Big East Game 1: Louisville 80 – Providence 62

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, Friar fans across the world!  I am pleased to announce that the start of Big East basketball play brings about one of the greatest occurrences of every year…Mattyoshow is back writing about PC basketball once again.  I am on a brief hiatus from becoming a doctor, so what better place to focus my energy than on coach Cooley his Friars.  I want to take this opportunity to express my sadness when I recently read that friarblog.com is going on an indefinite hiatus.  Yes, they are a “rival” blog, but those guys are truly dedicated to PC basketball and I both respect and appreciate that.  I use friarblog.com to gather nearly all of my Friar news, and am sad to see them not being able to keep the posts coming now that the start of Big East play is upon us.  With that being said, we at NTCF will do our best to pick up where friarblog.com left off and keep the PC Friars posts coming.  This season, I plan on recapping every Big East game, and then following them team through any post-season play that they participate in.  If any news comes about throughout the season, I will try and post regarding that as well.  Let’s do it.

-The Friars got off to a decent start to the 2012-2013 season.  They suffered a couple of tough losses to start the season, but then got hot through late November and early December.  The Friars stumbled as of late, losing their last two games before the start of Big East play.  To be completely honest, I am neither surprised or disappointed with the losses.  The Friars were looking to integrate 3 players into their rotation, and a drop off in production and continuity had to be expected.  With that being said, their play should only improve from here.  There are no longer excuses to be made.

-Here’s my quick and dirty breakdown of the Louisville loss: sloppy, undisciplined basketball = loss against a better team.

-Vincent Council isn’t yet 100%.  Council is know for being the fastest guy on the court, beating his defender off of the dribble, and making the right decision nearly every time.  On Wednesday against Louisville, Council looked slow and lacked feel for the game.  He never looked to be in rhythm with his teammates.  I know Council needs to shake off come rust, but he better get it going sooner rather than later.

-LaDontae Henton isn’t the same player that he was last year.  He has become completely relient on the three ball.  Every time he drives to the lane it feels like he gets rejected.  He is displaying no post-game or mid-range jumper.  What was most frustrating was his inability to throw an inbound pass.  I mean are you kidding me?  I know Louisville presses all the time, but not being able to get the ball inbounds is simply unacceptable.

-From my understanding, the return of Kris Dunn and Vincent Council meant that Bryce Cotton didn’t have to handle the ball anymore?  Was it just me or did it seem that every time Cotton handled the ball against the Cards, he turned it over?  Bryce, get to the three point line and wait for a pass!

-Where was Kris Dunn in the first 12 minutes of the 2nd half when the Friars couldn’t get anything done on offense?  Council and Cotton were having a tough time breaking the press, and I have to believe Dunn could have helped there.  Maybe Cooley was mad that Dunn was lacking decisiveness on offense in the first half.  But, the kid is playing his 4th game and has only had 8 practices on the college level.  Ed Cooley said it himself, he needs to live with freshman mistakes in order to have Dunn gain experience.

-Speaking on no-shows, where was Sidiki Johnson?  The Friars were getting smoked on the boards in the second half, and Johnson only logged 4 minutes?  I know he isn’t refined, but is Kofane a better option?

-Kadeem Batts was the lone bright spot for the Friars.  He displayed some nice low post moves against Louisville’s big-man Dieng. Kadeem was aggressive in the post when the rest of the team lacked aggression  all game.  I am really hoping Kadeem continues to display this level of assertiveness throughout the season.

-NEXT GAME: Saturday, January 5th vs. Depaul, 8pm

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