TWO DUKIES PICK THE ACC
Volume XI, Episode 6
November 25, 2007
EASTERN KENTUCKY (2-2, 0-0 Ohio Valley) @ # 13 DUKE (5-0, 0-0)
Duke’s win over Marquette was incredibly impressive. After slicing through the Duke defense at will last season, Dom James shot 4-16, and canned no buckets after intermission. Paulus wasn’t really guarding James - - he covered that Dave Cubillan clown instead and did an excellent job of shutting his showboating ass down. DeMarcus covered up DJ down the stretch, when the Blue Devils weren’t zoning, that is. Everyone else was excellent defensively, and the rebounding was top-flight. Tom Crean just kept pounding the Red Bull on the sidelines, and never seemed to make any real adjustments to how the game was being called by Pants-Popper, Eddie Hightower, and some third weak sister. McNeal and Matthews were completely lost, and no one on the Golden Eagles nés Warriors had any clue how to contain Singler, or, for that matter, Lance Thomas (who enjoyed his best game in a Duke uniform). Gerald struggled, but DeMarcus seemed at times like the best player on the court.
Strangely, but hardly surprisingly, K is back to his old tricks just five games into the season, yanking Taylor King off the floor after roughly 20 seconds and one goofy turnover and never using him again, playing Zoubek a mere six minutes despite his excellent showing, once again burying Marty (sigh), and just generally ignoring that whole “we’re going to use 11 guys” rhetoric that was in use in the halcyon era of ten days ago. That was all to deke out NCCU? It’s hard to argue with a victory over a team like Marquette, which, in a guard-heavy epoch, is a potential Final Four club, but I really wish K would quit f**ing around with this tired old nonsense. Both teams were dragging noticeably down the stretch, and, well, did Duke really have to be? However, this team can execute in frontcourt sets, it can hold on to the rock, and it doesn’t have McRoberts, so we won. This season is really getting everyone’s hopes up, especially when you see how bad other teams have been, particularly in the ACC, where Garyland is a joke and the Tools couldn’t defend a blind man indicted as a peeping tom. STRONG showing against scaaaary ODU and BYU, Horseface! So replacing Wright and Terry with no one actually . . . makes the team worse? I think I get it now. In any case, good to see Central Casting serial killer typecastee Robert John Frasor and the inimitable QT, who shattered the backboard with some ridiculous shot before Roy and staff tackled him and removed him from the court. #1? Heh.
Last season, the Tools opened up their ill-fated run to the NCAA title with a boring win over Eastern Kentucky, which seems like as good a reason as any to welcome the Colonels to Duke’s schedule, as the teams meet for the first time Sunday. What’s EKY’s story? Don’t try to find out by checking your copy of The Sporting News’ preview rag - - by the way, I found out that all the good info went over to Lindy’s, in pretty much the same format TSN used to have, and for every team. As a bonus, you don’t get microscopic player bios you don’t need, but you do learn salient facts at the team level. Thanks, Lindy’s.
Kentucky. What do we know about this place? Well, until recently, Kentuckians had quite the representation in the statehouse in Frankfort and in Congress - - corrupt scumbag Ernie Fletcher, the insane, doddering Jim Bunning, and deformed Cabbage Patch Kid Mitch McConnell. Sadly, Fletcher has been voted out of office, and right-wing hatchetman McConnell may soon follow. Bunning doesn’t even know where he is. Whoops, sorry; Eastern Kentucky - - formerly known as Eastern Kentucky State Normal School, presumably to differentiate its attendees from the inbred mutants matriculating in Lexington - - is in Richmond, Kentucky, which is named for Richmond, Virginia. Um, cool! Richmond (KY), according to its various websites, boasts an attraction called the Jolly Time Arcade. Oh, I’ll bet it does, but you have to bring your opposite-sex first or second cousin to get in.
Whiny former Mildcat point guard Travis Ford, now at UMass, recruited some of the current players during his tenure as the Colonels’ head coach from 2000 to 2005, but the current signal-caller is erstwhile LaSalle cager Jeff Neubauer, a fairly young head coach at 36. The Colonels are a small team, but they led the OVC in shooting percentage from the floor last season, so they’re to be taken seriously despite their less-than-robust 60 ppg this season. Or maybe not - - that 41.7/69.2/31.8 shooting line is pretty suspect, as is the 12.3/12.8 A/TO ratio. There’s one guy on the roster taller than 6-8, and with that, I think it’s time to end this preview.
Duke wins easily and maybe some of those “practice guys” get to play in some real live game action. For Duke.
Duke 91, Eastern Kentucky 60.
Duke 89, Eastern Kentucky 65.