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Old 11-18-2004, 03:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Some thoughts on the early action....

Originally posted by KevinBeane

*Arizona got a first place vote and is ranked 11th, and that's exactly how many points (11) they beat U. of San Diego by, who won four games last year and was missing their top player. San Diego outscored them by 7 in the second half (that's the half the heavy favorite is s'posed to run roushod over their Mark.) They just looked terrible. In the next round of the NIT, they'll play Wright State, who is high after scoring a dramatic road overtime win at Tulsa. Can't pick the upsets, but however many points Vegas ends up giving Wright State, take them.

As an Arizona fan, you better believe I was glued to this game. I completely agree, UofA looked bad. "Sloppy" is probably the best word to describe their play in the second half. Mustafa Shakur was the only player that I thought had a good game and even he made some careless passes.

Aside from the obvious criticisms about their virtually non-existent defense (and it was pathetic in the 2nd half, especially on the interior), one of my biggest complaints from last season so far has not been addressed: feed the ball inside to Channing Frye. This guy is at least one of the three best centers in the country and can fill it up if you get him the rock. UA lives and dies far too much on the perimeter. If you want to win, you get Frye the ball consistently. He should be taking at least 12-15 shots a game.

And where was Hassan Adams???

San Diego's roster looks pretty different from last year's and I expect that team to be much more competitive this season. It's also possible that Arizona just lost interest in the second half after dominating and building a comfortable lead in the first. Season openers are never a team's best performance. Also, missing Isiah Fox probably hurt a bit as far as slowing down SD in the middle. Those are the reasons why Arizona fans shouldn't be crying just yet. Still... not a good game for the Wildcats.

After they beat Wright St. ("when", not "if"), they have a tricky Michigan squad waiting for them. I think the much-improved Wolverines will provide a good test and set a barometer for where Arizona really is at. Still hoping to see a Zona v. Wake matchup in the pre-NIT final.
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