So, yeah, nothing unusual going on in the Atlantic Coast Conference over the weekend past.
After adding a no-fluke 65-51 thrashing over previously surging UVa on Saturday to its earlier victory over Villanova, 13-3 Virginia Tech now has two Ws over legit Final Four/ Champion contenders.
But one of those Ls was to upside-still-to-be-determined Louisville, another to struggling Syracuse.
Meanwhile, 8-5 Georgia Tech was never really threatened, while downing Florida State by 13. That’s the same Seminole team that was the hottest in the land, not situated in Waco or Spokane. Among those Tech Ls are setbacks to Georgia State and Mercer.
You can’t make this stuff up.
Clemson, which seemed back on its feed in a tight, defense-oriented win over Louisville, was throttled in Cameron Indoor. To a 7-5 Duke team, by 26 points.
What is goin’ on here?
You tell me.
I haven’t the slightest.
* * * * *
What I do know is Louisville fans are going to have a much better sense of the Cardinals come sundown on Saturday.
The Red & Black Faithful are hoping for an uptick.
U of L is sitting 46th in the NET; 41st in Ken Pomeroy’s rankings.
Too danged bubblicious for this Cardinal fan.
So, are you ready for some Big Monday . . . uh . . . Matinee hoops.*
* I assume the women’s big battle with NC State at 7:00 on the Deuce determined the odd time of tipoff.
It’s a 2:00 o’clock tip for a rejiggered visit from the scary Ramblin’ Wreck.
Josh Pastner starts four seniors, one of which is 35 year old (at least) Jose Alvarado, who makes something like 60% of all his FGs, and almost half of all his triple shots, and gets to the rim as feistily as anybody in the crazy conference not named Carlik.
Asked to compare the two PGs, Chris Mack called Alvarado, “heavy metal”, and Jones, “jazz.”
Anyhow, it’s going to be a battle.
After beating Tech nine in a row, U of L fell in last season’s encounter in Hot ‘Lanta.
And, that’s only the beginning of treacherous road.
The Cards then get to trek to balmy Syracuse to play the Orange.
Boeheim’s teams are always a tough matchup because of that zone. Meaning the quick 48 hour turnaround for the youthful Cards will be especially detrimental.
And then, and then, and then . . . (Thanks that along came Jones) Louisville gets two whole days to breathe before heading to Charlottesville. Where Louisville has won only once. In 1990. Which means never in the ACC, never while Tony Bennett has been coaching.
The Cards only two Ws over the Cavaliers since they joined the ACC were the Mangok Mathiang stunner, and last season at the Yum!, when Louisville hit 9/22 treys, and 21/24 at the line.*
*Of Louisville’s 80 points in that win, only 9 were scored by players who shall participate Saturday.
Bottom Line: A daunting, telling six days ahead for the University of Louisville basketball team.
* * * * *
The answer to how the Cards will fare is blowin’ in with Sunday night’s storm.
Here’s what I believe.
Charles Minlend is ready to contribute. A good thing.
The former San Francisco Don gave mature, well considered responses during Saturday afternoon’s presser.
After mentioning it’s been one of the hardest years of his life, Minlend was asked when he’d know he’s back and ready?
“Motor. When I can get up and down the court.”
I just got a sense, he’ll be there this week.
The other really heartening development, one guy’s opinion, is Sam Williamson’s response to his relief role.
— c d kaplan