While the Saints were dismantling the Lions in the 2nd half Saturday night, another dismemberment was happening in Piscataway, New Jersey: Rutgers took its second Top 15 scalp of the season, defeating defending champion Connecticut, 67-60. It was the Huskies’ second loss in New Jersey last week (also blitzed by Seton Hall, 75-63). What’s wrong with UConn?
Leadership seems to be the biggest issue. Watching them on the floor, there’s little or no cohesion, and lots of bad decisions are being made. But perhaps there’s more. Here’s what point guard Shabazz Napier said:
When a play starts breaking down and I’m yelling, ‘Bring it out, bring it out,’ and Boat or Jeremy takes a shot, that just shows that I’m not a leader. It sucks, because we lose games like that. But I try my best. I’m just a human being, I try to do my best in helping my teammates out. If they don’t want me to do it, that’s on them, but I’m still going to be scratching and trying to do it, because I hate losing.
That’s Allen Iverson-wannabe Ryan Boatright and future NBA lottery pick Jeremy Lamb, in case you’re wondering.
“I’m not saying (some players) have their own agenda, I just feel they don’t understand what’s going on. I feel as though I’m the closest to Coach. I feel as though I understand what Coach is thinking about. I understand how to play along with Coach, because I’m the point guard, so I have to be the coach on the court. Sometimes the guys don’t listen to me.”
Clearly, they really miss Kemba Walker. And the egos of Lamb and Drummond don’t appear to be having the greatest impact on the team.
The Big East schedule hasn’t even gotten challenging yet. The Huskies’ haven’t played a ranked team in a month, and the Georgetown-Louisville-Syracuse stretch doesn’t happen for three more weeks. Can Calhoun make the magic happen again, like he did last year? And if he doesn’t, can we agree that March 2011 run was all Kemba? [via Ballin is a Habit]