The Elgin Baylor Classic taught us two things that we might have already known about the Redhawks, as they split the two games taking place Thursday and Friday before New Year’s Eve.
The blowout win over Nebraska-Omaha showed us that Seattle U can easily beat teams that it has significantly more talent than. UNO is also transitioning up to Division I, and it showed. They were significantly out-rebounded, out-scored, and out-everything-elsed by Seattle in a blowout that saw some huge numbers. Aaron Broussard tossed in 31 points. The Redhawks grabbed 49 rebounds, 20 of them on the offensive glass.
Friday’s loss reminded us of another, more painful fact. This year, Seattle has been completely unable to beat teams in close games. In games decided by 10 points or less, Seattle U is 0-5. On Friday they were tied with SJSU at 50 near crunch time in the second half, and promptly gave up a 10-0 run to let the game get out of reach. Whether that’s due to bad discipline, bad leadership or bad coaching, that’s not a good trend.
Hero: Aaron Broussard. He’s been the man for the Redhawks all season, and the Elgin Baylor Classic served somewhat as his coming-out party. The senior tossed in a combined 50 points in the two games and collected a combined 19 rebounds, as well as providing solid defense. It’s a shame he won’t be around for at least 1 year in the WAC, because after what he has given to this team, he deserves it.
Goat: Sterling Carter. It’s great that he isn’t afraid to put up shots, but… there’s a certain point when your shot isn’t on that you should think about becoming more of a distributor. Sterling hasn’t found that point. In the two games he shot 4-20 and had just 1 assist in each game. All 13 shots he took against San Jose State were 3’s. He’s not an asset to the team if his play remains that one-dimensional.
Key stat: 5. Of the teams Seattle U has beaten this year, those teams have a combined 5 wins against other Division-I teams this season. (And one of those 5 teams was Utah, who barely count as D-I this season, anyways. Zing!)