Sunday, December 29, 2013

Scanning the SoCon- Week Nine

Each week, fans and bloggers from around the SoCon are surveyed for the latest opinions on the SoCon. This is our third year of Scanning the SoCon, and hopefully our best year yet.


Maine at Chattanooga (Dr Pepper Classic)
Bluefield at Appalachian State
Georgia Southern at Campbell
Milligan at Western Carolina
High Point at Wofford
UNCG at North Carolina State
Presbyterian at Samford
Furman at UC-Davis

Duke vs. Elon in Greensboro, NC

College of Charleston at Davidson

The Citadel at Radford
Appalachian State at Duquesne
UNCG at Western Carolina
Wofford at Samford

Elon at Western Carolina
Samford at Georgia Southern
Chattanooga at Furman
Davidson at Wofford


1) Davidson 75 (5)
2) Elon 66 (2)
3t) Western Carolina 61
3t) UNCG 61
5) Georgia Southern 47
6) Wofford 42
7) Samford 33
8) Chattanooga 29
9) Furman 26
10) Appalachian State 13
11) The Citadel 9


Kyle Cain, UNCG- 5 votes

Others receiving votes- Jelani Hewitt, Georgia Southern (1 vote), Sebastian Koch, Elon (1 vote)


Elon at Western Carolina- 3 votes

Others receiving votes- College of Charleston at Davidson (2 votes), UNCG at Western Carolina (1 vote), Wofford at Samford (1 vote)


Sum up your team.

Appalachian State- I don't wanna. It's just been a continuing exercise in futility. Losing to Winthrop and Presbyterian is a all-time low. Struggling against North Greenville didn't help. Now this team has their fourth and final sub-D1 game against Bluefield College, then their final non-conference game against Duquesne later in the week. No word on when Canty will return. The good news is that the team looked as good against NAIA Milligan as they could, but it doesn't give any hope to the future. With Elon, UNCG and Davidson next week to start the SoCon schedule plus the chance of Canty returning, the season could be salvaged but let's not get ahead of ourselves here

Chattanooga- The Mocs have been painful to watch at times this year, but showed some signs of life against UAB a few weeks back and then beat Grand Canyon on Sunday night. The Mocs still have a lot of work that needs to get done, but with the team maybe finally get sort of healthy with Rico White and Z Mason back, and Lance Stokes not looking quite as hobbled, maybe they can make a run in the SoCon.

Western Carolina- The Cats have not played since their last second loss at Georgia back on December 21. In case you didn't see that game, the Cats were called for 26 fouls by the SEC officials, while blowing the whistle only 13 times against the Bulldogs.

As we head into the SoCon season, if your team is leaving, which team in the SoCon are you going to miss the most? If your team is not leaving, which team that is leaving are you going to miss the most?

Appalachian State- Davidson because it's a short trip of 100ish miles and it's a big deal to both teams. If the games are scheduled right (unlike this year where the only meeting in January 9th), then it's a big gate for both schools. For some reason App plays Davidson very well in Belk and has won three of their last five there. Plus the $2 Brickhouse beers.

Georgia Southern- The team I'm going to miss playing the most is actually already gone. The College of Charleston was always the team I like to see GSU play, and beat, the most. This stems from the great matchups these two teams had when I was at Georgia Southern in the early 2000's. My first season of closely following GSU basketball was the 2003-2004 season and two of my best memories of GSU basketball came from that season when GSU came back from down double digits with about 10 minutes to play to beat Charleston infront of one of the largest and loudest crowds I've ever seen in Hanner Fieldhouse. Then a few weeks later GSU went to Charleston and again beat Charleston in a packed Kresse Arena. The current SoCon team that I'm going to miss the most is UTC. I've followed their program since the NCAA tournament appearances of the mid 90's and always thought highly of the UTC basketball program. Two of my biggest SoCon memories come against UTC as well. The first one isn't a great one as it was when UTC ended GSU's run in that 2003-2004 conference tournament with an overtime win in the semifinals. The second one came a couple years ago in my first trip to Chattanooga to watch GSU take on the Mocs. The Eagles came storming back from down 16 points with 12 minutes to play and Jelani Hewitt won the game on a 3 pointer at the buzzer. The games with UTC are something I'll definitely miss.

Western Carolina- For most WCU fans, I'd say we'll miss the Mountaineers the most. Like in football, the largest crowds in Ramsey are for ASU games. It's the rivalry that Catamount fans love to hate.

Which two SoCon coaches are most on the hot seat?

Appalachian State- The first answer by far is Jason Capel. Last year of a contract and with a conference move ahead, it doesn't look good. Second by a long way is probably Larry Hunter by default. Don't know his contract situation, but he's a tenured SoCon coach who seems to be one 20-loss season away from a pink slip. If he doesn't produce with Trey Sumler in his senior year, I can see the Cats making a move.

Chattanooga- It is almost too obvious to say Jason Capel. For the record, that is why this question asked for two coaches. Capel was the obvious choice. My second choice is The Citadel’s Chuck Driesell. He just hasn’t done anything to indicate that there is any reason to believe that he can be the one to turn it around for the Bulldogs at this point.

Western Carolina- My guesses would be ASU's Jason Capel and The Citadel's Chuck Driesell. Capel in his 4th season at ASU is 3-8 on the season, without a DI win this season, and Driesell is 4-9 this season, after going only 8-22 in 2012-13. Both teams have dim prospects for improved seasons over last year.

What should your team have for a New Year’s Resolution?

Appalachian State- Get Jay Canty back on the court. He won't be the fix-all, but with the pieces currently in place, he could help out a lot. He can alleviate pressure off the guards and free up Obacha and Baskins so they don't have to do more than they can.

Chattanooga- Play better defense. Somehow. Someway. If they can play better defensively, there are a lot of wins out there for the taking in the SoCon.

Western Carolina- Since I'm sure we lead the conference in fouls, the New Year's resolution should be "To reduce personal fouls, and improve scoring consistency."

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