Blog Entry

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Posted on: November 9, 2010 8:40 am
Edited on: November 9, 2010 8:51 am
Tennessee lost an exhibition to Indianapolis on Monday night.

Indianapolis is a Division II school.

So now the folks who talk about college basketball in November -- and that number isn't nearly as high as I'd like it to be -- are making predictable and sweeping generalities, apparently forgetting how another school that wears orange suffered a similar embarrassment a year ago last week.

"Hopefully we can learn from this and move in the right direction," Syracuse's Wes Johnson said after last preseason's exhibition loss to Division II Le Moyne. He then proceeded to learn from it and move in the right direction, i.e., the direction of a Big East title and No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.

Which is why Bruce Pearl shouldn't be overly concerned.

Granted, there's a chance what happened Monday at Thompson-Boling Arena will ultimately prove to be the first sign that the off-the-court drama surrounding the program will have an on-the-court effect that'll cause the Vols to fall short of expectations. But it's just as likely that this defeat means absolutely nothing, which is pretty much what I told a distraught Syracuse fan who emailed after the Orange's loss to Le Moyne last November and proclaimed his favorite team's season "just ended before it ever began."
"This isn't going to be as bad as you think or as bad as it was Tuesday night. I can't find proof right now (I've been looking for 15 minutes), but I believe UMass lost an exhibition in the 1995-96 season, then went on to make the Final Four. Grand Valley State famously beat Michigan State in an exhibition two years ago, and the Spartans still made the Sweet 16. So losing a game like this isn't necessarily a prediction of what's coming."
Those were my words filed within 24 hours of Syracuse's loss to Le Moyne.

My levelheadedness served me well.

So while I do wonder if the Vols will miss Wayne Chism, J.P. Prince and Bobby Maze more than most anticipated, the reality is that I've seen Pearl win with rosters much worse than the roster he has now, and I'll still be shocked if Tennessee isn't a borderline Top 25  team that competes for the SEC East title and makes the NCAA tournament. In other words, Monday's development didn't change my opinion of the Vols one bit. My guess is that they'll bounce back Friday and open the regular season with a double-digit win over Chattanooga, just like they were always going to do.
Category: NCAAB

Since: Nov 29, 2007
Posted on: November 15, 2010 7:42 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Yeah, ill remember you.  The one with the dirty mom!  Loser. 

Since: Mar 22, 2009
Posted on: November 11, 2010 1:37 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Tennessee sucks yep I went there. You shall see. Remember me.

Since: Nov 29, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:37 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

My bad C_Elmston, you are correct.  He did cheat.  I stretched it there.  However, I doubt anything else you say will happen.  We dished out some rough punishment, and although I believe Bruce should still be punished, i think that what has already been taken from him (recruiting off campus for 1 yr, and 1.5 million pay cut, not to mention other things) will help ease the minds of NCAA.  So if your predictions are true, looks like we are in for a long year.  If not, then look out cause we will be on a long run, in the NCAA tourney that is!  GO VOLS

Since: Sep 22, 2006
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:18 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

C'mon, kids; pre-season is essentially meaningless for teams from power conferences.  Sure, they can boost their power ratings and thus their seed, supposedly.  Sure, they can "battle-test" themselves by finding opponents who will play them close.  But really, unless you're Gonzaga, Memphis, or some Sun Belt team that needs to prove yourself outside of the conference, these games are all about chemistry and experience.  Wins and losses matter like your grades in junior high make a difference in your job prospects.

Syracuse was fine last year, and Tennessee will likely be fine this year--pending further punishments.  That and conference play are all that (should) matter to the Vols.  Can Pearl beat the rap?  Can the Vols beat the Wildcats? Those are the questions.

Since: Jun 6, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:08 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

As for my fellow Vol fan kingfishvol, Pearl may have lied, but he didnt cheat. 


What the hell are you talking about???  He knowingly broke one of the most obvious of rules, and only admitted his wrongdoing when caught.  That's TEXTBOOK CHEATING.  Don't be such an idiot homer.

Since: Jun 6, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:06 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Oh, this Pearl thing isn't going away, tim.  He most likely will be suspended by the NCAA, quite possibly for the remainder of the season.  That's if he's lucky and he isn't forced out.

Since: Nov 29, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:01 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Nopes, not Michigan.  Probably your mother!  Yes, I went there.  And so did she. Loser. 

Same thing was said last year after we had 4 of our top 6 guys arrested.  What happened then?  Oh, thats right, we only beat the #1 team in the nation.  How you like them apples? 

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2010 2:00 pm

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

Parrish may be right, this loss to a Div II school could be nothing.  Pearl was likely more intent on working on plays and seeing what players could do than on winning the game.  On the flip side, Ohio St lost an exhibition game to Div II Findlay the year after making the Final 4, and subsequently saw Oden, Conley and Cook all go 1 and done.        It turned out to be a disappointing season for the Buckeyes.  The post game analysis at the time was Matta was more interested on working on things than winning a meaningless exhibition, but this loss was a portent of things to come. 

Since: Oct 15, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2010 12:44 pm

Tennessee Verse...

Who will Tennessee play in the 1st round of the NIT?? Michigan??

Since: Nov 18, 2009
Posted on: November 10, 2010 11:12 am

You remember Syracuse from last season, right?

I think we all have gotten the message that you hate bruce Mr Soapbox!!! Yes the best coach in UT history should be fired immediately for having A BBQ at home for recruits and lying about it; just like Cal. and 50 other coaches should be fired for whatever underhanded BS they used to land a recruit..I hope your p#nis is bigger than that rock you live under!!!

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