Slapdash January 15, 2013
When you don’t know what to write about, just start writing.
Eight Is Enough
I’ve gone over it and over it and over it, and I think I’m pretty certain that it’s possible there’s a chance that 22-12 (8-10) gets us in the tournament. That’s 13-1 non-conference, 8-10 conference, and then a loss in the first round of the BTT.
It’s rare for a team with a losing record in their conference to get in, but with the B1G #1 in the RPI, and with our non-con wins over likely protected seeds Gonzaga and Butler, 22-12 is enough.
Maybe even more than enough. With those wins, I could see some crazy scenario where we finish 7-11 in the conference but then win two BTT games and squeak into the tourney at 23-13. Is seven enough?
Man, 7-11 has to be a tough committee sell. Eight is probably enough, though. But just to be safe, let’s get to nine. Ohio State, Northwestern, at Nebraska, Wisconsin, Purdue, at Northwestern, Penn State, Nebraska, at Iowa.
And then stun Indiana in Champaign to get to ten.
The January Ten
If you’ve been around ALE for long, you know that the football signing day post is the most epic post of the year. I think I spent 24 hours on the post last year. The very first post here was Signing Day 2009 (Terry Hawthorne! Justin Green!), so I like to celebrate the first Wednesday in February as a little birthday party for ALionEye.
Because of that, I’ve decided to hold off on previews of the ten players who started class yesterday until Signing Day. I considered a pre-signing day post – I even typed up the intro, comparing the early enrollees to St. Nicholas Eve with Signing Day being Christmas – but I thought better of it and decided to hold off until February 6th.
What’s St. Nicholas Eve? Well, for some reason, at my house, we always got one present on December 6th. My sister and I would put our shoes on the back porch on the evening of December fifth (what?) and then race down the stairs in the morning to see what St. Nicholas put in our shoes. I always got an orange in one shoe and then some gift in the other shoe. In fact, one year, I believe St. Nicholas put shoes in my shoes. That was an Ed Hightower looking at himself in the monitor moment if I’ve ever seen one.
ANYWAY, even though I’m not putting together the preview just yet, I still want to touch on the ten guys who started class yesterday. By far, my favorite recruit of those ten is DB/WR Darius Mosely from O’Fallon, Illinois. Hmmm… that’s where my sister lives now. WAIT, didn’t Mosely visit Illinois for his official visit on DECEMBER SIXTH?? Is the universe trying to tell me that Darius Mosely is my St. Nicholas Eve present for 2012???
FOCUS. Mosely is an athletic two-way player who I want to be Brandon Lloyd II – arrive as a defensive back, catch a few passes in August and never leave the WR position.
Man, if I keep this up I’m going to use up all of my good stuff for the epic signing day post. Here, I’ll just say this. Juco safeties Eric Finney and Zane Petty probably start (Finney at star LB). Juco OT Dallas Hinkhouse has a chance to start as well. Mosely and fellow DB recruit Dillan Cazley will both get a head start on the competition for the wide open secondary by going through spring ball. Decent chance one of them finds the starting lineup as a true freshman. The OL I’m most excited about is Christian DiLauro. He was a high school tight end that we’re moving to offensive tackle. I’ve been waiting years and years for us to find athletic high school tight ends that we can bulk up and move to tackle.
OK, that’s all for now. Epic post in t-minus 21 days.
Three Star Surprise
I’ve probably written about this before, but we are so due for a three-star basketball recruit that plays well above his ranking. A Jordan Taylor. A Victor Oladipo. Heck, even Trey Burke was outside the top-100 before arriving at Michigan and becoming (maybe) the best player in the Big Ten.
We had Cory Bradford – he was an off-the-radar recruit from Memphis who came here, sat out a year for academics, and the proceeded to become Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Since then, I’d say only Mike Davis qualifies as “three star kid who far outplayed his ranking”. Davis was so far off the radar that he signed in August and started school three weeks later. And then he climbed to, what, second team All Big Ten?
We need another one. In fact, we need a Kendall Gill. Gill wasn’t the highest ranked recruit – there wasn’t an RSCI back then, but if there was, he wouldn’t have been on it. Gill was more Trey Burke-like. From “don’t expect much” to “we’re expecting a Final Four” in a flash.
Look at Andre Hollins at Minnesota. Hollins was a 3-star recruit who decided between Minnesota, Mississippi, Stanford, and Auburn. He picks Minnesota… and is now one of the top guards in the Big Ten (as a sophomore). When do we get a kid like that?
Give me a Will Sheehey. I’ll take one Aaron Craft, please. Just find me a three-star kid (is it you, Jaylon Tate?) who goes from three-star recruit to “wow, what a vital part of this team”.
Wait, I’m calling it now. Maverick Morgan is our very own Jack Cooley. 10.1 rebounds per game as a true freshman. Maverick, call the ball.
Maverick has the ball.