Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tuesday Lay-up Lines

The best game of the night is out in Waco as Baylor hosts Texas in a Big XII battle. As much as I like Baylor's squad this year, this is going to be a tough match-up for them. The Longhorns are huge and deep up front, and the Bears just do not have the muscle to match-up with them. Conversely, however, Baylor is going to be the much quicker team, and they will have an advantage on the perimeter.

Rick Barnes is going to have a tough decision to make defensively. In order for him to keep his advantage on the offensive end, he is going to want to keep Damion James at the three, which means that one of Gary Johnson and Connor Atchley will also be on the floor. That creates a bit of a match-up problem defensively. If I'm a Texas fan, the only one of Baylor's guards that I'd feel comfortable with James guarding is LaceDarius Dunn, simply because Dunn is not a penetrator or as quick as the other three. And I still don't love that match-up. I think Rick Barnes will go zone against Baylor, trying to cut down on penetration while making sure to get out on shooters. Texas is a very good defensive team this year, and as good as the Baylor back court is, I see Texas being able to keep them out of the lane.

There are a number of other good games on tonight as well:

  • 7:00 PM: Kentucky (16-4, 5-0) @ Mississippi (10-9, 1-4): The Wildcats are one of the biggest surprises of the season, especially after losing to VMI in the season opener. Big Blue looks like they are the class of the SEC. That isn't quite what it would have been in years past, but with a 1-2 punch of Jodie Meeks and Patrick Patterson, UK is going to be a tough team to beat come March.
  • 7:00 PM: Miami FL (14-5, 3-3) @ NC State (10-7, 1-4): The Hurricanes really need this win to keep pace in the ACC.
  • 7:00 PM: Buffalo (12-5, 4-1) @ Western Michigan (7-11, 4-1): First place in the MAC is on the line after Buffalo knocked off previously undefeated Ball State their last time out.
  • 7:30 PM: Boston College (15-6, 3-3) @ Maryland (13-6, 2-3): The Terps could really use a win just to boost their confidence after possibly the worst lost in the history of the program. Two things about Maryland - if Greivis Vazquez is going to run his mouth and call Cameron Indoor "his house", you gotta come harder than 2-10; and if Gary Williams doesn't turn this team around quickly, he may find himself out of a job this off-season.
  • 9:00 PM: Purdue (15-4, 4-2) @ Wisconsin (12-7, 3-4): This game could make or break Wisconsin's season. As it is, the Badgers have lost four in a row, including their first meeting with the Boilermakers. UW is already tinkering with their line-up (going to three guards as opposed to three forwards), and dropping to 12-8, 3-5, when they still have Illinois, Minnesota, Ohio State, and the Michigan's on their schedule could be devastating. Purdue, on the other hand, is playing as well as they have all season, and they still are waiting for Robbie Hummel to get to 100%.
  • 9:00 PM: Northeastern (13-6, 8-1) @ VCU (15-5, 8-1): A battle for first place in the always competitive CAA.
  • 10:00 PM: BYU (15-4, 3-2) @ Utah (12-7, 3-2): This is one of the most underrated rivalries in the country, and the Mountain West is one of the most underrated conferences in the country. Currently, they have three teams in the top 50 (San Diego State is mid-50's, depending on where you look), with Utah and BYU sitting at 33rd and 26th, respectively. This is a big game for both programs, even beyond the rivalry. BYU's best win is against SDSU, while Utah is still trying to overcome losses to Idaho State and Southern Baptist.

1 comment:

Tyson said...

Huge game for the Utes tonight kid. Huge game. Thanks for the little blurb...I will now click on some ads