Last nights games

Watched part of each game, Ole Miss/A&M, Tennessee/ Missouri, Kentucky/Georgia last night.

Even though the league is considered to be down this year, there is no guaranteed win on our schedule. We could easily finish .500 in league play or worse if we don’t have our A game. Vandy, Missouri, A&M, we are better than. Ole Miss, I think we could handle at home, but we start w them on the road Saturday. No road win will be a gimme. Florida is finding their rhythm, Georgia better than expected, Kentucky is Kentucky, Miss St has talent and size to best us. Auburn looks to be best in the league. Tennessee will be a toss up. LSU is favored tonight by 5 and has tons of talent.

Finishing .500 or worse in league play will not shock me. Finishing well above .500 will be a pleasant surprise.

Still worried about size and depth. We haven’t been exposed yet But so far so good. Happy where we are at 12-1. Go hogs

Even though we’ve played a decent amount of games, there just isn’t enough information to really know where we’re going to land at the end of the year.

There are people on this board still predicting we won’t make the tourney. Others are potentially projecting us as high as 4th best team in the league.

As usual, my guess is that the truth will be somewhere in the middle.

Here are the only things that I’m looking at for this year:

  1. Do we win most of the games that we’re supposed to. I’ll give the team one stinker that just equals a bad day at work with a loss.

  2. Are we within 5-7 points of the games we’re supposed to lose with about 5 minutes left in the second half. That means we have a chance to win, but the final score could be larger because of fouls and necessary risk taking.

That’s pretty much all I’m looking at for this first season. So far, so good.

  1. What teams are we supposed to beat? Serious question. Per ESPN we are supposed to be 12-6 in conference, so giving the team a “stinker” as you say should leave us at 11-7. They also predict us to beat TCU, which makes us 12-1 NC. That’s 23-8. So if we finish worse than that, is it a failure?

  2. I actually agree, I want to see us compete and look to be improving as the year continues. Especially with the class coming in, and recruits we are looking at for next year and beyond. Gives them a lot to consider.

The biggest unknown, and what I’m most worried about is, how will this team react if they get blown out in a road game? Will it have a major long term affect to their psyche? Will a subsequent 12-0 run by an opponent bring about an “oh, no here we go again” thought process in their head?

A blow-out or 2 is almost a certainty in this SEC schedule. It could happen tonight in Baton Rouge. It happens to virtually every team in the NCAA during a season. We reacted very well to our one close defeat by playing perhaps our best game of the season immediately thereafter. That gives me some comfort that the staff knows how to keep the team from getting down on themselves and letting doubt creep in.

Now, here’s hoping we don’t have to see what might happen after a blow-out loss for at least another 10 (or 18) games.

Picked to finish 11 in SEC. Must be expected to lose most of the SEC games.

Yep, that’s why it’s amusing. They have us picked to finish 11th, but if you look at the predictor it has us 12-6. Very different numbers

Edit: They’ve updated again, now says 11-7 (and beating TCU). The one change is AUB. We went from a slight pick 51%-49%, to very slight underdogs 50.1%-49.9%

Both Georgia and Kentucky have phenomenal guards who can really move with the rock and create their own shots…those will be tough games for our less athletic guards (er, which implies our whole team). And, they have size.

I’ll be watching closely tonight…we appeared to struggle against A&M, at home. I’m wondering how real its closeness was…as we pulled away easily near the end.

These are essentially grown men so I believe they could accept getting beat in a blowout.

There is not a guaranteed win on our schedule, nor should there ever be. We have to give it all every game. Even the #1 team in the country has to give it their all every game if they want to be champions. You can’t play to your competition. You play your best every single game the your record will say who you are.

But, to try to answer your question, I think talent wise, we are in 7,6,5,4 range. Coaching, we are in the 3,2,1 range. Trying to combine those, we are probably going to end up somewhere around the 5-4 range in conference, which means about 6 losses. I think we will win some road games to less talented teams, and lose a few home games to more talented teams.

LSU on the road is a tough, tough win. I think the game will be in the 60’s. First team to get to 70 will win.

  1. I agree, always give your all in every game.

  2. Playing to the level of competition, that’s what I like about this team. They do play to the level of competition, and they win (well more than they lose). Usually playing to the level of the competition is a bad thing and causes losses. These guys play down and win and play up and win.

Totally fair question. That’s one of the problems with being in the first year of a new coach, and it’s one of the reasons that I don’t try and project the wins and losses. We might not even know who the teams are that we’re supposed to beat until we’re half way through conference play. I’ll take it one step further and even say that we might not know until the season is over.

I haven’t seen all the other SEC teams play yet. However, I have seen Auburn, Tennessee, A&M, Kentucky and some of Vandy and Mizzou.

Auburn looks to me like the absolute best team and a legit team to go back to the final four. A win here would be a legitimately surprising upset.

After that, Kentucky and Tennessee look like teams that we should be in contention for a win with 5 minutes left, but I could see losses here.

I do think we should be able to beat Vandy and Mizzou from what I’ve seen of them. I would be disappointed with losses there.

I haven’t seen the other teams. Although, I have read on here about how much better Georgia looks. I’ll watch LSU tonight.

That’s exactly the opposite of what we want them to do. Our football team “learned to accept” blowout losses for the last 2+ years. You want them to hate a blowout loss and understand that their play in that game was unacceptable. You want them to know that they are a better team than what they showed on that given night. You want them to be anxious to play the next game and show everyone they are a very good team.

I believe that is the way they will feel if and when it happens. I believe the coaching staff will know how to make sure it happens. Thus far it hasn’t happened so we can’t yet say it for a certainty.

I like your take

What I worry about on the road is foul trouble. The crew that called the Indiana game didn’t hardly blow their whistle in the second half. That is probably not the norm for SEC games. Road teams usually get more fouls called on them. It will happen on the road in SEC games for these Hogs and there just isn’t much depth to overcome it. That is my concern going forward.

The way this team plays defense I am not sure they get “Blown Out” this season. Usually a game like that happens when a team goes nuts hitting 3’s and against this Hog team I don’t know if that happens.

Tennessee lost their point guard. I don’t think they are in the top 6.
Auburn may be the top but I wouldn’t gift wrap the title for them!
The SEC is wide open and I say that after watching a lot of games. LSU showed their colors at VCU! They don’t have the discipline on either end of the floor yet to claim the top 4 yet either. The Hogs should be able to go into Baton Rouge and pull out a win tonight.

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