December 04, 2006

Where did they come from?: Wichita State (6-0) had already posted road victories over two teams that made last April's Final Four - 72-66 over George Mason and 57-53 over then-No.6 LSU - and made Syracuse (7-1) their latest victim, with a 64-61 win over the Orange.

posted by hawkguy to basketball at 09:43 AM - 10 comments

Interesting side note: Wichita State's coach is Mark Turgeon, a member of the 1988 National Championship Kansas squad. If the Jayhawks keep sliding, I see a great replacement in the future. (But KU just extended Bill Self's contract.)

posted by hawkguy at 09:50 AM on December 04, 2006

They were conference champions last year, #24 in the RPI, and made it to the Sweet 16. So it isn't like this is a complete shock. Still, good to see they aren't just a one-year wonder.

posted by tieguy at 10:36 AM on December 04, 2006

It is nice to see more and more of the mid majors making a name for themselves recently. I just hate to see the same teams winning year after year.

posted by livewire at 10:54 AM on December 04, 2006

think we can get a meatier link? this one just goes to the WSU men's basketball page.

posted by goddam at 10:59 AM on December 04, 2006

Yeah, good point, goddam. Boo for low-cal links.

posted by tieguy at 11:07 AM on December 04, 2006

Sorry guys...I'm looking right now.

posted by hawkguy at 11:19 AM on December 04, 2006

Try this one... Full story from the local Wichita paper. Not great, but better.<a

posted by hawkguy at 11:22 AM on December 04, 2006

It is nice to see more and more of the mid majors making a name for themselves recently. It seems that one of the major trends in all of sports today is the decrease in the talent gap. It seems that at all levels in all sports, teams are more competitive across the board. Now that sports are a major concentration of everyday life, competition is becoming stiffer and players are getting better. We get guys like D Wade who barely got a scholarship to Marquette? Not exactly a notorious basketball powerhouse, but obviously the competion for a scholarship at a Major D-1 school was and is very tough. If you get a scholarship to a D-1 school you are probably a pretty damn good player. After that its about coaching,conditioning. The teams that put in the most work will get the best results. Another part of the rise of the mid-majors is the fact that they are more likely to retain a player for their full 4 years of eligibility, which allows the teams to build better chemisty and really grasp their offensive and defensive schemes. Coaches at mid-majors are also more likely to keep their jobs which gives the teams consistency.

posted by yay-yo at 03:11 PM on December 04, 2006

good points yay-yo

posted by bronxbomber at 04:52 PM on December 04, 2006

One more thing that mid-majors do really really well, especially in comparison to the big league schools, is recruiting to their system. Whereas a lot of the top flight programs simply go after the biggest and best recruits available, the mid-majors are usually more selective in choosing guys who work in their defensive and offensive schemes. This is a big part of why really cohesive units from well-coached mid-major schools are able to succeed against teams with far more talent but with players who maybe are being forced into a system they perhaps aren't perfectly suited for.

posted by fatfryar at 05:34 PM on December 04, 2006

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