Set Your Tivo: 02.13.10

Posted by THager on February 13th, 2010

***** – quit your job and divorce your wife if that’s what it takes to watch this game live
**** – best watched live, but if you must, tivo and watch it tonight as soon as you get home
*** – set your tivo but make sure you watch it later
** – set your tivo but we’ll forgive you if it stays in the queue until 2012
* – don’t waste bandwidth (yours or the tivo’s) of any kind on this game

Maryland @ # 7 Duke – 1 pm on CBS (*****)

The Terrapins have had extra time to prepare for what should be one of the best games of the year.  With the postponement of their game against Virginia due to snow, Maryland has not played in six days, which probably gave UM some much needed rest in the thick of conference play.  With a win in Cameron Indoor Stadium, Maryland will finally receive some respect.  Georgia Tech, who has more losses on the year and is eighth in the conference standings, is ranked #20, but the Terps (16-6 and second in the ACC) don’t even rank in the top 30 in the ESPN/ USA today poll.  This game will feature two of the most well-rounded teams in America, as both teams score over 80 points per game but neither gives up more than 65 points per contest on defense.  With top 25 rankings in both offensive and defensive efficiency, these squads both rank in Ken Pomeroy’s top 10.  No opponent has scored more than 75 points or shot over 40 % from the field in Maryland’s last seven games, while Duke has not given up 70 points on the other side since their loss to Georgetown two weeks ago.  Duke has struggled to put points on the board in their last two games, but when a team plays defense like they did against UNC (holding the Heels to 5-19 from beyond the arc) they are going to win most  games.  Maryland has not beaten Duke since 2007, and if they plan on having success at Cameron Indoor Stadium, they are going to have to guard the perimeter well enough to force Miles Plumlee and Brian Zoubek to beat them.   More often than not, Duke is going to have at least two of their three star players (Singler, Scheyer & Smith) shoot well, but if Maryland limits the offensive onslaught to just one player, they at least have a chance.

Rhode Island @ #21 Temple – 4 pm on Atlantic 10 Network (****)

Rhode Island could use a big win to solidify their tournament status, and Temple would also benefit largely from this game after showing some vulnerability in their last four games.  These teams are ranked among the top 25 in the RPI, but Temple ranks 43d in Ken Pomeroy’s rankings and Rhode Island is 68th.  Both teams are extremely unbalanced, as Temple has a suspect offense and Rhode Island has one of the worst defenses among tournament contenders (125th in defensive efficiency.)  It is doubtful that all six “good” teams from the Atlantic 10 will get in, and Temple (fourth in the conference) and Rhode Island (fifth) do not want to lose any standing with the selection committee if they lose this one.  In their last meeting, URI came back from eight points in the latter part of the second half to force overtime.  Despite 23 points from Delroy James, Rhode Island shot below 37 % for the game and lost.  Now in Philadelphia, the Rams will have to contain Lavoy Allen, who averages a double-double and was 8-12 in the last matchup.

Xavier @ Florida – 6 pm on ESPN (****)

Xavier is the co-leader of the Atlantic 10 right now, but can ill afford a second consecutive loss to another bubble team.  With a loss to South Carolina, Florida is also coming off of a loss.  Among most basketball experts, Xavier is the better team, but they will have to play this one in Gainesville, where they are just 3-5 on the road the year.  Florida has not had a quality win since their win over Michigan State back in November, mostly due to poor defense against teams like Syracuse, Vanderbilt, and Kentucky.  Xavier’s Jordan Crawford is averaging 24 points per contest in his last three games, and if the Gators want to have a chance, they are going to need to keep him to less than 15 points.  When Florida played A10 opponent Richmond at home in December, they only scored 21 points in the second half and shot 38 % from the field.  With four players who average in double figures, Florida should be able to top their 53-point effort against the Spiders.  The offensive woes have not been limited to their out-of-conference schedule, as they have not scored more than 71 points in any of their last four games, a stretch in which they are only 2-2.  Although Xavier is on the road, they are the better team and should be able to walk away with a win.

#12 Tennessee @ #2 Kentucky – 9 pm on ESPN (****)

A few weeks ago when people were down on Tennessee for a pair of losses and down on Kentucky for a bad road loss to South Carolina, both teams responded.  Kentucky has won their last four games, and Tennessee has won three consecutive games against Florida, LSU and South Carolina.  However, after a 19-point loss to Vanderbilt (their second loss to the ‘Dores this season), people are raising questions about Tennessee’s legitimacy.  They have played well on defense in each of their last nine wins, giving up less than 71 points in each of those games.  However, they gave up an average of 80.6 points in each loss, and could likely give up another 80 points against the Wildcats.  Kentucky averages 81.6 points per game, and has four players averaging at least 10 points per game.  John Wall, who is second in the nation in assists per game, is a great complement to DeMarcus Cousins, who shoots 55 % from the field and averages over 10 rebounds per game.  Thanks in large part to Cousins, UK also ranks among the nation’s best in blocks and rebounds per game.  Kentucky will play at Rupp Arena, where they are 16-0 on the year, while UT is 1-2 in their last three road games.  One of Tennessee’s main problems is lack of a go-to guy, as UT’s leading scorer Scottie Hopson only averages 13.1 points per game.  With the crowd behind them, look for Kentucky to continue their home winning streak in front of the ESPN Gameday crew.

THager (49 Posts)

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14 responses to “Set Your Tivo: 02.13.10”

  1. K Dawg says:

    KENTUCKY IS #2! NOT #24! WOW

  2. TH says:

    Hmm, Duke v. MD was 5-star? Might want to revamp that rating system…

  3. K Dawg says:

    I agree, TH. UT @ UK is a 4 star, which doesn’t make much sense to me, has huge implications on the SEC Eastern Division and its nearly a game with two Top 10 teams going at it with ESPN GameDay being at Rupp. Seems to me like that game would/should have more excitement and meaning than Duke/Maryland. ACC is horrible this year.

  4. rtmsf says:

    From a national perspective, Duke-Maryland holds more cachet than Kentucky-Tennessee. It’s easy to harp on it after the fact that the Duke-UMd game ended up being a dog, but there have been many, many classic battles over the last ten-fifteen years between the two teams, whereas we have trouble thinking of more than a handful between UK-UT that held as much importance. Tennessee has never made it past the Sweet Sixteen. Ever. How seriously can you take that program?

  5. K Dawg says:

    Hmmmm? That’s strange? Wonder why ESPN picked Kentucky/Tennessee as there primetime saturday night game during “Rivalry Week”? Hmmmm… yeah, you’re right. This game don’t mean nothin’! LMAO.

  6. K Dawg says:

    Oh, and from a National Perspective. The University of Kentucky is the most popular Program in the Nation.


  7. THager says:

    Last time I checked, four stars does not correlate to “This game don’t mean nothin” This is an important game, and four stars reflects that.

  8. rtmsf says:

    I’ll tell you why. Because ESPN is going to do Gameday at Duke later this season. March 6, look it up. They don’t do it twice at the same place in one season.

    They obviously wanted to have a game at Kentucky this year, and the UT game was the best option.

  9. rtmsf says:

    Not that it’s at all relevant to this discussion — again I was harping on TENNESSEE below, not Kentucky — but define the word “popular.” With your definition please explain how you intend to prove that. Thanks.

  10. TH says:

    THager is not me btw.

    No hate from me rtmsf, I love the site. But I think it would be wary to rely on “history” to project your rating system (or use it as a real strong guide anyway), this late in the season, and especially with regards to ACC ratings. Gary Williams MD is not anywhere near the MD is once was…I thought it was pretty clear from the get go this was going to be a blow out, and wasn’t surprised by the outcome.

    Also, its hard for me to not take Tennessee seriously with them being the one loss KU has taken, and UK being #2.

  11. jstevrtc says:

    If I’m not mistaken, this is the second time over two different threads that we’ve asked him to prove that, but no response has come.

    We’re not saying you’re wrong. We want to facilitate this discussion. But don’t just come with unsupported proclamations based on emotions and opinion. Come with some evidence. Lord knows there’s plenty out there. Who knows, you may convince us.

    I’d also like to add — as I mentioned in the other thread with which you had a problem, you seem to be finding anything you consider either negative or not positive enough about Kentucky basketball and harping on it, rather than cite and give credit for all of the positive things we’ve said as well…which, this season, WAY outnumber the negative. Any response to that at all? Or are you just the “Comic-Book Guy” of college basketball message boards?

    John Stevens

  12. rtmsf says:

    TH – I understand your point, but I think if you ask most college basketball fans which game they were more looking forward to today… they’d have chosen the Maryland-Duke game slightly ahead of UK-Tennessee. That’s my opinion, and I could very well be wrong. I don’t believe I am, but it wouldn’t be the first time.

    Check back in with me on Tennessee in March. We’ve been down this road with them countless times before. I’ll go on record as saying that Maryland will equal or surpass Tennessee’s NCAA performance regardless of where they are ranked right now. Again, not the first time if I’m wrong. But I’ll stand by it and take my meds if I am.

  13. K Dawg says:

    Sorry, I only check RTC once or twice a day. During a single UK Radio Broadcast, 75 Conutries from around the world listen in.

  14. rtmsf says:

    Well, I guess that settles it then!

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