Monthly Archives: January 2011
Saturday’s loss to Auburn has me torn. On one hand I’m thinking:
Is Darrin Horn just not a good coach? I know, I know, he didn’t shoot 7-33 from three-point range or get pounded on the boards, his players did. He was the same coach in today’s loss to Auburn as he was in surprising victories over Vandy and Florida.
But today might be the worst game he has coached at South Carolina. The player rotation was what struck me as most bizarre.
- Damontre Harris comes out of the gates hitting nice jumpers on the first two possessions of the game, and winds up playing only nine minutes and taking one more shot. Why was he on the bench so much?
- Stephen Spinella showed over and over why he should be the absolute last guy off the bench, but somehow was allowed to log twelve minutes and miss all five of his shots. Why wasn’t he on the bench more?
- Johndre Jefferson, honest to goodness, I forgot he was on the team until he showed up in the second half. But by the time he arrived playing solid interior defense where there previously had been none, it was too late. The way we were getting destroyed around the basket, why did it take so long to get him in there? We may not have seen him at all if Malik Cooke hadn’t been T’d up.
The loss of Lakeem Jackson today just seemed to throw Horn’s entire coaching strategy off. Jackson is a nice piece, but we shouldn’t have missed him as much as we did. I just can’t remember a Carolina basketball game in which I kept looking at the floor and then the bench and then the floor again wondering what the heck Horn was thinking.
On the other hand:
What did you expect? This is a team that lost one of the top five players in school history from last year’s team, a team that despite upsetting #1 Kentucky was not very good. The stars of this year’s team are a freshman point guard who doesn’t shoot all that well and still has trouble with control and decision-making at this level, and a senior who until this year has been a role player. A good role player mind you, but a role player nonetheless.
The rest of the team is littered with freshmen and sophomores who are not game changers. My fingers are crossed that one of two of them may develop into that, but at this point they are far from it. Brian Richardson has been in a shooting/confidence slump since the beginning of SEC play, and our two freshman big men, Harris and Slawson, combined for a whopping four points in 15 minutes of play on Saturday. Tack on a transfer from Nevada and a JUCO transfer, and you can understand why we were picked sixth in the SEC East in the preseason.
I’ve seen several tweets and other comments about how it’s inexcusable we lost to a team that has so much less talent than us. I find that laughable. Look at our team from top to bottom and I think you’ll come to realize victories over Vanderbilt and Florida are the aberration, not a loss to Auburn.
So maybe Darrin Horn knows exactly what he’s doing, and a bad loss like Saturday’s is just part of the process.
And to that I say, after watching 30 years of Carolina basketball, I’m sick of the process.
So the nation’s number one recruit, Jadeveon Clowney, landed in Clemson, SC for an official visit this weekend. I’m concerned, or course, but not because the CTU crowd will be just as happy to negative recruit the kid to Bama as they would be to sign him outright. Instead, I’m concerned that Clowney might be swayed by the Tiger’s newly acquired mascot.
New mascot you say? Why yes, I answer, and posit the following video evidence for your consideration (before you watch, two things; 1) that’s not a litter box, that’s Littlejohn Colliseum, and 2) you aren’t hearing Russian, that’s just what really inbred mountain folk sound like):
With only a week to go before signing day, TRC would like to focus on the final remaining recruits on South Carolina’s board and let you know where we think they will ultimately sign. In our continuing efforts to give you the “outside view” of Gamecock sports, understand that we have put about four minutes of thought into this and have access to no insider information whatsoever. (Some people think my uncle Billy is a Gamecock insider because he has a block C tattooed on his calf, but I’m not buying it.)
Cedric Cooper - A linebacker out of Lithonia, GA, if Cooper had committed to us back in September we would’ve said “meh” and not remembered him until next Wednesday when we read down the list of LOI’s. But since he’s stringing us along and is one of the last of the uncommitteds, he is an ABSOLUTE MUST HAVE for this class. The funny part is everyone seems to be aghast that he committed to SC and Arkansas without decommitting from either. GASP! BLASPHEMER! After committing to several more SEC and ACC schools over the next week I think he winds up at, oh, let’s say Virginia.
Jerrell Adams - Very impressive player based on the touchdown pass I saw him catch in the Shrine Bowl, which is the only play I saw from the Shrine Bowl and the only play in which I have ever seen Jerrell Adams. Clemson has had an Adams (Gaines) more recently than us (Frank), so I say it’s our turn to have an Adams and he signs with USC.
Roderick Byers - Kids from South Carolina flirt with Oregon every year for some strange reason, and none of them ever go there. As appealing as their neon shoe/sock combination is, he’ll be a Gamecock. If he does go to Oregon, we will not hear from him again until some message board yahoo starts a thread in 2014 called “Remember Roderick Byers?”
Phillip Dukes – Dukes is from Manning, and kids from Manning always seem to screw us. And by “always”, I mean once, and I’m referring to John Fulton. Dukes winds up at UNC.
Jadaveon Clowney – Not sure if you’ve heard of this guy, but I predict this DE/RB will be the real sleeper of this class. The problem is, somehow Alabama got video of him and are hot on his trail. Despite neither him nor his family ever claiming a favorite, or for that matter, ever commenting on anything AT ALL, most folks seem to think he is USC’s to lose. I personally think it’s 50/50, so I flipped a coin to decide things once and for all. I called heads for USC, and it landed on tails. After losing it for a few minutes - weeping uncontrollably, calling the coin “stupid”, breaking my hand on a dugout wall - I convinced the coin to go best two out of three. Then four out of seven.
Fortunately for us, the coin finally landed on heads five times out of nine. So when Jadaveon Clowney professes his love for the University of South Carolina on February 14, you can thank the Buckster.
Submitted by an anonymous source, but it is interesting that CTU Kicker Spencer Benton wears #13 for the Tigers. Could he be Axeman13?
Now that we are through with football season, (and the Golden Globes), and are quickly approaching Oscar time, we here at TRC thought it might be a good idea to give you a quick review of each potential 2011 Best Picture Nominee:
The Tourist (Sony Pictures): The nation’s consensus #1 recruit, Jadeveon Clowney, visited Cola back in November, is close with many current Carolina players, has a close relationship with Coach Johnson, and has purportedly been leaning toward the Cocks for months. Time to commit and help us recruit? Naw, he took a visit to Alabama, has others trips on tap for Florida State and C.T.U., and is making noise that he might hold off on signing day so he can visit elsewhere in February.
Burlesque (Sony Pictures): Pops Frisby in his comeback role (I mean really, how old is that dude? Gross.), and Mike Bellamy playing Mike Bellamy as a Prima Donna of a dance troupe? No thanks.
The Kids Are All Right (Focus Features): Hey, things are not all black and white, ok? Sometimes you’ve got to give people latitude and let them live their lives, you know? I can’t tell you why Devin Taylor, a DE, is back in coverage, and I can’t explain why Melvin Ingram, a DT, is standing up and coming off the edge. Broaden your mind dude, stuff like this is happening all around you all the time. Geeze.
Black Swan (Fox Searchlight): We’ve seen your Black Swan, Stephen. And then we’ve seen your White. Try to even them out a little, eh Garcia?
The Fighter (Paramont Pictures): This movie was not reviewed as Chris Culliver is no longer with the program.
Red (Summit Entertainment): No, it’s not red, it’s Garnet. I don’t care what friggin Lou Holtz says in The Blind Side. It’s Garnet. Oh, and Helen Mirren is older than my mother, but is really, really hot. I feel all weird inside.
Inception (Warner Brothers): Let me help you out with this one: It was all a dream. Maybe even you- right there in the theater watching the flick- are just a waking dream. It’s not so hard to imagine, really: The sheer apocalyptic impossibility of the ’84 Navy faceplant just adds credence to the premise.
The Social Network (Columbia Pictures): Ok, here’s the deal: Cecil Newton asked for $200K in cash for Cammy Cam’s sig. Then he offered the Bizarro Dawgs a 10% discount from what he said Auburn was willing to pay. The Bizarro Dawgs refused, so Cammy Cam signed with Auburn. Think Cecil got a big ol’ smile on his face?
Alice in Wonderland (Walt Disney Pictures): To illustrate how far down the rabbit hole we are, we quote the HBC: “Coach Beamer has done a great job coaching special teams. But we’ve got to find a way to get him some better players.”
The King’s Speech (The Weinstein Company): /grins “Well, it is what it is.” /smacks gums “You saw it, didn’t you?” /finger-parts hair “Well, anyway . . “ /sucks on teeth.
A few snarky things from the snarkverse, snarky, snark, snark:
Florida Gator Blinn Human Being Mississippi State Bulldog Auburn Tiger quarterback Cam Newton announced today (via his employer) that he was turning pro. To say that Cam is turning pro is kind of like saying I’m turning straight (uh, I should probably add here that I’m legally married under the laws of the State of South Carolina and have two kids).
- Kentucky Wildcat WR/RB/QB/PR/Compliance Officer/Spokesperson/Equipment manager/Halftime Choreographer/Tax Preparer Randall Cobb is leaving the Cheesy Biscuits of Lexington’s Red Lobster (DRI -17) behind and will enter the NFL draft. No real snark here, just a silent ‘thank you’ to the Almighty that we’ve seen the last of #18. /arms raised and swaying.
- CTU, looking to plug holes left by
rats jumping from a sinking ship staff changes, unveiled three new members of its coaching staff: A wide receiver coach that was selling tires three years ago to coach running backs, the leader of the powerhouse Duke Blue Devil Dline, and an offensive coordinator that coached high school football less than 18 months ago. Asked to comment on the additions, Head Coach Dabo Swinney, in classic erudite fashion, said the hires were “big” and listed the other coaches he considered. [note: the other dropped names gave no corroborating statements.]
- South Carolina Wideout Demario Bennett is transferring to Coastal Carolina. In a related story, South Carolina apparently had a wide receiver named Demario Bennett.
- A reader named Ty Seale took issue with a previous TRC post, Cecil In Da House #CashMoney, so he took to twitter to offer his reasoned critique, which we reproduce here in its entirety:
We here at TRC are open to your input and thoughtful analysis. Accordingly, we’ve readdressed the Cam Newton-Paid Athlete-Auburn University-Tainted Temporary Championship-Business As Usual-Lack of Institutional Control-Impending NCAA Probe Scandal with another, more carefully produced, effort:
Hope this helps, Ty.
Apparently upset about the position of his NFL draft declaration on the ESPN.com home page Thursday, Cam Newton withdrew his name with the intention of re-declaring as soon as Friday.
“I fully expected the Heisman Trophy winner and quarterback of the National Champion football team to command more real estate on ESPN.com when he announced his intentions,” Newton said. “Obviously I was unaware ESPN would give prime position to a feel-good NFL story about some Division III wingback.” (Newton was referring to New England running back Danny Woodhead.)
Newton continued, “Hopefully tomorrow will be a slower news day. Also, I’ll be sure to hold a press conference, cry a little bit over the trials I have been through this year, dance and smile a little, and maybe throw in some streamers and balloons and (stuff). Praise God.”
ESPN immediately responded via press release that they would be filming a “30 for 30″ documentary about the situation, and would dedicate the first “College Gameday” of 2011 to Cam Newton’s juice bottle.
Cecil Newton and Jay Jacobs could not be reached for comment from the car they were riding in together.