It’s “Slow Your Roll” Monday on the MobTown Sports Beat, and we’re handing out speed warnings to those who may feel compelled based on recent successes or failures to get ahead of their proverbial selves. Here’s a look at who needs to “Slow Down” as we begin another week.
Slow your roll Coach K and the Duke Blue Devils, as your season is now next season as this season has reached its unceremonious end. Duke fell to Lehigh on Friday, which wasn’t “Two’s day”, by a 75-70 score and in handing it to them, the Mountain Hawks not only gave Duke a head start on their off-season plans, but they also did their patriotic duty by freeing up Coach K to concentrate more fully on his Team USA squad and Olympic preparation. It seems that the star treatment that Duke often gets in ACC play did them no favors in the tourney and outside the scope of ACC officials. It turns out that the contact that Duke players have been getting away with all season on screen hedges actually is a foul as some ACC fans have maintained and those calls, along with the foul trouble that accompanied them for Duke’s bigs, put the Devils in a hole they couldn’t escape from. Their inability to manufacture open looks in the half court without the help of Austin Rivers who too often seems only interested in creating for himself came to roost and Duke paid the price against a 15th seed. Duke will bounce back, they always do, but for now it gives me great pleasure to advise Coach K and his Dukees to slow their roll and enjoy what remains of the tourney like the rest of us…from the couch.
Mountain West Conference
Slow down Mountain West (or those like myself prematurely claiming it as an awakening hoops giant). Wichita State and UNLV not only failed to win a single game in this year’s tourney, but both bowed out to double digit seeds in Thursday’s only upsets. San Diego State followed suit on Friday with only New Mexico picking up a single win before bowing out in the round of 32 to Louisville, thus ending MWC inclusion from the big dance. In fact all schools west of the central time zone have been sent packing at this early stage in the game. We already knew of the PAC-12’s issues and weren’t altogether sold on the WCC, but in you Mountain West…we believed and you failed us. Next time someone points west and specifically to the Mountain West Conference touting hoops hype, don’t believe the hype and tell them to slow down.