There was some debate a few posts down about what happened so I was compelled to rewatch the tape of the game. I also figured it might be therapeutic to do so….I was wrong. At any rate here are some observations from having watched it with a cold clinical point of view:
- The stretch which UNC essentially lost control of the game was from the 6:31 mark to the 4:22 mark left in the game. UNC was up by 10 and over the course of 2:09 UNC had three missed three pointers and missed jumpers by Wright and Hansbrough each. During this time Georgetown scored seven unanswered points and closed it to 75-72 when Roy decided to call a timeout. After that timeout UNC went back to running a interior based offense and subsequently began scoring again with two free throws apiece from Hansbrough and Wright as well as a layup by Hansbrough. This is why I think Roy’s biggest mistake was not calling the timeout at 75-70 and getting them back on track. Assuming he does that and we get the same result out of that timeout we got from the one he ended up taking, UNC would have been up seven with four minutes left and not just five. I think that changes the complexion of the game and maybe rattles the Hoyas a little more as well as boosts the Heels’ confidence.
- The missed Wayne Ellington three at 5:18 to go was huge because looking at the tape again Hansbrough had Roy Hibbert on the post and a feed to him would have been easy.
- The Hoya possession beginning at the 4:48 mark was key because UNC had defended them down to three seconds on the shot clock when Ty Lawson fouled Wallace trying to drive to the basket. After the inbounds something happened on the UNC defense that left Reyshawn Terry guarding Hibbert. There is no way Terry could be expected to guard Hibbert who stepped around Terry and dunked the ball to cut the lead to three.
- During the final four minutes UNC took only one three pointer outside of the Ellington three at the end and that was a good look from Terry with three minutes left and UNC up by three. I have absolutely no problem with him taking that shot because this is the kind of shot Terry hit against Boston College, NC State, Michigan State, and USC. I was certain it would fall and when it did not it spelled trouble.
- And not to blame the refs but the foul calling down the stretch did not help UNC any. The most crucial call came with 45 seconds left and Jessie Sapp pulled down a missed Tyler Hansbrough jumper. Sapp comes down with the ball and turns knocking Hansbrough down who had come up behind him. The foul was called on Hansbrough which seemed like a questionable call since it appeared to me the ref pointed at Sapp. I looked at that foul several times and the only way I can figure the refs call a foul on Hansbrough is that he did not give Sapp enough space to come down. However in one respect it was a common thread for the second half officiating which was less favorable.
- In watching the tape there are so many of those shots which were just off. I thought most of them were good looks and had they fallen no one would have cared about them getting away from their offense. There is a point when you look at a team having gone that cold and you realize that it was just not meant to be and it was a perfect storm of events which snowballed in a grand collapse by UNC to end the season.
Okay I was wrong. It was therapeutic and I think I can actually let it go now, at least as far as blogging about it goes.