Bumped from the diaries. GO BRUINS. -N
YES, we can STILL get a No. 1 Seed.
(1) We have a ridiculous combo of RPI and SOS. Most teams have one, but not the OTHER.
(2) Due to regional pod-bracket concerns, we are still most likely going to be OUT here for the 1st weekend, at least.
(3) Who is our coach?
He doesn't look like Jim Harrick. He teaches players to be TOUGH.
He doesn't look like Mr. STP. He actually coaches fundamentals.
He doesn't look like Lute Olson. HE COACHES DEFENSE.
He didn't schedule Little Sisters of the Poor this year.
We beat an emerging Texas A&M.
We beat an athletic Georgia Tech.
We beat a traditional Big 10 presence in Michigan.
We avenged our loss to the Ducks.
We swept the run-and-gun Wildcats -- Arizona AND Kentucky.
We went toe-to-toe with the Cougars -- WSU and BYU.
We swept the Thugs down the street.
Now's when we cash in on that goodwill.
I KNOW this hurts. I KNOW it does. It hurts me, too. My boss and one of my colleagues went to Cal, and I'm getting drilled. My wife and my father-in-law are just about apoplectic.
BUT WE WILL BE BACK.
When all else fails, what do you have?
You have your core. Your roots. Your heartfelt belief. Your self.
And what is this team built on, MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE.
Defense can be sharpened, honed, re-tooled, rebuilt, and refocused.
If this, this, THIS vomit-inducing abomination is the one single last KICK IN THEIR ASSES WITH RED-HOT CLEATS that the team needed, well, better NOW than next week.
I BELIEVE in Ben Howland, and that he will draw on his experience and knowledge and love for UCLA basketball to pull this team back.
I BELIEVE in the fire and pride of Arron Afflalo, and that he will rise to the challenge, ring the bell, and ramp it up ONE MORE TIME, once and for all.
I BELIEVE that Darren Collison will draw from his AGGRESSIVE second half, and make sure that we don't EVER come out in a first half like this again.
I BELIEVE that Lorenzo Mata will go 50+% on FTs in the Tournament, 'cause he'll never want to go down like this again.
I BELIEVE that Shipp will realize he not only needs to score, but to help on D when the leaders have their hands full.
I BELIEVE that Luc Richard Mbah a Moute will overcome his surprise at his first March loss, and not let up the rest of the way.
I BELIEVE that Mike Roll, Alfred Aboya, and Russell Westbrook will realize just how fragile the team's success is, and not leave anything to mere chance or "to the other guy" and step up.
I BELIEVE IN THIS TEAM.
I BELIEVE IN COACH HOWLAND.
I BELIEVE IN THE BRUINS.
And for now, I'll keep believing until you're ready. Not blaming you one bit, not puffing myself up.
This HURTS... palpably.
But I just want the Dance to start already. No more prelims. Get us a couple of practices and a clean bill of health from this game, and LET'S GO.
Let the other 63 underestimate us.
I dare them to.
We got out-toughed? Toughness is a choice. It's a choice. It's a decision.
It is choosing and deciding, once and for all, to never let another team get up by double-digits on you in the first half just because you're 'confident' you can come back.
Every possession counts. IN MARCH, MORE THAN EVER.
Time to prove we've learned that.
To quote from a recent movie, "Why do we fall?"
"So we learn better to pick ourselves up."