Thursday, March 1, 2007

Mission: Rautins

Well folks, Mission: Rautins Decision 2007 has reached a consensus on the status of the new name of "The Artist Formerly Known as 'Son of Leo.'" From a polling over on the RealCuseFans site... the new moniker shall be none other than "Homebrew Drew" (Courtesy to reafsnyder for the nick). This is the same group of hoodlums who have given Brennan-McBride the nickname "The Hyphen," which I consider an instant classic...

The kid is moving out of his Dad's shadow, and coming into his own, actually being recognized by other coaches as evidenced here by PC coach Tim Welsh:
"[Andy Rautins] is a terrific player. You know what he does very well, he's old-school, he understands how to move without the ball. He's not just a shooter who stands there and waits for the opportunity. He really moves and cuts without the ball ... We made him look like Tracy McGrady out there. He's a good player, obviously, I recruited him. I wanted him. He certainly didn't get Leo's genes on shooting the ball. He shoots the ball better than Leo ever did, that's for sure. " — Providence coach Tim Welsh told the Syracuse Post-Standard after Rautins' performance helped the Orangemen knock off Welsh's Friars.
Now, come Saturday, we've got a Tracy McGrady look alike of our own to defend against. Nova's Scottie Reynolds seems to be on an absolute tear since he was shut down at the Dome during their trip to the Great White North. We all know about the damage that Nardi and Sumpter can cause, but this freshman has been literally ungodly his last few contests. Since playing us he is scoring at a clip of 18.6ppg. In the last four games, he has ramped it up to 27ppg, in games at GTown (18pts), Marquette (25), Rutgers (25) and UConn (40).

On a good note, when the ball is in his hands, he is averaging 3TO's/contest. To me it seems like lately he either gives the ball to the opposition or puts it in the hoop. In my humble opinion, we need to throw a good dose of PH at him this Saturday and see what he can do against a truly lockdown defender. Being able to stop Reynolds is the key to victory. Nardi will shoot, Sumpter will play his game, but Reynolds is the X-Factor that we cannot allow to succeed if we look to win.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Update: Big East Roundup

Well, after the beauty that was last night, It seems we are mathematically still eligible for a bye in the BET. At the same time, this is banking on the fact that Cuse can take Nova on the road Saturday, and that Quincy Douby decides to find new eligibility and singlehandedly beat Notre Dame. The Irish seem a lock for the 4 spot if they can beat a Rutgers team that is only scoring 59.9ppg, and is 3-12 in conference and in 2nd to last place in the BE. The only thing the Scarlet Knights have going for them is they are playing in the RAC. All in all this doesn't look too promising for the Cuse, and they will most likely not get the bye.

The battle for fifth place is then where the Orange look to be heading. The only contenders at the moment seem to be SU, Marquette, and West Virginia. The Golden Eagles are 9-6 with a game against Pitt on Saturday. The Mountaineers are 8-6 with Pitt tonight and @ Cincinatti on Saturday:

5. Syracuse (10-5) @ Nova
6. Marquette (9-6) vs. Pitt
7. West Virginia (8-6) @ Pitt, vs. Cinci

If Cuse wins out, they own sole possession of 5th place in the conference. We own the tiebreaker with the head to head win at Marquette, so at worst we can finish in sixth with a loss at Nova. If WVU wins out against Pitt and Cinci they will also be at 10-6, and the tiebreaker would be more complicated.

Games against common opponents: WVU 6-6 (2 left), SU 10-4 (1 Left)
Head to Head against Georgetown WVU L, SU W
Head to Head against Pittsburgh WVU 0-1 1 Left, SU 0-1

If WVU loses to Pitt tonight, we can guarantee the 5th place lock, as seeding for a tiebreaker between teams that haven't met goes to a head to head comparison of concurrent opponents, starting from the top down until a distinct advantage is shown to one team. And if this fails and I am completely misunderstanding the tiebreaker it goes to a coinflip. I'm not kidding, its right in the PDF. As of right now it seems solid to say we are looking at a 5 seed in the Garden this year...

Guess Who's Dancing!!

March Madness here we come. The Orangemen have upset #10 Georgetown at the Carrier Dome last night, and are seemingly gelling at the right time to make some noise next month. As of right now, the Cuse is 21-8 (10-5) and got that quality win that they needed to push them over the bubble and into the dance. Following a gutsy performance from TRob, and some sharp shooting from Nichols, Devo and Rautins, not to mention the presence of Mookie to shut down the interior and get Hibbert in foul trouble early. I will have more as the day progresses, but as of now, I need to actually work...

As The Big East Turns

It seems that JanulisForThree over at Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician was privy to a private meeting of the Big East and is reporting back on it. Spearheaded by Otto the Orange, it seems that the mascots of the conference are calling for an intervention.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Bubble Boy...

No, I'm not talking about our beloved 'Cuse Hoopsters, I'm speaking of the Yankees' Carl Pavano. Pavano is arguably one of the most injury prone pitchers to ever grace an MLB mound for the Bronx Bombers. It seems now that he was on the track to health, he had to go and mess it up again, getting hit with a line drive off the foot while pitching BP, resulting in the need for an MRI. Due to the request of one of my good friends, I am putting the official petition for Pavano's name to be changed to bubble boy out there, or at least for the Yankees to invest in some sort of personal shield or net to be placed around him... and for him to use a screen in BP sessions, as apparently he doesn't believe in that.

Well, You can't discount the numbers....

It seems to be official boys and girls, Andy Rautins and "Do It All Paul" Harris (I think we need a nickname for Rautins besides "Leo's Kid" as he may be coming out of that shadow) have shown up with a vengeance. Both Rautins and PH played well in extended minutes against Providence on Saturday, Rautins being the official star of the game with a career game (19pts, 7-12 (5-9 from 3), 4ast, 4steals). Harris only had 6pts, but 9 boards, and 6 assists, along with looking solid with the ball and making good decisions throughout the game.

On top of all of this, DNic seems to still be running at his PoY nomination with an 18pt, 6rbd effort, along with one of the nicest looking clutch shots we've seen this side of the McNamara era with his fadeaway three (seen in the video) in the final minute to help seal the deal. It seems his competition is mostly from Pitt's Aaron Gray and G-Town's Jeff Green.

On another solid note, this win should look good on the tourney resume, though a win on Big Monday against a Georgetown team that has been on a roll lately (read 11 straight and 1st place in the BE) would likely push us over the bubble from the NIT to the Big Dance. Pitt on Saturday showed us that GTown can be out-quicked with their big men in the game, and the way our lineup of Devo, Rautins, Nichols, Harris and Mookie could be able to do that. Add to that the fact that Josh Wright has been sick as of late, and Roberts is having major problems with his knee, which will require surgery in the offseason, and this quick lineup may be our best bet. It puts three shooters on the floor, along with two slashers who can dish to an open man. My concern is that with Roberts not at 100% Mookie will need a spell more often, especially against the large obstacle that is Roy Hibbert.

Supporting evidence from the Pitt/Georgetown game to help our case:
Georgetown shot .200 from behind the arc
Pitt played them tight with limited action from Gray (ankle)