Sunday, February 06, 2005

Remember how I said that Syracuse game wasn’t that important in the long run, since we weren’t expected to win and coming out of the four game stretch against UConn, Pitt, BC and Cuse at 2-2 wouldn’t be that bad?

Well games get a lot more important when you’re up 11 with five minutes to go, on the road in front of a record-setting crowd and nearing a marquee victory over a top ten team.

But then the two things that have been great all year – free-throw shooting and our guards ability to handle pressure – collapsed as Jim Boheim took his team out of the zone and forced our hand. Our defense suddenly couldn’t get a body on Hakim Warrick, probably because Ric Cornett wasn’t in there after a marvelous first half, and our offense decided that we would stop attacking, even though Dennis Lattimore and Torin Francis were knocking down shots and dominating the Syracuse interior people.

We’ll just forget the fact that a senior point guard couldn’t find a way to draw the fifth foul on Gerry McNamara, or that Mike Brey stopped play Cornett, or that Thomas, Chris Quinn and Colin Falls decided to pass the ball back and forth for the first 30 seconds of the shot clock and then chuck up a bad shot, or no shot at all in some instances, after they’d throw it inside with a second and a half left and leave Lattimore or Francis to fend for themselves.

I don’t know what Mike Brey is doing on that bench sometimes. I’m not sure if he’s letting the game in his senior point guard’s hands, at which point someone needs to smack Thomas around, because the way we just hung out the last five minutes on offense was terrible, or else he’s telling them to pound the air out of the ball, at which point he needs smacked around. That still doesn’t help me to understand that in a game where Jordan Cornette was in foul trouble the entire game and Ric Cornett was playing masterfully that Cornett doesn’t see the floor for the majority of, if at all, the second half.

But just like the UConn win made that Villanova loss feel better and saved Chris Thomas from being shoved off the curb, the undefeated Boston College Golden Eagles come to town Tuesday night, and just like UConn, their strength lies on the interior. If the gang up front can keep Craig Smith and Jared Dudley from running away with it, then Thomas, Quinn and Falls better take that opportunity to step up, knock down some shots and make everyone on Chestnut Hill shed a tear.

How did we lose that game so badly? Sigh…


I got to see Ray and Maria Full of Grace this weekend, and they were both really good movies. The SUB played a screwed-up, extended edition of Ray, but it was still good, but Jamie Foxx was absolutely amazing. I don’t think anyone save Mr. Ray Charles Robinson himself could have done it any better, after the SAG award last night, I feel very comfortable moving Foxx ahead of Eastwood in the Best Actor rankings. I still have to see Don Cheadle (who Meg claims was amazing), the always-awesome Johnny Depp and Leo in action, but they’ll have to put in one helluva showing to beat out Foxx as highly rated on my list as he is.

As far as Ray the movie winning Best Picture, I can’t see it stacking up against either Million Dollar Baby or Sideways. I thought it was really good, even with Christina covering her mouth, completely aghast, anytime the belt and needle were brought for heroine scenes, and Katie staring daggers at me every time the married Ray Charles would begin hitting on another woman (as if noble me somehow represented the ills of men), but Sideways got a nice boost last night from winning the oddly named Screen Actor’s Guild Best Cast award, which translates to Best Picture, apparently.

So as of right now, with about a half dozen films left to see, these are my predictions:

Best Supporting Actress:
I Want: Virginia Madsen for Sideways
Who Will Win: Cate Blanchett for The Aviator, or Madsen.

Best Supporting Actor:
I Want: Morgan Freeman for Million Dollar Baby
Who Will Win: Freeman

Best Actress:
I Really Want: Kate Winslet for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
I’d Be Happy With: Catalina Sandino Moreno for Maria Full of Grace
Who Will Win: Hilary Swank for Baby

Best Actor:
I Want: I’d really be happy with either Foxx, Depp or Cheadle winning, although I think Foxx deserves it.
Who Will Win: Foxx for being so damn awesome in Ray

Best Picture:
I Want: Sideways
Who Will Win: Totally up in the air right now, though I’d say it’s between Sideways and Baby, although the Academy loves them epics, like Aviator


It’s good to know one weekend of my summer is already planned, as reservations have been made for me to spend the weekend of August 6th and 7th in beautiful Canton, Ohio, home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and site of the induction of one Dan Marino, my childhood hero and the best damn quarterback of them all. Come close to Canton time, we’ll look at how John Elway would be mentioned in the same breath as Marino if it wasn’t for the fact Terrell Davis, Rod Smith, Easy Ed McCaffrey, Shannon Sharpe, Jason Elam and the Orange Crush defense weren’t dropped into his lap during the twilight of his career.

Here’s one article on Number 13’s induction, in case you're interested. Between the potential trip to Cape Cod to visit Brendan, a Texas swing to catch up with my cousins and Ellen, the inevitable trip to see Norah and now my Canton weekend, this summer is looking fantastic already.


Never has there been a time that I hope Dill is right than tonight, when we travel to Danny Klee’s house to watch Super Bowl XXXIX. You see, Dill predicted a dramatic, 23-21 Patriots win, while I predicted blowout city. I really would like to see a close, exciting game – even if it’s just to spite all the Steeler fans who aren’t watching because their team choked at home again – and also because it’s always a downer on the season, no matter how good it is, if the Super Bowl ends up sourly. People forget the 2002 season, which had the emergence of Vick, Pennington and Tommy Gun’s one-year cameo as an NFL starting quarterback, only because the Super Bowl was probably the worst ever as the Bucs trounced the Raiders.

So whether I’m right or wrong tonight, I’ll be happy. So here’s to a close game, the commercials being good and maybe another breast popping out here or there.

In case you forgot how last year's game went, here's what I wrote after the Patriots bested the Panthers 32-29.

Next time… Super Bowl reaction and I promise an OC letter soon.

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