For What It's Worth: February 6th

For What it’s Worth on this February 6 -- The last time the Shockers had lost three straight games was four years ago in Gregg Marshall’s second season.

About last night---

To put this mess in the proper perspective consider that Southern Illinois was a team that had lost six straight. And not just six straight, but six straight by an average margin of 17 points. This figured to be a team that wouldn’t fight the inevitable---boy was that wrong. Wichita State couldn’t have looked any better through the first thirteen and half minutes—they lead by 17 at the 7:23 mark. Who could have possibly seen a 25-3 run coming against them?

Not finishing---

People generally assume the term ‘finishing’ applies to the end of the game and it generally does. Last night against SIU it should have come in the first half, but the Shockers let them up off the mat and then had problems containing them the rest of the night. You never want to let a bad team think they are anything but bad, which is exactly what Southern Illinois is. WSU missed a great opportunity to have an easy night, by thinking that they were already having one. If they’d kept them down for a few more minutes that game would have been over by the half.

Not finishing part 2…

…as it pertains to the end of the game. Two of the last three possessions for Wichita State ended in turnovers. One of those came on a shot clock violation after a time out. I know that confidence is a tricky thing, but it’s interesting to me to see a team that was so tough in the face of adversity earlier in the season when three starters went down—suddenly turn a little timid.

Hoops IQ---

There were three straight possessions late in the game for SIU that the Shockers defended perfectly for the first 30 seconds of the shot clock, only for the Salukis to score on all three possessions. Twice it was because of silly—heck—stupid fouls. There were more than a few times last night that the Shockers were their own worst enemy.

The last play---

I’m sure more than a few Shocker fans that that Jalen Pendleton charged into Demetric Williams, I thought it was good non-call. Pendleton may have been a little out of control, but Demetric was falling backwards either stumbling, or trying to buy the call. I do think that the goal tending call on Ehimen Orupke was incorrect. The ball still appeared to be on its upward flight, I was surprised that the call was made.

Now what---

It’s not time to panic, but a little worry might be warranted. As things sit right now WSU will be favored in its remaining home games, but I’d have trouble picking them at Indiana State, Illinois State or Creighton. Three more losses gets them to eight heading to St. Louis---even with a high RPI is 11-7 in the Valley good enough for an at-large bid to the NCAA?

Bruce weighs in on controversial call


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