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Cardinal weekend wrap-up


Two Cardinal victories, two "eh" reactions from the fan base.

The outcome of both games was never really in jeopardy, but there was a noticeable lack of energy in Freedom Hall over the weekend and it translated to some sloppy play and final scores that were closer than they should have been. Poor decisions and off shooting nights in November shouldn't surprise anyone, but the lack of bounce is a bit disappointing given the great chemistry this squad is supposed to possess.

Here's hoping the finale sets us up with some significant good vibes heading into Saturday's test at UNLV.


The new intro video is awesome. Kudos to whoever put it together.

I'm really hoping that it's going to end with a different player saying something every game. If that's the case then I'm really, really looking forward to Stephen Van Treese telling me to make some noise.

Edgar Sosa is playing the best basketball of anyone on the team right now, and I think that's a good sign. Case and point: Sos led the team in scoring with 13 heading into the half on Sunday and didn't take his first shot of the second half until just under the 15-minute mark.

That type of play is not in Bad Edgar's repertoire.

Our zone is really bad when we're in the three-guard lineup. Seeing Swop and Samardo recklessly flying at shooters on the perimeter is tough to watch.

Swop was still much better over the weekend than he was last season, and while most complaints center around his offense, it's his defense that really needs to improve for this team to have a shot to repeat as Big East champs. You know that rebounding has been stressed to him early and often this year, but he has got to do a better job of locating shooters when we're in zone. If the ball goes in the basket it doesn't matter how well you have somebody boxed out.

Love the Preston undershirt and the improved Preston free-throw stroke. Oh, and the four steals in one game. I forgot he plays defense.


Obviously it was awesome to see Mike Marra finally bury a three yesterday, but he's actually been a boon to the team over the past couple of days despite his shooting struggles. He handles the ball well, is big enough to make passes  over people when he's pressured, and it appears to me that he's the best defender of the freshmen. If he gets going from beyond the arc then he's really going to demand decent playing time, even in the season's final weeks.

Samardo's doing pretty much exactly what he was doing at this time a year ago: being bigger than people, struggling to finish around the rim, getting fouled a lot and making a lot of free-throws. He does appear to be more athletic and in better shape, which has really helped him on defense, but he's simply got to be stronger with the ball in his hands. There's no reason someone with his size should be on the ground that much. He's going down because he's off-balance when contact is made, and that's because he's always moving away from the rim.

If only he had TJ's arm length.



33-of-41 from the stripe? That's summer improvement right there, men. Big congrats.

Jerry Smith certainly doesn't mess around when it comes to fast (freshman scoring record) and slow (the last two years) season starts.

Great to see George Goode back on the floor and confidently stroke his first jumper. There might not be more of a team-first Cardinal. Or better half-court shooter.

I would destroy that shooting doctor at one-on-one.

There hasn't been a "kid's announcer" segment yet where I haven't busted out "kid can't even read." It's as involuntary as breathing for me.


We're not good, we're not going to a bowl and Kragthorpe will be fired no more than six days after the Rutgers game.


Also, we could bring in Zombie Vince Lombardi and he still wouldn't be able to beat South Florida in Tampa.