Friday, March 28, 2014

Way Too Early Reactions

I was wrong, dead wrong about Iowa State cruising to a victory.  I felt like Napier could play that good but didn't expect two others to hit jumpers like that too.  The Cyclones got straight up beat in the first half.  Every jumper fell for UCONN and every close look rimmed out for ISU.  Or so it seemed.  They were on a different level.

I thought ISU would come out different in the second half, and to an extent, they did.  The action made more open looks to the basket.  Dustin Hogue took beast mode to a whole 'nother level with 34 points total.  But UCONN switched their game up too.  Instead of settling for the long jumpers, they got the ball into the paint and scored some easy buckets.

Here's where I'm disappointed.  Kane guarded Napier for much of the first half.  Napier had whatever he wanted.  Morris guarded Napier most of the second half, and I don't remember Napier getting much of anything.  In fact, I think Morris won more than he gave up.  So why so long to make the switch?

In the second half, UCONN moved away from the jumper and started attacking the rim.  ISU has no rim protectors and UCONN kept making bucket after bucket low.  Why wasn't Edozie in late to at least force fouls?  I get they wanted offense but Thomas attempted one three point field goal.

As much as it pains me to say this, I think Coach Hoiberg got outcoached.  UCONN's offense in the first half torched the defense with the jumper.  And in the second half, ISU got worked down low.  I thought I'd be the last to say this but Coach Ollie made the adjustments and Hoiberg didn't  That's probably an unpopular opinion but one that I'll stick by.

Fully loaded (with Georges) I think ISU rolls UCONN.  There were obvious stretches in the first half where the Cyclones offense was stagnant and I think Niang would have pushed through that.  His high post looks and moves would have created trouble for the UCONN bigs.  But it wasn't to be.

The Iowa State Cyclones got beat tonight by a better team.  No ref shenanigans.  No questionable clock calls.  They just got beat.  But a better Cyclone team will emerge next year.  And I can't wait.  

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