Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Winthrop not what Davidson needed

Davidson’s BracketBuster game with Winthrop will create some local interest, but Wildcats officials can’t be thrilled with the matchup.

That’s not because Davidson doesn’t want to play Winthrop at some point, but the Feb. 22 game might kill any chance Davidson had for an at-large berth in the NCAA tournament.

Davidson, which was No. 69 in RPI according to collegerpi.com, needed a matchup against a top-30 RPI team, such as Butler or St. Mary’s, in the BracketBuster game to help its NCAA resume. The Wildcats are 1-6 in Division I nonconference games and don’t have a signature road win.

Davidson won’t get that against Winthrop this season. The Eagles have a strong history – reaching the NCAA tournament seven of the past nine years – but Winthrop’s RPI is around 110. That won’t improve before the game with Davidson, because Winthrop’s next six opponents other than the Wildcats all have RPIs of 200 or higher.

Winthrop’s RPI is comparable to Southern Conference teams Chattanooga, Georgia Southern and UNC Greensboro, and wins against those schools won’t help Davidson’s cause either.

So, while the matchup with Winthrop might create a buzz locally, it will be a buzz kill for Davidson’s NCAA chances unless the Wildcats win the Southern Conference tournament in March.

-- Kevin Cary


Anonymous said...

Gimme a break, Davidson isn't getting an at large---they haven't beaten any schools in the Top 100 RPI in how many years? Their best win is App St! Even if they drew and beat Butler they weren't going to get an at large.

Davidson needs to worry about beating Winthrop, who does know how to beat the big boys. Maybe this will be a good lesson for them, to worry about an at large, they need to learn from the Eagles, who have shown they are a better program.

jason/charlotte said...

Davidson has not beat anyone to warrant an At-Large... Their best win is App. State (94 RPI) Winthrop has beaten a ranked Miami team, a talented GA Tech team, and a really good Akron team. Who has Davidson beat? Winthrop should take care of this one easily at home.

Gary49r said...

Good luck winning at the Nest in Winthrop....Winthrop has only lost 6 home games in like 7 seasons.

And this doesn't help.

"The Wildcats are 1-6 in Division I nonconference games and don’t have a signature road win."

Your telling me they may get an at large are you kidding?

Anonymous said...

Winthrop is stacked w/ talent, they have something like 7 freshman and are still 14-8 on the year, thats incredible. They should be good for quite some time. Davidson has Curry, but that is about it. Hopefully he can shoot well enough to win, but Winthrop has a top 20 defense nationally. But thats ok I'll still pull for my wildcats.

Anonymous said...

Kevin, do not think the possibility of Davidson getting an at-large bid hinges on this bracket buster game. The fact that they are 1-6 versus D-I opponets in OOC games has squelched the hope of an at-large for Davidson. They should be happy to be playing quality competition in their BB game.They need to concentrate on the opponent they have and not who they wanted. To complain about playing Winthrop in this nationally televised game shows how much the admin at Davidson thinks of themselves. Davidson is like every other mid-major and wants to earn some respect. As a WInthrop alum and fan, I get that. If you start beating some of those quality programs in OOC games, you will get that respect. The top mid-majors this year (top 25) are (and should) be paying each other - not Davidson or Winthrop. The Winthrop/Davidson game is an execellent match-up, not just for local interest.

Tarheel Ted. said...

Totally agreed. Who do they think they deserve to play? They had there shots this year, and lost all of them. Winthrop is a terrific program and look at their young guys, wow.

Anonymous said...

"Davidson has Curry, but that is about it."

Oh, how wrong you are.

Anonymous said...

they may be 1-6 in non-conference but who did they lose to - UNC, Duke, UCLA, NC State, Charlotte, and a team they should have beaten - Western Michigan. UCLA, UNC, and Duke are all ranked in the top 5 and each loss was within single digits. Charlotte and NC State and both have winning records and are a combined 27-14. But Davidson won't need an at-large because they are so dominant in conference.

Wintrop's may have some solid non-conference wins but they did lose to Marshall and Missouri State. Winthrop did manage to keep within single digits with Ole Miss, Baylor, and Saint Mary's but that trio is quite like the one (UNC, Duke, UCLA)Davidson faced and lost to by single digits.

To say that Davidson has Curry and that's about it is wrong. Richards only led the nation in assists last year.

Davidson by 17.

Dr.D said...

I'm a Davidson fan, and you are an idiot if you think we beat Winthrop by 17 at home. They have better non conference wins than we do. Getting close doesn't count. Open your eyes, this will not be an easy game for us.

Eric (Columbus, OH) said...

Davidson lost its chance of an at-large invitation when they lost to Western Michigan, UNCC, & N.C. State. If the Wildcats can stay focused & not get flustered they could run the table & get in the tournament by winning the conference tournament. Failing that, they should have a decent seed in the NIT & should play like there's no tomorrow & win that thing.

Anonymous said...

Davidson is not only based on Curry (Although he did outscore the entire Chattanooga team in the first half, a few weeks ago.) Richards is as good a true point guard as any. Max Paulus-Gosselin is a fantastic defender and can shut down major conference players. While Davidson's big men are not dominant, they do their jobs well. foul trouble doesn't hurt the Wildcats at big men because there is a rotation of four of them!

Winthrop will not be easy, however, this is a game that has been needed to be played for a while. Winthrop gets all the credit as the "Really good local mid-major" and because of that Davidson has been snubbed on Tournament seeding in the past.

Davidson should win this game, however a loss is not too bad either. If the 'cats were to lose, it would come just in time for them to refocus and dominate in the tournament.

Winthrop should watch out, the Davidson fans will cancel that home court advantage. Can anyone say, "Sweet Caroline"?

Anonymous said...

Winthrop fans are no slouch. But they like to party more than watch sports. But dang they have some hot girls at that school. I have been to a few games where that place was rocking though.

Anonymous said...

I am so excited they're playing this game. The biggest bummer is that it's a year too late.

Torrell Martin would have been the best defender Curry has faced.

The point guard battle between Gaynor and Richards will be awesome.

Davidson doesn't have anyone who can guard Taj McCullough. Winthrop doesn't have a big man rotation like the Wildcats.

Davidson is a little better, but the home court makes it even.

Should be entertaining.

Anonymous said...

"Torrell Martin would have been the best defender Curry has faced."

Really? Better than the likes of Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, Gerald Henderson, DeMarcus Nelson, Russell Westbrook, Courtney Fells, etc. who have guarded him all year? Only Westbrook managed to hold Curry under 20.

Torrell Martin? You've got to be kidding me.

Anonymous said...

Actually Mantoris Robison of the Eagles is only a sophmore and is by far their best defender, and will be one of the best in the country next year. Ty Lawson does not play defense nor any of the others you mentioned. Those guards are built to score. It makes me sick that the City of Charlotte gives so much attention to Davidson and so little to Winthrop, esp. with Winthrop being closer. The observer should be ashamed of itself. Im a Tarheel fan and I hope Winthrop wipes the floor with these arrogant Davidson people with no good wins to their name.

Chicago Bulls Fan said...

Torrell Martin was nasty. He will be in the NBA next season, right that down. He's averaging 23ppg in the EURO league this year. He will be at the Chicago Summer Camp for the NBA. And by the way, Winthrop has sick defense. Be careful Davidson.

cougar fan said...

Davidson is certainly a talented team, has played a difficult out-of-conference schedule, and is dominating the souther conference. Having said that, they have no quality out-of-conferene wins as others have mentioned. Instead of clamoring about Winthrop, they better concentrate on the SoCon - without that championship they will be heading for the NIT.

Go Cougars !!!