Monday, January 31, 2011

The Emery Board: Week 12

College basketball has not seen a team go undefeated since Bobby Knight's Indiana Hoosiers went 32-0 in 1975-1976. The closest we have seen since then was a Jameer Nelson-led St. Joseph's team that went 27-0 in the 2003-2004 season before losing to Xavier in the Atlantic-10 tournament. Every season a team flirts with the notion of an undefeated season, but every season that notion slowly fades as January turns to February and February turns to March. BYU's senior guard Jackson Emery, has made the bold prediction that his team, a Cougar squad that finished with a 27-4 record last season, will in fact go undefeated this season.

We have decided that, in honor of Emery's swagger, we will keep a watch on the BYU Cougar's schedule, see if they can walk-the-walk. We will also keep tabs on any other undefeated teams who try to make a run at the perfect season.

Week 11:
You know, it's kinda funny. We've been so enamored with the recent explosion of JimmerJam2011 that we lost sight of what the Emery Board was all out: playfully ripping Jackson Emery. If you recall, after BYU's first loss of the season, a head-scratcher to UCLA in Anaheim, Emery clarified that although they had lost, he still thought they could go the rest of the season without losing another game.

Well, I guess Mr. Emery forgot to remind his teams of his statements following their emotional home victory against SDSU on Wednesday. Because going into The Pit for a conference match-up against a team desperate for a signature win is not an easy thing to do. The Cougars played well, but new Mexico played better. BYU got only 9 points from their bench, all from Charles Abouo, and while Jimmer did drop 32, he did so on 12-26 shooting.

As for Mr. Emery, he had a somewhat-cold week. In the last two games, he has shot a combined 3-for-15, including 2-for-12 from behind the arc, and recorded only a mere five assists.

Things don't get much easier for the Cougars from here on out. They travel to Wyoming on Wednesday then host UNLV on Saturday night. Yes Wyoming is only 1-6 in the conference but that one win came at home against the same New Mexico squad that just beat BYU.

Next Game: 2/2 at Wyoming
Next Possible Loss: 2/26 at San Diego State

Undefeated Teams

No. 1 Ohio State: 22-0 (9-0)
Last Win: 58-57 at Northwestern
Next Game: 2/3 vs. Michigan
Next Potential Loss: 2/6 at No.18 Minnesota

"There can be only ONE!". Well no not really, but there's only one undefeated team left in the country, and it's tOSU. The Buckeyes' other sensational freshman, Aaron Craft had a big week, scoring a combined 24-points on 9-for-17 shooting and dished out nine assists in Ohio State's two wins. This team is loaded with talent from top to bottom, has experience, size, great coaching, and well, pretty much everything a team needs to win six consecutive games in March. The Buckeyes have shown they can win close games on the road, and can win games in which the opponents force them to play a different style of basketball. And to think I just wrote an entire paragraph about tOSU and didn't even mention Jared Sullinger. That's how good the Buckeyes are.


No. 6 San Diego State: 21-1 (6-1)
First Loss: 59-71 at No.9 BYU

"They have been weighed, they have been measured, and they have been found wanting." Or you could just say they lost a hard-fought game on the road in one of the toughest arenas to play at in the entire country. But on the plus side, Kawhi Leonard was battling flu-like symptoms prior to the game and still had a large night. Circle Saturday the 26th on your calenders, because that's when the SDSU fans get to return the favor to BYU.

The Bottom of the Barrel:

It would be rude of us to include the "have's" and but not the "have-not's". After all, planetary balance is very essential. For every team that hasn't lost a game, there has to be a team still fighting for their first win.

Centenary: 0-23 (0-3)
Next Game: 2/3 vs. North Dakota State (10-11, 5-6)
First Potential Win: 2/10 at Southern Utah (6-15, 3-6)

Another week, and another couple of losses for the Gentlemen. They capped-off a four-game road trip by getting smacked by Summit League leaders Oakland 100-70, and finally get a chance to play in front of their home crowd, if they have one. With only seven games left, it's looking less and less likely that they will get that elusive-W.

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