This edition of the roundtable is hosted by Bj Fischer from Falcon Blog.
Who's doing a better job coaching this year? Reggie Witherspoon or Rob Murphy?
If you measure a coach by how he uses the tools he is given then hands down it's Murphy. Falcon Blog summed it up really well:
Last year, EMU was 9-21 with one of the 20 worst RPIs in D1 basketball. They were 5-11 in the MAC finishing tied for 10th. That team lost its top scorer and rebounder--its only double figures scorer, in fact. They fired their coach, and brought in a Syracuse assistant who is in the first year of implementing a defensive style and the same 2-3 zone that BG has been trying to use for five years. And for all that, EMU beat BG last night. EMU is 5-2 in the MAC.
If this is what he can do with the dumpster fire he inherited in Ypsi then the MAC west should shudder at what he will manage to do with thee or four years of team building under his belt. EMU can be the first MAC team, in some time, that might be able to stand up regularly against the East.
Witherspoon's tenure at Buffalo, if it were a kid, would be going into high school. He is having a good year but given the talent he has that's not too surprising. Murphy is pacing the game, and his approach, around the tools he has.
How are you feeling about the bracket buster?
(as I write this on Sunday the pairings are still not known) Most places have UB as one of the better road teams this season so the Bulls should get a TV game and a crack at a quality win, something they badly need if they want to impress the NIT should UB fail to win the MAC.
Both this year's matchup(s) and in general. Based on this, the four lowest ranked teams in the MAC are also the four most inexperienced. Does this surprise you?
Well that only somewhat telling. Toledo has serious problems that are *preventing* them from getting the experience they need. Northern Illinois just dumped their best player in what can be called an ethical, yet disastrous, decision.
Who's broken out of the bottom of the pack from last year? Aside from EMU getting better and Miami falling apart the MAC's cellar is just about the same as it's been for several seasons.
Of course experience matters but so does organization.
It seems like I do less head shaking at the MAC's officiating than I used to. Is it better...or are we just used to it?
Were just used to it.
I'm not enough of a hoops wonk to track individual officials so I cant say if it's "the talent pool". But more often than not I just shrug my shoulders are the terrible officiating because, well, that's the MAC.