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Friday, December 12, 2008

Post Xavier, Pre-Georgetown

It is amazing to me to see the reaction from so many Memphis fans even two weeks after the heartbreaking loss to Xavier. It has been like the Tigers really disappointed people with that loss. Certainly any loss is tough, but Xavier is pretty good and currently 10th in the country in the AP(6th in the RPI, 25th in Pomeroy). In a way that is part of the problem. Memphis just doesn't have a hard enough schedule this year, so losing ANY top 25 game is disappointment and potentially problematic.

If you think about two years ago, Memphis was in the exact same boat. One they lost a few games early - especially the Georgia Tech loss in Hawaii - and they lost several of their tougher games against highly rated teams (at Tennessee comes to mind).

Memphis does have a way to redeem themselves - win at Georgetown (19th AP, 23rd RPI, 3rd Pomeroy). Any win over that kind of program on the road will be huge and Memphis has three games of significance this year (@ G-Town, @ Tennessee and @ Gonzaga)

Of course, what is most disappointing about the Xavier game was HOW the Tigers lost - they didn't look very good offensively and the free throws at the end of the game were disasterous. Let's all hope that the last two weeks have been an opportunity to learn from their mistakes. We have heard how Tyreke Evans has spent hours working on his outside jump shot (if he has any hope of moving to the NBA in the next year, he better keep up the 500 jumpers a day routine). The Tigers have gotten some good news in Matt Simpkins being ok'd by the NCAA clearinghouse (wow, what speed). Hopefully, they have figured out that your offense can't ONLY rely on steals and fastbreaks. Hey on occasions you even have to set up a half court play.

Go Tigers !!

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