Or so we will say at about 10:30 tonight.
Greetings Cougar Nation and the new love of my life, Michele.
Unfortunately, I have NO TIME today for the in depth, non-analysis that I provide for you all on a routine basis.
That said, despite my earlier sentiment to the contrary, we're going to win tonight. The reasons, though short here, are pretty basic:
1) We bother people.
The thing that was talked about A LOT the last two years is how dog gone tough we are as a tournament team. The reason: the Pac defense is just a nightmare if you haven't seen it before. And, as we have seen, #1 seeds like Pittsburgh this year and UNC last year, have a difficult time figuring out how to score against us (you can add all of the non-conference yuck fests we've put on teams the last three years right here as well).
To be sure, St. Marys has the shooters to do a Vandy job on us and just light the place up tonight. But, as talented as they are in some respects, this SM team is just not as good as Vandy two years ago, Oregon of years past, or CAL this year. And as good as Patty Boy is, most point guards aren't as good when they can't get out in the open floor. And, unless we put up another UCLA brick job, we're going to frustrate the holy hell out of them tonight.
Remember in our losses this year, both Baylor, the Zags, as well as our Pac-10 foes had seen us and prepared for us before. Ditto LSU via Trent Johnson. And given how unseasoned we were early, remember we nearly even with Pitt with 5:00 left.
So keep in mind that not only have the Gaels not played us before, they've had a whopping TWO DAYS to prepare.
Its not enough time.
2) Let Down City
St Mary's is going to be mad. Real mad. But, have you ever tried to take your anger out on somebody you can't beat up or who doesn't play the anger game? IF you have, you know that trying to do so doesn't relieve anger or frustration, it builds it.
Unless we fall down 20-4 to start this game (which we won't), St. Mary's is going to get more and more frustrated as the game goes on. Dare I say "Bank on it."
3) Free Throw Shooting
Besides brother Klay who has done a bit of a clank job from the line lately, everyone else is shooting free throws well. Included in that mix is brother Casto who seems to have found his touch. We're going to lead late, so we're going to get fouled late. So, we're going to have to make our free throws. We will. And we'll win.
That's all I've got for now. Onward to South Carolina.
Cougs 61 St. Mary 52