Saturday, November 29, 2008

A 10 Musings

As November draws to a close I thought I would give a brief update on the league and teams thus far:

A 10 CONFERENCE: Announced this week that beginning in 2010 our conference tournament championship game will be aired on CBS on Selection Sunday. I am guessing we take CUSA spot at 11 AM on that day. First thru fourth place teams receive first round byes and seeds 5-12 will play on higher seeded teams home court during the first round. Teams who finish 13th and 14th during conference season will be shut out of tournament again. Good move by Bernadette McGlade.

CHARLOTTE: 1-5 thus far and one of the biggest disappointments in the conference. Point guard depth is really hurting this team. Dijuan Harris is good but he can't do it all. Three of their losses have been by a total of 5 points.

DAYTON: 5-0 on the season. They won 60-59 in overtime last night over Auburn in the Chicago Invitational despite going 0-24 from three land! The Flyers get a date with Marquette tonight; their best chance for a non conference marquee win for the Selection Committee. Marcus Johnson has been strong to this point.

DUQUESNE: The Dukes are 4-1 thus far but looked terrible against Duke on ESPN yesterday. All their wins have been against 'cupcakes'.

FORDHAM: The Rams are 0-4 with losses against Ivy League schools Princeton and Columbia. The lack of upperclassmen depth is going to make for a long season. On the plus side they have inked three terrific recruits for 09-10 that feels is one of the top 25 classes in the country.

GEORGE WASHINGTON: The only loss has been on Auburn's home floor. The Colonials have a 3-1 record overall. Up next is a 12/7 tilt against Maryland.

LASALLE: The Explorers are 2-3 thus far with their next game being against Bucknell on Tuesday night. LaSalle lost to UCONN by 8 points and had Florida State beat before losing by 4.

UMASS: 1-3 overall and right up there with Charlotte with disappointment. They suffered a 1 point loss to Jacksonville State at home the other night and were absolutely embarrassed by Memphis early on. That was a bad game in more ways than one as they lost their 7' Luke Bonner to injury. Derek Kellogg appears to be going through the growing pains all first time head coaches go through as well. They still have non conference tilts against Boston College, Kansas, and Vanderbilt.

RHODE ISLAND: These Rams have represented the A10 well with a 5-1 record. Their only loss was a nail biter against Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Jimmy Baron went off from 3 land in that game. They get #20 Villanova tonight after a nice win over Penn State last night in the Philly Hoop Group Classic.

RICHMOND: 3-2 overall with a 2-2 split in the CBE Classic. They get Coppin State on Sunday at home.

ST JOSEPH'S: 2-3 overall with losses to Texas and Alabama in the Maui Invitational. They do not appear to be 6 or 7 deep and Martelli needs to develop some depth so his above average starting 5 have a chance night in and night out.

ST LOUIS: 2-2 overall with a nice home win over Boston College. They are at Detroit Mercy today and hope to improve over their last road performance at Nebraska. Willie Reed has been a fan favorite to this point and the frontline looks promising with fellow frosh Brian Conklin and Brett Thompson to go along with the 6'10" stringbean shot blocker.

ST BONAVENTURE: 3-2 overall with a nice win over Rutgers on their home floor. They almost followed that up with a home win over Mississippi State but poor free throw shooting done them in. This team has the talent and coach to finish higher in the A10 than originally thought. Andrew Nicholson is the best freshman big man in the conference to this point in the season. He recorded a double double against the Scarlet Knights and followed that up with 13 and 9 against the Bulldogs. A neutral court game against fellow Big 4 member Canisius is on tap tonight.

TEMPLE: The Owls are 3-1 to this point. They are at Buffalo tonight and follow that up with a visit from Miami (OH). Temple plays several MAC schools a year as part of their agreement for being in the MAC for football. However Dunphy still has Tennessee, Kansas, and Villanova to show off Dionte Christmas the A10's best All American canidate.

XAVIER: My Musketeers are of course 5-0. Winning the PR tourney over Memphis will be huge Selection Sunday as well as the neutral court wins over Mizzou and VA Tech. All is not rosy in Musky Land though as Terrell Holloway will be out 2-4 weeks with a stress fracture in his left foot. We face Miami (OH) today in a tough non conference rivalry. The Redhawks have already challenged UCLA and Pittsburgh on the young season. With Ohio and Auburn also coming in before the trip Crosstown to UC Brad Redford and Brian Walsh will be forced to play meaningful minutes and it is time for them to sink or swim. It is looking extremely unlikely we get Jordan Crawford eligible after seeing the NCAA's ruling against IU. Again no excuses we still expect to win on a consistent basis this season.

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