Wednesday Report Card: Aaron Bruce's Struggles
A - Hasheem Thabeet
The big 7-3 soph lacks the consistency of conference rival Roy Hibbert.. but considering the experience gap, Thabeet's having a much more impressive season. (Thought it should be noted they're similar in actual age despite Thabeet being a sophomore and Hibbert being a senior.) With 8 blocks last night against DePaul, its now 5 games in a row with at least 6 blocks. Thabeet is averaging 4.4 blocks per game, twice the amount of Hibbert, and he also averages more rebounds. I compare these two for obvious size & position reasons, and also because they'll be vying for position in this summer's NBA Draft. Coming into the year, Hibbert was considered to be a much better prospect, but Thabeet is steadily moving up the charts.
B - Oklahoma
How many more close wins does this team have left? Last night's wild double-OT win.. which Baylor basically gave away multiple times, was one of many close wins for the Sooners. There was the miracle shot against Texas Tech, down to the wire wins over OSU and Tech again, and back in December they beat WVU in double-OT and escaped with a close win over Gonzaga. For all the tight wins, the only real heart-breaking loss was to Kansas State when Michael Beasley hit a late game-winner. Something tells me this team's good luck will run out when it counts.. early in the NCAA Tournament.
C - Justin Fuehrmeyer
The Missouri State sophomore guard might seem like an odd choice for the Report Card considering his so-so stats and his team's mediocrity. A couple years back I saw him play in some late round of the Missouri high school tournament, shortly after he had signed with Barry Hinson. At the time he didn't really look like a D1 player due to his tiny build and lack of height. Yet here he is playing almost 30 mpg for a team that although itsn't good, isn't bad either. Who knew.
D- Jerome Dyson
I still find it hilarious how good UCONN's been since Dyson was suspended.
F - Aaron Bruce
Bruce has had a nice career and deserves respect for really being the first guy to get on-board Drew's rebuilding project at Baylor. He's stuck it through lean times and the four-year starting point guard should finally reach the NCAA Tournament this year. Yet, he's had a rough stretch here.. fouling Crocker on a 3-point attempt that turned into a 4-point play, and then there was the phantom time-out call late in the recent loss to Texas. On an unrelated note, Bruce is a rare player whose mpg has diminished in each of his four years.. from 34.8 to 31.1 to 29.7 and now 23.0
The Daily Report Card tells you all you need to know about the day in college hoops. From good to bad and bad to worse, I'll be laying down the law.
Previous Best / Worst
February 19th - Josh Duncan / Tim Welsh
February 18th - Wake Forest / NJIT
February 15th - Oral Roberts / Big Ten Predictions
February 13th - Mike Green / Ed Donato
February 11th - Charron Fisher / Tim Morris
February 8th - Big West / Virginia
February 6th - Chris Lofton / Dick Vitale
February 5th - Bob Knight / Josh Heytvelt
February 4th - New York Giants / Washington State
February 1st - Nevada / Penn
January 31st - Kansas State / St. John's
January 29th - Winthrop / Dyson & Wiggins
January 28th - Rutgers / Doris Burke
January 25th - Ron Hunter / Princeton Offense
January 23rd - Kentucky / Archbishop Burke
January 22nd - DJ Augustin / Scott Sutton
January 21st - New York Giants / Marquette
January 20th - Maryland / ESPN.com editors
January 18th - Cleveland State / Marquette
January 17th - Drake / HP Laptops
January 14th - Roy Hibbert / Michigan State
January 10th - Tony Bennett / Saint Louis
January 9th - DJ White / CSTV
January 8th - Robert Morris / Schedule Makers
January 7th - Wayne Ellington / Illinois
January 6th - Herb Sendek / Kentucky