Thursday, March 03, 2011

Thursday Night Beer: Husker Hoops Still on the Bubble

Thanks to a home victory over Missouri this week, Nebraska basketball is on the verge of being "bubblicious", at least according to ESPN's Joe Lunardi, who has them currently in their "last four out".  So what's it going to take?  Probably three more wins at bare minimum.  Must win at Colorado, then pick up at least one and probably two more in Kansas City at the Big XII tournament.  That's a tall order, since the Huskers haven't played very well outside of Lincoln. Certainly can't afford another hairball like the one the Huskers coughed up in Ames last Saturday afternoon.

Our other NCAA tournament-bound team, the UNO hockey team, really could use a good performance this weekend against #11 Minnesota-Duluth on the road. It's all about the seeding, and second place is still possible as the Mavs sit one point behind second place Denver. Second place is important because the top two seeds don't have to play the Thursday night games at the WCHA Final Five.  Speaking of which, the WCHA uses a "Gopher Rule" when scheduling games:  if Minnesota is scheduled to play that night, they always play in the second game that night so that Gopher fans can make it after work. Not that anybody should be surprised by this. (H/T:  Goon from NoDak)

Turns out Wisconsin blogger Chuck Schwartz seethed a wee-bit at being called out for his ridiculous declaration that Badger head coach Mike Eaves had sewn up a coach of the year award. Especially from a football blogger who crashed the inner sanctum of hockey.  But with the Badgers in a free-fall that began with being swept in Omaha, he finally acknowledged that Eaves won't win the award... though he still should. Oh, he let me know why loud and clear: Wisconsin lost so much from last season's team, it was remarkable that they were ever in contention. True to a point, but programs like Wisconsin usually have a solid stream of talent waiting in the wings - which they do. So while Schwartz and some of his Badger pals were running around patting themselves on the back, most people outside Badgerland took this season for what it is: reloading.  And his whole excuse that "nobody saw the Badgers collapse" pretty much validates my main point: you can't declare the race over at the halfway point of the season.

I see Creighton is starting to promote season tickets for their first season of baseball at TD Ameritrade Park.  First game will be on April 19th...and the opponent is going to be Nebraska. MECA had better be prepared for a huge crowd for opening night downtown; no soft opening for this place.


Goon said...

I would be very surprised if Blais isn't the coach of the year in the WCHA this season. He was picked much lower and his team will finish in second or third.

Husker Mike said...

I'm biased, of course, towards Blais. Personally, I think Blais is clearly the candidate. That being said, Hakstol of UND and Gwozdecky of DU are also deserving of mention, though they were also supposed to be in the mix.