Loosely Connected Thoughts: On The Bearcats Taking An L, And More.

The goal this week is to do this every day.

Of course, that was last week's goal as well.

*On the Bearcats. Last night was frustrating, watching UC's offense devolve into one-on-five down the stretch, with no player not named "Jarron Cumberland" able to do anything offensively. The result was a loss to Houston in a game that was there for the taking, and one that was officiated weirdly. (Not poorly, not unfairly, but weirdly.)

The game served to amplify the concerns about what will happen to this team against quality opponents that go out of their way to send multiple guys at Jarron, and it likely lowered Cincinnati's potential seed in the NCAA Tournament by at least a hair.

Still...I'd chalked this game up as a loss about ten minutes after the season started, and the win over Memphis did soften yesterday's blow just a little.

The Cougars are last year's Bearcats, likely a little head and shoulders above and beyond everyone else in the AAC, very stout defensively, good on the glass, and very, very tough to beat at home. The glass half-full guy you know I always am (I'm kidding) looks at yesterday, sees that Justin Jenifer was a non-factor (can't happen again), sees the way the offense melted down over the final six minutes, remembers how much Houston had an advantage on the glass, and cringes at the missed free throws, and sees a game that the Bearcats still could have (you might argue, should have) won, where many teams would've gotten blown out.

I called my shot after the game, and I'm sticking by it.

 

*On the Muskies. Xavier suffered an absolutely brutal loss to DePaul, and even if I still think XU finds a way to win at least one more game, we have officially reached the point where it's fair to wonder if the Musketeers will end the regular season with 13 straight losses.

I didn't think this team would really, really good, but in what most perceived to be a down year for the Big East (and it is), I really didn't think they'd be a good bet to finish in last place with seven games remaining. Even if you give Travis Steele the grace period he deserves (and I do), and acknowledge some of the built-in obstacles that existed since way before the season began, this team should have enough to not be as bad as it is.

* On the Norse. I don't want him to leave NKU, but if I was an athletic director with an opening, my first call would be to John Brannen.

*On the AAF . The new pro football league made its debut this weekend. I watched a little, although not a ton. Without doing an exceptionally deep dive into the two games I saw pieces of, I'll tell you that the league's presentation was pretty impressive, aided greatly by the production values of CBS and the NFL Network. It didn't look cheap or gimmicky, and I didn't even notice that there were no kickoffs.

Also, Marvin Lewis tried his hand at broadcasting. He didn't sound comfortable, at least at the outset of the game he was doing last night, which I didn't finish, which is understandable.

I give him credit for trying, though. Most newbie analysts get months of coaching, with the opportunity to call practice games with their partner. Marvin was thrown right in, in a league filled with unknowns. Did he do well? No. Frankly, I'm not sure who, without months of prep, would have.

Radio today: UC's loss, Kyler Murray's NFL and Bengals chances, Kareem Hunt, and a successful offseason for the Reds. We talk about all of it today, starting at 3:05 on ESPN1530.

Mo Egger

Mo Egger

Mo Egger delivers his unique take on sports on Cincinnati's ESPN 1530! Read more

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