Sunday, February 16, 2014

Scanning the SoCon- Week Sixteen

Scanning the SoCon gathers bloggers and fans from around the conference to vote on things and  answer questions. This is the third year of Scanning the SoCon and hopefully will be our best year yet.


Davidson at The Citadel

Elon at UNCG

Furman at Wofford
Georgia Southern at Chattanooga
Western Carolina at Appalachian State

The Citadel at Western Carolina
Elon at Georgia Southern
Appalachian State at Furman
Wofford at Davidson

Chattanooga at UNCG

1)      Davidson 99 (9)
2)      Chattanooga 86
3)      Elon 79
4)      Wofford 77
5)      Western Carolina 61
6)      UNCG 51
7)      Samford 45
8)      Georgia Southern 39
9)      Appalachian State 30
10)  Furman 18
11)  The Citadel 9


Brian Sullivan, Davidson- 2 votes

Others Receiving Votes- Jelani Hewitt, Georgia Southern (1 vote), Gee McGhee, Chattanooga (1), Z Mason, Chattanooga (1), Tommy Spagnolo, Appalachian State (1), Stephen Croone, Furman (1), Lee Skinner, Wofford (1), Spencer Collins, Wofford (1)


Wofford at Davidson- 6 votes

Others Receiving Votes- Chattanooga at UNCG (1 vote), Western Carolina at Appalachian State (1), Elon at Georgia Southern (1)


Sum up your team.

Chattanooga- The Mocs beat Western Carolina on Friday night, and they are off to a 10-2 SoCon start. They have four games left. The main goal is to finish with the second or third seed in the SoCon Tournament. That means two or three wins in the last four. The Mocs are in very good position to earn that, but need to keep on winning. Thursday night at Georgia Southern is huge, and the road game at UNCG next Sunday should be interesting. The Mocs could still win the SoCon title with a lot of help. They could also fall down to the fifth seed if the wheels fall off. They have clinched a bye for the SoCon Tournament. Honestly, Moc fans should be pleased with that effort considering where this team was mid-December.

Davidson- The last time I wrote about the Wildcats, we were looking forward to a big game against the undefeated Mocs. That turned out to be a 94-51 romp. It was followed by home wins over The Citadel and Furman and road wins over Samford and GSU. Those five wins have been by an average of over 22 points. The Wildcats now stand at 11-1 and have clinched a bye in the conference tournament. The team is playing better. In an interview before yesterday's game, Coach McKillop said that the guys are making shots but that there is plenty of room for improvement on defense. This looks like a team that is improving steadily and should be ready for Asheville.

UNCG-  UNCG continues to be exactly what they've been all season, wildly inconsistent. Even though the wins have been few and far between since the middle of January, the Spartans haven't played all that terrible. It just seems to always be one little thing that hurts. This afternoon, UNCG lost to Western Carolina in overtime. In that game UNCG continually left points at the free throw line only to really need them at the very end. As for positives with this team, UNCG has started to get more and more contributions from freshmen Diante Baldwin, RJ White and Tyrone Outlaw. Baldwin has pushed senior PG Drew Parker out of the starting lineup. White and Outlaw have been very good the past few games (Outlaw was 5-6 from 3 at Georgia Southern). Unfortunately, this schedule just won't back off for UNCG. They finish up with home games against Elon and Chattanooga and then travel to Davidson and Wofford. At this point a bye for the tournament seems unreachable. The #6 seed is a good goal at this point and I think they may can get there if G can split these final four games.
Western Carolina- Western Carolina was 1-1 for the week, winning at home (barely) and losing on the road to Chattanooga, with very uninspired play in both games. Lack of offensive consistency and committing a fouls each and every time the opponent takes the ball inside continues to plague the Catamounts.

Name one team that don’t want your team to face in the SoCon Tournament.

Chattanooga- The obvious answer for the Mocs is Davidson with the 43 point loss and all, but I hate to throw that out there because it is too easy of an answer. I think the Mocs match up reasonably well with Western Carolina, Wofford and Elon. I think the Mocs probably would want to avoid Wofford. They have already beaten them twice. It is hard to beat a good team three times. Very hard. The Mocs will be challenged to face off with Wofford a third time in the tournament.

Davidson- Elon is the only team that has defeated the Wildcats. But I really want to face them in the tournament. I guess I'll go with Wofford. They have 3 excellent players and are getting better play from some of their other guys. And they are superbly coached.

UNCG-  UNCG seems to just always play poorly against Elon. I honestly can't remember the last time the Spartans defeated the Phoenix. So, I would have to say that I would not look forward to seeing UNCG draw them in Asheville.
Western Carolina- The Cats have the capability to lose or win against any team in the conference, from top to bottom, therefore I do not have a good feeling about WCU's first game in the tournament, be it Friday or with a bye, Saturday. This team is just too inconsistent o predict.

Would you like to see a conference run SoCon TV? How should it be operated?

Chattanooga- Yes, this would be a great addition for the conference. Personally, I would pay money for it. Here’s what I think they should do- put the live broadcasts for free on the internet, but have weekly features previewing the week ahead (about a 15 minute show) and the archived streams that is charged a monthly fee for, or a cheaper annual fee. Assuming the quality was reasonably good, I would happily accept a reasonable fee for archived material and a weekly preview. It would raise money for the conference, yet provide free broadcasts for people who wanted only that. It should feature every home game for a SoCon team, both in conference and out of conference. This will be a great additional feature for the SoCon.

Davidson- I would have liked that. I don't really care now.

UNCG- Yes, this is something that should have already happened. Anytime the Big South beats you to doing something innovative, you should feel ashamed. And no, there shouldn't be a charge for it. It amazes me when I see teams charging $4-$6 for this service. Really? You are not ESPN. No school has the sound/picture quality to justify ever paying for these streams.

Western Carolina- Yes, this is needed very much, we're behind most other midmajor conferences in this area, even the Big South. No charges, this is the way you get people to watch and follow SoCon athletics. It should be well publicized and free.

In honor of the Winter Olympics, who currently associated with the SoCon would you like to see competing in a Winter Olympic sport? Which sport?

Appalachian State- Iamarino in curling. Not as player, but as a stone.

Chattanooga- I know it is a little ridiculous, but I think watching Z Mason in male figuring skating would be quite amusing. It’s hard to imagine Mason in one of those outfits skating around. It would be fun to watch, though.

Davidson- Ice dancing is on right now. The camera does lots of close shots of the skaters' faces. The reaction shots when the scores are posted are fun. I'd like to see two Southern Conference coaches competing as a pair in ice dancing. I want two who have very expressive faces and who have hilarious reactions when things don't go their way. Give me Darcie Vincent and Mike Morris. Wes Miller and Jason Capel would also make a nice pair.
UNCG- I swear I think Iamarino is the Russian judge in figure skating because I always wonder if he's seeing the same thing as the rest of us. I also think Charlie Codd (App State AD) is like those ski jumpers. He's really just sitting at the top of that giant hill about to take off and no one (probably including himself) knows whether he's gonna be able to stick the landing or crash. Seems like a good metaphor for App State and Georgia Southern.

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