Thursday, November 27, 2008
Above and Beyond - even for Jimmy
Been debating for a few days how I wanted to handle the Jimmy Patsos forfeit at Davidson on Tuesday night. Patsos played the Dooley triangle against Stephen Curry and the Wildcats. It's the same defense I saw Dooley, my high school coach, employ some ten or twelve years ago in a high school game (that ultimately determined a championship) to take an opposition's leading scorer out of the game. And the thing about Dooley was he was he smart enough to get out of the defense when the opposition figured out how to handle it. I called Dooley on Wednesday morning to see if he had saw that his defense had hit the big time. He thought I was referring to the extended zone he often teaches, that had helped Penn State-Harrisburg hold Penn State-Mont Alto to 8 points in a half. But when I told him that Patsos had used the Dooley triangle to hold Curry scoreless, his first question was, "Did he win?". My answer, "No. He lost by 30." He laughed. I don't fault Patsos for trying something crazy, I saw the same defense take a championship caliber high school team out of its offense for about a half before they figured it out. But this is Division I basketball and its unlikely that the defense could possibly work playing 4-on-3 against high quality players. But that wasn't Patsos' strategy anyhow. His strategy was to simply shut out Curry and the result of the game be damned. Not changing from the defense when it obviously was giving his team no chance to win, was ridiculous. If you read the Fan Blog, you know I don't like Jimmy Patsos and his styles and methods. But you also know, that I've respected the job he's done at Loyola as far as the basketball product and getting the school and community excited about it. But this was bush league. He owes his team more, he owes his school more, he owes his fans more, he owes the game more. It was only a week after the Loyola coach sat in the crowd because he wasn't sure how to deal with the referees that he tried this bit of schenanigans. He's definitely our turkey this year, because his actions this time didn't make a mockery of just himself, but a mockery of the game.