Louisville CardFile: Kennesaw State

joaniecardBefore  a significant portion of the empty/ emptier/ emptiest Yum! “crowd” yet had found seats, this game was over.

U of L’s first four possessions were a Trey Lewis three and a Damion Lee triple, bookended by a couple of Chinanu Onuaku jump hooks.

Ball game.

Hypersomnia ensued.

Even Rick Pitino, who, after all is responsible for the scheduling of such scrimmages as this, admitted afterward that the game wasn’t of consequence. Indicating there’s not much that can be learned from such affairs.

At some point, when the Cards were up 20+ with plenty of opening half left, I jotted in my notes, “Worst Opponent Ever?” But, despite the Owls’ Ken Pomeroy rating of 331 out of 351 DI schools, there have been cupcakes even sweeter. Just a season ago, U of L throttled Savannah State (#337), 87-26.

The mind numbs.

So, the question is: Why do so many of these schools keep popping up on the schedule each season?

And, yes, I acknowledge that I keep promising to stop ragging on the schedule, but can’t help myself. It is, sadly, as big a storyline of this early season, as the burgeoning potential of this team.

At least Western Kentucky will bring some fans and fire, for an old rivalry tilt Saturday noon. Then a couple more plugs come in back to back for paychecks before Louisville heads up the road to take on UK.

 * * * * *

One of the problems with playing such lesser lights is that bad habits develop.

U of L led 41-19 at intermission. The Cards, pressing full court every possession, had forced but four turnovers, while committing six themselves.  And had but a single steal, while KSU pilfered the ball five times. The visitors, vanquished as they were, won both of those statistical battles for the night. Eleven turnovers against 12 for U of L. Eight steals vs. six.

I keep thinking back to one of Denny Crum’s favorite homilies. You have to have a healthy respect for your opponent.

With teams like Kennesaw State, it isn’t necessary for victory. Thus bad habits ensue.

Louisville didn’t really need to work its offense, so bad was the Owls’ D. Thus, only 17 assists on 40 made FG.

Onuaku was 8/10 from the floor. All in the paint. Mangok Mathiang was 4/5 from the floor.1 All in the paint. Matz Stockman was 4/5 from the floor. All in the paint.

You think, against the ACC teams, those guys are going to be able to post up so readily, get the entry pass so easily, tom-tom two, three, four uncontested dribbles, edging closer the the hoop unimpeded, then turning for an point blank opposition-less score?

Put your hands down, class, that was a rhetorical question.

Louisville hit 80% at the line, but it was just 4/5. The visitors, employing matador D, only fouled 9 times.

 * * * * *

Donovan Mitchell can dunk. Duh-oh. I think we knew that already.

Quentin Snider can dish. Yeah, we knew that too.

Enough. The game isn’t worth any more verbiage.

— Seedy K


22 thoughts on “Louisville CardFile: Kennesaw State

  1. CD, based on your assessments, you and I usually see things the same way, and its true with the pitiful early season schedule. But as I sat in an almost empty section 114 last night, I did realize one benefit to this type of game: A lot of young fans get to see their team that otherwise wouldn’t be getting a ticket if we were playing Xavier, Texas, or whoever. A family of 5 moved into the row in front of me about 5 minutes into the game, and those 3 kids were awestruck and didn’t care about Kennesaw’s RPI. It reminded me of when I was a kid and got to see Rick Wilson, Wesley Cox, Phil Bond, Larry Williams and Griff play Idaho State in 1976. Granted, enough is enough, but it was fun watching a game through their eyes. And with the light traffic, I was home in 10 minutes.

  2. Phil, those kids got to see the coming out party of a Nordic Monster; As Howie Lindsey said on the radio today “It’s getting Matz in here…….”

    1. Hahahahahahaha!!!!! Love it, Counselor. Yes, lutefisk will be offered at the games by February? Love Phil’s comment, too. Terrific point. And yes, this is one hell of a team.

  3. Phil, great point. Thanks. When I see those kids at the games, I too am taken back to the early 50s at the Armory, and later, late 50s, at Freedom Hall, when my pal Larry and I had the run of the upper level. Cards drew about 4-5,000/ game. It was indeed magic, and all those guys were heroes. Phil Rollins, whom I now see and chat with about every game. Corky Cox. Charlie Tyra, who went to Atherton with my brother. John Reuther. Don Goldstein. And, yes, the opponent really didn’t matter. The flip side, of course, is that, back then, if you were under 13, you could get a pass for all the games for a dollar. And I don’t mean a dollar a game. A dollar a season. Now, that will get you .18 of a bag of popcorn. And, you also reminded me of my dad, who started taking me when I was 8 years old. He was the Master of Egress. Took it as a challenge to be home in time to listen to Peck Hickman on our big old floor model radio.

  4. Everybody be jumpin’ on the Matz bandwagon. Such as it is. So, I’ve got an offer. If Matz makes a difference this season in a game of significance, I’ll treat all ye regulars to a meal of the Norwegian delicacy, smalahove. Which is prepared by torching a sheep’s head, removing the brain, salting, smoking then steaming it, then serving it with boiled potatoes and turnips.

  5. The Ranch House Junior Booster Button was 50 cents for the season. Dennis and I were displaced one night late in the first half from a mid-court box when Mayor Schmied and his family arrived late, so we moved to nearby seats. This was the season when Wes played on the freshman team so we had been there for hours by then. It was fun to be a kid in an all-access world.

    It would be nice to see that no paid-for seat is unfilled in the early season, whether by systematic distribution of donated tickets to schools and charitable organizations or better by bringing in more attractive competition.

  6. Just a random check of Duke’s future schedule in December turns up Buffalo, RPI 148, Georgia Southern- 243 and Elon-183. It’s called padding your resume. Every big school, especially those that play killer conference schedules, does it to make their record look good come selection Sunday. They are practice games and for those of us who ante up substantially to the CAF, it’s just the price of admission. I’d rather hear you talk about My Man Matz! Minutes and numbers are soaring!

  7. Ahhh so it took almost 60 years to meet, again, my adversaries for empty cups to pop on our exit. Man, those things were loud in an empty arena

  8. SmartGuy, of course all the contendas play some patsies. (And play in front of empty seats like Carolina last night when the Green Wave rolled into Chapel Hill.) Using your example, Duke, in addition to a handful of cupcakes (as opposed to the Cards’ baker’s dozen), they play UK, VCU, Georgetown, Utah State, Long Beach State and Utah before league play.

    And, what more is there to be said of Matz? He’s obviously THE FUTURE of U of L hoops, like Rodney and Pervis and Gorgui, the next U of L pivotman to lead us to that savored W on the final Monday of the season.

    Prepare thy palate to savor a Scandinavian delicacy.

    1. Seedy has seen the light! The north star has risen and he has grudgingly accepted the greatness that is Motts Applesauce!

  9. I’m more than a bit disappointed that none of you Matz acolytes mentioned how he brought the Norewegian Wood to the Owls.

  10. I have to say that I had the same idea as the Mayor. Pitino now has a record of scheduling only bottom feeders prior to ACC play. I mean some of these teams have less athletic ability than Archie Bell and the Drells. Clearly fans are showing their dismay if not disgust by staying away in droves even they they have spent a small fortune on tickets. It is undoubtedly a safe assumption at this point that the garbage games will continue as long as Pitino is the coach. So it would be a great thing if a movement could start before next season that would offer a place for season ticket holders to gift their tickets for distribution to Boys and Girls Clubs and the like. I grew up in a non college town and would have given anything when I was twelve to have seen a college game live and in

    1. To Wildcat, I have passed the ticket utilization concept up the ranks toward the management of Big Brothers-Big Sisters. Since most season tickets are purchased in pairs, it is ideal that adult and child pairs be the initial recipients. All it requires is a mailing address to which to send them, clerical (volunteer) help, and postage and supplies to distribute them, as well as the athletic department’s clearance, if necessary. For now it’s only a pretty good concept.

      But if Archie Bell and the Drells were really playing, but not basketball, the YUM wouldn’t have as many empty seats as for Kennesaw State.

  11. Wildcat, while you came around to a good suggestion at the end of your screed, your prejudice slipped through at the beginning. Reality is that, while The Rick’s non conference schedules have been pretty sorry generally, there were a few Novembers and Decembers there, in the run up to the ’13 title, when he didn’t schedule all schleppers. He sure regressed this season.

  12. You know, Mott’s make many fantastic consumables besides applesauce…….so instead of applesauce man……… I offer you “CLAMATOMAN”.. catchy as hell if you ask me. Where is Stan Lee when you need him???

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