“We have always trusted our defense,” Fox said. “In that situation, especially the way the rebounding was going the second half, I didn’t feel like we were going to need it.”By "it" coach is referring to fouling. This morning it's easy to look back and think we would've had that thing if we had sent them to the line. Rolled the dice. But to his credit, Coach's defense that he trusts forced a 30 foot jumper from a guy who had not hit from behind the arc much all night (1-7).
It's certainly a healthy debate, to foul in that situation or to play defense. I'll trust the coach. Just wish that damn shot had rimmed out.
Some other thoughts:
- I've admired the Stegeman renovations from the outside, but this was my first time inside. It's like a brand new arena. Walking in, if there hadn't been so much Dawg on the walls I would've thought I was at an away game.
- Great crowd despite nasty weather. I gave the students some grief during football season about empty seats, some of which is really out of their control. But currently they seem to be putting the lower bowl alumni to shame in the Steg. Just saying.
- Thanks to those of you who joined in the live blog. Definitely have some things to iron out before signing day and moving forward. But overall I thought it worked pretty well. Stay tuned.
- Gerald Robinson is a difference maker. But he played tight last night and his quick fouls and turnovers hurt. We need him to find his SEC groove.
- Clearly the highlight of the night was Florida's Chandler Parsons hitting a three from the corner, start running down the court and gets racked by one of his own coaches. He really needed that timeout.
- I know Trey logged something like 47 total minutes, but he spent about twice that talking to the refs about certain fouls that were somehow non-fouls.
- I thought overall the players really rose to the challenge of playing a top team on a big stage. And I'll admit when I looked at Price about 27 feet away with just 6 or so seconds left in regulation I thought we were officially done. He thought the same thing, but briefly. Then he, Ware and Thompkins found a way to get it done.
- And that's why this is such a kick in the gut. We have to win ones like this.
Like Coach says, they'll use the agony as fuel.