And that, as they say, is that. The 2009-2010 Auburn basketball season is over. We’ve already covered the elephant in the room here, but a few more thoughts about last night’s game:
— We can dither about a lot of factors, but the game basically came down to one thing: Florida hit their three pointers. Auburn did not. Our Tigers basically never outshoot (outshot, excuse me) their opponent from 3, but the different between 4-for-25 and 7-for-15 is vast, vast, vast. Vast enough that Auburn never really had a chance of making up for it elsewhere.
— Especially with that kind of interior defense. Though I rarely thought the problem was Lett, Knox, Hargrove, or whoever happened to be “defending the rim”; the bigger issue was stopping Irving Walker (et al) on penetration. The Gators finished with 17 assists on their 27 baskets. (For comparison’s sake: Auburn notched assists on 10 of 28.) Total offensive points-per-possession: 1.18, even with Auburn mostly shutting down the Gators’ work on the offensive glass. Auburn’s been worse this season, but that’s not good, not good at all.
— Frankie Sullivan: man, what can you say? Still wish he’d knocked down a couple more of those wide-open deep looks he got, but he alone seemed to understand what was a good shot and what wasn’t last night. (Obligatory note that he was the only non-senior seriously involved with the offense goes here.) Recruiting job No. 1 for the new coach is keeping Sullivan on the roster.
— I’m sorry, but when you reach this point in the season, you shouldn’t still be dabbling with a 10-man rotation. Pick your guys and let ’em play. No offense to Andre Malone, but what are we really going to get out of a two-minute first-half stint from him?
— Still can’t believe Brendon Knox got two shots in his final game. Two.
— It’s kind of obligatory to note how this one game reflects the entire season, right? So, yeah, of course Sullivan went off just as soon as Waller finally went cold; of course they kept things competitive but lost by double-digits in the end; of course the game essentially was decided when a tired Auburn team couldn’t quit fouling down the stretch.
— A final thanks to Lucas Hargrove, Johnnie Lett, Brendon Knox, Dewayne Reed, and Tay Waller for all of their hard work and their contributions to the fun of 2008-2009. Best of luck, guys.
All right, I’m off to enjoy a packed-full weekend of hoops. I’ll be back if there’s any more concrete Lebo developments. See you soon.