UNLV kicked off the ’07-’08 Basketball Season with an exhibition against
Green Valley High School, I mean Washburn, last night. The highlight of the evening was Armon Gilliam seeing his jersey retired, and although the final score was 77-47, the game exposed what should be a rough start to the season for this rebuilding Rebel Basketball team.
Here are my game notes:
- Joe “Two Mommies” Darger led the team in scoring with 19. Joe is a great scorer, and it is great to see he has developed more of a mid-range game. However, he made it to the free-throw line 8 times, something better teams won’t make the mistake of doing. To sum it up, when Joe Darger leads the team in scoring, we are in trouble.
- Corey “C-Buckets” Bailey was second in scoring. Once again, as happy as I am to see C-Buckets finally have confidence and put some points on the board, this does not bode well for the season. Corey was 5-14, and I have no idea if this is a real line, or if he will put his tail between his legs when facing real competition.
- WINK WAS RUSTY! 3-12 from the field, and 0-5 from THREE. Curtis Terry tried to get guys involved too much and matched his 7 points with 7 assists, making up for Marcus Lawrence who didn’t play becuase of academic reasons. NOTE: these were the 3 players I predicted would set the tone for our season. TONE SET. (note: what you can’t here right now is the sound of me slamming my head into my file drawers repeatedly.)
- A couple positives: We took care of the ball, only 10 turnovers. This is an amazing stat considering all 10 active players played in various lineups. We held up the defensive intensity as well, holding
Cimmarron High School, sorry Washburn, to only 9 first-half points. Once again, playing 10 players, and tooling lineups while still holding a team to 9 first-half points is incredible. So unlike the Football Team, the Lon Kruger is once again giving us an incredibly disciplined, hard working, defensive minded team. I love Lon Kruger.
There are still a bunch of questions. Will Adeife be able to give us consistent minutes? How will Lon tool his line-up when he has to go small and rest the big man? What will we do for scoring if Wink lacks confidence (which he is very much like Shawn Marion in this respect)? What do we do if Lawrence still has academic trouble and Curtis Terry no longer is a scorer because he has to worry about getting other guys involved? Will Marceceo Rutledge and Lamar Roberson give us scorers on the floor, or will they still be developing? These were all the things I worried about before the season, and last night did NOTHING to subside those fears.
Now we have three weeks, and three teams to prepare for a two-game home stand against Louisville and UNR. Here are the 3 teams that will help us prepare:
- Montana State
- Dixie State
- San Diego
I hate rebuilding years.
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