Monday, November 19, 2007

Guest Post: ISU Blogger Gives Gophers The Edge

PJS Note: With the biggest game in the Tubby Smith era set to tip off Tuesday night, PJS and CrossCyed at the Clone Chronicles decided a little cross-blog cooperation was in order. Below you'll get CrossCyed's mostly pessimistic views on the Cyclones' 2007-08 season and what to expect from ISU Tuesday night. You'll find my preview at the Clone Chronicles here.

Guest Post
By CrossCyed

For those of you looking for a good-looking win against a Big 12school, Tuesday night may be your chance.


G Diante Garrett OR Sean Haluska
G Bryan Petersen
F Rahshon Clark
F Craig Brackins
C Jiri Hubalek

Iowa State really appears to be a team in disarray. With lackluster performances in all of the first three games, it's really hard to get a read on the team, and the game against the Gophers will be a good test.

I must preface the article by saying we will likely be missing our best player in 6-7 Wesley Johnson, quite possibly the best sophomore in the Big 12 not named DJ Augustin.

We're also without SG Lucca Staiger, who is currently ineligible due to the NCAA and it's bass-ackwardness. The backcourt provides question marks at both guard positions. Sean Haluska is the real wild card to start - he's looked pitiful in regular season play and has had trouble hitting the jumper.

Both Garrett and Petersen will run the point Garrett is silky smooth with an unpredictable shot. Petersen is undersized with a nice shot. Clark is by far our best defender and is an aggressive rebounder. He has a decent shot at times from beyond the arc and will also throw down the occasional big time dunk. Brackins is the highest rated recruit to come to Ames since Marcus Fizer. Has a good outside shot and can face up down low, but needs work with his back to the basket. Gets easy rebounds, but not the tough ones. Fun to watch, but McDermott doesn't like to give him a ton of minutes.

Hubalek is coming off injury, and appears to be a lot closer to the guy that frustrated us his sophomore year than the guy that matched up against guys like Maric from Nebraska. Has the occasional urge to shoot the jump shot, which he usually misses. Incredibly frustrating guy to watch. Off the bench, the main guard sub will be Charles Boozer, younger brother of Carlos. He basically shoots a knuckleball but can catch fire. Really hard worker, but was also a redshirt candidate, so he still has flaws. Cory Johnson, Duluth native, is the backup at the forward position. Has a nice shot and will look to score, but is undersized. Max effort guy.

Alex Thompson (Iowa transfer) and Clayton Vette will be the big man subs. Alex Thompson makes me cringe every time he comes in, pretty much worthless. Vette has impressed me with his nose for the ball down low. Carries weight, but not quite tall enough. Overall, we are going to need big games from our big guys to win. We can't be depending on our backcourt for the scoring like we did at Bradley.

With the students gone for break, the homecourt advantage will be somewhat diminished too. Minnesota may have been bad last year, but I tend to think we're bad this year. Not having Wes hurts a ton, because it's losing a double-double from the shooting guard position. I expect Minnesota to win a close game, probably in the high 50s or low 60s. I can't get a proper read on this team right now, but I'm leaning more towards a team that will miss the NIT than one that will make it.


Anonymous said...

great. before I read this I was willing to accept a minny loss tomorrow thinking ISU was just a tad more talented. now after reading thiss a win will mean less and a loss will crush me. jesus.