Duke Game Revisited
I hadn't planned to write on the Duke game, but there are a couple of things I want to get off my chest so here goes.
My negative feelings towards Coach K continue. While he didn't misbehave as badly in our game as he did in the Ga. Tech game, he still makes my blood boil when he goes into his act. I was upset after the Ga. Tech game to the extent that I tried to find out the e-mail address of Commissioner Swofford in order to communicate with him personally. I asked for his e-mail address through the ACC web site, but I have heard nothing to date. They probably don't give it out, but they at least know how one ACC fan feels because I told them in the e-mail I sent. I don't expect it to do any good, but I want to ask John Swofford how he feels when the rest of the nation sees Coach K's behavior on TV and the referees do nothing to curtail it. Another thing. Coach K had to be restrained by his assistants in the Ga. Tech game. When I see that done by the UNC coaching staff or a situation created whereby it is likely to happen is the day I will strongly consider watching no more Carolina basketball. Coach K represents a lot of what I think is wrong with basketball today and he is rewarded for it by the talking heads like Dick Vitale. How appropriate for Donald Trump to be in Cameron to root for the Devils. Bet he would like to have his answer back to the question of who he would hire, a Duke graduate or a UNC graduate. I think I know what he meant to say, but that's not what came out. It would not be much of a stretch to interpret his answer to mean that he would hire a UNC graduate, but I don't believe that is what he meant to say. Man that hairdo was something. I don't watch his TV show so its the first time I had seen it. I would have a tough time not laughing out loud were I to be in his presence. He can't fire me.
I missed the first part of the Game Day program that came on at 8:00, but I did see the portion that came after 8:30. Some probably think it was "over the top" but all things considered, I think it was pretty good. I couldn't help but wonder as I was watching it how fans of other elite basketball schools such as Kentucky, Kansas, and Indiana must feel while watching it. There is no way this kind of publicity could be bought and no reason for most schools to even consider it since they don't have a rivalry that would approach Duke-UNC. I got back to Richmond a little late from a visit to the Antietam battleground. More about that later.
I try as best as I can to keep up with happenings in the ACC and I could swear I read somewhere that Duke had air conditioned Cameron. I must have imagined it unless it has been approved and not yet accomplished. I have to laugh every time I see old Dick Vitale sitting in that roost the TV announcers use. It's hard to believe they haven't done something to improve that situation, but maybe that's what gives Cameron its "character." They couldn't have known that TV would be such a large part of the game when Cameron was constructed in the late 30s.
Much has been said about the call at the end of the game and I'll have to admit I'm confused whether it should have been called a "travel" or not, even after reading the rule that applies in such situations. I detest the rule that allows a player, no matter who he plays for, to call time out when he is in trouble and wants to maintain possession of the ball. I don't remember seeing this until fairly recently, and the only way I know to eliminate it, other than having the officials make some kind of subjective judgment, is to reduce the number of time outs a team is allowed. If the number of time outs was reduced, a team might decide that a time out is more valuable than a single possession of the ball. Wouldn't have applied in the McCants-Reddick situation though.
Palming the ball still bothers me because I am unaware of any change in the rules which makes palming acceptable. It is something that officials have just decided they are not going to call and apparently no one can require them to do so. Its everywhere. Playgrounds, high schools, colleges and, of course, where it began, the pros. I about dropped my teeth (a joke- I still have my originals) when an official, Ted Valentine, I think, called palming (traveling) in the Duke-Ga.Tech game. I don't recall seeing it called another time this year and I watch a lot of basketball.
UNC's defense looks better as a whole compared with the beginning of the season, but it really looked weak against penetration against Duke.
They have been having a lot of fun making sexual double entendres about penetration on some of the message boards.
I'm hoping for the best from here on out but I am a little confused over everybody predicting that we will do so well in the tournaments. I agree we have improved in some areas, but some players disappearing at critical times, unforced errors and free throw shooting continue to bother me. I have taken up a bad habit this year, and I don't quite understand what has caused it. I have shouted at the TV during games several times, and I don't remember doing this more than a couple of times in my entire life. Most of the time it has been when we miss free throws. I yelled at Noel when he missed two early, but he did improve on his free throw shooting later in the game. McCants going to the free throw line is no sure thing either.
Hope we do well in Greensboro and if we do, this could mean two more games with Duke this year. Don't know if my ticker can take that. If it does happen, I guarantee you I will be in my watching spot this time when the pre-game activities begin.