeton play Cornell and was stunned at how much better the Tigers are. Realy run their stuff well, have good athletes. But I don't see a 16 knocking off a one, not this year. Don't think the mid major/low majors are as loaded. Is that better than Andy? I strive to be better than Katz.
Nice article on blair, well written. Any way will pitt be motor city bound and do we have a chance to be cutting down the nets?
Dana O'Neil (2:56 PM)
Nick: Thanks. My 4 year old could have handled that one. DeJuan writes his own story. I like Pitt's defense. Love their depth and DeJuan. My only worry is their lack of consistent outside shooting. I think they could be in Detroit for sure but they'll need to shoot well through the tourney to get there.
After spending an evening in the toolshed that is Cameron Indoor Stadium, I highly recommend a trip to Top of the Hill on Franklin Street and a pint of Old Well White. You can sit on the patio and enjoy the ensuing party on Franklin.
Dana O'Neil (2:57 PM)
Marc: I actually have been to Top of the Hill and liked it very much. Forget my brew of choice but it was good.
Hi Dana! For a change, SU has some big non conference wins for the resume. Will 9-9 in the BE be enough?
Dana O'Neil (2:58 PM)
Geoff: I think if Syracuse finishes 9-9 and doesn't lay a major egg in the tourney they should be in. The strength of the league, their own non-conference sched will help.
Dana, do you think UCLA's Jrue Holiday should come out after this year?
Dana O'Neil (2:58 PM)
John: Personally I think he'd be better suited sticking arouond after Collison leaves and running the show himself.
Dana, What's the NCAA doing putting the Final Four in Detroit? I've been to a couple without my team there and had a blast. I can't imagine going to Detroit in March as a 3rd party fan.
Dana O'Neil (3:00 PM)
Matt: It's all about the size of the venue these days. I'm attempting to reserve judgment and be pleasantly surprised but I'm not expecting it will be as delightful as the Riverwalk last year.
Dana O'Neil (3:00 PM)
alright folks, time for me to get ready for that little game in Durham.. Thanks for the questions. See you next week.
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