This is the type of article I hate writing. I just finished watching Cincinnati play arguably their worst basketball game of the season and its late on a weekday.
A lot went wrong tonight, but the loss tonight is easily attributable to three factors:
- Turnovers: Tonight the Bearcats had a season high of 20 turnovers. There was no single culprit causing all the mistakes. Moore, DeBerry, Caupain, and Ellis all had three, and the rest were pretty spread out.
- Ellis: Octavius Ellis got into foul trouble again, begging for more Justin Jackson comparisons. He fouled out, including a bonehead technical foul. DeBerry has been a nice surprise, but he is not ready for real minutes. Ellis has to stay on the flour for this team to be successful.
- Offense: I just don't get it. I am running out of ways to express my frustrations with this. If you stand around, nothing will happen. Move with the ball, move without the ball, and move the ball itself. This is so basic and fundamental that it is absolutely mind-blowing. For every possession in the game, they play like they are up 5 with 2 minutes to go.
Cincinnati was simply outplayed tonight. Memphis had 17 layups, and comparatively got what they wanted on the offensive end. Nichols feasted off of Ellis' foul trouble, boasting 17 points with 8 rebounds.
On the positive side, Caupain led the way with 14 and Morman came out of nowhere with 11. Tonight was tied for the second most minutes Morman had played all year. We also out rebounded Memphis by five (31-to-26) with Clark grabbing 10 boards.
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The season is far from over. There is plenty of time to bounce back from this. Temple would be a big win on Saturday. If we can squeeze a "W" out of that, Houston and UCF should be wins. That would put the Bearcats back up to 14-5 going into a home game against UCONN. We're probably still a tournament team at this point, but not as secure as we were a few hours ago.
All that being said - Saturday just became a much much bigger game.
-Daniele "Da" Bologna