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Definitely no swagger

George Mason Basketball: Definitely no swagger

Friday, February 13, 2009

Definitely no swagger

It's appropriate that this year's homecoming theme is "No one has swagger like us", because to me that is just what Mason seems to be missing this year. I'm talking about the kind of "swagger" that draws up killer instinct with heart and determination. I say they are missing this because I just don't see what else in the equation can explain this rollercoaster of a season. Talent wise the Patriots can play with any team in the CAA and the excuses about the youth and chemistry can only go so far. We have beaten this topic to death here and now Mason sits on the cusp of potentially not even getting a first round bye in the CAA tourney. Most of us earlier in the season thought this homecoming match-up could maybe decide 1st place in the conference and now most fans are more worried about what kind of alcohol will be needed Saturday to enjoy themselves. What's even more disappointing is the fact that 1st place Northeastern has dropped two straight and a victory last night for Mason, despite everything that's happened, still would have made this game more interesting. Patriots have bounced back at home after road losses all season so I'm not saying this going to be a boring game but you can't help but wonder what's going to happen after this game even if Mason comes out with a victory? Will Mason's road woes continue for the rest of the season and into the CAA tourney? What kind of Mason squad will we see on a neutral court in Richmond? The home Patriots or the road Patriots?



Blogger What Not said...

Name the guy on the floor for the Pats who plays with presence and toughness and emotion and poise.


I'm a big believer in Coach L. He's an excellent, experienced coach, and a very decent, down to earth guy. OK, not great recruiter. And his teams tend to mirror that- nice guys, happy...but not so aggressive.

They think it's going to come to them because the bands playing some lame Bon Jovi song. Enough already with the back in the day. Play 2 halves full tilt and earn a win. Leave it all out there. Put Fleming in and have him hip check someone into the student section. Fire. Play with fire. Not dirty-ever. Just hardnosed.

When does he go Bob Knight on these guys? When does he throw sh*t??

Think Pitino, Knight, Coach K, even gotta at some point, when they think they're going to get plays drawn up in the huddle, you gotta challenge they're manhood.

Where's the edge? Where's the in your facedness? I'm not talking about running at the mouth or showboating on the floor. I'm talking about looking through, not at the opponent, wanting to absolutely dominate them at both ends.

Soft, soft, soft.....

Northeastern by 9.

11:58 AM  
Blogger's good for you. said...

I think we'll bounce back. Mason won't forget their home loss to UNCW last season on homecoming, our only loss at home last season. Our guys SHOULD want to redeem themselves for that performance, and the game last night vs. UD (and every other close, painful lose this season).

I totally agree with WhatNot on what we're lacking. I think our guys have heart...I think they want to win...but, sometimes you gotta have that killer attitude. I see glimpses of it in guys like Cam, but we need more. I almost wish for one of our guys to punch someone in the cahones (I miss you, Tony) just to show it's WORTH THAT MUCH.

I don't know what to expect tomorrow, but I'll be there to find out. And as Ryan points out...well, it's a noon game. We can all start drinking away our misery by 2 pm if needed. Or sooner.

12:16 PM  
Blogger Matt Scanlon said...

Coach L is a fantastic recruiter. We have a top 30 recruiting class coming next year.

Plus, having some dude scream at you doesn't give you heart. It has to come from the players.

12:37 PM  
Blogger What Not said...

If Coach L were a fantastic recruiter, GMU would be dominant in the CAA, not tied for third with Drexel.(Think Gonzaga after their Cinderella run.)

He (and I give him credit for this) gets mostly very solid kids, good guys who are not going to get the school in trouble and who will graduate or at least stay for 4 years. He doesn't get a lot of kids who are looking for stardom because he won't promise them the moon.

So yeah, I guess it depends on your definition of a fantastic recruiter. In many ways I guess he is.

As for their play of late it is his job to light a fire under them and to have them go hard every night out. They lack intensity. He's not just "some dude" screaming at them. It would mean something.

1:03 PM  
Blogger C Hirsch said...

I have no idea what to expect out of us tomorrow. I have given up trying to figure this team out.

1:09 PM  
Blogger Matt Scanlon said...


Do you even remember the caliber players GMU had before the Coach L era?

The quality of players under Coach L was consistently gone up every year. I hate to say you don't know what you're talking about, but you don't know what you're talking about.

1:37 PM  
Blogger What Not said...

I graduated in 84 and have followed them since. I'm not going to get into the typical ad hominum stuff, you don't know this or that stuff that happens because of the anonymity on these boards. If you want to have a good debate- cool. If you want to prove your point by simply saying I don't know, then we have no debate.

On the one hand you're saying that the quality of the players has gone up, on the other you're implying they have no heart. So where's the quality? Talent, maybe.

Do you think they have a swing man or shooting guard on this team more talented than Carlos Yates? Do you think they have a point guard better than Miskiri? Or John Niehoff?

My guess is that you're thinking that more contemporary players and the overall level of league play is better now than say 10 years ago. I say the athleticism is better but their fundamentals and the results aren't.

Yeah, "better" players out of high school. Guys like Vlad. You can have talent but is it really talent if it doesn't produce? It's a team thing.

8:07 AM  
Blogger's good for you. said...

"Do you think they have a swing man or shooting guard on this team more talented than Carlos Yates?"

Are you really hyping Mason's all-time leading scorer, a guy who died a DC street and was a cocaine user/dealer? Yeah...I think I'll take Larranaga's clean-cut, team-oriented, good kids anyday other the "stars" of the past. Come on, man...Mason wasn't a Final Four caliber team or even a regular CAA leader until Larranaga arrived.

Congrats on the homecoming win, guys. Win out, though...we need 'em.

P.S.: Wow...Gary Williams? You'd really rather have Gary Williams? Just because he yells a little or a lot? Maryland SUCKS. Mason is a better program than Maryland!!

10:20 PM  
Blogger What Not said...

Not hyping Yates, but he was a nice player, just mixing it up a little here and adding some historical perspective. I absolutely will take this program and players over UMD or anywhere else for that matter. Love these guys and Coach L, but just not willing to buy into the idea that they're "loaded". Next year, yeah maybe. In two years with Pearson and Morrison and new blood, absolutely.

Showed some intensity yesterday. Guards still sketchy. Long had a good game.

6:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This squad has talent but something is missing,at least the players we are seeing each game. Coach L has in the past recruited players that played hard nosed ball. Tony Skin was that type (and I don;t mean his beating the competition at WS). Lewis and Evans were as well. I don't get why Fleming has been benched as he could reset the tone.

2:40 PM  
Blogger's good for you. said...

I agree with a couple of you...based on this year's class, and next year's, a welcome change may be coming in terms of the competitors Larranaga is getting. We'll certainly see. As for Fleming...I don't get it either. I know he doesn't have the talent the other guys have, but I love his intensity and blue collar work ethic. He deserves a lot more respect than he's gotten from Coach L. this season...just like Carter last year.

8:32 PM  

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