Friday, March 12, 2010

Hubris, thy name is Lawal

I’m not sure I’ve ever read quotes from a 7-9 team in the ACC with the level of delusion confidence coming from the Yellow Jackets after their come from behind win over 10 seed North Carolina. Lawal said after his teams not-so-convincing 62-58 win in the opening game of the ACC Tournament that, “We feel they can’t stop us.”

He wasn’t the only Yellow Jacket singing this tune as Zach Peacock nearly guaranteed a victory saying, “…if we don’t turn the ball over and execute…it’ll be another ‘W’ on our schedule.”

Really? This is the same Georgia Tech team that lost five of its last seven regular season games. Their only wins since January have come against Boston College, North Carolina and N.C. State. They had a chance to seal up a NCAA Tournament bid by winning at home against a mediocre Virginia Tech team and got thoroughly outplayed. The Yellow Jackets were 1-7 on the road in ACC play so I don’t suspect anyone told them that they don’t get to play this game at home.

I suppose that most of this posturing comes from the fact that they feel like they should have won the game against Maryland. Cliff Tucker’s (and Greivis Vasquez) hit a 3-point shot at the buzzer to win 76-74. Contrary to that narrative of the game I think it was the Yellow Jackets who got lucky. They shot well above their season averages and Maryland played a relatively poor game. Maryland led for most of the 2nd half and Georgia Tech had a lead for less than 8 minutes of the game. I would say they played about as well as they could and still lost. I’m sure Paul Hewitt wasn’t thrilled to read these comments. You know Gary Williams has made his team very aware of what the Georgia Tech players have said. If Maryland plays hard and focused Georgia Tech doesn’t have much of a chance. There is a good reason the Terrapins finished six games ahead in the standings, they are the better team. It is true that the Yellow Jackets have some matchup advantages against Maryland with their front court and it isn’t totally unfathomable that they might pull an upset but that is what it would be, an upset. These comments strike me as the bravado coming from a bunch of recruits headed off to a battle they know they are not ready for. I know Lawal and his teammates could not have given Gary Williams a better gift.

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