Game is at 9:45 PM EST/6:45 PM PST. Can't ask for anything better timewise.
If Cal were to somehow pull it out, our second round opponent would be Duke. The Cardinals will be a tough first round opponent though, and probably should be one of the most competitive games this upcoming week. Some quick notes:
Like Cal they have an efficient offense (#20) and an iffy defense (#77). On offense they’re good at offensive rebounding. On defense they’re good at forcing turnovers. Conversely, they’re bad at preventing offensive rebounds and they foul too much. Also, their offense turns the ball over too much.
The reason why I am scared of them is because the team has proven that they can beat the best team in the country not once but twice. They beat Syracuse twice. They are definitely tested. They played one of the toughest schedules in the nation. Edgar Sosa is as dangerous as it gets if you ask me. If he’s on, it’s over. Rick Pitino is a fantastic head coach and even more so in the tournament. Samardo Samuels can be a load inside. Reginald Delk can really shoot it. Their biggest flaw is probably just inconsistency, but they are definitely capable of beating anyone.
It’s a roundtable format with several analysts. The highlights of the discussion:
This is a tough draw for Louisville because Rick Pitino has had to play “mostly zone” because he “knows his team can’t play man to man.” And it’s a bad combination with Cal, because Fraschilla says Cal has the shooters to beat the zone. (He mentioned Randle, Christopher, and Robertson specifically.)
Impressed by the fact that Louisville beat Syracuse twice. Even though Louisville has trouble playing man to man, he’s seen Louisville switch up from zone and man to man, then go back to zone. The multiple defenses have confused some teams during the season. Thinks Pitino might come up with some “wrinkles” to compensate for his team’s shortcomings in man to man defense.
Mentioned that he did the Cal game vs. Murray State last November when “Murray State was one possession away from tying the game.” He likes the fact that Cal has 4 seniors and acknolwedged that Cal has great shooters. But he also said we have a glaring weakness on the inside: we have no consistent post presence to get baskets down low. Might be a problem for us.
Not sure who said these things, but one of the analysts called us “a poor man’s Villanova.”
Big thanks to norcalnick and Ohio Bear for these tips, Rated-R Superstar and concordtom for their thoughts. Substantive preview coming tomorrow.