Posts Tagged ‘Duke’

Heartbreak! Butler Hits the Wall, Scheyer, Singler and Smith Deliver for Coach K

In march madness on April 5, 2010 at 8:26 pm

A great final.

Duke 61, Butler 59

Butler did everything they had to do to win this one – kept it close, got Duke’s big man Brian Zoubek in foul trouble, played ferocious D, forced Duke to turn to only their stars for points – and the Bulldogs even got the ball into their own star’s hands, the Horizon Conference POY’s hands, with 13 seconds left.

Gordon Heyward, after his signature behind the back dribble, was pushed outside. He tried then to go baseline and hit the game-winner, but his high-arcing shot rimmed out.

Heyward was going for it all the way, and it looks like even the Duke players knew it – Zoubek drifted to the baseline to double-team leaving Matt Howard open under the basket, with 3 seconds on the clock.

Had Heyward dumped it, would they have had the lead? We were screaming at him to pass it. (sigh).

Instead of course, Duke rebounds Heyward’s miss. Butler fouls. A made FT makes it a 2pt. game. And a missed one left Heyward with the chance only to make a desperation heave – a shot which tantalizingly hit the backboard square and then the front rim hard …

and with a CLANG! Butler’s storybook season came to an end.

YH does feel the zebras favored Duke, and particularly Scheyer, on exactly three calls: Scheyer got continuation at the 7 minute mark on a foul that’s clearly on the floor; the charge called on Hayward when Scheyer was definitely moving (noted by broadcaster Clark Kellog) took away a 3 point play and gave Duke the ball; and Scheyer got away with offensive goaltending on the putback they praised.

But the Blue Devils weren’t lucky in this one, they were good.

Brilliant tactical move by Coach K at the end of the game to switch D’s on the inbound pass, forcing Butler to burn their final timeout, unable to get the ball in bounds. Not only did it defuse Butler’s offense striving for the winning bucket, but without that timeout, Butler had no play after Duke’s made FT at the end of the game. That was a crucial switch up at a critical moment that paid off huge for Coach K – master of endgame and inbound. (By contrast, Scheyer and Singler punked the Butler D twice on inbounds plays for easy twos).

Butler couldn’t get Matt Howard started which was critical because he was getting open looks. The Bulldogs struggled to hold onto the ball in the second half, and too often got jammed up by the 7’1″ Zoubek and Singler in the paint.

The Devils – and particularly Singler – matched the defensive effort of the Bulldogs with blocks and steals aplenty, and they won this scrap by making shots that Butler missed. The Blue Devils kept their cool.

Congratulations to the Duke Blue Devils, NCAA March Madness 2010 Champions.

and to the runner-up Butler Bulldogs – for the last several weeks you were America’s team. We fell in love with you and admired every minute of tough team defense. Thank you so very much for an amazing, valiant, impressive effort to win it all against the odds.

Brad Stevens, YOU ARE THE MAN!

[By the way, Stevens’ substitutions down the stretch were stunning – repeatedly, on a play-by-play basis, bringing Jukes in on offense and Howard back for D resulted in a four point turnaround at one stage – tactically brilliant].

YH thanks all you college hoops fans for joining us –

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Butler versus Duke in the Final: We said it back in February, Butler’s Better Than Duke

In march madness on April 4, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Yesterday’s Hoops is so lucky that the first year we exist, the March Madness was filled with great play, upsets, drama and fun times – a great year, thanks for joining us.

And hey, do go back and look at our entries since February 10, when we launched, up to now. It has been a real ball and we’ve been right on point. We really hope you will subscribe based on our quality and join us for coverage of the NBA Playoffs.

That said, in terms of college ball, after a year of amazing play and upsets galore, it comes down to a Butler team that deserves it and a Duke team that doesn’t.

Butler 52, Michigan State 50

Butler continued to play team defense and score by moving the ball inside and out. Perimeter D was again awesome and focused defense on Durrell Summers, who was held to14 points.

“A lot of people want to shoot the last shot in the big game,” Butler G Ronald Nored said. “We want to guard the last shot.”

sick. And again, we believe Butler is better than Duke and said it weeks ago.

Yesterday’s Hoops, February 21, 2010

When YH said it, back on February 21st, everybody made fun of us – not laughing so much now, are ya?

Duke 78, WVU 57

A lot of people believe that half the Final was decided on  selection day.  And everybody who knows March Madness knows it. It’s funny to read and watch the rationalizers and TV hosts – yeah, like Krzyzewski needs sympathy – ha!

The haters leaned on Duke so hard today – primarily for the primrose path they had to get to the Final – that finally even Coach K had to acknowledge the din: “If we’re going to be despised or hated by anybody because we go to school and we want to win, you know what, that’s your problem.”

But then, in a typical move of cover-my-ass that is why so many hate Duke’s Head Man, Coach K also said today, “If Butler wins, it would be a huge exclamation point on parity.”

Hey, Coach K?

YH hopes Brad Stevens and the Butler Bulldogs beat you hollow.

And that the NCAA Tourney expands to 96 teams so we don’t have to keep seeing you at this time of year.

Coach Krzyzewski Does It Again And Is Immediately Favored

In march madness on March 29, 2010 at 4:50 pm

Duke 78, Baylor 71

The Blue Devils needed help from the refs to close this one out, but Coach K remains a formidable March Master.

Duke’s much maligned big men have grown enormously in heart. They exhibit markedly increased effort in the tournament.

What’s scary is the Blue Devils are winning despite a tourney-long shooting slump by Jon Scheyer, who was 5 for 12 in this one, including a late 3 which Dookies are calling clutch, but which could also arguably be called “in garbage time” since it followed the advantage of the 2-shot personal tech …

and he was 5 of 5 from the line.

Just tuning his slumping shooting arm with those FTs, was Scheyer. Will he go off against the Mountaineers? All signs say yes.

Duke looks better than they have looked all year. Huggie Bear has his work cut out for him.

And finally, six weeks ago we wrote:

Butler is Better Than Duke

– Yesterday’s Hoops, February 21, 2010

YH published it and then floated it on comment pages and by chatting on numerous chatboards, starting back on February 21st -and everybody made fun of us.

Now that our bracket is totally shot, one bright spot for YH fans is that the two teams could meet in Indianapolis – on Butler’s home turf – to prove it!

March Madness 2010 has to be one of the Top Five in NCAA Tournament History, not for Fantastic Finishes, but for great fundamental basketball and excellent defense.

Los Lobos On The Move; General Grievis Earns ACC POY; Kansas Destroys K-State; Xavier, Wisco, Purdue and Kentucky Roll

In march madness on March 3, 2010 at 8:48 pm

The Lobos of the University of New Mexico have dominated the Mountain West Conference and, under Head Coach Steve Alford – the Hoosier who hit the winner for Bobby Knight in ’86 – UNM looks prepared to make at least one upset in the NCAA tourney.

They finish tight games well and Alford has the tenacity as a coach that he had as a player. It probably doesn’t hurt that he gets regular advice from Coach Knight.

UNM 73, TCU 66

With tonight’s victory, the Lobos matched a school record for most wins in a season, 28-5.

The Lobos were led, as they are most nights, by versatile small forward Darington Hobson, who had 20 points, 14 boards and 7 assists.

There’s a nice interview with Alford at Rivals – click  here.

Maryland 79, Duke 72

They will call it an upset, but anyone who has been watching Grievis Vasquez lately knows this was something of a grudge match – Vasquez wants to be called Player of the Year in the ACC.

He scored a career-high 41 in his last game, but used a variety of tools to dismantle the Dukies.

With 20pts – including 6 for 6 from the line – 4 boards, 5 assists, a block and a steal, General Grievis was everywhere.

Tonight, Vasquez earned ACC POY honors over Duke’s Scheyer, Singler or Smith.

Kansas 82, Kansas State 65

Kansas got back to form on D and poured the points in on offense to protect their homecourt winnings streak, cover a 9 and a half point spread, and secure the #1 seed against the upstart Kansas State ballers led by fiery Coach Frank Martin.

Even in a rematch at Tourney time, YH still likes KU to win it all.

Purdue 74, Indiana 55

Purdue hanging tough despite the loss of F Robbie Hummel, but the Hoosiers are weak competition compared to Michigan State who held Purdue in the previous game to their lowest point total of the year.

Hummel was the 2nd leading scorer for the Boilermen – his loss is serious and against quality teams damning.

Kentucky 80, Georgia 68

After the dismantling by the Vols, UK looks back on track.

Wisconsin 67, Iowa 40

The blowout isn’t the story, it’s Wisco defense starting to get tuned in.

Xavier 82, Fordham 56

Now that’s a blowout!

Notre Dame 58, U Conn 50

In a Battle on the Bubble, Dame managed without Harangody to get by U Conn. So could the Huskies be out of the NCAA Tournament?

Is Jim Calhoun, like Roy Williams, out of the tourney just one year after being in the National Championship game? wow. parity.

Pitt Steals ‘Nova Thunder; Ohio State Impresses; Kansas, Purdue, Cats and Devils Roll

In march madness on February 21, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Congratulations to General Grievas, our ACC Player of the Year, the first player in ACC history with more than 2,000 points, 700 assists and 600 rebounds.

Great weekend of ball!

Ohio State 74, Michigan State 67

Ohio State University gets the BIG ups from Yesterday’s Hoops, after a locked-in, very impressive victory over Michigan State.

Izzo is no joke, and Lucas is back – MSU’s program jammers – all you K-State roosters better mind the Spartans.

That said, Ohio State plays great team defense – they collapse lanes, force steals, turn on the break.

They are disciplined in the half-court set, patient with the ball. Fundamentally sound and the only team in the Big Ten that I’m confident is big enough to hang with the monsters of the Big East or Cole Aldrich and KU.

Not to mention ET.  All right already, Evan Turner’s the Men’s POY.

I am leaning toward Ohio State as FF candidate, the sole representative of the Big Ten. (Boilermen, I love your game, and YH really does hope you earn your way out of the Elite Eight)

Pitt 70, Villanova 65

Pitt won this on crisp, excellent free throw shooting, good defense and an unusual, turnover heavy performance by ‘Nova, who in any case didn’t need the win like the Panthers did … at home.

Pitt killed YH last year, and once burned, we are wary.

Meanwhile, ‘Nova stays in our FF, we LOVE Scottie Reynolds. draws the 3pt. foul and makes all three in the waning seconds of a tight loss. There’s no die in this kid.

Syracuse/Boeheim, KU/Self look unperturbed right now. They’re the ones who look focused and actually comfortable working to beat … everybody. ‘Cuse and Kansas just looks scary likely.

A lot of nervous coaches this year.

Coach K, I hate to say it, but everybody knows you can’t ride those three guys – no matter how good they are – very far in the tourney.

Duke 67, Virginia Tech 55

I said Duke by 9 and the spread was 12 and a half. It was by nine until a three seconds left in garbage time and that meaningless 3 – that still didn’t cover, Dukies? Sorry Blue Devils, I don’t believe it – and you know what?

YH says it, right now: Butler is better than Duke.

Wisco overrated, too.